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Top News Links: Tuesday, Jan. 19

Fraud charges for 11 former Superior Bank execs

The Securities and Exchange Commission has filed fraud charges against 11 former executives and board members at the now defunct Birmingham-based Superior Bank and its holding company. The regulatory agency says the bankers were involved in various schemes to conceal the extent of loan losses as the bank was faltering in the wake of the financial crisis, according to an SEC statement. – AL.com

Bernie Sanders draws crowd in Birmingham

With polls showing him running well in Iowa and New Hampshire, presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders took aim at what might be unusual territory for a self-described democratic socialist: the Deep South. Yet a crowd of more than 5,000 packed Boutwell Auditorium Monday night to hear the Vermont senator, while nearly 1,000 milled outside in freezing temperatures. "There must be some mistake, I heard Alabama was a conservative state," Sanders said. – AP/BaytownSun.com

GE good at getting subsidies from states

The prevailing explanation for General Electric's leaving Connecticut, encouraged by MSNBC's Joe Scarborough, is that this state is "hostile to business." But the claim must contend with the fact that Connecticut has awarded at least $4 billion in subsidies to businesses since 1992. So this state is pretty friendly to business — or at least to the lucky businesses that win state and local tax credits, grants, low-interest loans and the like. But GE is a more complex story. – Courant.com

Company changing exit lights from ground up

A Huntsville company believes the exit signs you commonly see in businesses, offices and schools are poorly placed and lit, and it hopes its patented technology can become the new industry standard. Emergent Lighting Systems has created a near-ground level building evacuation system designed to help people safely exit facilities with greater ease in case of a fire. – WAAY

Shelby opponent says timing on his side

Jonathan McConnell got a late start in his campaign against U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby. That, he said, was by design — an attempt to neutralize the Republican incumbent’s resources.  “What we did by doing that was turning it from an $18.3 million race or whatever’s in his war chest to a $7 million race, because if we wanted to maximize our statewide advertising in Alabama through the media market it would cost $220,000 a week, and we’d turn it into a 16-week race,” McConnell said in a recent interview in Montgomery. – Montgomery Advertiser

Gun sellers not panicked over Obama moves

President Obama’s recent executive order called for increased background checks and for all who sell guns to become licensed dealers or face severe punishment. While many are showing support for the President’s decision, gun sellers are saying the order is not giving out new rules. – AlabamaNewsNet

AFC, Baptist Health open Greenville clinic

American Family Care and Baptist Health continue the expansion of their partnership with the grand opening of a new AFC PriMed clinic in Alabama’s River Region.  The primary and urgent care clinic, the ninth to open under the partnership, is located at 101 Paul Stabler Drive in Greenville. Doctors and the medical staff began treating patients this week. – News release

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