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Top News Links: Thursday, March 29

Just don't call 'em taxes

State Finance Director Marquita Davis asks state agencies to look for potential fee increases to help the general fund budget. — WPMI-TV/MSNBC

Voter-approved sales tax takes effect in Cullman

A new half-cent sales tax in Cullman set for collection in May; schools to benefit. — Cullman Times

Birmingham considers school tax vote

Birmingham schools ask city to schedule vote on property tax for schools; mayor endorses plan. — Birmingham News

No bond payment from Jefferson County

Jefferson County will miss April 2 general obligation bond payout to "ordinary citizens." — Bloomberg Businessweek

April 1 deadline to E-Verify employees

Businesses face an April 1 deadline to enroll in federal E-Verify program. — WPMI-TV/MSNBC

Alabama personal income growth near bottom

State ranks 46th for personal income growth; other Southern states also low. — Birmingham Business Journal

Baldwin filter maker wins Lysol contract

Quality Filters of Robertsdale partners with Lysol to make allergen and bacteria-clearing filters, to be marketed throughout U.S. and Canada. — Mobile Press-Register

Boeing soars into missile defense program

In its 50th year in Alabama, Boeing begins work on new $3.48 billion missile defense contract. - Huntsville Times

Hospice leader charged with bank fraud

Talladega County man accused of embezzling $466,500 from company he served as CFO, pleads guilty to bank fraud. — Birmingham News

Shelby seeks NIH funding for Alabama

Sen. Richard Shelby argues that Alabama should qualify for NIH funds for states with little such support so that schools besides UAB have better chance at funding. — Birmingham News

Confusion over cities' claims to BP funds

Gulfport frustrated as Gulf Shores wins $6.5 million while the Mississippi city's claim is rejected. — WLOX-TV

Possible bid for Knology

Reports circulate that Avista and WideOpenWest are considering a bid for Knology, which provides communications services to portions of Alabama.— NASDAQ

Regions aims for $1 billion in refinancing

Regions Bank sets goal of $1 billion in refinancing for homeowners through federal program for troubled mortgages. — Birmingham News

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