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Top News Links: Wednesday, March 14

State unemployment rate on the decline

Figures released yesterday show Alabama’s unemployment rate has dropped to 7.8 percent—the lowest rate in more than years. – Tuscaloosa News

Regions to repay bailout with $900 million stock sale

Regions Financial plans to sell approximately $900 million of its common stock in order to help repay $3.5 billion of federal bailout money the company received through the Troubled Asset Relief Program Capital Purchase Program. – Huntsville Times

Property tax vote in the works for Madison County

Legislators in the county are working on a plan that could possibly allow Madison residents to decide whether they want to increase property taxes each year or continue with a half-cent sales tax to pay for operation and maintenance of the city's new James Clemens High School opening this fall. – Huntsville Times

Verizon Wireless invested $120 million in Alabama in 2011

Verizon Wireless spent $120 million in Alabama in 2011, an investment that added 22 new cell sites and boosted the carrier’s 4G LTE network in Birmingham, Huntsville, Mobile and Montgomery. – Birmingham News

International Shipholding to sell vessels

Mobile-based International Shipholding Corp will sell two of its pure car truck carriers for $73.9 million to help repay a $35 million debt and pursue growth opportunities. – Reuters

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