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Top News Links: Wednesday, May 16

Birmingham auto parts supplier cuts back to one shift

The effects of a Michigan auto supply plant fire have now hit a Birmingham supplier of Mercedes-Benz in Vance. MISA, a subsidiary of Marubeni-Itochu Steel, is cutting some shifts as a result of a production slowdown at Mercedes. The plant, located on Sterilite Drive, has cut to one shift a day. – AL.com

Tom Wolfe took inspiration from Alabama businessman

The death of writer Tom Wolfe on Tuesday at age 88 recalls an Alabama connection to one of his novels. John Harbert III, the founder of Harbert Management Corp., Harbert Construction and Harbert Realty, among other companies, was one of the inspirations for the main character in Wolfe's "A Man in Full." – AL.com

Tyson Foods acquires companies to battle higher feed costs

Tyson Foods Inc. said Tuesday it would buy the poultry rendering and blending assets of American Proteins Inc. for about $850 million, as the company looks to recycle more animal products to use in feed and pet food. Tyson is facing higher feed costs in its meat processing business as prices of commodities like soybeans and corn increase. – Reuters

Businesses, churches weigh in on widening Huntsville road

It's a road project that will impact thousands of people every day: the widening of a heavily-traveled stretch over Huntsville Mountain. City leaders are examining the most efficient way to handle construction on Cecil Ashburn Drive. The mountain road will soon go from two to four lanes. – WTVM

Cadence CEO says company will still love Birmingham

Cadence Bank may be moving its CEO to Atlanta following yesterday's announced merger with State Bank Financial Corporation, but much of the bank's infrastructure will stay in Birmingham in the near term. That's what Cadence Bank CEO Sam Tortorici said today in a phone interview with AL.com. – AL.com

Another restaurant shuts down in downtown Selma

Efforts to revitalize downtown have hit a setback in Selma as another downtown business is set to close its doors. Charlie’s Place is closing up shop after just over two years in business. Owner Charlie Morgan says the restaurant just isn’t making enough money to support itself. It’s the third eatery located on Water Avenue to shut down. – ANN

Federal ruling may help Drummond Co. in defamation case

A recent federal appeals court ruling may offer ammunition to energy business Drummond Co. Inc. in a defamation case against Florida litigation boutique Conrad & Scherer and a former partner there—human rights lawyer Terrence Collingsworth, who has drawn scrutiny for alleged witness payments. But the ruling is only part of a broader legal showdown that Collingsworth indicated on Tuesday he has no plans to abandon. – Law.com

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