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Top News Links: Wednesday, Oct. 17

Governor offers early retirement plan for state employees

State employees could take cash or insurance payments in return for early retirement in a new cost savings plan developed by Gov. Robert Bentley. — Montgomery Advertiser

Mobile hospital closing

Infirmary West, a 124-bed hospital acquired by Infirmary Health from the University of South Alabama in trade for a cancer center site, will close Oct. 31, Infirmary Health announced this week. — al.com 

$1 Million gift to Calhoun

Huntsville businessman Bill Propst Sr. and his wife have presented $1 million to Calhoun Community College to improve facilities at the Huntsville campus; Propst is the former owner of Vintage Pharmaceuticals. — Huntsville Times

Above average rates for Alabama home equity loans

Rates charged by financial institutions on 10-year home equity loans in Alabama are above the national average. — Birmingham Business Journal

Honors for Mercedes-Benz GL-Class

The Alabama-made Mercedes-Benz GL-Class vehicle has been named SUV of the Year by Motor Trend magazine, the second time it's won the honor. — al.com

ULA rockets pass another test

United Launch Alliance rockets have successfully  passed the fifth of five contract milestones set by NASA, showing protections for rocket crew. — Huntsville Times

Jefferson County to appeal ruling

Jefferson County officials say they will appeal a bankruptcy judge's ruling that they must make sewer bond payments in full now, without retaining money for sewer repairs or legal fees. — Bloomberg Businessweek

No delay for Chantix trial

Pfizer, maker of the stop-smoking drug Chantix, asked to delay the start of a federal court trial in Florence until new scientific data could be reviewed, but judge says trial will start Monday as planned. — Fox Business

Intergraph breaks ground for new HQ

High-tech Intergraph broke ground Tuesday for a $60 million, 1,100-employee headquarters building. — WAFF TV

Birmingham ban on payday loans extended

Birmingham yesterday extended its ban on new payday loan businesses until at least next year. — WPMI TV

Orange Beach takes steps toward island purchase

The city of Orange Beach has commissioned an appraisal for two small islands near Perdido Pass with an eye toward purchase; would be designated for recreation and habitat restoration. — al.com 

Andrew Brimmer, namesake of Tuskegee business school, dies

Andrew Brimmer, the first black member of the Federal Reserve, died earlier this month at age 86; served on Tuskegee board for 40 years — Los Angeles Times

Limestone megasite decertified

The Tennessee Valley Authority has withdrawn certification of the 2,000-acre megasite in Limestone County and the property is now being marketed in smaller parcels. — Athens News Courier

Record quarter for ServisFirst

ServisFirst Bancshares, based in Birmingham, announced third quarter results with quarterly and nine-month income up more than 50 percent from last year. — Montgomery Advertiser

Income up at Renasant

Mississippi-based Renasant Corp. announced third quarter results with net third quarter income of $7 million, up from $6.5 in the same quarter last year. — Yahoo Finance

Hoover apartment complex sold

The 150-unit Cypress Garden apartment complex in Hoover has been sold for $5 million to a Florida company; transaction handled by Hendricks & Partners. — Birmingham Business Journal

Deputy director chosen for Port

H.S. "Smitty" Thorne has been named deputy director and chief operating officer of the Alabama State Port Authority. — Break Bulk

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