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* MONTGOMERY - According to a report released by the Alabama Department of Economic Development, Alabama Highway 69 in Cullman County is in need of expansion.

 The report has this project rated 16th with it calling to widen 1.1 miles from 4th Avenue to Cottage Hill Drive. It would expand to four lanes with added capacity to facilitate continued growth, improve mobility and reduce traffic delays while enhancing safety.

  The cost of the project is an estimated $40 million according to the report.

 

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* MONTGOMERY - State Senator Paul Bussman of Cullman addressed the beginning of the 2016 Alabama legislative session on his facebook page.

 The senator pointed out committee meetings are going on with topics discussed as protection of children from violent abuse, common core, illegal hunting on private property, lawsuit lending and others.

 Bussman reported things will become very active for the legislature next week when the bills become available to discuss on the floor of the senate.

 

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* WEST POINT - West Point is out to claim its second straight AHSAA Class 5A, Area 14 basketball championship Friday night.

 The Warriors meet the Russellville Golden Tigers in the title game at Jim Boyd Gymnasium. West Point advanced to the finals beating Fairview 61-40 Wednesday while Russellville got past Lawrence County in the other semifinal, 55-42.

The game will be carried live at 7:00 p.m. on your Cullman County/North Alabama Sports Leader, WKUL-FM.

 

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* All county offices inside the Cullman County Courthouse will be closed Monday in observance of Presidents' Day. Cullman County Sanitation Department will operate on its regular schedule.

 

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* LACON - Traffic is back to normal in the Northbound lanes of Interstate 65 following an accident Thursday morning.

 A tractor trailer crashed around the Cullman/Lacon exit, mile marker 318, causing the northbound lanes to be shut down until the accident was cleared. Traffic was re-routed on to Highway 31.

 The cause of the accident is still under investigation by the Alabama State Troopers Decatur Post.

 

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AHSAA Area Tournament scoreboard - Wednesday:

West Point 61, Fairview 40 (5A, A 14)

Russellville 55, Lawrence Co 42 (5A, A 14)

Cold Springs 47, Falkville 41 (G) (2A, A 14)

Tanner 60, Addison 34 (G) (2A, A 14)

Locust Fork 57, Good Hope 51 (4A, A 10)

Hanceville 69, Vinemont 46 (3A, A 10)

Susan Moore 71, Hanceville 68 (G) (2OT) (3A, A 10)

Austin 63, Cullman 49 (G) (6A, 15)

Hartselle 60, Decatur 36 (G) (6A, A 15)

 

West Point vs. Russellville Friday 7:00 p.m. on WKUL-FM for the 5A, Area 14 championship.

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* City of Cullman Water Department battled the cold and snow flurries Tuesday in repairing a broken water line in the 4th Avenue SE service area. The repairs were done with the cause of the broken line undetermined.

 Residents in the area had to deal with no water service for a short period of time. A crew responded to the issue before 10:00 a.m.

 

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* MONTGOMERY - Alabama Department of Public Health has confirmed a resident from Morgan County has been diagnosed with the Zika virus.

 The name of the person and their exact location has not been released to the public.

 The ADPH is conducting a series of tests with residents from the state who have traveled to areas where the virus exists. Four tests are not complete at the present time.

 

 

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* One local ranked prep basketball team is looking to win a second straight area title while two other schools go on the road Thursday facing highly ranked opponents.

 The St. Bernard Saints play the Meek Tigers in the 1A, Area 11 title game at 6:30 at the Fazi-Richard Athletic Center. The 5th ranked Saints have won 17 straight, are 21-1 on the season and 12-0 at home.

 Good Hope Lady Raiders play at No. 2 Locust Fork in the 4A, Area 10 championship. Lady Raiders looking for their second straight upset in the tournament as they meet a Locust Fork squad who is 25-1 on the season. Game tips off at 6:00 p.m.

 Fairview Lady Aggies are in Moulton for the 5A, Area 14 championship with No. 5 Lawrence County. Lady Aggies are 21-6, Lady Red Devils are 24-4. The game will get under way at 7:00 p.m.

 

 

 

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* HANCEVILLE - First place will be for grabs Thursday night in the Northern Division of the Alabama Community College Conference.

 The Wallace State Lions welcome the Marion Military Tigers to Tom Drake Coliseum with the game featuring the two best teams in the conference.

 Marion is 20-3 overall, 8-0 in the North and has a 15-game winning streak. Wallace State is 22-4, 7-1 in division play and has won five consecutive games. The Lions are 10-0 at the Coliseum this season.

 The showdown will tip off at 7:30 p.m. and will be carried live on WKUL-FM with pregame at 7:20 p.m.

 

 

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* GUNTERSVILLE - An order has been issued to drop charges against three Marshall County deputies for their involvment in reportedly destorying signs of a candidate from the 2014 election.

 Lieutenant Heath Thomas, along with deputies Chris Bearden and Jeremiah McCormick were accused of damage to signs for Republican candidate Chuck Ellis in his quest to become sheriff of Marshall County.

 Court costs were ordered and covered by the depuites along with Bearden's wife Tiffany and former deputy Lewayne Segars who were also charged in the case. The deputies were placed on administrative leave and have returned to work under the decision made by current sheriff Scott Walls.

 

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* HUNTSVILLE - National Weather Service reports 2.5 inches of snowfall was recorded in the Morgan City community in Morgan County on Tuesday. That was the most across the Tennessee Valley while other locations in Sand Mountain had between an inch to an inch and a half.

 Less than half of an inch of snow was reported across Cullman County with the precipitation coming after lunch and lasting into the early afternoon.

 

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* ARLEY - No weather problems were reported at Meek High School with the AHSAA Girls 1A, Area 11 Tournament getting played as originally scheduled for Tuesday.

 Both games were decided in the final seconds. Meek edged St. Bernard 32-31 when Sarah Mauldin hit a three-pointer with three seconds left to save the No. 1 seed Lady Tigers from an upset by the Lady Saints.

 No. 2 seed Brilliant went on a 13-4 run to finish the game, coming back to edge Lynn 39-38. Brittany Farley scored on a short range jumper with 15 seconds left to send the Lady Tigers to Friday's championship game. The game will tip off at 6:00 p.m. on the Meek campus.

 

 

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* A forum presented by the Cullman Chapter of the Alabama Federation of Republican Women was cancelled Tuesday night due to the inclement weather in the area.

 The forum was to present candidates running in the Republican primary for the Cullman County School Board.

 Incumbent Gene Sullins is looking to repeat as the representative in District 1 with his challenger being Patrick Klein.

 Running in District 3 of the school board is incumbent James Thompson with Heath Allbright, Sam Benefield and Destry Stone as his opposition.

 No make up date for this forum has been set.

 

 

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* PRICEVILLE - Morgan County Sheriff's Department is looking for a suspect who robbed a woman of her medication outside a pharmacy in Priceville Tuesday afternoon.

 The incident was reported at the Pill Box, located off Alabama Highway 67. A male approached the woman with a weapon, demanded the prescription and fled the scene.

 The medication reportedly stolen was a muscle relaxer. No more information was provided. 

 

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* A week after Cullman County and other areas in the Tennessee Valley dealt with thunderstorms and a tornado watch, winter weather returned, causing regular routines to be altered.

 Schools in Cullman County and Cullman City were released Tuesday afternoon, Wallace State Community College closed for the day at 3:00 p.m.

 Seven of the eight scheduled area basketball tournament games were postponed until Wednesday.

 Residents were greeted with light now in the area during the early afternoon with caution advised on traveling, especially in higher elevations.

 

 

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* Current information on AHSAA Area Basketball Tournaments:

 3A, Area 10 @ Holly Pond - Postponed til Wednesday.

 5A, Area 14 @ West Point - Postponed til Wednesday.

 2A, Area 14 (G) @ Tanner - Postponed til Wednesday.

 1A, Area 11 (G) @ Meek - Still on tap.

 4A, Area 10 @ Locust Fork - Postponed til Wednesday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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* FLORENCE - Investigation continues by Florence Police after the body of a Vinemont man was found near the Singing River Bridge Overlook just off Helton Road.

 The victim was identified as 60-year old James Brian Burress. An autopsy is scheduled to determine what caused his death. Burress had been living in the Florence area for a couple of months prior to this death, according to police reports.

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* School systems closing for the day (February 9):

Cullman County 12:00 p.m.

Arab City Schools 11:30 a.m.

Morgan County Schools 12:30 p.m.

 

Basketball games at Holly Pond & West Point and Arley are still on as of the present time.

Games at Holly Pond start at 4:00 p.m.

Games at West Point start at 6:00 p.m.

Games at Arley (Meek HS) start at 4:30 p.m.

 

Stay tuned for updates on air and on line.

 

 

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AHSAA Basketball Area Tournament scores:

 

5A, Area 14 (G) @ Moulton:

Fairview 56, Russellville 30

Lawrence County 74, West Point 36

Fairview vs. Lawrence County Thursday 7:00 p.m.

 

4A, Area 10 @ Locust Fork (G):

Good Hope 69, J.B. Pennington 62

Good Hope vs. Locust Fork Thursday 6:00 p.m.

 

1A, Area 11 @ St. Bernard:

St. Bernard 62, Brilliant 38

St. Bernard vs. Meek Thursday 7:00 p.m.

 

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