MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Gov. Kay Ivey will issue her annual State of the State Address to the Alabama Legislature Tuesday evening.
WSFA 12 News will air the address live on our website and mobile apps, including Roku and Amazon Fire TV, starting at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday and will have complete coverage and reaction in our evening newscasts.
The governor’s speech will be given in the Old House Chamber of the State Capitol.
Ivey has invited several special guests. They include:
- Brandie McCain - A previously incarcerated inmate who is among the first group of Ingram students to earn the nationally recognized Certified Logistics Associate credential from the Manufacturing Skills Standards Council.
- John Carroll - A retired Army Veteran who was struggling to find gainful employment until he was assisted by the Alabama Department of Labor and the Decatur Career Center.
- Carl Flemons - A veteran’s representative at the Department of Labor who helped John Carroll find employment.
- Joanne and Shanice Williams - The wife and daughter of the late Lowndes County Sheriff “Big John” Williams.
Ivey spoke last week at the Public Affairs Research Council of Alabama’s annual meeting, giving us an idea of her priorities going into this new legislative session.
Alabama prisons are at the top of the list of issues that need addressing. Governor Ivey has created a commission to take a closer look at what can be done to improve conditions. That committee just issued a report last week making several recommendations from boosting funding to expanding education programs for inmates.
Education is also expected to be a hot topic. Governor Ivey is expected to make a big push for a constitutional amendment that will be on the ballot on March 3rd. That amendment would make it so that members of the state school board are appointed by the governor and approved by the Senate. It would also change the name of the State Board of Education to the Alabama Commission of Elementary and Secondary Education.
“Alabama is at the bottom of all of the rankings that measure education in our states,” Ivey said. "Members of the commission would be appointed by the governor to a six-year term, which removes them from the whims of the political cycle. "
Currently, state school board members are elected.
Then there’s the 2020 census, which could be the most important census in Alabama’s history. Alabama is at risk of losing a congressional seat. The census also determines the funding for many government programs. So expect the Governor to stress how critical it is that every Alabamian is counted.