Sandbags Holding Back the Mississippi

Sandbags Holding Back the Mississippi

Iowans Worry About Mississippi River Flooding

Flood worries build in southern Iowa where the Mississippi River could overflow today. A massive sandbagging effort is underway as other parts of the state see the waters recede. President Bush will be getting a rundown today on the damage today. Residents, neighbors, National Guard troops, and even inmates have gathered in Clarksville, Missouri. They are working tirelessly to prepare for the Mississippi River to crest in the coming days. The federal government predicts 27 levees could potentially overflow if the weather forecast is on the mark and a massive sandbagging effort fails. Officials are now worrying.

New Orleans Still Vulnerable to Hurricanes

Government forecasters say it might not take more than a strong category two hurricane to breach the levees and flood New Orleans. The new report uses what is said to be the most accurate and complete picture yet of the region’s levee heights. It concludes that the area surrounding New Orleans is, in fact, among the nation's most hurricane-vulnerable.

Hoover Police Arrest Rape Suspect

Hoover police arrest a man they say impersonated one of their officers and raped a Hoover woman. Now investigators suspect 33-year old Aaron Nathaniel Morrison in other attacks. Investigators say Morrison confronted a woman in the parking lot of the Iron Horse Cafe. They say he convinced her he was on off-duty officer in the early morning hours of May 20th. When the woman got into his car, investigators say Morrison drove her to another location and raped her. Police ask anyone who has had contact with Morrison to come forward. They also are reminding people how off-duty officers are expected to act. Morrison is being held in the Jefferson County Jail without bond. police will not say whether the woman has positively identified him as her attacker. Hoover police say they are contacting law enforcement agencies in at least three states and are alerting the public here because they're beginning to believe there may be more victims.

Anniston Police Bust Cocaine Ring

Nearly two dozen people have been indicted for allegedly operating a crack cocaine ring around Anniston. US Attorney Alice Martin says officers arrested the suspects on Friday. The investigation was code-named "Operation Rosewood," and has been going on for 2-1/2 years.

Richard Scrushy to Continue Testifying

Questioning is expected to continue this morning for Richard Scrushy as he testifies about the massive accounting fraud at HealthSouth. Scrushy could be seen escorted by US Marshals Monday morning from the Shelby County Jail. Wearing an orange jailhouse jumpsuit and handcuffs, a van took him to the Federal Courthouse in downtown Birmingham. Scrushy was brought to the state last week from a federal prison in Beaumont, Texas. He is answering questions in a civil lawsuit filed by HealthSouth shareholders seeking to recoup billions lost from the accounting scandal.

Jeffco Leaders Look to Cut Bond Crisis Team

Jefferson County leaders are looking at cutting the team working on the county's bond crisis. Right now, five different law firms and financial teams are working for the county. Commission President Bettye Fine Collins says all that personnel may not be necessary. Meanwhile, commissioners met with representatives from Merrill Lynch about refinancing the sewer debt. Collins says she feels the meeting was encouraging and the county will not have to file for bankruptcy protection. County leaders will meet again with experts from Merrill Lynch at the end of this month.

Summit Could Gain Incentives for Expansion

The city of Birmingham could provide some major incentives for an expansion project at the summit. Bayer Properties is asking the city to reimburse up to two-million dollars from taxes over the next five years. Currently the shopping center brings in about 13 million dollars in taxes for the city. The expansion would add 50-thousand square feet of new retail space.

Hybrid Vehicles Could be Made in USA

Fuel efficient hybrid vehicles could soon be made in the USA. It is not official yet, but Toyota is in talks with manufacturers in Japan about possibly bringing production plants to the United States. One local dealer says if you want a hybrid right now, you could be on a waiting list from weeks to months. The company is increasing hybrid production to meet the high demand for them in the US.

Possible Special Session for Lawmakers

Alabama lawmakers could be called back to Montgomery for a special session of the legislature Next month, if Volkswagen decides to build a production facility in the state. It would likely be located in Limestone County. House Speaker Seth Hammett, an Andalusia Democrat, says lawmakers would need to approve incentives for the automaker.