Top Headlines: Medical mystery solved, Auburn auto supplier expands

Online search helps solve 24-year medical mystery
Confusion, nausea, fever, anger, then back to normal. This was Lauren Vandiver’s life beginning in early childhood. Her parents, Phillip and Angela Vandiver, spent more than twenty years asking the question “why?” Why is she forgetting who we are? Why is she throwing up? Why is she so angry? They knew there had to be an explanation for their daughter’s symptoms, and they were right. However, the diagnosis would take two decades to be found. – HudsonAlpha

Auburn auto supplier spending $2.5 million on expansion
Israeli-based auto supplier Arkal Automotive is pumping $2.5 million into an expansion of its Auburn factory, The Opelika-Auburn News is reporting. The injection molding company, which has been in Auburn since 2011, supplies plastic goods for vehicle components for Mercedes-Benz, General Motors, BMW, Audi and Volkswagen. – AL.com

Analyst parses winners and losers if gas tax rises
Alabama’s political leadership is going to push for a gas tax with Tuesday’s opening of the 2019 legislative session. The proposed tax is aimed at improving state roads and bridges but WHNT News 19 Political Analyst Jess Brown said not everyone’s going to like where the money ends up. The proposed 10-cent per gallon hike, phased in over three years, gives the counties equal shares. Obviously, Alabama’s counties aren’t created equal. – WHNT

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Ivey calls special session to address gas tax issues
Following Tuesday’s adjournment of the Legislature, Gov. Kay Ivey called a Special Session to tackle Alabama’s ongoing infrastructure issues. The Governor’s Office said the Special Session will be focused on legislation to levy an additional tax on gas and diesel fuel; legislation concerning the Legislature’s Permanent Joint Transportation Committee to provide for effective legislative oversight of the Alabama Department of Transportation; and legislation to provide the Alabama Highway Finance Corporation with authority to borrow money and issue bonds to improve the Alabama State Docks and the Mobile Bay ship channel. – ANN

Burr & Forman in new deal on downtown tower
Real estate advisory group Newmark Knight Frank announced today that it has brokered a renewal lease for downtown Birmingham’s Wells Fargo Tower. Burr & Forman law firm has renewed its lease on 104,514 square feet at the tower and will continue to occupy the top six floors. It is the largest tenant in the building, which was erected in 1986 and is currently 87 percent occupied. – AL.com

Trump OKs disaster aid for storm-torn region of state
President Donald Trump has declared that a major disaster exists in Alabama and ordered federal aid to supplement state and local recovery efforts in Lee County, where a tornado swept through and killed at least 23 people. In a news release Tuesday, the Trump Administration said assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the disaster. – Alabama Political Reporter

Dread River Distilling will raise your spirits this summer
Dread River Distilling Co., billed as the first distilling company of its kind in Alabama, is slated to open its doors this summer, the company said. Dread River will manufacture several different spirits, including bourbon, blended whiskey, vodka, rum and gin. It will also have several beers on tap that are brewed in-house and is working on a wine it will offer. Eventually, there will be a tasting room, lounges, a VIP room and a private event space on the second floor of its 24,500-square-foot location at 2400 7th Avenue South, where all three types of beverages will be served. – News release

Beware, writer warns, Twitter may turn you into a monster
As a full-time freelance writer – having transitioned from law practice at midlife, accursed with all the selfish, self-doubting sensibilities that kind of crisis entails – Twitter brings out my absolute worst self. With my insuppressible, hereditary, Type-A personality, coupled with my raging but not formally diagnosed obsessive compulsive disorder, when I click on that deceptively peaceful, blue Twitter-bird icon, I transition into a digital-age monster. – Alabama Political Reporter

Tradebe completes acquisition of Aaron Oil Co. of Mobile
Tradebe Environmental Services LLC, a subsidiary of Tradebe, an international leader in sustainable waste management, has completed the purchase of Aaron Oil Company Inc. of Mobile. The name of the new company is Aaron Oil Company LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tradebe Environmental Services. – News release

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