DiscoverJefferson County Alabama: Podcast for the People
Jefferson County Alabama: Podcast for the People
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Jefferson County Alabama: Podcast for the People

Author: Jefferson County

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This is a podcast for the citizens of Jefferson County Alabama to help inform them about issues and happenings in and around their county government. It's meant to inform and take a deeper look into the information provided on our social media channels. It's how you get the meat between the tweets!
35 Episodes
Did you get a new TV, computer, coffee pot, or whatever for Christmas? Here's how and when to dispose of old electronics and paper on Jan. 28 at the Birmingham Zoo. Hana Berres, education training coordinator, for our Stormwater Program talks about what you can bring to this FREE event. Every electronic item is recycled and paper is shredded on site. We also have 3 community cleanups on MLK Day and Hana explains why these events are so important and how you can get one in your community. If you have questions please contact the department at 205-325-8741. And, additional information can always be found on our Keep It Clean JeffCo page! #keepitcleanjeffco. 
It's been almost a year since Jefferson County launched its COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program. We talk with Nathan Salter in Workforce Development about what assistance has been provided, what funding is still available and about ERAP 2, which is coming down the road. As a reminder, details can be found on our website at: and if you have questions, you can contact one of our partner agencies at Birmingham Urban League at 205-326-0162, Neighborhood Housing Services of Birmingham at 205-328-4292, or Bridge Ministries at 205-930-0309. 
Why can't the county fix my drainage issue? Why hasn't the County paved my road? Why doesn't the county pave the Interstate?  Here is a look at what the County can and can't do vs. cities with the Confidential Assistant to the County Manager Justin Smith. Justin has been with the County for more than 10 years. We break down some of the common questions we get, what departments fall under the County vs. State and what organizations sound like they are County related, but aren't. It's a quick 20 minutes. 
Today we talk with Sharon Gadbois, public affairs specialist, with the SBA Disaster Loan assistance program. If you experienced damaged in the Oct. 6-7 storms/flooding the deadline is approaching for you to apply for help. They have an office open in the Boardroom at the Hoover Rec center (open Mon-Friday 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.) or you can call 1-800-659-2955 to get help and more information. You can also apply online at We talk about what you need to apply, what the loans cover and what the interest and payback time frame is. Take a few minutes and listen if you need help. 
We are now live-streaming all planning and zoning meetings, but we wanted to take a deeper dive into the process, how long it can take, and tips for those coming before the planning and zoning commission. If you ever need to reach the staff of planning and zoning you can call Development Services at 205-325-5321 or email and someone will answer your question. 
Want to know how elections work in Jefferson County? This podcast is for you. We talk to the Chair of the Election Commission, the Chair of the Board of Registrars, the Sheriff's office and both Circuit Clerks who handle absentee voting. It's a unique group that works together to make elections happen. Jefferson County is even contracted to execute elections for other cities like the upcoming City of Birmingham Mayoral election. Links to websites mentioned in the podcast:* Jefferson County Board of Registrars* Jefferson County Circuit Clerk (Birmingham division)* Jefferson County Circuit Clerk (Bessemer division)* Voter Frequently Asked Questions
In this episode we talk to our partners that are helping administer Jefferson County's Emergency Rental Assistance Program. For details visit for details and an online application. Can't do it online -- no problem you can call our partners for an appointment to walk through the process. Those numbers are Neighborhood Housing Services, 205-328-4292; Birmingham Urban League, 205-326-0162; and Bridge Ministries, 205-930-0309. This program is federally funded and has different guidelines than our previous program due to those guidelines. 
Interviewing for a job at Jefferson County is done a little differently. Joining us are Matt Luetjen and Jamie Koladish from our Human Resources Department with a few tips on how to prepare. Want to find out what jobs are open in Jefferson County visit: 
This episode is different. It's audio from Thursday's Commission meeting and guest Liliana Tschanett, from the SBA Office of Disaster Assistance. She and her team will be at the Fultondale Public Library, 500 Byrd Lane, Fultondale, AL 35068, Monday - Friday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and this Saturday, April 10 (only) helping people secure loans to help them with recovery. This is for victims of the Jan. 25-26 tornadoes. You can also apply online at or call 1-800-659-2955. This is for homeowners, renters, and businesses. 
We are talking trash today! We've had a lot of questions about this transition so we thought we would talk to the Director of Environmental Services, David Denard, and the Vice President of Operations for Amwaste, Rick Sweeney  (the new vendor) to answer some questions. If you have questions about service, your account transition to Amwaste, or anything else call 205-788-1400, or email them at We are also updating our FAQ at "Garbage Service Change" page daily. We appreciate your patience as we transition to the new vendor. 
April is national Child Abuse Awareness Month. We talk with Deb Schnider, director of the Children's of Alabama CHIPS Center ( Children's Hospital Intervention and Prevention Services). We discuss what they do, and how to open the door for dialogue on this topic with children. Important: if you believe a child is in immediate danger call 911, if you suspect child abuse call the Jefferson County Department of Human Resources at 205-264-8160 and if you want to reach the CHIPS center call 205-638-2751. For details visit:
March 13 marks the official 'anniversary' of the COVID-19 pandemic in Jefferson County. At this time a year ago the Joint Command was formed. We talked with the heads of the Joint Command, EMA Director Jim Coker, and Director of the Jefferson County Dept. of Health, Dr.  Mark Wilson about the past year. There are personal reflections, surprising moments and discussion about the vaccine and the new COVID-19 variants. 
We talk to Melissa Sizemore, Jefferson County EMA, and Julie Cobb, with the Jefferson County Dept. of Health, and serving on the Unified Command for COVID 19 in Jefferson County. Both give details on where to go to sign up for information ( - click on the green button) or call the vaccine hotline at 205-858-2221 (Mon. - Fri. 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.) to speak to a real person. Also insights into how the process works right now and why. It's a little long (almost 30 minutes) but we think you will find it worth the time. 
Interview with Tony Petelos, the first County Manager for Jefferson County. He explains the County Manager form of government and how it works.
Jefferson County environmental services is transitioning to a new more modern sewer billing software, much like other utilities use. In this podcast we explain the transition timeline, who it affects (not those who get their bills from BWWB), and what customers will be asked to do. If you want to receive your paper bill, you can, but if you opt in for the new billing system you will get a lot more detail on your bill, you billing history and ease of online payment. If you have questions, you can call ESD Monday - Friday at 205-325-5390. We've also created a special FAQ on our website with details. Click here. 
Our Veteran's Committee has an event this week for our employees that are Veterans and we took a few minutes to talk to an employee from each branch of service about how their service carries over into their position at the county. We have the Army, Navy, Marines, and Air Force all represented. And, the conversation gets a little lively when we talk about "the best" branch. Hint, you really need them all! Thank you to Akirashanti Byrd (Tax Collector Office), John Sepulveda (Deputy Director at Youth Detention), Darrick Williams (Chief Administrative Analyst, Human Resources), Don Carroll (Assistant County Attorney) and Alan Sconiers (Jefferson County Compliance Office)
The Board of Equalization is responsible for valuing fair and equitably all taxable real property in Jefferson County, to notify tax payers of valuation increases and to hear and decide protests and to defend established values in court. In this episode we talk with Maria Knight, Chairman of the Board of Equalization on "Why she Serves" in her role with Jefferson County and the importance of her department and position. For more information the Board of Equalization or any questions regarding your property log on to, email  or call 205-325-5566 Mon-Fri from 8am to 5pm. 
The Jefferson County Commission recently approved over $1.4 million in federal dollars allocated to Jefferson State Community College and the Dannon Project for Occupational Training and Work Based Learning Programs with our Office of Workforce Development.The programs, which also involve character and leadership development, are geared to train and engage students in occupational skills ranging from the broad fields of healthcare to information  technology. The occupational training programs also provide opportunities for students to earn national certifications such as welding technician to nursing assistant, and many others.The goal of both organizations is to provide occupational skills training which leads to enrollment in further education or full time employment. Administrators began accepting applications on July 1, 2022 and will continue through June 30, 2023.For the program year 2022, as required by the Workforce and Innovation Opportunity Act (WIOA), Central Alabama Partnership for Training and Employment (CAPTE) submitted regional advertisements for request for proposals for out of school youth training programs. As a result, responses were received from  Jefferson State Community College  and The Dannon Project. How to Apply: For more information on how you can apply for Jefferson State Community College's Work Based Learning and Occupational Training Programs contact Tamara Cheeks at or  205) 856-6038.**Special Thanks to Tamara Payne - Director of Career and Learning Services and Leah Bigbee - Director of Center for Workforce Education at Jefferson State Community College for participating this enlightening podcast interview.Jefferson County Podcast for the People -Episode 8 Jeff State Work Based Learning and Occupational Skills Training Programs equips students for job readiness opportunities - Learn How to Apply today!Chiara Morrow -  Show Host/Producer - Public Relations Coordinator, Public Information Office - Jefferson County Commission Helen Hays - Director of Public Information, Public Information Office - Jefferson County
Apply for the Jefferson County Skilled Worker position at The deadline to apply is August 12, 2022
Many of you participated in our Citizen Survey earlier this year. There was an open comment section on that survey and we wanted to respond to some of your comments and questions with actual information that might help. In this podcast we talk about the County website, the number to the County Manager's office (205)731-2880, and online services list and How Do I? page. The comments were valuable feedback and the Office of Public Information is going to work to implement some of your suggestions in the coming year. 
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