Off to a Busy Start

Hello friends. Your new City Council members are off to a busy start. Since being sworn in we have had two Council meetings and an all day workshop on Ethics Training with the Alabama League of Municipalities. This was a very informative session and filled us to the brim with pertinent facts and rules and laws regarding our office.

Mayor Finley’s Update for November 27 to December 3, 2016

Team,

What a busy and exciting week for our city.  As with most of you I truly enjoyed my Thanksgiving time and was ready to hit the ground running Monday.

Some highlights from the week are as follows:

  • Revenue reports that we ended the month of November with general fund sales tax revenue up 17.85% over the same month last year.  While this does include one very positive anomaly we still would have been up about 11% without it!
  • The Planning staff approved a 4,000 sq. ft. addition to Griffon Aerospace at 106 Commerce Circle. The addition will establish a modern, corporate lobby area for their company.
  • Legal coordinated with MU, Engineering, and Public Works on our city fueling station project.  We are now in the process of getting everyone on the same page for the agreement, necessary permits, and bid process.
  • Legal and Police attended a local drone meeting.  As you can imagine the legality and safety of drones are a hot topic in municipal law.
  • IT fixed the Cable TV for Police. J Seriously, with the impending weather concerns earlier this week and our cable “acting up” IT went above and beyond to problem solve, eventually with great success.
  • The gym floor at Dublin was refinished over Thanksgiving Break, just in time for recreation youth basketball games to start this week for boys and girls games from ages 7-18.
  • Public Works assisted recreation to fix the kiln at the Senior Center.
  • We now have over 120 entries for our Christmas Parade next weekend.  Parade starts at 5:30 Saturday night the 10th.
  • The Cabinet Software (archival software) demo for all interested departments was held Thursday and went rather well.  We plan on bringing this to council for a vote at the next council meeting.
  • Court reports that we had two very large dockets this week with approximately 350 people on the dockets these last two days.
  • HR is continuing to work on the Employee Luncheon scheduled for December 14th.  Kelly Rolin has collected over 40 prizes for an employee drawing, and we are continuing to work on the program and other details.
  • Taylor met with multiple land owners in Downtown Madison to work on securing the required easement for our Phase 3 project with great success.
  • Our Economic Development team, led by Mary Beth, had a detailed meeting Thursday on a major destination spot project.  Our updated proposal will be sent early next week as we continue to work to secure this.
  • I attended the Redstone Update this week.  Agencies that gave updates were NASA, Army Material Command, US Army Space and Missile Command, PEO Missiles and Space, PEO Aviation, ATF, and the FBI in addition to a keynote speech by AMC Commander General Perna.  The recent Republican win is looked upon extremely favorably by all agencies and both ATF and the FBI are in major expansion modes.  The FBI is scheduled to have over 5000 new job at Redstone during the next 10 years.
  • I had strategic meetings with the following folks this week:
    • Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle
    • Decatur Mayor Tab Bolling
    • Athens Mayor Ronnie Boles
    • Madison County Commissioner Dale Strong
    • State Senator Bill Holzclaw
    • Madison County District 2 Commissioner Steve Haraway
    • Outgoing Madison City Schools Superintendent Dr. Dee Fowler
  • Many of these discussions concerned the Limestone County School Tax Funding issue.  It sounds like very solid progress is being made in their mediation discussions.  We defined several areas/meetings that we will be focused on to support these efforts in the upcoming weeks.

Thanks again to all of you for your continued focus on our citizens and the improvement of their quality of life.

Have a great weekend!

Your Mayor,

Paul Finley

So far in Council session we have named an acting Police Chief (Major Jim Cooke), acting Fire Chief (Deputy Chief Brandy Williams) and acting City Attorney (Ms. Megan Zingarelli). I am very pleased with these three appointments and believe our City’s future is bright as we move forward. I personally appreciate the leadership and integrity that these three professionals display.

I have had the opportunity to help the neighbors of Windsor Parke subdivision. They had a vacant lot that was the responsibility of the management company to keep maintained. The neighbors brought to my attention that it was in poor condition with overgrowth and was potentially a safety issue for neighborhood children. I contacted Public Works who contacted the management company. Through the assistance of Public Works this area was taken care of and is no longer a hazard. The Management Company will be held responsible for costs incurred.

I hope to have a similar work party in the area along Wall Triana between The Reserve and Mill Creek Crossing. This area is mutually maintained by the two Home Owner Associations and as such the City is not able to intervene. I will post updates on the Bridgefield and The Reserve and Mill Creek Crossing Facebook pages as we look to early spring to prune and cutback the overgrowth in this area.

Several folks have asked me about a pool status regarding the city and Madison City School Board collaboration. City Administrator Taylor Edge has been working with the BOE and hopes to have two or three options for us to consider by the end of the year. I am encouraged by the progress that is being made.

The brand new movie theater located behind Publix on Highway 72 is back under construction with a new management company. The expected opening date is May, 2017. A letter of intent has been signed for the “old” Kroger. Details will be announced by the company under their timeline. Construction on the brand new library on Plaza Drive has begun. The Madison Library will increase in space from 15,000 to 25, 000 square feet. Construction should take approximately 18 months so mid 2018 is a tentative completion date.

After much research and discussion among council and wildlife professionals I am not going to pursue requesting a trapper be hired by the City to trap coyotes within the city limits. It has been advised that the answer is to keep all animals (especially cats and small dogs) inside and to go out with them at night as needed. I was also given the suggestion to spread a line of powdered laundry detergent along your property line. The smell will repel coyotes.

The Madison Christmas Parade is this Saturday, December 10th at 5:30. The parade route will start at Hughes and Plaza Road and will end in Downtown Madison. Here’s the link for more information: Madison Christmas Parade

Council meetings for December will be December 12th and 19th starting at 6 pm.

As always if you have any questions or concerns I can be reached at Email Maura. or 256.337.2408. Thank you for your continued support!