It has been a very busy December for us! As mentioned previously, we have appointed acting Directors in Police, Fire and City Attorney. The Fire Chief position has now been advertised for a couple of weeks and we have received over 30 applications. The Mayor’s Office will begin the vetting process after the first of the year and will bring us qualified candidates to interview. The Police Chief position should be advertised within the next couple of weeks and the same vetting process will occur. I am confident that the Mayor’s Office and City Council will bring forth the best possible candidate for all three positions.
Mayor Finley’s Weekly Update for December 4 – 11
Madison City Team,
Hope everyone is staying warm today. As is always the case we had a busy week throughout the city. Here are a few high lights:
I know there are events/actions that I am missing but please know how much we (Mayor/Council) appreciate your actions. My ratio of positive/negative comments this week was 7-1….I will take that every time. Thanks to all of our employees for your efforts.
Have a great weekend.
Weekly Update from Mayor Finley for December 12-19
Good Friday afternoon to you. Here are some of the high lights from last week.
As I close I want to make sure I am clear on something. Our City team is doing some fantastic things and have been for the past few years. Hard decisions Mayor and Council had to make years ago are now paying off. HR, and the city team who supported them, have made dramatic improvements in our insurance costs, especially when compared with what others folks are incurring. And starting next year the already approved COLA will kick in on our 2nd paycheck in 2017. We (Mayor and Council) plan on doing everything we can to continue to invest in you, our employees with step and/or COLA’s as the budget allows! Please keep on working hard for our citizens and looking for proactive ways to save/make money and to increase your subject matter knowledge in your respective areas.
We value each of you and thank you for all that you do!
Have a great weekend!
Mayor Finley Update for December 16-31
Good Afternoon Madison Team,
Wow….2016 is almost in the books. Time sure flies when you are busy and having fun!
Our week between Christmas and New Year’s still had plenty going on. Here are just a few of the highlights:
As I close for the week (and year) I wish each and every one of you a very Happy New Year. 2017 promises to be one of the best and busiest Madison has seen….looking forward to supporting our community with you!
War Eagle, Roll Tide, and Happy New Year!
Mayor Paul Finley
Our Revenue office has mailed out approximately 5,700 business license renewals for 2017. Collecting this revenue means about $2.8 million to our top line revenue numbers. This is an excellent reminder for all of us to Shop Madison First. Every dollar spent in Huntsville is about .10 in sales tax dollars lost to improve our roads and fund our schools here at home in Madison.
Speaking of Shop Madison First (and you will hear that phrase quite a bit in my blog) we have received our Department and Board Assignments and I am pleased to say that I will be working with the Madison Chamber of Commerce. I attended an Orientation meeting today and am looking forward to working with the Chamber as we bring more businesses to Madison and to better serve those businesses we currently have.
As for other Council assignments I am the City Council liaison to the Fire and Police Departments. In addition to the Madison Chamber I am the liaison to MCDAB (Madison City Disability Advocacy Board) and MARF (Madison Animal Rescue Foundation). I am a member of the Human Resources Committee. I look forward to serving all of these organizations. For a complete list of Council assignments click here: 2017 Council Assignments
Also, as mentioned previously, I have been working with Alex Riley with Madison Up in exploring the opportunity of a playground and enrichment center at the corner of Gillespie and Wall Triana. This property is privately owned. Madison Up is researching pursuing this project. Mayor Finley and I met with both Alex and Ms. Tracy Slaughter last week in a productive meeting where we learned more about this project. For right now the City is not able to pursue this as we do not own the land. One of my specific goals during my term for this area is to have a multi use path from the corner of Wall Triana and Gillespie all the way to Browns Ferry and Wall Triana. I believe this goal will be a benefit to all of those in Madison.
Our Fire Department (MFD) has been very busy this month. They responded to a fire that is currently under investigation at Austin Furniture on Highway 20/Madison Blvd. The building is a total loss. They also responded to a fire on Rainbow Mountain that caused no property loss or injury. In the subdivision that I represent, Walden, they responded to a new garage extension that caught fire due to an electric issue. They were able to put it out very quickly with little damage (mainly smoke damage) to the home. The residents were able to get their car out of the garage and the fire was contained. I am very grateful to MFD and how quickly and professionally they responded. Our First Responders are the very best in my opinion. Please let these situations remind us all that we are still in a drought condition and there is to be no outside burning.Please do not use the lighted luminaries in paper bags with the small votive candles this Christmas season. It is just too dry and dangerous.
The new Council members each had a meeting concerning the progress of Town Madison. While it may seem quiet I assure you the project is moving forward and positive actions are taking place. January/February should start the announcements for the first businesses that will be at both the east and west portions of the development. I am very excited about this as it will be a huge boost for Madison retail for many years to come!
At the December 19th City Council meeting Taylor Edge, City Administrator, brought three proposals for the Aquatic Center. They are:
A. We would add a seasonal cover/dome/bubble over the pool. This would increase pool space by double year round from what we currently have. The cost is ~420K. Pros: least expensive and can be done fairly quickly. Cons: Could be considered a “band aid” or just a temporary solution as it would not increase the competitive swim ability. It is a shallow pool so no diving from starting blocks.
B. We would build a second, connected 4 to 5 lane pool (depending on space) to connect with the current pool at Dublin. We would also add shower/locker room facilities. Pros: Between MCS BOE we have the funding. This would increase the lanes and provides other facilities. Con: Space could be an issue. There would be additional expenses for maintenance.
C. A brand new Aquatic Center near the Central Office and stadium on Celtic Drive. Pros: Would completely solve all issues of practice space, competitive swimming. Con: At ~$10.5 million this is above our current financial status.
You can read WHNT’s Kristen Connor’s excellent synopsis of the three plans here: WHNT Article
The other Council members, Mayor Finley and his wife Dr. Julie Finley, and I greatly enjoyed the Madison Christmas Parade. We had over 120 floats participate this year and that was a new record. My many thanks to Mrs. Gayle Milam, who works with the Recreation Department. She is everyone’s favorite elf for coordinating this massive undertaking. It went off without a hitch and everyone enjoyed hot chocolate at the gazebo afterwards.
We are happy to announce that Ace Hardware will be building a new store at the northeast corner of Mill/Portal and Hughes Road. It should be open in the fall of 2017. The movie theater is still on track for an early summer opening and the new business near CVS will be a physician’s office. We welcome all three to the city of Madison!
Whew! It’s been a busy end of the year and I look forward to serving you next year! Again, from my family to yours, I wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Healthy and Happy New Year!