It’s hard to believe we are in the fourth quarter of 2022! As always we have a lot to report! My thanks to Teresa Crane with Woodmen Life for the new Mums in the Balch/Gillespie roundabout. I hope in the spring to add to their project. We had a wonderful State of the City Address on November 4th. My thanks to the Madison Chamber of Commerce and all who made this wonderful event happen. Now on to the news!
Mayor Finley’s Reports
October 1st to 23rd
It has been a beautiful weather weekend; I hope all of you have enjoyed it so far.
Our last three weeks have been very busy, here are a few of the highlights.
- Madison celebrated our annual Downtown Street Festival on a beautiful Saturday. An estimated 35,000+ attendees enjoyed a great time. Thanks to all involved in helping our community enjoy this great event.
- Toyota Field hosted its first football game October 15th. UNA played Jacksonville State with a capacity crowd of 10,000 in attendance. MPD played a key role in getting folks safely in and out and the event was deemed a huge success.
- Our Madison City Schools celebrated their 25-year anniversary with a celebration at Central Office.
- Holtz Leather celebrated a ribbon cutting last week. They are the tenant in the upgraded building on the corner of Sullivan and Main.
- We want to welcome Permit Specialist II Samantha Sledge and Code Enforcement Officer Travis Denson for their first full week at the City of Madison.
- During the three weeks the permitting division created 246 permits, issued 224 of them, and the inspection division performed 938 inspections.
- Code Enforcement shared they performed 63 inspections/re-inspections, created 28 cases, and picked up 2 trucks of signs in the R.O.W for well over 170 signs during the three weeks.
- Business development in Town Madison continues to move along. Site work for the new dual Marriott (Courtyard & Residence Inn) started this week. Panera Bread opened, and tenant improvements for Saza’s, Prohibition, and Taco Mama are close to the finish line.
- Need a coffee fix? Honest Coffee opened in The Avenue recently, PJ’s Coffee of New Orleans is open on Browns Ferry, LuxBru is set to open on Madison Blvd in the next couple of weeks, and a new coffee shop concept has been approved for the corner of Sullivan and Bradley in the former wedding chapel. And don’t forget Just Love Coffee Café, across from City Hall, which was the first to figure out Madisonians really like coffee.
- Building Services has been busy with a Legal, Court, and Communication Specialist remodel upstairs that consisted of removing doors, adding doors, patching drywall, adding drywall, sanding drywall and painting along with moving furniture back and forth multiple times to accommodate different areas.
- The outside of the City Hall has been pressure washed/soft washed to remove algae.
- Madison Fire and Rescue shared that they responded to 343 calls, 223 of which were EMS related over the three weeks. One of their weeks was the second highest # of calls in a week this year.
- Our Public Works CIP team has been busy as they completed grading and digging on the north side of Shalerock, poured 60’ of sidewalk connecting the trailway to Moore’s Creek Subdivision and layered back the ditch.
- In addition, Public Works focused on typical fall projects including cleaning out ditches, cutting back vegetation, repairing sidewalks, and multiple other projects supporting the city.
- The MPD Training Unit conducted an unannounced All-Hazards Plan (Active Shooter) Scenario Based Training Exercise for our officers from all shifts
- MPD shared that they supported 3689 Calls for Service during the three weeks for an average of 1227 call per week.
- Court had a busy three weeks opening 389 cases, closing 246 cases, issuing 115 warrants, all while short-handed. Thanks to our Court team for keeping things going!
- Exciting times for our community as Recreation shares that the purchase of playground equipment for neighborhood parks and Palmer Park Expansion is on the City Council agenda for approval on Monday, October 24, 2022. A total order of $323,107 is the purchase price. With the grant pricing for this order, the City of Madison will save $105,476. The funding source for the purchase is the FY23 Recreation budget.
- The Air Structure has been assembled over the outdoor pool for the fall and winter.
- The city is now earning 1% on all accounts, up from .45%. One of the good things about inflation!
- The city is working on the establishment of the first Entertainment District in Madison – to be located in Town Madison. A meeting with businesses in the proposed district occurred October 19th, and adoption of the district is expected to occur before the end of the year.
- Remodeling work on the former Publix on Hwy 72 has commenced. This center will be reborn with the opening of a furniture store and a specialty flooring retailer over the next six months.
Thanks to each of you for your focus on our city. Madison continues to shine, let’s have another great week.
October 24th to November 13th
I would like to start by thanking all our Veterans for their service to our country. Our community recently completed Veterans week and I continue to be amazed at the high level of patriotism we enjoy throughout the Tennessee Valley. Special thanks to Chief Bailey and Chief Gandy for bringing our Ole 48 Fire Truck down to Huntsville for Friday’s parade, it was rainy but that didn’t slow down the crowd!
Here are a few of the highlights.
- We enjoyed Celebrate Madison at Toyota Field and had a crowd of 1000 or so in attendance. Our Madison Chamber of Commerce did a great job of bringing the State of the City address back to Madison and we will build off of this night to make it better and stronger next year. Communications Specialist Samantha Magnuson put together three videos which truly captured our community and spotlighted our exceptionally high quality of life.
- One of our announcements at the Celebrate Madison event was the purchase of a building and property from Hexagon in the Town Madison area. Using our ARPA $$$ we will quickly look to transition the building into Fire Station 4 and a MPD substation, giving us beefed up coverage for the south side if Madison. In addition, we secured land that we will be able to utilize for adult recreation and hopefully, a full pickleball complex once financing is defined and secured. Special thanks to City Administrator Steve Smith for his efforts in helping to make this happen.
- We also learned that the Alabama Legislature has appropriated $500,000 in state funding from the General Fund to be expended for park upgrades and a community center in the City of Madison. This funding comes via ADECA and will be used as we look to revitalize the building formally known as Three Springs.
- If you have been in historic downtown lately you have seen we are on the final stages of completing Short street, Shorter street, and the Garner street extension project. Thanks to Engineering for all of their efforts to work through previous issues and bring these projects closer to completion.
- Our Hughes Road project is down to the last 1-2 punch list items….thank goodness.
- Detective Teresa Taylor-Duncan spoke to the Women’s Economic Development Council (40 ladies) at Woody Anderson Ford on Sunday regarding personal safety and the RAD program.
- Recreation staff placed the order for the playground equipment that was approved at the October 24, 2022 City Council meeting. Hardiman Place Park, Silver Creek Park, and the Palmer Park Extension are the locations for the new equipment.
Rather than deliver stats for each department in this update I wanted to take a minute to again thank all of our employees who make those stats happen. Each day our team simply “does their job”, supporting our community with actions and efforts that seem mundane to us but are imperative to a community being successful. As we move towards Thanksgiving, I am thankful for each of you and hopeful that you stay healthy and continue to prosper.
Have a great week and thank you for all that you do to help make Madison the best city to live in in Alabama!
Here is a link to the City of Madison’s youtube page where you can see the Celebrate Madison videos:
December 4th to 11th
City of Madison Team,
I start with a huge thank you to everyone who has been involved in the planning for our Madison Christmas parade. We were ready for safety and light rain; we simply were not prepared for lightning and heavy rain. Our late call was 100% safety focused. Sunday looked iffy but better weather wise but not participant wise and thus, we decided early on to cancel and regroup.
This morning was an incredibly special morning for our community which was celebrated at Toyota Field. The Artemis mission concluded with a successful splashdown of the Orion spacecraft in the Pacific Ocean, culminating our first mission on our journey back to the moon and eventually to Mars. Many of our spouses and family members worked on this program over the past few years….congratulations to everyone who supported these folks in a big-time success!
Here are a few of the highlights from last week.
- Our City Council passed the contract to redevelop the building formally known as Three Springs into our new Madison Community center. This 30,000 sq ft complex with house our new and improved Senior Center in addition to multiple community rooms, game rooms, crafts rooms, recreational opportunities, an outside pavilion, and upgraded courtyard. The project should take about 18 months to complete.
- Total sales tax collections for the month of November, 2022 are up 8.39% over collections for the month of November, 2021 and year to date collections are up 2.90% over the same period last fiscal year.
- Building shared the permitting division created 50 permits, issued 61 permits, and the inspection division performed 291 inspections.
- Code Enforcement performed 10 inspections/re-inspections, created 2 cases, and picked up 8 signs in the R.O.W.
- Our Public Works team spent a majority of their week making sure our rainwater moved. Their efforts in cleaning out ditches, trenches, and unclogging drains helped our city minimize any possible flooding problems….thanks PW team.
- With the upcoming purchase of the Hexagon recreational complex, Steve Smith and Kory Alfred met with Bostick Landscape Architects concerning the design of a pickleball facility. Bostick will provide a scope of work for this project, giving council an idea of the financial cost.
- One of the neat things Recreation supports is our homeschool PE programs. This week the Homeschool PE program had 74 participants.
- MPD had 1032 calls for service last week.
- Captain McRae and Sergeant Dawe attended the TADAA (formerly known as Too Good for Drugs course) Graduation for 145 5th grade students at Rainbow Elementary School. Their presence goes a long way with these kids….thank you!
- Madison Fire and Rescue responded to 128 incidents, 91 of which were EMS related.
- Our Fire Marshall’s office has signed off on 27 civil plans and permitted 72 new construction inspections in FY23.
- Court opened 65 cases, closed 162, and issued 44 warrants.
- We held another ribbon cutting in Town Madison as Prohibition officially opened. This is on the heals of a ribbon cuttings at the Korean BBQ restaurant and Phil Sandovals Mexican on Highway 72 last week. More and more choices of great restaurants in Madison.
Good news is there is only one day next week with rain in the forecast…..whew. Thanks to all of you for your focus on our community, let’s have a great week.
As always, I will be updating this blog every couple of weeks. Please check back during the the fourth quarter of 2022 for new information. You can also provide your email address in the box below for a subscription and be notified when the blog is updated I can be reached at Email Maura or 256.337.2408. Thank you again for your continued support!