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Madison County, Alabama

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Madison County is a county in Alabama. Its county seat is Huntsville.

Website evaluation

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Budget P
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Meetings P
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Elected Officials Y
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Administrative Officials Y
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Permits, zoning Y
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Audits N
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Contracts P
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Lobbying N
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Public records N
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Local taxes Y
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Transparency grading process

Last rated on October 1, 2012.

The good

  • Some budget information is posted, but is not up to date[1].
  • Meeting dates and agendas are posted.[2]
  • County Commissioners are listed along with contact information.[3]
  • Contact information for the Administrative Departments and key staff is provided.[4]
  • Building permits, forms, codes and associated costs are available.[5].
  • Tax information is provided and there is a way to pay property taxes online[6][1]
  • Open bids are posted. [7]

The bad

  • No meeting minutes are posted.
  • No audits, contracts, or taxpayer funded lobbying expenses are listed.
  • No information is provided on how to request public records using the Alabama Public Records Law.

Elected Officials

County Commission

Madison County is governed by a County Commission composed of a Chairman and six Commissioners. The Chairman is elected "at-large" by voters of the entire county, while each commissioner is elected per district[2]. Elections occur every four years, with the next one coming up in 2012[8].

Member District
Mike Gillespie, Chairman At-Large
Roger Jones District 1
Faye Dyer District 2
Jerry Craig District 3
Dale W. Strong District 4
Mo Brooks District 5
Robert C. Harrison District 6
No information on salaries or pensions is available.

Other Elected Officials

Member Title
Craig Whisenant Coroner
Robert L. Broussard District Attorney
Mark Craig License Director
Blake Dorning Sheriff
Fran Hamilton Tax Assessor
Lynda Hall Tax Collector
No information on salaries or pensions is available.

Administrative Officials

Member Title
Don Hackney Fire Marshal
Richard G. Grace Director of Public Works
Ronnie Elliott Director of Recreation Department
John Morring Director of Sanitation Department
Fritz Mucke Director of Water Department
No information on salaries or pensions is available. A former License Department employee, Amanda Leigh Houk, was recently found guilty of stealing from her place of employment[9].

Budget and Spending

The latest year with known appropriations is the 2009-2010 fiscal year which was set at $111,922,764. The latest fiscal year with a breakdown of expenditure categories is the 2008-2009 fiscal year. The top expense categories were "General Government" (31.5%), "Public Safety" (27.1%), and "Highways and Roads" (13.4%)[1]. The County Commission has recently been struggling in curtailing overtime pay abuses[10]. In speaking about one county employee, Commissioner Faye Dyer stated "I don't buy 50 hours of overtime by this person last pay period. I'm sorry this is not happening.[11]"

The Madison County Water Department last year ran a $1.3 million deficit. In response, it has proposed increasing water rates[12].

Emergency Services

Madison County has its own Fire Department, and contracts out services to nearby jurisdictions that have requested coverage[13]. The 911 call center has recently raised phone rates in response to new equipment needs[14].

External links

References