Here are the responses to the Flashpoint Candidate Questionnaire from Madison County Commission, District 1 candidate Chris Stuckey:
1. What is your position on the proposed Sales Tax increase?
Vote NO! NO! and NO! on the Sales Tax Hike! Moreover, oust any Commissioner that voted for it! Since 1988 the current 1/2 sales tax Hike has generated at 1988 ($450+ million). In the Next 20 years, the existing 1/2 cent tax will generate $650+ million dollars. That’s over a billion dollars.
According to the, (Code of Alabama 1975, Sections 11-85-1-through 11-85-7) this statue authorizes the county commission to develop a master plan for the county’s physical development.
Meridianville Middle School was built within the last three years. Now, it’s over crowded. What happened? As the population grows, the need for infrastructure increases. The Level-of-Service is affected and poor forecasting of the population increase over a desired time decreases the quality of life. A proper master plan for all of Madison County would be taken into account the boom in growth and provided an alternative solution. Before the impacts should arise.
2. What is your position on raising Property Taxes for schools outside the City limits of Huntsville or Madison?
The people that I meet going door to door are not interested in property tax increases. As Chris Stuckey for County Commissioner for District 1, I will provide the data in charts, graphs and maps and tables easy to read so the people can make informed decisions based on accurate analysis.
3. Describe your approach to Economic Development? Does the County need more Industrial Parks / Sites; would you support development of a TVA Mega site in the County?
There are two basic strategies that are derived from the export base theory:
*Economic base theory is basically that we manufacture something locally and export it for example: For $250, of which $100 remain in the local community which 70% is spent locally.*
1. Increase revenue into Madison County, AL
a. Promote Madison County as a destination place. According to the last report tourism numbers were great! Forbes ranked us as 4th fastest growing economy in February 2008.
b. Start a “Get The Business Campaign” try to attract firms serving national and international markets.
c. Provide assistance that helps local companies to expand to international markets. At no additional cost to the taxpayers! Madison County Commission has an organization that started in 1983 called TDIC (The International Trade Development Center) that operates in the overall Economic Development mission of the Commission. According to the Commission web site, they offer export mentoring, export consultation, training and market outreach. *** Part of the Commissioners Job Description is Economic Development which includes attracting new businesses ventures to County*** For every 1 manufacturing job a Commissioner brings in 1.5 service positions are created.
2. Decrease the amount of revenue out of Madison County
a. Create Local “Buy it in Madison County” campaigns to encourage exporters to buy local firms.
Without a master plan, which includes a land use analysis, it would be presumptuous to guess (about more industrial parks). However, what if TVA wanted to put a mega site in Madison County?
a. Whose community is moving into? $1,000,000, homes or $500,000 $325,000 $125,000 $90,000 or a local trailer park community.
b. If we had a designated area, what level of commitment could we expect form TVA?
c. What’s there long-range plan? Are they going to build here and hire Labor force capital from another location?
d. There will be environmental impacts. Is the community ready?
e. There will be economic impacts
f. The ultimate decision rests with The People First its there decision!
4. What is your position on ‘Metro Government’?
I would like to see us look at the Unit system Vs. the District system first. Before we explore the option of combing the two governments.
5. Which roads and bridges in the County are most in need of improvement; which roads in your District need improvement?
a. There are several roads in the district that need improvement. However, the concern is funding.
b. It takes 3 to 5 million dollars to produce a 3-lane road for the distance of a mile.
c. In order to expedite the county road improvement we should consider moving the 5% yearly pay raise to the for county employees to an honest merit system. This would provide an increase to the pay of those honestly earning tax pay funds.
d. There are a few ITS (intelligent transport systems) that will decrease congestion and casualties on our county roads.
6. Describe your approach to public safety. Does the Sheriff’s Department have adequate resources? Does the Fire Marshall have adequate resources? Do the Volunteer Fire Departments have adequate resources; should the County establish a ‘regular’ Fire Department? Does the EMA have adequate resources?
It all goes back to the plan! If your population increases there will be an impact on the services you can provide. In all areas, the Sheriff’s Department has 107 deputies. That’s 1.7 deputies per 1,000 persons the national average is 2.3, According to the Huntsville Times, if I’m not mistaken some of if not a good majority of our public safety professionals are first responders. Which would leave us handicap in an emergency.
7. How would you improve County Mental Health services?
I would like to see an independent agency do a SWOT analyses , which include a review of :
8. Does the County need more Parks / Greenways and if so, where?
Yes, more families are moving in. They need safe environments for their children to play. Greenways would create great buffers that would protect are local natural resource treasure the Flint River for generations to come.
***FUNDING TO DEVELOP THROUGH PRIVATEE PARTNERSHIPS , GRANTS, AND OTHER FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES. TVA MAY HELP FUND LOCAL PROJECTS.
9. What do you propose for protecting the Flint River?
a. We want this natural resource around a long time. I have gone canoeing with my family on the Flint River and it was a wonderful experience. We go to the watering holes out in the county.
b. This would be in the master plan assessment.
10. What is the biggest problem facing your district?
Our infrastructure is not prepared for the population increase. The roads are reaching capacity, the schools are at capacity. Our public safety professionals are stretched. Our needs for waste treatment plants are now. Our quality of life in Madison County is a stake.
Let us plan together to make Madison County the best County in the United States.
Plus a softball: Are there any questions you wish we had asked? Go ahead and answer it.
The County Commissioner position is far beyond the 1950′s road shed idea. With the population growth in Madison County the demand for basic infrastructure, roads, schools, water treatment facilities and public safety services have increased.
At this time, Madison County needs, foresight in growth management, policy, and economic development.
What is the role of a County Commissioner?
1. Policy and Statue Development
2. Public Services
3. Community & Economic Development
5. Administrative Support Operations
According to the Functional and Organizational Analysis of Alabama County Commission
“Generally, the county commissions’ duties fall under the Policy & Statute Development, Public Services, Economic & Community Development, Regulation, and Administrative Support Operations functions herein identified for Alabama local government.”
Revision Approved by the Local Government Records Commission July 25, 2007
What role does the 2010 census play in the County Commission role?
Every ten years U.S. Census Bureau conducts the Census. The Census data provides crucial information to the government that helps them determine the number of representatives in Congress we will receive in addition to other monetary benefits.
It’s the same at the district level. Madison County Commissioner’s in 2010 will supply information to the Census Bureau in order to ensure that the county ‘s electoral precincts and district remain equitable. I want District 1 to prosper. Chris Stuckey is the only conservative candidate that works with the Census data as a tool daily, he is the only candidate will develop policy on the people first, he is the only candidate that has the experience to negotiate and recruit businesses and industries to District 1 and Madison County.
Locally trained as a planner and urban analyst. Chris Stuckey is the only candidate with the background to provide the people with accurate data to make informed decisions.