County Commissioner Dale Strong (R) announced this morning that he is thinking about running for Chair of the Madison County Commission, currently held by Mike Gillespie (D).
Strong made the announcement at this morning’s Madison County GOP breakfast, which featured speeches by the three Republican County Commissioners (Strong, Faye Dyer, and Phil Riddick).
Commissioner Riddick spoke first, saying that a FEMA official told him that Madison County was the most organized area in the wake of a disaster that FEMA had ever visited. Riddick also said that the County was exploring options to improve the delivery of water in the County (two companies are vying to take over the system).
Commissioner Faye Dyer spoke next, detailing the County GOP agenda: going to a unit system instead of the district system (currently each Commissioner has a budget to spend how they want, as opposed to a unit system where spending decisions are made at the County level) and implementing a time management system for employees. These initiatives have been blocked by the Democratic majority on the County Commission. Dyer noted that Phil Riddick has already saved the County a couple of hundred thousand dollars by reviewing some contracts.
Dale Strong spoke to strong applause – Strong showed tremendous leadership following the tornadoes – Strong spoke about the 15 years he and Dyer and former-Commissioner now-Congressman Mo Brooks have worked to keep taxes as low as possible, spend public money appropriately and effectively, and improve services for the people of Madison County. Strong spoke about the hard work that neighbors and churches and companies performed after the tornado outbreak: helping people, clearing debris, feeding people, and providing services. Strong noted that the warden and prisoners at Limestone Prison helped early on by looking for people in the debris. Strong told how some guy asked him how he could help, and within an hour Gator Technologies had set up satellite communications.
Strong got a standing ovation with his closing remark: “we sucked it up and got it done”.
Plenty of officials were on hand, however I’d like to commend Sheriff Blake Dorning for his leadership during the tornadoes (crime went down that week). Deputy Mayor Rex Reynolds was at the breakfast – Reynolds and Mayor Tommy Battle showed great leadership during the crisis.
It is an unfortunate fact of life that a crisis is the crucible through which leadership is recognized. Some people rise to the challenge, some people don’t, and some people display bad judgment. Let’s remember that at the polls. Elections have consequences.