With the goal of keeping local parents (and voters) as informed as possible about all things parent-related, the editors of Rocket City Mom compiled “4 Questions for the Candidates”. We asked all the Huntsville City and Madison City candidates to answer the same four questions, and have published their responses unedited and as they have sent them to us.
Get to know a little about each candidate and where they stand on serving local families in our full Know Your Vote series. We encourage all of our readers to exercise their democratic right and vote on Tuesday, August 25, 2020.
4 Questions with Steve Smith
Q. What do you see as the top three most pressing issues facing Huntsville today? What are your plans to address those issues?
-Finances – We have done a really good job over the past 8 years to get our budget to finally start working for the City instead of the City working for the budget. What I mean by this is we have paid off all short term debt and now paying cash for all of our purchases such as police cars, fire trucks, dump trucks, etc. We have to continue to continue to grow out in a smart manner that increases our tax base and tax revenue. Bringing certain commercial and residential projects to Madison that bring value to our community allows us to grow our revenue in order to continue to address our infrastructure, parks, and other quality of life needs our citizens demand.
-Town Madison – Although Town Madison has been slowed due to the pandemic, we must continue to support and assist in making it as successful as possible. Bringing the right businesses in will enable this development to take care of Madison for a very long time. It has already generated over a million dollars for our schools and we must keep it a priority moving forward.
-Cliff Farms – While this development is still located in the County, the City will be approached within a year or two in order to annex. Current Council and Mayor have already set money aside to do a feasibility study once the request is made official. We must make sure the commercial base the development brings will support not only our schools but city services as well.
Q. Why do you believe you are the right person for this office?
I am in my 8th year serving on Council. I have led the charge to get our finances in order. When I first got on Council, we were using borrowed money to fill pot holes and now we are paying cash for everything we buy. I’ve made very strategic decisions for not only the short term issues but making sure our City is setup for success for years to come.
The next four years have the potential to set Madison up for years and years of success if handled correctly and I believe it is vital I am part of the decision making process since I have been working on these issues since day one. I truly believe if the next four years are handled correctly, the City could be debt free in about 15 to 20 years.
Q. As the incumbent, what new or existing initiatives do you look forward to working on?
Knowing we are on the verge of being very financially sound for years to come, we must continue to update our financial policies to ensure we are setup for success regardless of who wins future Council and Mayor seats. We must have policy in place that dictates financial responsibility by all those who serve.
Q. What is your overall vision/mission when it comes to families living in your city? What are your ideas about how to best serve them specifically?
I realize Madison is successful due to the families that move into our City to attend our schools and be a part of such a wonderful community. We have top rated schools and we also need top rated parks, recreational facilities, greenways, art venues to service all of our families and continue to improve the quality of life Madison has to offer. We are already the number 1 place in the state to live, raise a family and buy a home so we are headed in the right direction.
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- Meet the Other 2020 Huntsville & Madison Candidates
- Back to School Guide for Huntsville & Madison County
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Rocket City Mom is a website about raising children in and around Huntsville, Alabama. Started in late 2010 by a local mom and newcomer to Huntsville, Rocket City Mom has grown into a thriving community of local parents and now boasts a staff of four, thirteen regular contributors, and tens of thousands of Tennessee Valley readers making it the #1 Parenting Resource in North Alabama.