2020 Budget Waiting Approval: Fiscal Year 2020 Started Oct 1st

The fiscal year started Oct 1st.  After two work sessions on Monday and Wednesday, we are now waiting on Council to pass. The next regularly scheduled Council meeting is not until Oct 28th.  If you have not read the Budget Overview with multiple updates over the course of the last six weeks, I urge you to do so here. As you can see, Council was presented a balanced budget without...

Tatumville Subdivision Still Being Discussed: We Must Protect Our Valuable Gully Watershed

The City of Fairhope is comprised of a complex gully system that manages our storm water drainage, safeguards our watersheds, provides refuge to plants and wildlife and contributes to the health of Mobile Bay. Our gullies have been negatively affected by uncontrolled development and it has been a challenge to put safeguards in place in perpetuity.  The comprehensive land-use plan will certainly address this. Perhaps that’s why this subdivision has...

FIRST EVER SELF-SUSTAINING BUDGET!

For the first time in Fairhope history, the 2020 City Budget proposal requires zero dollars of utility profits to balance. The City is finally self-sustaining financially and can run independently from our Utility Department. There are ZERO Utility dollars paying for government operating expenses. I’m not sure how many ways I can articulate it, but this is a very good thing and something to be celebrated! And in case anyone...

Barney Gaston Day: A Memorable Day in Fairhope History

August 24, 2019 What a special day it was in Fairhope’s rich history. Barney Gaston Day took place at our wonderful Fairhope Museum of History. LT. ‘BARNEY’ GASTON was born and raised in the City of Fairhope and graduated from the Marietta Johnson School of Organic Education Dot Yeager was on hand to describe Barney and his family’s generous spirit.  When she told me she had graduated with him at...

Timeline for Sewer System Upgrades & Water Quality Initiatives

I decided to dedicate a page for a timeline to keep citizens up-to-date on the City’s progress in fully Updating & Rehabilitating our Sewer System and clean water initiatives. This timeline demonstrates the focus and perseverance of having a big goal. One agenda. And never losing focus despite the many roadblocks, political distractions (which I will not include in this timeline) and lack of Council support. My administration cannot do...

In the Face of 44% Growth, Please Support Collaborative Strategic Planning

Our Founding Fathers established Fairhope with Vision and Planning.  They planned the “downtown” with wide streets surrounded by residential lots forming the heart of, and foundation for, what our City has become.  It has been said that great parks developed by Olmsted (Central Park) and later the lake front parks by Daniel Burnham inspired Fairhope’s open spaces and public parks providing water access to all residents.  Without this foresight, Fairhope could have been...

2019 Arbor Day

This year’s Arbor Day was another success.  Getting up Saturday morning, walking across the street to the Coastal Community College where the event took place and it was absolutely the most beautiful day of the year so far.  It felt like I was in a scene from Truman Show! Our Public Works Director, Richard Johnson, welcomed everyone and declared that Arbor Day would be his official first day to wear...

Two-Year Anniversary Update on Campaign Promises

When someone decides to run for office, it’s important to have clear goals for which to measure success. On this two-year anniversary in office, I’d like to share my administration’s progress on the promises I made when I took office. We all live in Fairhope for a reason.  But we were at a critical tipping point in 2016 with haphazard planning, and that encouraged me to run for office and...

Overview of 2019 Budget

When I took office in November of 2016, I spent the next several months separating the co-mingling of Utility funds with General City funds in addition to creating departments with their own revenue and expenses. We now have a budget with much more accuracy, transparency and communication.  The hard work has paid off too, as you can see in a previous blog post. The financial health of the City has never...

2019 Proposed Budget to Council Before Schedule

The Mayor’s fiscal 2019 draft budget was delivered to City Council members on August 10th (10 days before the date required by state statute). Each year my office aims to improve and streamline the budget process and this year is an especially exciting year for the City and its Utility Department. We will be going over some of the exciting developments in six council work sessions (three of which will...