Decatur Development Blog

Expansion and Development in the Greater Decatur area

Posts Tagged ‘Billy Jackson’

Tuesday’s Referendum

Posted by alalto on April 16, 2010


Following Tuesday’s referendum, I have begun to feel optimistic enough start posting again on here. While it’s possible that the Justice Department might not OK the council-manager government, the Sunday alcohol sales approval is enough that it could positively impact the city in numerous ways.

Benefits of Sunday alcohol sales

1) A wider variety of restaurants: It’s a well known fact that there are many restaurants that usually won’t even think about going to a city that doesn’t allow Sunday alcohol sales. True, some will move to cities that don’t allow the sales, but that usually only occurs in large metropolitan areas like Birmingham, Nashville, Atlanta, and on up.

Now, restaurants that could potential begin looking at Decatur, now that the sale of alcohol is allowed on Sundays, are Olive Garden, Buffalo Wild Wings, Carrabba’s, etc… And now that Longhorn Steakhouse is already establishing itself in Decatur, the research, facts, and demographics have already been looked at and people know the situation. That’s not to say that we’re going to be seeing these things pop up over night, it’s going to take time.

As far as location goes, I’d like to see at least one restaurant locate downtown that is investing in the city because of Sunday sales.

2) Increased tax revenue: In this kind of economic climate, every municipality could benefit from some extra tax dollars. While restaurants take time to develop, increased tax revenues will be felt more readily. I’m not sure how these tax dollars will be allocated, I think the jury is still out on how the city will use the money.

Council-manager

I’ve always been a fan of this form of government, because it cuts out a lot of red tape and creates a more fluid government. Unfortunately, there’s no telling how this will go when the Justice Department looks at it. Billy Jackson sees the whole approval of this switch as an attempt to stomp out the minority vote in the city and I hope that his constituents have taken notice of his willingness to work with other officials in creating a system that works for everyone, not just the majority of Decaturites.

What is possible is that the state legislature could attempt to make an exception for the city in this situation to change the make up of the future council. For example, instead of having three districts, there could be five, allowing for what we currently have in the way of District 1, which gives the minority vote a seat on the council.

I’m hopeful that something good will come of all this, but you can never tell.

Anyways, I expect to post on here more frequently now that I have a bit more time on my hands, and I’m a little more optimistic.

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More about District 2 race and Bama gets a B

Posted by alalto on August 5, 2008


Some interesting things in this article.  When asked about whether or not they would support current council president Billy Jackson (District 1) for another term of president, David Bolding raised some interesting points.  They weren’t specifically about a council president though.

He proposed demoting the position of mayor to a part time position and giving it a salary that is about equal to the current city council salary of $15,071, random number…  Anyways, He says that the former money used for the mayor’s salary ($100,480) should be put towards hiring a well qualified city manager to deal with all the budget issues and such.  I’m a fan of the idea of a city manager, these have been shown to be very effective in other cities.  Greenville, SC has a city manager if I’m not mistaken.  Vestavia Hills, AL has proposed it too I believe. 

The problem with the whole proposition of the city manager position is that I like Don Kyle, and I don’t wanna do him any wrong by paying him less.  Either way, I support David Bolding for the District 2 position.  He’s convinced me that he’s the man for the job.  If you haven’t already, I encourage you to read the Daily’s articles that have all these question in them for the candidates.  They’re actually quite interesting.

In other news, the State of Alabama gets a B overall in the No Child Left Behind junk.  Three schools in Decatur did not make the cut, Austin High, Brookhaven Middle, and Decatur High.  The high schools have been hitting a rough spot lately, and Brookhaven regularly is on these lists.  Hartselle Schools met all their goals, as did all in Lawrence County except for RA Hubbard and Hazelwood.  Morgan County schools also did great. 

It was a pretty good day for Decatur Metro Area schools.  These results don’t sound good, but they’re an improvement over last year.  Looking at the high, middle, and elementary school details in the articles, I noticed that there is a wave of improved student scores coming up from the elementary schools and it looks to be pretty strong.  Looks like it’ll hold on through once the first few classes come through.

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