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Mayor declares August as Aspergers Syndrome Month

Mayor Paul Finley declared August 2011 as Aspergers Syndrome Month at the July 25 Madison City Council meeting. Angela Prestriedge Collier accepted the declaration from the Mayor on behalf of Asperger Syndrome S.E.A. Beyond Tomorrow: Support, Educate, Advocate.

The group’s goals are to support individuals with asperger’s syndrome and high functioning autism, educate individuals to foster happiness, prosperity and success and to advocate for individuals and their families who are touched by asperger’s syndrome or high-functioning autism.

For more information, visit Aspergersyndromeseabeyondtomorrow.com.

An update on the Madison Chamber of Commerce was also given at the meeting.

 “I’m proud to say that I’m working with one of the strongest boards that I’ve ever worked with,” said Lori King-Taylor, consultant to the Madison Chamber of Commerce.

She said they have spent three months working on a strategic plan for the year.

 “Often times during progress, however, you do need to make changes,” Taylor said.

She said part of that included the recent changes in staff. She said while those employees were valuable to the Chamber, they need to have employees aligned with their goals.

King-Taylor said all spots have been filled for the Madison Business Expo, which will take place Saturday, July 30.

The Chamber is making an effort to contribute educational programs for the community.

“We’ve put a committee together to survey our members and find out exactly what they need to make their businesses more successful,” King-Taylor added. “We just really think that it’s time we step up to the plate and make a change in the community.”

She continued by saying he executive director search is ongoing. The interview process for candidates will begin Aug. 3. She said they anticipate making a recommendation to the Board of Directors at the Aug. 24 meeting.

Lou Galipeau and Tabitha Ivey, former members of the Madison Chamber of Commerce, addressed the council.

 “We want to thank you for all the support we’ve receive in the last couple of years,” Galieapu said. “We’ve enjoyed growing this community.”

Galipeau said they have brought in business from the Shoals all the way up to Scottsboro. He added that they are proud of the new programs they brought in, such as Biz B4 Hrs.

 “We created a lot of fun, a lot of energy and a lot of contest,” Galipeau said. “We are proud of everything we did, but we are also very, very proud of working with the community.”

In other business, Troy Trulock gave a presentation to the council on behalf of the Recreation Advisory Board.

“Our population is growing, and that’s a good thing,” Trulock said. “But our recreational facilities are not.”

He said the board would like to expand the recreational facilities in Madison over the next 15 years. Trulock said current facilities are overcrowded and they will not be able to support the needs of Madison’s citizens.

Aside from the sporting event opportunities, it could bring the opportunity for trade shows to come to Madison. 

“We’re asking for $35,000 to conduct a six-month feasibility study,” Trulock said.

This money will determine our recreational needs for the next 15 years, anticipated revenue from new facility used, the cost to build facilities and the costs to maintain, staff and operate facilities.

Trulock said there is no specific location in mind for the facilities.

“It’s an exciting concept,” said Councilman Tim Holcombe.

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