Runoff Elections | Hot 5

  • Published: April 4, 2016
  • This Week’s Top 5 Things You Need to Know

    PLUS | DRIVE home the message

    1. Primary Runoff Elections Next Week 

    Thank you again to each county for sharing election results with the Association! With the Primary Runoff Elections coming up next week on April 12, ACCA asks each county to please once again share election results in commission races as soon as they are available. A form is available for your convenience, and it may be returned to Brandy Perry (bperry@alabamacounties.org).

    DOWNLOAD .xls Form Election Results

     

    2. 2016-17 ACEA Associate Members

    The Board of Directors of the Association of County Engineers of Alabama would like to publicly thank the companies that have displayed their support of quality engineering for the 2016-17 year. A total of 60 companies have joined ACEA as associate members, representing a significant increase over the previous year. A complete listing of these Associate members can be found at www.acea-online.org.

    In addition, printed directories with full contact information for the associate members will be distributed at the ACEA conference next month.

     

    3. NACo: ACCA on the Front Lines of Nationwide Fight

    In an article titled “Big-box assessments leave counties in the dark,” the National Association of Counties (NACo) examined a problem sweeping the country that has already cost counties tens of millions of dollars. There is a trend of retailers winning property tax reductions by arguing that stores that are open for business have the same value as those that are closed and vacant. Litigation is ongoing in Alabama on a Lowe’s that was built for about $9.5 million, is insured for more than $10 million, and Lowe’s argues is worth about $2.5 million for property taxes.

    This year, the Alabama Legislature has already passed an ACCA-supported bill to help address the issue. The bill, which currently awaits the governor’s signature, would allow counties to hire specialized outside counsel in these property tax appeals.

     

    4. Hotel Deadlines Approaching for Administrators and Engineers

    Professional development for county staff is always an investment that pays dividends for years to come, and that is abundantly clear with the upcoming training for administrators and for engineers. It is important for each county to be represented at these conferences for vital information about:

    • reducing county liabilities;
    • maximizing available reimbursements;
    • prison reform implementation;
    • the new federal highway law;
    • flood damage recovery.

    There are important deadlines coming up quickly for both conferences, which will be held at the Perdido Beach Resort in Orange Beach:

    • This Sunday, April 10, is the last day to reserve hotel rooms at the reduced rate.
    • Friday, April 15, is the deadline for early registration.

    Please use the links below to register or get additional info:

    Association of County Engineers of Alabama Annual Conference, May 10-11

    Association of County Administrators of Alabama Annual Conference, May 11-12

    5. Progress on Property Insurance

    The Association’s efforts to begin providing insurance coverage for county property, vehicles and equipment is on track for an October start date. The Board of Trustees of the Association’s Liability Self-Insurance Fund Inc. will meet April 20 to finalize many of the legal details necessary for counties to shift from Meadowbrook’s STAR Insurance Coverage to the new self-funded program. This new line of insurance coverage is designed to enhance the protection of county property, offer customized service and save county dollars. Interested? Contact Henry van Arcken (hvanarcken@alabamacounties.org or 334-263-7594).


    Hot 5′s Hot Tip | DRIVE Home the Message with Letters to the Editor

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    Do you want to amplify your support of transportation revenue? Legislators need to hear directly from you and other friends and colleagues about the needs in your county and the transparency and accountability provisions. To emphasize your steadfast support, you can combine that with a letter to the editor, to communicate your support throughout the community.

    For your use, DRIVE Alabama is preparing sample letters to the editor that you will receive by email later this week. So keep an eye on your inbox!

    Also, if you would like a recap of where things stand on both pieces of legislation, please see this memo from Sonny Brasfield dated Friday, April 1.