Metro Proposal Divides Madison Residents

Posted at 6:05 PM, Nov 02, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-02 19:32:37-04

A proposal to add city services has divided Madison residents. The plan would add services like sidewalks, street lights, public trash removal, and curbside recycling in exchange for a higher property tax rate.

"At this point, being retired and living on a fixed income, any little amount is a burden," said Stephen Russell, who first moved to Madison in 1995. "I'm against it."

Russell is against Mayor Megan Barry's proposal to expand the city's Urban Services District by 13.604 acres, including parts of Madison. It would mean a property tax rate of $4.516 per $100 of assessed value - higher than the previous $3.924 rate.

Neighbors in favor of the plan argue well lit streets and sidewalks for pedestrians are important in an area that's growing.

"I feel like this would bring new residents to the area," said Alex Pearson, Russell's neighbor. "To me, a small tax increase would be a perfectly good trade off too make the neighborhood more valuable."

Two council members represent Madison. On Tuesday, councilman Bill Pridemore put forward an amendement that would exclude certain areas of his district from the added services.

"I excluded some rural areas along Neelys Bend Road, because it just doesn't make sense to do this there," Pridemore said. "I'm doing my best to make everyone happy but it's almost impossible."

Council members will vote on a finalized plan on Nov. 15.