Handlon ‘very pleased’ after meeting with city’s businessesPublished 2:18pm Friday, January 25, 2013
By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor
Alabaster Mayor Marty Handlon said she was encouraged after speaking with dozens of the city’s business owners during a “comfortably full” Jan. 25 meeting at the Alabasater City Hall Annex building.
“I think it went really well. I was very pleased,” Handlon said after the meeting. “We let the business owners know that they are our backbone, and we told them what a vital role they play.
“I had some people say that today was the first time they’d ever met the mayor,” Handlon added.
Handlon said sales tax revenues make up a majority of the city’s budget revenues, and said working to provide an environment favorable to the city’s businesses helps to support city services. She said she held the meeting to follow up on a campaign pledge to be a “full-time mayor,” and to be accessible to city residents and business owners.
During the meeting, state Sen. Cam Ward, R-Alabaster, who is the president of the Alabaster Industrial Development Board, gave an update on the city’s economic development efforts.
City department heads explained the city’s new online sales tax filing system, and gave business owners tips on helping to keep Alabaster’s sewer rates down, Handlon said.
Alabaster City Administrator George Henry also gave those in attendance a description of the recently launched “Buy Alabaster First” campaign on the city’s website.
Through the campaign, which is at Cityofalabaster.com/shop-alabaster-first-business-directory, businesses are able to claim their listings on the website and add detailed information, such as summaries of the business’ offerings and their hours of operation.
“We actually had business go in and claim their businesses after the meeting,” Handlon said.
Handlon said she is planning to hold similar business meetings each quarter.