County manager discusses capital projects, economic development

Published 12:48 pm Monday, November 1, 2021

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PELHAM – Local business leaders heard a detailed summary of Shelby County’s projects, events and internal operations from County Manager Chad Scroggins on Wednesday, Oct. 27.

The Shelby County Chamber’s October Community Luncheon at the Pelham Civic Complex featured a State of the County address from Scroggins, who talked about the county’s progress over the last two years and what he and his team anticipate for 2022.

“It’s good to be together,” Scroggins said, noting he delivered his speech in a virtual meeting last year because of the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’ve had a lot of challenges over the last couple of years, as you all have in your business operations.”

Scroggins then introduced his colleagues who make up Shelby County’s leadership team.

“They’re not just managers of departments; they’re leaders in their fields,” he said. “We’re blessed to have a very talented team in Shelby County.”

In addition to the pandemic, Scroggins recapped other major events that have occurred since his State of the County speech in 2019, including controversy over a proposed toll bridge project, letting a bid for the county’s largest construction project in 15 years, a national election, a fight for more local vaccines, a county employee benefits change for long-term stability and sewer legislation.

“We operated through all of those things,” he said. “We are one of two counties that did not shut down their government operations. Record numbers of real estate transactions occurred.”

Growth in numbers

In 2021, Shelby County’s population grew by 5,322 people, from 217,702 to 223,024. The parcel count increased by 2,079.

“We want to make sure we grow smart, our communities grow smart, and that we provide high-quality places to live in Shelby County,” Scroggins said.

The county’s unemployment rate for September rose to 2.1 percent, compared to the state’s rate of 3.2 percent and the nation’s rate of 5.2 percent.

From October 2020 to July 2021, Shelby County’s 1-cent sales tax amassed $36,092,500.

Scroggins said he and his team budgeted conservatively for the next fiscal year, noting the county’s Fiscal Year 2022 budget effective Oct. 1 was based on the actual revenues the county received in 2019, prior to the pandemic.

“Our budget for FY 2022 is $150 million,” he said. “That is a significant increase from where it has been. Shelby County was given $42 million by the federal government of ARPA (American Rescue Plan Act) funds.”

With the first $21 million of the funds, the county completed a waterline expansion along U.S. 280, from Chelsea to Harpersville, and increased the capacity of the county’s radio system for first responders.

Budgeted expenditures include roughly $35.9 million for public safety, $19 million for the highway department, $21.1 million for water services and nearly $13 million for the landfill, which will have new MSW Cell No. 5 design expenses.

Scroggins said the budget also accounts for capital projects with “a 20-year shelf life that benefit all 808 square miles of the county.”

Shelby County ranks first statewide in the following categories: per capita income ($33,978), household median income ($77,799), unemployment rate (2.1 percent), education rate (at least one college degree – 40.8 percent), home median price ($211,900) and health outcomes.

County-wide projects

Scroggins reviewed various projects that have been completed or started in the 2021 fiscal year throughout the county.

The projects include:

  • Independence Hall – American Village
  • Abby Wooley Park restrooms
  • Alabaster Veterans Park fields
  • Joe Tucker Park restrooms
  • New pickleball court at Heardmont Park
  • New County Services Building on 280
  • Chelsea cross country course around Shelby County 11 ballfields
  • Vincent walking trail
  • Inverness greenway/sidewalks
  • New airport hangar
  • Vaccination clinics
  • Dunnavant Valley Park
  • Double Oak Park
  • Landfill Cell 5
  • Intersection lights
  • Realignment of the 39-47 intersection

A ribbon cutting and dedication ceremony for the new Shelby County Services Building near the intersection of U.S. 280 and Dunnavant Valley Road is scheduled for Monday, Nov. 15 at 9 a.m.

The Inverness license office and Shelby County Sheriff’s Office’s Greystone substation will each close once the new facility has opened.

“We’re able to consolidate services into one building” Scroggins said. “This is an excellent place to bring the services to our residents. We’re bringing services to where people reside and make it more convenient for them.”

Development and future prospects

Investment in recreational opportunities in different communities benefits the local economy, Scroggins said, and organizations like 58 INC., Shelby County’s economic development agency, serve to advance economic prosperity and business health.

“It has been a fun four years to see the start of 58 INC. to where we are today,” he said. “The number of projects that are occurring in our county under the retail and commercial sector, we’ve never seen before.”

Scroggins invited all residents to provide input for Shelby County’s new comprehensive plan at

“Our goal is to lead this county to a brighter future than what we have right now,” he said. “What we’re doing is trying to make sure we lay the groundwork to be No. 1 in the future.”

Residents may also send feedback to about anything they think needs to be addressed, and they can follow @DiscoverShelby on Instagram and Shelby County Alabama on Facebook.