MADISON, Ala. (WHNT) – In one week, residents in Alabama’s 10th largest city will vote on whether their city should change its system of governance. According to Madison city officials, every vote matters.

“This special election could possibly change our form of government in Madison. It’s important that we get everyone to the polls and everyone doing adequate research to understand what their vote means,” said City of Madison Communications & External Affairs Officer Samantha Magnuson.

Voters will decide Tuesday, May 9th whether the city will change its form of governance from its current mayor-council format to a city manager-council format.

If the measure passes, this would leave the mayor as the face of the town and the president of the city council. A city manager would then be hired by the council to oversee day-to-day operations of the city; appoint and remove department heads; present a budget to the council.

If the measure passes, the change would not go into effect until 2025.

“This all started years back after the 2020 Census and when we got our numbers in for Madison, and we’re looking at how much we’ve grown. We know other cities in Alabama operate on a council-manager form of government, so we started the research to see if this is something Madison would look to do in the future. Ultimately, it’s up to our community to make that decision for themselves,” replied Magnuson.

Magnuson says there are seven voting districts in the city. Where you cast your ballot depends on where you live.

Important Dates:

  • April 24, 2023 – Last day to register to vote for the municipal special general election.
  • April 26, 2023 – Election Workers (Officials)- Training school
  • May 2, 2023 – Last day to receive absentee application by mail.
  • May 3, 2023 – Public testing of Electronic Vote Count Machines
  • May 4, 2023 – Last day for a voter to apply for a regular absentee ballot by hand. (City Clerk Office)
  • May 8, 2023 – Last day, up to the close of business, for a voter to apply for and submit an emergency absentee ballot.
  • May 8, 2023 – Last day, up to the close of business, for a voter to hand-deliver absentee ballot.
  • May 8, 2023 – If an absentee ballot is returned by mail, it must be postmarked by May 8, and received by noon on May 9, 2023, election Day.
  • May 9, 2023 – Election Day: Polls open at 7:00 a.m. and close at 7:00 p.m.

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“We have the ballot language also available on our website. You can go knowing exactly what that ballot will say and what that vote means for you, so you aren’t going to be confused at the polls. Go in, do your research ahead of time so you’re ready. We also ask our community members to have patience as they’re waiting in line, trying to get their vote in,” added Magnuson.

For more on the special election, visit the City of Madison’s website.