Madison considers future move for Police Department

Mayor Roy Lindsay outlined a proposal on Monday to purchase the office building located west of Madison's City Hall and move some municipal departments into the two-story building.

Speaking during a short budget meeting held after the Madison City Commission's regular session, Lindsay proposed a couple of funding items that would assist a proposal to purchase the Hanson building for city use. Lindsay provided a two-page written proposal for the building purchase and basically read the document during his presentation.

Among the reasons for purchasing the building, located on the northeast corner of Center St. and Van Eps Ave., were better access to the Madison finance office and the Madison Police Department's desire for more room.

According to Lindsay, the municipal utility office staff receive about 3,000 visits each month, and other visitors are received at the city finance and engineer's offices. He said those offices should receive remodeling to improve their workplace efficiency.

The Police Department wants more space for additional interview rooms and a large conference room that would support personnel involved in major incidents. Lindsay pointed out that the city police currently have one interview room. He said if that room is in use, the officers place other persons in unsecured rooms in the building or they interview witnesses in a hallway.

According to Lindsay, local law enforcement would prefer a conference room that would hold 20 to 30 persons and would have Internet access.

The Madison police also want additional room to store evidence.

Lindsay said moving the Police Department to the Hanson building would allow remodeling at City Hall to improve access -- particularly for persons with handicaps -- for individuals visiting the finance office.

Among the future development proposals for the current City Hall space, Lindsay said moving the Madison Police Department to the Hanson building would provide room for a handicapped-accessible ramp to the finance and utilities offices. He added that remodeling would allow moving the mayor's office into the remaining space previously used by the city police.

In the proposal, Lindsay noted that the Madison Police would still have close access to their vehicle garage shooting range in the lower level of the Downtown Armory.

The mayor also proposed moving the city engineer's office to ground-level offices on the west side of the Hanson building. Lindsay pointed out that the current engineer's office, located on City Hall's second floor, is not handicapped-accessible.

To help pay for purchasing the Hanson building, Lindsay proposed that city commissioners provide $70,000 annually to the municipal budget and enter into a three-year contract with Dr. Derrill Hanson for buying the office building. Lindsay also proposed that the city place $50,000 annually into municipal reserve funds to help pay for future remodeling of the Hanson building.

Lindsay asked that the city commissioners take the funding ideas for the Hanson building proposal into consideration as part of Madison's 2017 budget.

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