NEW UPDATE – Monte Sano water pressure survey

At our October 2015 Monte Sano Civic Association meeting, Dr. Hobbs with Huntsville Utilities was asked to investigate issues with water pressure on the mountain.  The MSCA Board sent out a survey to the membership regarding water pressure and received three responses.  Huntsville Utilities investigated each issue and provided the following response:

From our Water Technicians:

Our crews went by these 3 locations and performed some pressure and flow tests at our meter located near the road, and also at the front and rear spigot at the house. I do not see anything alarming at any of these 3 locations that indicate an issue.

So, after analyzing all of the information that we gathered, I believe the customers may be simply experiencing the difference in pressure between the normal operation on this system (meaning the pumps off and the system demand and pressure is supplied solely by the water level in the tank) and the time when the pumps are on (typically only for a short 1-2 hour duration, about twice a day).

The pressure fluctuation looks to be around 7-20 psi, depending on the location, but at all times remains well within the guidelines that Huntsville Utilities is required to provide at the meter locations.

Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns.”

Harry L. Hobbs, PhD

Public and Governmental Affairs Liaison

Huntsville Utilities


Originally published on 11/29/2015

At our last membership meeting, several residents stated they were having issues with water pressure in their homes. Dr. Harry Hobbs, Public and Government Affairs Liaison for Huntsville Utilities, has asked the Monte Sano Civic Association Board to provide him with a list of persons who are experiencing issues with their water supply.

He stated Huntsville Utilities will send out crews to see if they can
improve the water pressure and check if there are any piping issues.

If this applies to you, please complete the below survey and email
your responses to Joe Dombrowski:

Note: if you are experiencing other water-related issues, please
provide details.

* Name:
* Address:
* Email:
* Phone:
* Approximate age of house:
* Is water pressure lower during certain time(s) during the day? If so, when?
* Comments:
* Describe any other water-related issues

Monte Sano Blvd Development UPDATE

We’ve heard that an application has been made to the City (we’ve not seen it and don’t know if or how much it might have changed), and that it’s currently in Staff Review. If (and that’s not a fait accompli) it passes Staff Review (we won’t know until later in December), it goes next to Departmental Review during January, then Planning Commission in February (at the earliest, as we understand it). As soon as we hear definitive dates, we’ll post them here and on Facebook.

City of Huntsville Floodplain Management Plan Update

Our City Councilman Mark Russell recently provided the Monte Sano Civic Association (MSCA) Board with an updated version of the city’s Floodplain Management Plan (FMP) report and asked that we share it with the Monte Sano Community.

The purpose of the report is to document local flooding events, evaluate progress on recommendations and action items in the FMP, and recommend changes (if any) in the FMP update.  This report plays an integral role in the City’s participation in the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Community Rating System (CRS) program, as it relates to the City’s participation in FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).  The City receives points in the CRS program for, among other things, preparing and implementing a FMP. These points total to form a rating which translates into a percentage discount that City citizens and/or property owners receive on their NFIP flood insurance policies.

As stated in the City of Huntsville Engineering website frequently asked questions section,, “many flooding problems involved blocked swales or drainage channels.  Though you may not live in a designated floodplain, this does not mean you do not live on a flood prone property…in a major flood, even some houses on top of Monte Sano could flood because of overflowing drainage ditches.”  The FMP includes a mitigation plan to reduce the risk of drainage flooding.  The complete FMP report can be viewed here.

Featured speaker at the 2015 Holiday meeting & potluck supper

Huntsville City Councilman Mark Russell will be the featured speaker at the Dec 8 Holiday meeting & potluck supper at the Monte Sano State Park Lodge. Doors are open at 6:00pm, dinner at 6:30 and speaker at 7:15. All children are invited to participate in a cookie decorating activity that will take place during the speech.

Mark Russell has served on the Huntsville City Council since 2002, and has served as president of the council for many of those years. But his service to our community began before he became an elected official. Some of the organizations that have benefited from Mark’s time and energy include the Boys and Girls Clubs, Leadership Huntsville/Madison County, The Huntsville Sports Commission, the Huntsville Historic Preservation Commission, The Huntsville Rotary Club and the Huntsville Hospital Foundation Development Board. He has also served as a volunteer tutor for the public schools, and referees high school and youth football games.

Mark has lived in Huntsville since 1973, when he moved here with his parents. He attended Huntsville City Schools and is a graduate of Auburn University. He and his wife, April, have two daughters, Mary Allen and Bailey. Mary Allen is a CPA with Ernst & Young in Atlanta. Bailey is a senior at Washington & Lee University.

2016-2017 Board of Directors nominees voting

Deadline to vote for the 2016-2017 MSCA Board of Directors is in a few days.  Please mail your ballots by Dec 1 or bring them to the Dec 8 Holiday meeting & potluck.

Ballots were mailed to all current members.  Extra ballots will be available at the Dec 8 meeting.   1 ballot per household of current members.  Vote for 5 members.

Thank you to the following residents of Monte Sano who have agreed to run for a position on the Monte Sano Civic Association Board for 2016-2017.

Judy Berry has lived on Monte Sano for 37 years.  In 1978 she married Childs Berry and moved to his house.  She fell in love with him and Monte Sano.  She is a graduate of Birmingham-Southern College where she majored in Elementary Education.  She received a master’s degree in Special Ed (Gifted from Alabama A & M) and taught in the Huntsville Public Schools for 18 years.  Her son and Childs’ two children both attended Monte Sano School and she has substituted there.  She has served on the MSCA board twice and loved it.  She is also a member of the Monte Sano Women’s Club and has held most of the offices.  She is an active member of Monte Sano United Methodist Church and she loves Monte Sano!!!

Michael Gullion and his family moved to Huntsville just over two years ago.  He targeted the Monte Sano area as he has three elementary aged children.  His children are in 3rd, 2nd and Kindergarten at MSE and absolutely love it.  Michael is the Vice President of Business Development and Strategy at SCI Technology and his wife, Donne, is the VP of Programs for the MSE PTA.  He recently purchased and moved into their new home on Natchez Drive and love living on the mountain.

William A. Stanley ‘Bill’ and his family have lived on Monte Sano for almost three years.  He and his wife Rhoda have three children, Ella-14, Olivia-11, and Will-7.  He gives credit to Bob and Gena (Bill’s sister) Crook for positively influencing their decision on Monte Sano after their move from Scotland, UK.  Bill is the Director of Global Health Monitoring at Aviagen Group.  He would like to work with the Civic Association and help continue to make this a wonderful community.

Matthew G. Taylor was born in Florence, Alabama and moved to the mountain nearly six years ago. He enjoys his home on the mountain with his wife, Marie, and two rescued beagle mixes, Abbie and Sookie. He served on the 2013-2014 MSCA Board and would like the chance to help again. He has a great appreciation for the mountain including its history, landscape, and neighborhood culture. He knows he lives in a very exceptional place. He may have been born in Florence but has planted roots on the mountain.

Elizabeth Thornton has lived on Monte Sano since 1998. She is a mother of two children, a freshman in the band at Huntsville High School and a junior she is home schooling.  For the past three years, Liz has been the bookkeeper for the Monte Sano Club. She is a member of Monte Sano United Methodist Church and previously served on the MSCA board in 2011 and 2012.  Her degree is in Accounting from UA-Huntsville. She is self-employed working with individuals & small businesses providing accounting and tax services. Elizabeth is interested in maintaining and cultivating the wonderful atmosphere on the mountain for the future.

Ursula Vann moved to Huntsville in 1950 and to Monte Sano in 1962.  Her late husband and she raised two daughters here.  The older, Kelley Johns, and family have returned to live on Monte Sano.  She had a brief early career at NASA as a mathematician.  Later she became a potter and has made that her life for the last many years.  She supports the Monte Sano Village concept.  She also is very much interested in maintaining the eclectic community on the mountain as a green refuge from the growing urban/suburban sprawl.

Greg Wright has been a resident of the mountain since 1974 and is actively involved in many aspects of the mountain community.  He is a member at Burritt, the Land Trust, Monte Sano United Methodist, Monte Sano Club, and last served on the MSCA board in 2013.  Greg was on the building committee for the addition at the church in 2010-11.  Greg remains committed to a community that can reach out to all different groups on the mountain and make it a better place for everyone.  He is also extremely interested in working with the proposed development on the mountain to assure it becomes an asset and not a detriment to the community.

Huntsville Utilities Message

Please see important message below from Huntsville Utilities:

Huntsville Utilities’ employees DO NOT wear shorts on the job. Our employees will also have a badge and clothing that identifies them as an HU employee. Unless we are lighting gas pilot lights, Huntsville Utilities’ employees do not enter the homes of customers. We do not perform any type of repair work inside the residence of a customer and will not ask for passage through a home to gain access to an easement or alley. Our services for, electric, natural gas, and water stop at the meter. In the event we have visited a home and the home was not occupied, we will leave a door tag on the primary entrance of the residence. Also, a clearly marked Huntsville Utilities vehicle will be in the vicinity. If at any time you feel suspect about someone misrepresenting Huntsville Utilities, please do not hesitate to call us directly at 256-535-1200.


Fall 2015 Potluck and call for VBAS volunteers

The MSCA General Membership Meeting and Potluck Supper will be held at the Monte Sano State Park Lodge on Tuesday, October 13. This event will be combined with the Fall Business Expo in which mountain community businesses will display their goods and services. Booths will be open at 5:30 pm, supper will be served at 6:30, and the program and speaker will begin at 7:15.  Membership renewal and t-shirt orders will be available. The speaker will be Dr. Harry L. Hobbs,  Huntsville Utilities, Public and Governmental Affairs Liaison. His presentation will cover new developments by Huntsville Utilities, levels of consumption, changes in service, scams  to look out for, improvements, and much more.

Business Expo tables are still available.  Please contact Dennis Madsen ( by 5:00pm Sunday Oct. 11 to reserve a table. We look forward to seeing you there!

Looking for a few volunteers 2:00pm Sunday Oct 11.  Von Braun Astronomical Society (VBAS) needs a few Strong Monte Sano backs to help unload 18 special Planetarium seats.  The seats are being transported from Buffalo State College Planetarium to the VBAS on Monte Sano.  Please contact Bob Crook ( if you plan to help.