December 2018 Edition
Happy Holidays! It has certainly been a busy year, with several significant changes, including new ownership of Chesterfield Mall, plans to re-purpose what was formerly Taubman Outlet Mall, opening of Top Golf, new hotels and subdivisions, proposed new multi-family developments, and ground breaking of the Chesterfield Hockey Association Ice Rink. All of this activity has kept our Planning and Development Services Staff quite busy.
SEEKING INPUT FOR COMPREHENSIVE PLAN UP-DATE
As the city begins the process to revise/update our Comprehensive Plan, we are seeking input from our residents to this important document that will impact how our city may develop in the coming years. This is your opportunity to voice your perspective on important aspects of updating the plan. Please call city hall or your council member to find out when and where these input sessions will be held. We really need to get heavy participation from the public.
POTENTIAL IMPORTANT BALLOT
We anticipate hearing the Supreme Court decision on our constitutional challenge to the state statute that authorizes the collection and redistribution of the county-wide pool tax by January, if not sooner. If the court invalidates the statute, the 54 cities that previously had a municipal sales tax prior to 1977 would be authorized to re-impose their previously approved sales tax. Cities like Chesterfield and others will need to put on a ballot for voter approval a new tax that would essentially replace (not add to) the invalidated pool tax. It would be imperative that the city receive this approval at the earliest possible time, because until then the city would find it necessary to use fund reserves to pay the bills and continue providing services. It may seem premature and presumptuous to address this issue at this time, but time will be of the essence to get voter approval of a replacement tax to benefit Chesterfield residents and businesses if the court finds in our favor, and it may take significant effort to educate and inform the public on this issue. Obviously, we will be excited if the judgment is in our favor, as the region will benefit greatly from a fair and equitable distribution of sales taxes that encourages sound political and fiscal decisions.
REUNIFICATION OF ST. LOUIS CITY WITH ST. LOUIS COUNTY ?
Another uncertain issue on the horizon is the possibility of a Statewide Initiative petition (whereby voters statewide would be able to vote) to consider whether St. Louis City may be allowed in some manner to rejoin St. Louis County. To me, it seems fundamentally unjustified and inappropriate for voters statewide to determine what is best for the residents of our region, effectively circumventing the constitutional process in place which calls for a vote of the residents of St. Louis City and County. Furthermore, there are numerous financial assumptions that would pose a burden to taxpayers in St. Louis County, should a re-unification occur. I realize there are many well meaning individuals and groups who are in favor of some sort of re-organization or re-structuring, but I think they need to face the reality of the existing challenges and provide remedies before pushing for re-unification or re-structuring.
I look forward to seeing you out and about. Please don’t hesitate to express any concerns or ask any questions on these or any other matters, or simply call or e-mail at your convenience.
Wishing everyone a great holiday season and a happy & healthy 2019!
Mayor Bob Nation