Fall 2019 Edition
As the summer winds down it seems as though there are more and more things going on, and it’s hard to know what to address in this quarterly message. This is a good thing!
Development in Chesterfield
Rightfully so, this is a frequent topic of conversation within our community because we are all interested in how our city develops in the best interests of our residents and businesses.
I thought I would take this opportunity to express KUDOS to the public, city staff, planning commissioners, and elected officials who all play important roles in the zoning and development process. The entire process is detail oriented and must adhere to legal principles, as well as city code. Whereas some projects are fairly straight forward, others for various reasons are more complicated and sometimes controversial. As much effort has been put forth in providing clear cut and definitive guidelines, subjectivity and individual interpretation is not eliminated. We are always open to suggestions for improvement to the process.
On occasion we hear questions/complaints about cutting down of trees, open space, and traffic. On a project by project basis, not only is there comparison to the Comprehensive Plan, but there are also specific requirements for percentage of tree canopy and open space, as well as traffic studies (if warranted). Therefore, tree removal by private entities must comply with written codes.
Contrast of “Board of Elector/Freeholder” relative to “Better Together”
Although for the time being, the Better Together organization has withdrawn their petition that would have allowed for a statewide vote on the imposition of a “Metropolitan City” over our entire St. Louis City and County, many who have followed this closely (including me) know the issue has not gone away, and are waiting for another re-introduction of a similar, but equally abhorrent plan.
As you know, the Municipal League of St. Louis County unanimously voted to pursue the constitutionally provided “Board of Electors/ Freeholders” process. Collection of petition signatures is required to trigger this process that is provided in Article VI, section 30a and 30b (http://www.moga.mo.gov/MoStatutes/ ConstHTML/A06030a1.html) of the Missouri Constitution.
As of this writing the number of signatures collected is still about 2,000 shy of the 15,000 needed in St. Louis County. We need signatures on these petitions! Anyone interested in helping with this task can call your councilmember or me. If insufficient signatures are collected, I think this strengthens the Better Together position. I believe that elected leaders have an obligation to follow through on the process to see that this Board of Electors is appointed to meet and make recommendations for the betterment of government provided in our metropolitan area.
The link above allows you to read in one page the scope and process that would be triggered once sufficient validated signatures are turned in. The option “to formulate and adopt any other plan for the partial or complete government of all or any part of the city and county” seems sufficiently broad in scope that could allow reasonable suggestions/recommendations that could be considered and ultimately voted upon.
In talking and listening to residents and business people who were definitely not in favor of a state-wide vote of “Better Together”, and probably not in favor of a merger of the city and county, there still seem to be a fair number of relatively well informed citizens who are in favor of “having a conversation.” Appointment of a “Board of Electors/Freeholders” accomplishes this goal. Remember, the goal here is to talk only – any suggestions coming from this group wouldthen be put to the voters – you! I think it is in the best interest of our entire region to allow this process to occur.
I hope to see you out and about, don’t hesitate to say hello and express your opinion or ask any question you may have. My supply of opinions is usually well stocked.
Mayor Bob Nation