Board of Aldermen

A catch-all forum for urban discussion. If it doesn't fit elsewhere, post here.
First unread post480 posts
Alderperson Ingrassia robbed at gunpoint sitting on her front porch.

http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/crim ... 97c3a.html
dbInSouthCity wrote:
Sun Mar 18, 2018 4:09 pm
KansasCitian wrote:
Sun Mar 18, 2018 1:57 pm
I thought the Board of Alderman had voted to reduce themselves by half, from 28 to 14, effective following the 2020 census.
Yes, 2020 Census won't be certified til 2021 so the first election with these reduced Board will be 2023
As far as I know, to date, the BoA has made no effort to layout a process for getting to 14 Alderman, right? That's a bit concerning for me.

To accomplish a halving of the board over multiple different election cycles is going to require some planning, and right now the BoA seems entirely disinterested in discussing what amounts to their own demise.
jstriebel wrote:
Mon Mar 19, 2018 4:27 pm
dbInSouthCity wrote:
Sun Mar 18, 2018 4:09 pm
KansasCitian wrote:
Sun Mar 18, 2018 1:57 pm
I thought the Board of Alderman had voted to reduce themselves by half, from 28 to 14, effective following the 2020 census.
Yes, 2020 Census won't be certified til 2021 so the first election with these reduced Board will be 2023
As far as I know, to date, the BoA has made no effort to layout a process for getting to 14 Alderman, right? That's a bit concerning for me.

To accomplish a halving of the board over multiple different election cycles is going to require some planning, and right now the BoA seems entirely disinterested in discussing what amounts to their own demise.
This plus the pushback by some alderman is concerning. Ive seen both Annie Rice and John Collins-Muhammad say it would hurt their constituents. I have absolutely no idea how "progressives" have twisted this board reduction to be against it. Im sure more alderman are against it. I'd like to make sure we know who they are so we can remind them the city overwhelmingly voted for this.
The redistricting begins in spring-summer 2021 via a transition ordinance, key issues are keeping majority-minority wards and population equality after the 2020 census. They can't start planning until the Census 2020 results come back, and they will end up with a transition ordinance at that point. The less they discuss it until spring 2021 the better in my eyes, lest they get to thinking they can take it back somehow.
https://www.stlouis-mo.gov/internal-app ... BB31CS.pdf

The last time (2011) went pretty smoothly compared to 2001 and 1981, but something tells me that 2021 will be a bloodbath...
http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/govt ... 5a082.html

Unrelated but related: the ordinance is clear that if an alderman commits a malfeasance in office, bribery, a corrupt practice, or a crime, they immediately forfeit their office.
stlhistory wrote:
Mon Mar 19, 2018 5:03 pm
Unrelated but related: the ordinance is clear that if an alderman commits a malfeasance in office, bribery, a corrupt practice, or a crime, they immediately forfeit their office.
And that's not a thing right now? Am I reading that wrong?
No, I think it is a thing right now. Maybe it's cause for the runner-up to sue? Or a constituent?
21st Ward Alderman has introduced a bill to keep 28th alderman. this is bad for many reasons, for one we had 28 alders when we had 850,000 people and during that time alders didn't have Twitter, facebook or email to communicate with residents
Not only should we NOT go back to 28 but we shouldn't stay at 14....we should go and do what Kansas City does (450,000 people) and have 6 wards and 12 alderman, of those 6 are elected from within the district and 6 are elected citywide but one from each district, so their 6 wards/districts each has 2 alders.
This way at least half of the board would answer to the entire city for their decisions.

More on KC Council and how it works- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kansas_Ci ... ty_Council


With less races and more land to cover, the it would get more expensive to run for office....So let’s give each eligible voter $20 as a “democracy voucher” that they can give out just for this 12 spot alderman election. I can give my $20 to one candidate or $5 to 4 candidates. Candidates can op out. With about 190,000 voters, this would take $3.8M every 4 years to fund, which could be done with a small sales tax hike of about .10% , call it a Democracy Fund.
Shane Cohn, correct?

I’ll be a vocal opponent to this if it starts gaining legs. Also, didn’t voters approve the reduction? Wouldn’t any change be required to get voted on by residents to overturn that previous change? If they try to vote this in without a city wide vote, I can see it being easily challenged in court.
dbInSouthCity wrote: 25th Ward Alderman has introduced a bill to keep 28th alderman. this is bad for many reasons, for one we had 28 alders when we had 850,000 people and during that time alders didn't have Twitter, facebook or email to communicate with residents
Wait, wasn't it Board Bill #25, introduced by 21st Ward alderman John-Collins Muhammad? I can't imagine Ward 25 alderman Shane Cohn would take this action.
B.B.#25 – Muhammad – An ordinance submitting to the qualified voters of the City a proposed amendment to the Charter of the City to maintain the Board of Aldermen as body of twenty-eight Aldermen representing twenty-eight wards, and preventing its reduction beginning December 31, 2021, to a body of fourteen Aldermen representing fourteen wards as called for under Article I, Section 3 of the City Charter; providing for an election to be held for voting on the proposed amendment and the manner for the voting; and for the publication, certification, deposit, and recording of this ordinance; and containing an emergency clause.
This is a horrible idea for many reasons. Opportunists like Muhammad are really hurting the city.


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It is very weird to see a lot of "progressives" push for this. I have no idea how bad governance practices are progressive, and as someone who considers them selves a bit progressive I don't understand this.

To me this is a deal breaker - I would never vote for any alderperson again regardless of office that pushed for this. If you want to make sure its done equitably which people like JCM are claiming is the goal, start planning for it instead of trying to reverse. This smacks of a power grab for people who have no confidence they can win over a new group of voters to elect them.
chaifetz10 wrote:
Fri Apr 27, 2018 7:12 am
I’ll be a vocal opponent to this if it starts gaining legs. Also, didn’t voters approve the reduction? Wouldn’t any change be required to get voted on by residents to overturn that previous change? If they try to vote this in without a city wide vote, I can see it being easily challenged in court.
The Board Bill would put it to the voters again. I think there's also a ballot petition drive that will be getting underway. Personally I'm inclined to support the board reduction but am not upset about this being up for debate again; to me the stadium supporters, including some aldermen, who were okay with the lawsuit overturning the will of the people on no public financing for stadia without a public vote were far more egregious in their actions regarding the "public will" issue.
What’s Muhammad’s case for not reducing?
In his words....racism. BUT, there is no plan or process for ward reduction yet. I get the concern for the poorer more predominantly black wards. History has certainly been bad for the St. Louis black community. But work towards creating a more equitable plan/process rater than eliminating it all together.
Apparently John Collins-Muhammad was arrested on a outstanding warrants after he rear ended a car while driving without a valid license & no proof of insurance according to the business journal..
I think the smart way is to keep what the voters voted on by reducing the number of alderman.. I think that alone could help with some of the cities financial burdens
Six years ago, City voters approved the ward reduction by nearly a 2 to 1 margin. Why on Earth do we need to go through this again?

http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/govt ... 08cfd.html
^ yeah, it's pretty f*cking insane. i love this part:

Others cite mounting concern that aldermen will struggle to respond to larger constituencies.
ignore (as St. Louis usually does) that virtually every other city in the US operates more efficiently with a much higher constituent-to-elected-offical ratio. but it could totes never work here b/c we're SO different or whatever.

i get the equity concerns, but you address those concerns by doubling-down on the details of the f*cking implementation and not by doing nothing for 6 years and then reversing a not-even-close public vote. if this is the new precedent then why even bother voting.
If it gets on the ballot, will this need to pass by the same margin as the first vote reducing the board? Didn't that need to pass by more than a simple majority.

Am i the only one that thinks alderman shouldn't be involved in the day to day "put a stop sign here" "pave my alley" BS? Isn't that what the CSB, NSO's are for? Alderman shouldn't have a problem responding to a larger constituency if they didn't have to deal with as much of this stuff and others handle it.
olvidarte wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 9:57 pm
If it gets on the ballot, will this need to pass by the same margin as the first vote reducing the board? Didn't that need to pass by more than a simple majority.

Am i the only one that thinks alderman shouldn't be involved in the day to day "put a stop sign here" "pave my alley" BS? Isn't that what the CSB, NSO's are for? Alderman shouldn't have a problem responding to a larger constituency if they didn't have to deal with as much of this stuff and others handle it.
The original was 60%.
This type of thing could only happen in a failed ghetto city government like St. Louis.
This is BS plain and simple...
Chicago Reader Aldermen's absolute veto power over ward projects gets unlikely court challenge
Chicago, she points out, has much greater local representation than other major cities. While our 50 aldermen represent about 54,000 residents each, New York has one city council member for roughly every 166,600 residents, and Los Angeles has one for every 264,600 residents. This makes it much more difficult to set citywide planning priorities in Chicago, she argues. And when it comes to affordable housing, aldermen are much more likely to cave to the NIMBYism that reinforces segregation.
https://www.chicagoreader.com/Bleader/a ... -challenge
Shrinking the Board is a done deal and everyone down at the Board knows it's a done deal, regardless of what noise they are making. People have had nearly a decade to come to terms with it so I have little to no sympathy.

The concerns about representation really have nothing to do with shrinking the board and everything to do with the plunging population in the North Side and the West Side. Under the 28 wards North City was almost certainly going to lose another ward after the next round of redistricting. There are currently 13 South City Wards, 5 Central Corridor Wards and 10 North Side wards. Under a new map there will probably be 7 South Side Wards, 2-3 Central Corridor Wards and 4-5 North Side Wards. But that would be about in line with what we would be getting after redistricting anyway, so representation is not a real issue.

I might try to whip up a hypothetical ward map at some point, though it is sort of hard to get accurate population estimates mid-decade for anything smaller and a block group.
Ward 24 - Only In St. Louis. Some Pushing For "Do Over" Vote On Ward Reduction
The St. Louis region is defined by political fragmentation. We have far, far more political jurisdictions than most regions. More municipalities, more aldermen, more school districts, more police departments, and way more problems getting things done. When everyone is in charge, no one is in charge. Politically, that's what defines local government within our region. A ton of elected officials, a ton of "Honorable So and So's" but no one who is actually in charge. As a result, regional policy is non-existent. Over time, the region, especially St. Louis City and County, have suffered in all kinds of ways, big and small.
http://ward24stl.org/news/2018/4/30/onl ... -reduction