Newsletter Issue: April 2017

Download the April 2017 Issue (PDF Version)

Upcoming Meetings

Membership Meeting
04/27/2017 - 6:30
Creve Couer
MUNI Awards Installation Dinner
05/31/2017 - 6:00 - 8:30
Sheraton West Port
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April 27 Meeting at Creve Coeur

The next League meeting will be held at 7:15 pm on Thursday, April 27 at the Creve Coeur Government Center, 300 N. New Ballas Rd.  The Government Center is located on Balla between Olive Blvd. and Ladue Rd., east of I-270.

Refreshments will be served prior to the meeting at 6:30 pm.

Program:  Kitty Ratcliffe is the President of the St. Louis Convention and Visitors Commission.  She will talk about her efforts to maintain and expand the $5.38 billion convention and tourism industry for the St. Louis Region.

The main item of business will the election of officers and board members for the 2017-18 year.  The report of the Nominating Committee will be sent out prior to the meeting.

 

April 27 Training Program on

The next Municipal Officials Training Academy program is set for Thursday, April 27 from Noon to 1:15 p.m.  The program is entitled “Municipal Budgets and Financial Disclosure.”  It will be presented by Attorney Kim Diamond from the Cunningham, Vogel & Rost law firm, and Julie O’Guinn of the Duckett Creek Sanitary District.

Officials are invited to attend via Webinar or in person at Frontenac City Hall. Click HERE to register for the webinar.

Contact the Municipal League office at  staff@stlmuni.org for in- person attendance.  Space is limited to the first 25 registrants.

The cost is $20 per person unless the city has an annual subscription. Please make checks payable to and mail to the Municipal League of Metro St. Louis.  Registration by Tuesday, April 25 is encouraged to ensure that all materials are emailed to registrants prior to the Webinar.

Content will include:

  • The Municipal Budgeting Process
  • Long Term Projections
  • Financial Disclosure Requirements
  • Budgeting and Disclosure Best Practices

Due to the subsidized and focused nature of the Academy, persons attending must be authorized to attend on behalf of a Missouri municipality or political subdivision. Additionally, registrants will need to state the municipality or political subdivision that has authorized the attendance of the registrant on its behalf upon registration. Approval for persons not attending on behalf of a specific municipality will be subject to the discretion of the Municipal League of Metro St. Louis and Cunningham, Vogel & Rost, P.C on a class-by-class basis and such approval may be denied.

 

March Meeting Synopsis

two presentations.  The first speaker was Paul Hubbman from the East-West Gateway Council of Governments who updated the membership on the application process for the Great Streets program.  Mr. Hubbman indicated that Great Streets plans must take into account all modes of transportation and consider the economic and social benefits of a project.  If a project is approved there will be an integrated planning process to develop plans for vibrant uses of the streetscape.  Most Great Streets plans create long-range guidelines for development.   Some of these may utilize surface transportation planning funds (STP) for development.  Sponsors are required to contribute 20% of the cost, up to $100,000.  The due date for applications is April 27 and the successful project plans will be developed prior to June 30, 2018.

The second presentation was by Mary Lamie, Executive Director of the St. Louis Regional Freightway.  She noted that the Freightway had been created out of a study from East-West Gateway.  It noted that the region is not cohesive and peer cities are out-marketing St. Louis.  Her role is to increase jobs in manufacturing and logistics with the potential for developing freight hubs.  She noted that St. Louis has many advantages which could be beneficial for freight companies, including four interstate highways, airport capacity, three port districts and significant rail connections.

During the first year, her office developed a website and marketing/advocacy plans along with construction priorities for the region.  The first two are the replacement of the Merchants Bridge in St. Louis and the I-270 bridge over the Mississippi River.

Ms. Lamie reported that the Administrator of the Federal Highway Administrator has been to St. Louis and strongly supports the efforts of the Freightway.  In addition, St. Louis officials have signed a promotional agreement with the Port of New Orleans which could lead to more freight shipments, including the possibility of containers on barges. They are also developing an apprenticeship program for students and developing a baseline to measure job growth in the future.

Thanks to Mayor Gerry Welch and the officials and employees of the City of Webster Groves for hosting the meeting

Newly Elected Officials Seminar on April 26

The League will hold its Annual Seminar for Newly Elected Officials at 4:30 pm Wednesday, April 26 at the Maryland Heights City Hall, 11911 Dorsett Rd., approximately 3/4 mile east of I-270.

The cost is $30 which includes materials and a buffet dinner.

We hope all of our newly elected officials will join us for an informative introduction to municipal government presented by municipal attorneys from the Curtis, Heinz, Garrett & O’Keefe law firm.

Topics that will be covered include:

  • What you can and can’t do – statutes governing municipalities
  • The authority of boards and commissions
  • Introduction to your municipal court – judge and prosecutor perspectives
  • Open meetings (sunshine) law – assuring compliance
  • Ethics/conflicts of interest
  • Robert’s Rules of Order

Invitations and registration materials have been sent to all newly elected League members and to all municipal clerks.  You can also contact the office directory at 314-726-4747 or staff@stlmuni.org.

While the program is designed for new officials, experienced officials are welcome as well.  For more information click HERE.  The deadline for reservations and cancellations is Monday, April 24.

 

Park Planning Grants Available

The Municipal Park Grant Commission is accepting planning grant applications to be awarded quarterly.  If your city is planning to submit a planning grant application for consideration, please send it to the Municipal League office by Monday, April 24.  The applications can be found on the Park Commission website:   http://www.muniparkgrants.org/applications.html

 

Legislative Update

focusing on floor debate on priority bills.  To see the full legislative report for the week ended April 7, click HERE.

 

Court Bills

HB 380 (Plocher) – Changes and creates provisions relating to minor traffic violations in municipal court.  House Perfection Calendar

SB 520 (Emery) – Enacts favorable revisions to SB 5 and SB 572.  Heard 4/3 Criminal Jurisprudence Committee.

 

Economic Development Bills

HJR 20 (Ellington) – Constitutional amendment to require countywide public vote for TIF projects.  Local Government Committee.  Passed 3/15.  In Rules Committee

 

Election & Ethics  Bills

HB 229 (Dogan) – Prohibits lobbyists from giving gifts to local government officials .  Passed House.  Senate Rules Committee

HB 269 (Roeber) – Prohibits direct or indirect expenditure of public funds to lobby general assembly.  Elections Committee.  Heard 3/1

HB 353 (Eggleston) – Increases population limit to 2000 for cities to forgo elections if the number of candidates equals the number of open seats.  Passed House.  Heard in Senate Local Government Committee 3/28.

HB 754 (Shroer) – Specifies that anyone running for office at a municipal, city, county, or statewide level must use their legal last name or maiden name.  House Perfection Calendar

 

Employment & Wage Bills

HB 104 (Love) – Repeals provisions relating to prevailing wages on public works projects.  Passed House.  Passed Senate General Laws Committee 4/6

 

General Government Bills

HB 451 (Austin) – Provides that change in population shall not remove a city, county or political subdivision from operation of a law.  Passed House.  On Senate 3rd Reading Calendar

HB 849 (Pfautsch) –  Political subdivisions not filing annual financial reports with the auditor subject to $500 per day fine.  Passed Government Efficiency Committee. Passed Rules Committee 4/5

HB 905 (DeGroot) – Prohibits municipalities from regulating dogs in a breed-specific manner   Passed Local Government Committee 3/1.  Referred Rules Committee

 

Land Use Bills

HB 608 (Anderson) – Prohibits cities from enforcing or enacting ordinances that prohibit residential dwelling rentals (Air B&B). Ordinances in effect prior to January 1, 2018, may be enforced.  Taxes to be collected.  On House Perfection Calendar

HB 1189 (Cross) – Prohibits municipalities from conducting interior property inspections of residences.  Heard Local Government Committee 4/5.

 

Police & Public Safety  Bills

HB 57 (Haefner) – Adds to the list of hate crimes certain offenses committed against law enforcement officers and first responders when the offenses are committed because the person is a law enforcement officer or first responder.  Passed House. Heard in Senate Criminal Jurisprudence Committee 4/10

SB 105 (Wallingford) – Requires the Department of Revenue to enter into the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement.  Ways & Means Committee.  Heard 2/7.  Passed Committee 2/28

 

Tax Bills

HB 935 (Haefner) & – SB 49 (Walsh) Allows St. Louis City and St. Louis, Jefferson, St. Charles and Franklin Counties to propose a 1/8th of a cent sales tax to fund the St. Louis Zoo.  The House bill  is on the Perfection Calendar.    The Senate Bill is on the Informal Perfection Calendar and could be debated at any time.

SJR 12 (Eigel) – Places a cap on annual state appropriations and reduces income tax rates based on revenue growth.  Informal Perfection Calendar

 

Transportation Bills

HB 275 (Spencer) – Prohibits the use of automated traffic enforcement systems, and requires any political subdivision to complete or terminate any automated traffic enforcement contract within one year.  Passed House 4/3

 

Utility Bills

HB 656 (Rhodes) – Changes the law regarding the uniform wireless communication infrastructure deployment act.  Utilities Committee. The Substitute bill virtually eliminates municipal authority over the public rights-of-way and places gross receipts business licenses and other fees on wireless service providers in jeopardy.  On House Perfection Calendar.

 

MUNI Award Nominations Sought

Is your municipality an award winner?  You will never know unless you nominate your community, collaborating cities, or an individual for a 2017 MUNI Award presented by the Municipal League of Metro St. Louis.

Since their inception, the MUNI Awards have provided an opportunity for League members from across the County to come together to recognize their fellow municipalities for extraordinary efforts.

You can be a winner this year by nominating your city or a group within your city for achievement in one of the following categories:  Arts/Culture; Citizen Engagement; Collaboration; Parks/Recreation/ Wellness; Public Safety, and Sustainability/Preservation.

To nominate, send a letter to the League office identifying the city, organization or person and why that group or individual should be recognized for accomplishment in one of the designated categories.

Nominations must be received at the Municipal League office by April 21.  Winning a MUNI Award tells your residents what you are doing right for your community.  Then, join us on May 31 at the Sheraton Westport Chalet in Maryland Heights when the MUNI Awards will be presented and the new Municipal League officers will be installed.

 

Public Safety Sales Tax Approved by Voters

The countywide public safety sales tax, Proposition P was approved by over 63% of the voters on April 4.  The tax is projected to generate $80 million annually – $46 million for the County and $34 million for all municipalities on a population basis, yielding about $50 per person.  Tax collections will begin October 1 and municipalities should start to receive disbursements from the Department of Revenue in December.  County Executive Steve Stenger and Police Chief Jon Belmar led the campaign.

 

Legislative Updates