St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay said Wednesday he's found a way to fund 160 additional police officers over the next two years, plus get money for proven crime prevention programs and more training for the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department.
"We can do things like look for more efficiencies, and do hiring freezes, things like that, but it's not going to raise the necessary dollars to hire that many cops," Slay said. "Cops are very expensive, but it's money well-spent."
The St. Louis County Council gave final approval to its 2014 budget, keeping most of St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley’s recommendations.
But the council did make funding changes at the request of St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch. Some money will go to adding staffers for a diversion program aimed at keeping first-time offenders out of prison.
Missouri auditor Tom Schweich had no authority to challenge Gov. Jay Nixon's decision to withhold about $170 million from the budget for fiscal year 2012 before the spending plan actually went into effect.
That was the ruling today from six of the justices on the Missouri Supreme Court. Judge Paul Wilson did not participate.
Two major Illinois prisons and other facilities will stay open for at least another month after an arbitrator ruled Gov. Pat Quinn's administration violated workers' rights in rushing to close them.
Arbitrator Steven Bierig concluded Friday that the state departments of Corrections and Juvenile Justice did not properly negotiate with workers over the impact of closing the supermax Tamms prison, the Dwight women's lockup and several juvenile facilities.