St. Louis County

Maggie Crane

The St. Louis County Council has green lighted a plan that merges some economic development functions with St. Louis City.

The merger creates the St. Louis Economic Partnership, which among other things will create a central clearinghouse where businesses can find what sites are available and what incentives are offered in both the city and county.

County Executive Charlie Dooley said linking economic development efforts will help the region speak with one voice, but said getting St. Charles County to join the effort will be a critical next step.

(Maggie Crane)

St. Louis City and County are a step closer to merging some of their economic development functions.

The St. Louis Board of Aldermen on Friday sent their version of the agreement to Mayor Francis Slay, who's expected to sign it. The St. Louis County Council will take a final vote on its measure on Tuesday.

Adam Allington / St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis City and County have announced a new division to aid business startups and entrepreneurs.

Called “STL VentureWorks," the project is an extension of the recently-formed St. Louis Economic Development Partnership.

St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley says STL VentureWorks’ five locations will help connect startups to capital funding sources, as well as provide mentoring and training opportunities.

J_D_R / Flickr

The median residential property value in St. Louis County declined 7 percent over the past two years, according to preliminary numbers released this afternoon.

St. Louis County Assessor Jake Zimmerman says the numbers show that property values in wealthier areas held steady or only had slight declines, but areas with clusters of foreclosures saw the median property value drop by 12 percent.

(A full chart of how different areas compared is below)

Rob Lee / Flickr

The St. Louis County Council is considering changes to its purchasing procedures that would prohibit vendors from supplying it with garments made under sweatshop conditions. 

Councilman Pat Dolan said he introduced the changes during Tuesday night’s council meeting at the request of municipalities in his district.

While Dolan said he’d prefer everything bought by the county was made in America, these changes will ensure the basic civil rights of workers are being met.

Tim Lloyd / St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley got behind the controls of a backhoe and started chipping away at the bombed-out looking Glasgow Village Shopping Center.

Susan Groves grew up around here and said it’s a little sad to see a part of her childhood torn down.

“But I think this is a good thing, too,” Groves said.  “This is a place for kids to come and tear things up and do things they shouldn’t be doing here.”

(Flickr/Creative Commons user SuperFantastic)

The owners of more than three dozen restaurants and bars in St. Louis County filed into the County Council chambers in Clayton today with one request - please let us continue to allow smoking.

The owners were there at the request of Councilman Mike O'Mara, who's introduced a bill eliminating nearly all the exemptions in the county's smoking ban. Currently, bars that make less than 25 percent of their revenue from food may receive an exemption. Bowling alleys and casino gaming floors are also exempt.

(via Flickr/kevindooley)

A mistake by the St. Louis County Department of Revenue will cost the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District about $2 million in expected tax revenue.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that employees at the department failed to add a surcharge to about 200,000 property tax bills. The revenue generated by the additional tax helps MSD control storm water runoff inside Interstate 270.

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

The St. Louis County Council is moving forward with a plan to put a sales tax initiative on the April ballot that would improve county parks, trails and the Arch grounds.

Council Chairman Michael O’Mara introduced a bill at this afternoon's council meeting that would authorize the ballot initiative and says he plans to campaign on its behalf.

Waitscm / Flickr

Tuesday night the St. Louis County Council passed a new ordinance that in part requires contractors have a U.S. Department of Labor approved apprentice program.

That provision drew criticism from some civil rights groups who said it was unfairly pro-union.

“You know there are any number of minority owned contractors who are not union contractors,” said Adolphus Pruitt, president of the St. Louis branch of the NAACP.   “We’ve fought this fight a hundred times about this language and how it excludes them simply because they’re not tied to the union.”

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