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St. Louis Police Officers Association, mayor compromise on local control ballot initiative

(St. Louis Public Radio)
The logo of the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department as displayed on the side of a patrol vehicle.

The St. Louis Police Officers Association announced today that the organization and the mayor of the city of St. Louis, Francis Slay, have come to a compromise regarding a local control ballot initiative.

The issue of local control of the St. Louis Police Department, that is, shifting the control of the department from the state of Missouri to the city of St. Louis, was a fixture in this past year's legislative session.

According to a press release from the SLPOA, here are the terms of the new compromised ballot initiative language (link included added by St. Louis Public Radio):

  • "A Safer Missouri, a political operation funded by retired investor Rex Sinquefield, would withdraw five proposed Constitutional Amendments that they had filed in March of this year that would have placed the question of local control of the St. Louis and Kansas City police departments before Missouri  voters in 2012.  The St. Louis Police Officers Association had adamantly opposed the constitutional amendments and had filed suit in Cole County Circuit Court challenging the legality of the proposals on a number of counts."
  • "A Safer Missouri would instead file a Statutory Proposition for the November 2012 election that would mirror the compromise legislation that the Mayor, A Safer Missouri, and the Police Officers Association had agreed to during the regular and special sessions of the Missouri General Assembly.  The legislation contained agreed upon language that added protections for the current and retired employees."
  • "In exchange for the concessions made on issues like pensions, benefits, residency rules and prohibitions against political interference that are included in the compromise ballot initiative, the Police Officers Association has agreed to withdraw its lawsuit against the previous Sinquefield-funded proposals and support the newly filed initiative."

The release states that the ballot initative language says that "the City of St. Louis would be able to establish control of the police department on July 1, 2013."

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