A citywide development strategy is on Megan Green’s agenda if elected board president
In 2019, 15th Ward Alderwoman Megan Green came in third in a close Democratic primary for president of the St. Louis Board of Aldermen.
After that experience running citywide, she was planning to sit out the 2023 contest. But when board President Lewis Reed and two other aldermen resigned after being indicted on federal corruption charges, Green’s phone started blowing up with people telling her to get into the race to replace Reed.
Among those who called was Mayor Tishaura Jones.
“It’s really hard to say no to the mayor when she’s asking you to run for a position and asking you to work with her on something,” Green said.
Either Green or her opponent, 7th Ward Alderman Jack Coatar, will have just five months to implement an agenda before the next election. Coatar talked about his on an earlier Politically Speaking podcast.
Green said her agenda includes:
- Establishing a development strategy for the city that lets developers know the level of incentives they can expect and the community benefits that will be required. Most good developers, she said, just want to make sure that everyone is playing by the same rules.
- Hiring more staff for aldermen so they are better equipped to do their jobs. Each member, she said, deserves a legislative aide and a constituent services person “so that when we have double the area of folks that are calling us about overflowing dumpsters and potholes that we have the capacity to field all those calls.”
- Changing the rules of the board to adapt to the downsizing from 28 members to 14. Everything from the number of committees to the way certain taxes are distributed is based on 28 wards, she said.
Green acknowledged that her outspokenness against people she believed were not acting in the interest of the city, including Reed, cost her some political support on the board. And she said that realistically, whoever takes over the role will be dealing with a divided body.
“But I have a background in that,” she said. “I was a Coro fellow who was trained in consensus building, and I'm optimistic that I can set the appropriate culture for the Board of Aldermen so we can rally around a collaborative legislative agenda.”
Follow Megan on Twitter: @MeganEllyia
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