Politically Speaking: Can Board Of Freeholders Succeed At Uniting St. Louis And St. Louis County? | St. Louis Public Radio

Politically Speaking: Can Board Of Freeholders Succeed At Uniting St. Louis And St. Louis County?

Sep 20, 2019

The latest edition of Politically Speaking takes a closer look at what’s historically known as the Board of Freeholders, a 19-person body that could present a plan merging St. Louis and St. Louis County to local voters.

Earlier this week, the Municipal League of Metro St. Louis submitted its last batches of signatures in St. Louis and St. Louis County to jumpstart the freeholders process. St. Louis County Board of Elections Democratic Director Eric Fey said the county’s signatures will likely be certified on Monday.

St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson and St. Louis County Executive Sam Page will appoint 18 out of the 19 members of the board. Gov. Mike Parson picks the final member. The board will have a year to potentially consolidate city and county services. It could also present a plan to somehow combine St. Louis and St. Louis County’s governments. Or, it could offer up nothing.

Here are some highlights of the show:

  • How the Board of Freeholders works — and how Krewson and Page are approaching the process.
  • Why previous boards failed to present a city-county merger plan that gained favor with local voters.
  • A look at some of the potential hurdles for the board, including financial questions about a city-county merger and the continued skepticism of a plan among African American political leaders.
  • What to expect from the latest season of the podcast We Live Here, which will explore what a merger could mean for the city and the county.

Follow Jason Rosenbaum on Twitter: @jrosenbaum

Follow Jo Mannies on Twitter: @jmannies

Follow We Live Here on Twitter: @weliveherestl

Music: “Makes Me Wonder” by Maroon 5