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Sunday Poll: Do You Accept Lewis Reed’s Apology (UPDATED)

Please vote below
Please vote below


This poll was manipulated by mass voting.

Last week a radio interview from January 11th began spreading like crazy on social media and the news:

For anyone who’s ever listened to Bob Romanik’s On the Dark Side radio talk show on 1190 AM, it should come as no surprise that a recent episode is drawing controversy. After all, the ex-strip club owner/police chief and convicted felon is always coming after his political and personal enemies with a mixture of wild insults and abhorrent threats, all book-ended by the show’s trademark rainstorm sound effects as though forecasting the flood of complaints that’s to come.

So it’s not exactly news that Romanik tried to discredit 15th ward alderwoman Megan Green last month by calling her a “good-for-nothing, skanky bitch” who, in his words, deserves to be literally flushed down the toilet and sexually violated by a storybook character. For veterans of Romanik’s radio wars, it’s more of the same. (St. Louis Magazine)

Romanik’s guest was Lewis Reed, President of the Board of Aldermen.

Short version: 2:50 minutes:

Long version: 12:34 minutes:

After this became controversial Reed apologized in a series of tweets:

Click image to view the top tweet on Twitter
Click image to view the top tweet on Twitter

Today’s poll question:

[results deleted]

This poll will be open for 12 hours, will close at 8pm.

— Steve Patterson


Tax Scams Make Sensational News But Media Fails To Mention Adjusting Withholding To Reduce/Eliminate Refund

March 13, 2015 Crime, Economy, Featured, Media, Taxes Comments Off on Tax Scams Make Sensational News But Media Fails To Mention Adjusting Withholding To Reduce/Eliminate Refund
I’ve circled the three places on KMOV’s home page where “Tax Cheats” stories appeared

When we watch television (vs Netflix, etc) it’s usually CBS — KMOV 4.1 here — unfortunately their promos on tax scams/cheats seem nonstop. Wednesday morning I checked local news sources for similar reports. KMOV had 3 mentions on their homepage, the others didn’t — but many had stories from this month:

These stories are designed to frighten you into worrying about someone steeling your refund — you go to file and someone else has already filed a return for you — taking your refund.  Meanwhile, commercials for auto dealers talk about using your refund as a down payment — some will even double it.  So a $3,000 refund becomes a $6,000 down payment.

Many get excited by a big refund — the bigger the better. The ideal, however, is little or no refund. Why? If you get a huge refund it means you’ve lent the federal & state governments your money interest-free.  A $7800 refund means you could’ve had another $15 in your pocket every week — $65/month.  I know some people use their refund as a savings plan, if so, put that amount into a savings plan every pay period rather than letting Uncle Sam hold it. In savings it’ll earn interest and should an emergency arise  — like car trouble — you can access your money.

You want your withholding set so you get little to nothing back at tax time. You can use the IRS’s Withholding Calculator to determine how your W-4 should be completed.

If you get a big annual tax refund you are leaving yourself vulnerable to fraud.

— Steve Patterson


The Streetsblog Network Expands By Adding Southeast US, Ohio, Texas, and St. Louis

January 30, 2015 Featured, Media, STL Region 3 Comments

The Streetsblog Network yesterday expanded into new territory: adding coverage in the Southeast United States, the states of Ohio & Texas, and the St. Louis region.

Streetsblog St. Louis launched yesterday.
Streetsblog St. Louis launched yesterday.

From yesterday’s post announcing the expansion:

A little more than six years ago, we launched the Streetsblog Network as a way for people across the country writing about livable streets, sustainable transportation, and smart growth to band together and share ideas. There are many wonderful things about the Streetsblog Network, but I would put this is at the top of my list: It is both profoundly local, full of people working on the nitty-gritty of street design, transit service, and planning issues in their hometowns, and broadly distributed, with hundreds of members operating in cities all over the nation.

For a long time we’ve been thinking about how to build on these strengths. And today we’re going live with a new way to channel the energy of the Streetsblog Network and broadcast it to the world.

We are launching affiliate sites that combine the work of Streetsblog Network members in four regions: St. Louis, Ohio, Texas, and the Southeast. These sites are based on a different model than our other city-based Streetsblogs with full-time staff. Each Streetsblog affiliate syndicates material from several blogs in its region and runs a daily dose of headlines to satisfy the universal craving for morning news. Have a look. (Doesn’t it blow your mind to see the words “Streetsblog Texas” in a site banner?)

The post continues with a list of blog included for each new area, here’s the St. Louis list:

Streetsblog St. Louis:

I’m honored to have UrbanReviewSTL be included as one of four blogs representing St. Louis! Be sure to check out Streetsblog St. Louis at stl.streetsblog.org. Also visit Streetfilms for excellent videos.

— Steve Patterson


Tonight on NineNetwork’s Stay Tuned Program: Sports & their impact on our region

January 29, 2015 Featured, Media, Popular Culture Comments Off on Tonight on NineNetwork’s Stay Tuned Program: Sports & their impact on our region
The current home of the St. Louis Rams
The current home of the St. Louis Rams

As expected, the St. Louis Rams have opted to go to a year-to-year lease on the Edward Jones Dome, they’ll play in St. Louis for at least another year. Reality is setting in:

The chairman of the region’s tourism bureau, landlord of the Edward Jones Dome, said on Wednesday that he believes the St. Louis Rams want to leave for Los Angeles.

The fight to keep the football team here, said Andrew Leonard, chairman of the St. Louis Convention & Visitors Commission, will have to be a “spectacular effort.” (Post-Dispatch – ‘Spectacular effort’ would be needed to keep Rams, CVC chairman says)

Rams owner Stan Kroenke bought land in the LA area over a year ago, recently announced a deal with an adjacent property owner to build a stadium. He’s said he is willing to move the Rams without  approval from fellow NFL owners.

Tonight on NineNetwork (PBS) the topic ‘Sports & their impact on our region’ will be examined. I’ll be among the guests on Stay Tuned tonight starting at 9pm Central. This program can be viewed live online at http://staytuned.ninenet.org/live. The conversation will also take place on Twitter @StayTunedSTL and hashtag #StayTunedSTL

See you on 9.1 tonight.

— Steve Patterson


We Have Many Police Departments In St. Louis

This post is intended to help out headline writers from outside the St. Louis region. Last week many said St. Louis Police when they meant St. Louis County Police.

Recent headlines
Recent headlines all attributing a mistake to the St. Louis Police, rather than the St. Louis County Police

Not their fault, they likely don’t know our long history of fragmentation.

The St. Louis region is in two states — Missouri & Illinois. Sixteen-seventeen counties, half per state, make up the Greater St. Louis area. The St. Louis Police was originally formed in 1808. In 1861, during the Civil War, the Confederate-supporting state took control of the St. Louis Police since the city was pro-Union. St. Louis only got back full control from the state in the last year or two.

In 1876 the rapidly-growing City of St. Louis left St. Louis County, to avoid having to support the rest of the then largely rural county. St. Louis, through changes to the Missouri constitution, became an independent city-county. The City of St. Louis, as a city-county, also has a Sheriff’s department.

St. Louis County Police was formed in 1955, absorbing the St. Louis County Sheriff at that time.  You might think the St. Louis County Police patrol all of St. Louis County, but no. St. Louis County has 90 municipalities. Some, like Ferguson, have their own police force. Others, like Jennings, contract through St. Louis County. Jennings used to have its own force, but it was dissolved in 2011. A few other municipalities contract through a neighboring municipality for police services. Unincorporated areas of St. Louis County are, as you’d expect, covered by St. Louis County Police. One tiny municipality, Flordel Hills, recently started its own police force.

With 884 individual units of government, St. Louis ranks 3rd only to Pittsburgh and Denver among our peer regions in ratio of local governments to citizens. (Where We Stand)

I’m not sure how many of the 884 units of government are police, regardless, the St. Louis Police is different than the St. Louis County Police.

— Steve Patterson