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Sunday Poll: Should St. Louis End Development Incentives?

April 15, 2018 Featured, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Should St. Louis End Development Incentives?
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Today’s poll is about the controversial topic of incentives to spur development. In December 2017 a report from Comptroller Darlene Green said, for the 2017 fiscal year that ended in June, tax abatements resulted in forgoing about $17 million dollars in revenue — St. Louis only receives about 19% of property taxes.

St. Louis municipal operations, therefore, did not receive about $3.3 million in property taxes that property owners would have paid last fiscal year absent the incentives. The school district missed out on about $10.3 million. The remainder would have gone to other tax-supported entities, such as the Zoo-Museum District, the St. Louis Public Library and the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District.

For the city, the forgone revenue is a drop in the bucket of its $1 billion budget. And economic development officials argue that tax abatement can help revitalize distressed properties, potentially attracting new residents who also pay city sales taxes and earnings taxes to make up for the property tax break. (Post-Dispatch)

So here’s today’s poll question:

This poll will close automatically at 8pm tonight. Wednesday I’ll share my thoughts and the non-scienitific results.

— Steve Patterson

 

 

 

Sunday Poll: Any Issues With ‘In God We Trust’ on Wentzville’s Board of Alderman Dais?

March 18, 2018 Featured, Religion, St. Charles County, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Any Issues With ‘In God We Trust’ on Wentzville’s Board of Alderman Dais?
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The opening of new buildings can sometimes be controversial, but using things like proportions, materials, colors, etc.  Wentzville’s new city hall opened last year and 12 letters are sparking protest & debate.

From earlier this month:

Dozens of people packed Wentzville City Hall on Wednesday night to rally behind a display of “In God We Trust” in the City Council chambers.

But their show of support didn’t stop several opponents of the motto’s display from voicing their opposition to the council.

The motto has been on display in large letters on the council dais since the building opened in November. (Post-Dispatch)

The phrase appears on the dais where the aldermen sit during their meetings. This issue is the subject of today’s non-scientific poll.

This poll will close automatically at 8pm tonight.

— Steve Patterson

 

Sunday Poll: Would Video Gaming Help Missouri’s Budget?

March 11, 2018 Featured, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Would Video Gaming Help Missouri’s Budget?
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There’s an effort in Jefferson City to bring in more revenue to Missouri, the way Illinois did 5 years ago:

Missouri could reap a $90 million per year jackpot if it allows slot machines in bars, truck stops and fraternal organizations, according to a new analysis of a gambling expansion proposal.

In addition to funneling more money to the state, members of a Senate panel Tuesday heard advocates say video gambling could generate an extra $20 million a year for local governments when as many as 15,000 machines are fully up and running by 2020.

The measure is being pushed by coin-operated vending machine companies, who’ve long wanted a chance to put terminals into local establishments over the objection of the state’s casino industry. (Post-Dispatch)

This is the subject of today’s poll.

This poll will close at 8pm tonight.

— Steve Patterson

 

 

Sunday Poll: Will The St. Louis Region Benefit From The Trump Administration’s Infrastructure Plan?

March 4, 2018 Featured, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Will The St. Louis Region Benefit From The Trump Administration’s Infrastructure Plan?
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Last month the Trump administration unveiled its infrastructure plan:

President Trump’s long-awaited plan for overhauling the nation’s crumbling infrastructure includes spending $200 billion in federal money over the next decade to spur an additional $1.3 trillion in spending from cities, states and private companies on major projects, White House officials said on Wednesday, a formula that faces long odds on Capitol Hill.

The increased infrastructure spending would be offset by unspecified budget cuts. Officials would not detail where those cuts would come from, or how the proposal would effectively leverage at least $6.50 in additional infrastructure spending for every dollar spent by the federal government, a ratio many infrastructure experts consider far-fetched. The officials said Mr. Trump would leave it up to Congress — where there is little consensus about how to pay for such a plan — to figure out the details, giving lawmakers wide latitude in creating what would need to be a bipartisan bill against the backdrop of the midterm elections. (New York Times)

Here’s a little more on the proposal:

The White House says its plan will create $1.5 trillion for repairing and upgrading America’s infrastructure. 

Only $200 billion of that, however, would come from direct federal spending. The rest is supposed to come from state and local governments, which are expected to match any federal allocation by at least a four-to-one ratio. States have gradually assumed more of the responsibility for funding infrastructure in recent years, and the White House says it wants to accelerate that trend. 

“What we really want to do is provide opportunities for state and local governments to receive federal funding when they’re doing what’s politically hard, and increasing investment in infrastructure,” DJ Gribbin, Trump’s special assistant for infrastructure, said to theUnited States Conference of Mayors last month. 

However, existing funding sources — such as sales taxes that have already been levied to pay for transit projects — may count towards a local jurisdiction’s contribution. (CNN/Money)

This plan is the topic of today’s poll:

This poll will close at 8pm tonight.

— Steve Patterson

 

Sunday Poll: Should Missouri’s Governor Eric Greitens Resign?

February 25, 2018 Featured, Politics/Policy, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Should Missouri’s Governor Eric Greitens Resign?
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Thursday was a busy news day.

Robert Mueller filed new charges against Manafort & Gates, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner drank chocolate milk to demonstrate his commitment to diversity, and Missouri Governor Eric Greitens was indicted:

The St. Louis grand jury’s indictment accused Mr. Greitens, a first-term Republican who was seen as having ambitions for higher office, of photographing a nude or partially nude person without the person’s knowledge or consent in 2015. The indictment said Mr. Greitens then transmitted the photo in a way that allowed it to be viewed on a computer, which prosecutors said made the crime a felony rather than a misdemeanor.

The charge comes weeks after Mr. Greitens acknowledged having an extramarital affair in 2015, but denied reports that he blackmailed the woman or took a nude photo of her without permission. A St. Louis television station had aired a report with claims that Mr. Greitens, a married father of two, took a compromising photograph of a woman with whom he was having an affair and then threatened her with retribution if she revealed the relationship. (New York Times)

Democrats, and some Republicans, are now calling on Greitens to resign. This is the subject of today’s poll.

On Friday he resigned his leadership post in the Republican Governors Association.

 

This poll will close at 8pm tonight.

— Steve Patterson

 

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