Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Totals Show How Voters Rejected `M' Metrolink Election Close except in 3 City Precincts

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Totals Show How Voters Rejected `M' Metrolink Election Close except in 3 City Precincts

Article excerpt

Proposition M, the sales tax proposal to finance MetroLink and a bus system in St. Charles County, was defeated by a margin of 3.12 percent of the total vote in last week's election.

The difference between the yes and the no votes was only 859 of a total of 27,533 votes cast. The vote was 13,337 in favor and 14,196 against.

But while the outcome of the election was close on a countywide basis, the results were lopsided at precincts in the county's three largest municipalities.

The most opposition came from voters in precincts in St. Peters, where the total vote was 857 for the proposition - only 28 percent of the vote - and 3,041 against, or 78 percent.

In St. Charles, 66 percent of 4,072 voters rejected the measure.

Support for Proposition M was scattered geographically. Strong support for the proposal came from voters in Lake Saint Louis precincts.

At polling places in Weldon Spring and Weldon Spring Heights, the vote was 498 in favor, 423 against.

Voters also favored the tax at the lone precinct in Foristell.

At voting places in most of the the county's other small municipalities, the proposition lost by large margins.

The figures do not always reflect the votes cast from residents of the municipality in which the precinct is located. For example, some residents living in unincorporated parts of the county may vote at precincts in St. Peters. Polling places in O'Fallon also may serve a few residents in St. Peters, or a Cottleville resident may vote in a St. Peters precinct.

Public officials and civic leaders continued last week to analyze the election results.

Jim Seamon, who is chairman of the St. Charles County Transit Authority, said he was "a little bit surprised" at the defeat of the measure since polls taken recently indicated strong support. "We thought it would win by as much as 20 percent," he said.

Seamon said it would be another two or three weeks before a decision was made on whether to put the measure on the ballot again in the general election Nov. 5.

Perhaps, he said, a lower tax rate may be proposed. He said a sales tax of one-fourth of 1 percent would be enough to operate a bus system, "but we have to decide if that's in the public interest. …

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