Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Editorial: Un-Siloed Is the Way to Grow

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Editorial: Un-Siloed Is the Way to Grow

Article excerpt

More than supporting renovation of the Gateway Arch grounds, propping up area parks and giving a thumbs up to trail-building, Tuesday's passage of Proposition P signaled a tentative step toward regionalism.

Sure, the sales tax measure passed with a higher percentage of the vote in St. Louis city 67.2 percent than St. Louis County, where 52.87 percent of voters favored it.

But that's not the point. The idea that voters in both areas saw the value of approving something that will benefit each of them is what's important.

Critics complained that the whole point of the measure was to get money for the Arch improvements and that the money for parks $6 million for county parks; $4 million for St. Louis County municipal parks; and $2.5 million for St. Louis city parks was included to make it more appetizing to county voters.

They said the same thing about the measure's inclusion of $9.42 million for Great Rivers Greenway trails.

Those are cynical viewpoints. A better way of looking at it would be to think that the measure's designers knew everyone would have to get something out of the deal for it to win the votes needed for approval.

There is legitimately some criticism to be dished out to the proposition's architects for putting the measure on the April 2 ballot, which traditionally has a low voter turnout. The strategy worked but we would rather have seen it go before more voters.

That said, the area is now going to move forward with money for trails and parks and new museum exhibits and a buffed-up old federal courthouse. Voters should be proud of the progressive steps they have taken toward regionalism.

Government leaders need to be cognizant of the trust that has been placed in them to continue to support one another and the development of the area, instead of retreating into the bunker mentality they all too often embrace.

It's too bad that St. Charles County executive Steve Ehlmann and the St. Charles County Council wouldn't allow their constituents to vote on the tax. The county's nearly 368,666 residents are free to enjoy what St. Louis city and county have to offer and should help shoulder the burden of paying for it. …

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