ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – A top St. Louis official says there needs to be some legal ‘sunlight’ cast on the continuing merger talks between St. Louis City and County, which have been taking place out of public view.
Aldermanic President Lewis Reed says he was shocked to learn in earlier news reports that city and county officials have been meeting to talk about dovetailing economic development, construction codes and healthcare. “I am not in the loop at all on any of this,” Reed said. “I found out in the news paper like everyone else.”
Reed says the Mayor’s office alone should not be at the table in the merger talks. He wants his office and the comptroller in on any future negotiations. “At minimum today, or as soon as possible, the Board of Estimate and Apportionment should get an update on what is going on,” Reed said. “And that would be the bare minimum.”
KMOX is awaiting a response from the Missouri Attorney General’s office about whether the state’s Sunshine Law, which requires advanced notice of meetings and agendas, applies to the city/county merger talks. Mayor Slay’s office released a statement saying… “the City will continue to follow the Sunshine Law when planning and holding meetings. The Mayor will keep the Board of Estimate and Apportionment and the Board of Aldermen informed of these talks.”