CLAYTON (KMOX) – Ellisville Mayor Adam Paul — known for fighting off an impeachment attempt and killing a controversial Walmart — is now setting his sights on a St. Louis County Council seat.
He said he made his “gametime decision” to run after hearing of longtime district 7 councilman Greg Quinn’s retirement.
“You’ve got to hit while the iron’s hot,” Paul told a KMOX reporter Monday.
Paul was elected in a four-way race in April 2012 after plastering the slogan “No Walmart” on his yard signs. He spent much of the ensuing year fighting to cancel tax incentives for a Walmart project that would’ve replaced an apartment complex.
He was removed from office about a year later by a council which alleged he’d overstepped his authority. Six months after that, a St. Louis County judge permanently overturned his removal and put him back in office. The Walmart project was dead by October.
“I’ve got a lot of support in the region right now with all that I’ve been through as Mayor,” he said.
How does he feel about leaving City Hall, instead of running for a second term as he’d intended?
“It switches things up, but I feel I’m exactly what the county needs and this district needs. They need somebody that can represent them and fight for them and look out for their best concerns.”
Paul says he’s still researching a lot of the big issues, like the sales tax pool and school transfer scramble, but he does have an opinion on a potential city-county merger.
“Our people vehemently oppose the merger and they need a voice in that. I haven’t talked to one person in the west county area who’s in favor of this merger and I question the motives behind it.”
He added: “I believe that deal’s been cooked for a long time.”
Also on the ballot for the district 7 council seat are former Ballwin Mayor Walt Young and current Ballwin alderman Mark Harder.
Like them, Paul says he’ll run as a Republican, although on hyperlocal issues he says he’s “not much of a parties guy. I’m more of a dinner and a movies guy.”
Paul’s Ellisville adversary (and predecessor as Mayor), Matt Pirrello, is running for the Republican nomination for St. Louis County Executive. Former state legislator Jane Cunningham told KMOX News Monday that she’s considering doing the same.