The April 4th general election is a big one here in the city of St. Louis. The city will most-likely elect it's first female mayor, Lyda Krewson. How cool is that?
Among the propositions on the ballot Tuesday, Propositions 1 & 2 have probably received the most press.
Proposition 1 would raise the sales tax 1/2 of a percent. The expected $20 million in yearly proceeds would go to things like transit and public safety.
Proposition 2 is tied to Prop 1. If Prop 1 passes, the city's use tax will automatically go up that same .5 percent. Prop 2 would authorize that increase in the use tax, expected to be $4 million per year, to be used to build a 20,000-seat outdoor stadium. Among other events, the stadium would be the home of St. Louis's entry in Major League Soccer.
A .5 percent increase in the sales tax would cost you 50 cents on a $100 purchase. Keep in mind that the food tax is 3% lower when you see reports of a high base sales tax in the city. The use tax is something businesses pay on out-of-state purchases.
This proposal is good for the city of St. Louis.
It is good for the city's youth according to Demetrious Johnson and according to the co-founder of World Wide Technology, David Steward.
In addition to that, it is good for Soulard. In Minnesota, proximity to the new Minnesota United stadium is influencing home-buying decisions.
We all see how busy Soulard is with Cardinals and Blues fans on the days those teams are playing. People visiting before heading over to the games or taking the Soulard shuttles to the games, help keep these businesses in business the rest of the year. Crowds also help deter crime.
People looking to rent apartments make their decisions partially on being close to things they like to do. There are plenty of young professionals that will see being close to an MLS stadium as a perk of living in Soulard.
The city of St. Louis will earn tax revenues from things that happen at the stadium. These tax dollars will go to pay for needed city services. Over the course of the next twenty years, these tax dollars generated for the city will be more than if the stadium didn't get built. The city's contribution is capped and can only be paid for from that increase in the use tax. General revenue funds can not be used. The owners of the MLS team are responsible for any construction cost overages.
Vote whatever way you think is best for St. Louis on Tuesday. Keep an open mind about Propositions 1 & 2 and the benefits they could have for Soulard, in particular.
P.S. Vote For Jack Coatar too.