St. Louis County Executive says it is “unlawful action” for the council to appoint members to Port Authority

CLAYTON, Mo. – St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger issued out a statement on Wednesday before the county council met.

Stenger said that the county’s administration has reached out to the council members in order to work on a number of matters in a cooperative manner. He said that it was his desire to have a productive relationship with the council and work with them on moving the county forward.

Stenger had hoped that the election would allow him and the council to move forward together. Stenger won the race with 56.9 percent of the votes with Republican Paul Berry III bringing in 37.3 percent.

“But in taking the unlawful action of attempting to appoint new members to the St. Louis County Port Authority Board, council members are making it clear that they continue to be more interested in petty political confrontation than in working together for the benefit of the St. Louis County residents,” Stenger said.

Stenger said that the council has been informed by the County attorney that they have no authority to make board appointments. He said that although the council has been told this information, they are still doing so to disrupt operations of economic development.

“The Council’s action, if left unchecked, will result in numerous important activities to grow and retain jobs in St. Louis County coming to a grinding halt,” Stenger said.

The appointments that Stenger is referring to were listed in the Nov. 7, 2018 Agenda Add-on for Other Communications. Councilwoman Erby, Council Chair and Councilman Paige, Councilwoman Wasinger, Councilwoman Walton Gray and Councilman Trakas all submitted requests for consideration of appointments.

Council District 1, Edward Charles James, Democrat – term of two years
Council District 2, John W. Maupin, Republican – term of three years
Council District 3, Richard “Skip” Mange, Republican – term of two years
Council District 4, Robert Birdsong, Democrat – term of three years
Council District 6, Dr. Robert E. Butler, Democrat – term of three years

Read the official letter from the Executive here.

It was also reported that the legal Port Authority met on Wednesday behind closed doors with their lawyer. It has not been released what their next steps are in moving forward.