Mayor Slay secures $300k in pledges in campaign to keep city earnings tax -

Mayor Slay secures $300k in pledges in campaign to keep city earnings tax


(KMOV) -- After forming a campaign finance committee called Citizens for a Stronger St. Louis, Mayor Francis Slay says he's secured more than $300,000 in pledges since Wednesday.

Most of the pledges, he says, come from businesses.

"Many big companies in the city and even outside the city that think this is very, very important for the tax base," said Mayor Slay.

St. Louis' Mayor has taken some heat for not campaigning against Prop A, which passed with 68% of votes, statewide. Prop A did two things. It banned Missouri cities from imposing new earnings taxes and it required St. Louis and Kansas City ask local voters to decide whether to keep the 1% earnings tax in place.

Mayor Slay had said he would focus his efforts on convincing city voters to keep the tax when the issue comes up for a vote in April.

The earnings tax in St. Louis generates about a third of the city's operating budget. If voters decide to repeal the tax, leaders warn it come at the expense of city services. The tax would be phased out over 10 years, in one-tenth percent increments.

Mayor Slay says he's raising private funds to pay for a campaign of public meetings and advertisements to convince city voters to keep the earnings tax in place.

He may not have a hard time convincing voters.

Tuesday, voters in the city voted against Prop A. Sixty eight percent of voters indicated they did not want to put the earnings tax up for a vote.

See results here:

As for the group behind the Prop A push, a spokesman says they're work is done. They have no plans to get involved in April's city vote.

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