TV, billboards push for tax increase for Metro - KMOV.com

TV, billboards push for tax increase for Metro

(KMOV) -- Have you seen the Metro ads?

Billboards and TV commercials are pushing voters to approve the sales tax increase in St. Louis city and St. Louis County.

In just over a month, voters will hit the polls to vote on a half cent tax increase that could create $75 million for Metro. Metro says the money would save jobs and restore bus and Metrolink services that were cut last year.

The commercials, produced by the Citizens for Modern Transit, feature people such as former Cardinal Mike Shannon, entrepreneur Joe Edwards, and other city and county leaders. Even Fredbird is lending his support.

Washington University Chancellor Mark Wrighton is also featured in the ads. He told News 4 that Metro is something the St. Louis community needs, and is an investment in the city's future.

"We have been through one of the greatest recessions in our history," Wrighton said. "This is a chance to make an investment in our community. It is important to the region."

But not everyone supports the increase. John Burns of Citizens for Better Transit says the tax increase is vague and has no guidelines for spending.

"[Metro was] in the red long before the recession, and they're going to be in the red again," Burns said. "We need to focus on reforming Metro before they get any more money. What they're saying is blindly give us your money and then we're going to tell you what you're going to get afterwards."

Metro will learn of its future when the polls close on April 6.

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