St. Louis County Council votes to add new position - KMOV.com

St. Louis County Council votes to add new position

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The St. Louis County Council vote (Credit: KMOV) The St. Louis County Council vote (Credit: KMOV)
CLAYTON (KMOV.com) -

The St. Louis County Council passed a bill on Tuesday to add a Director of Legislative Research.

This person would basically be an attorney who would represent the County Council. They would do work like drafting paperwork, forms and legislation.

The bill also allows for the director to have a secretary and “other employees”.

Tuesday's vote was 4-3 and now the County Executive has to sign off on it.

Councilman Mark Harder voted against the proposal and submitted a letter to the County Executive asking him to veto the bill. He said the charter doesn’t allow the council to appoint this position and believes it’s a waste of money.

“In our estimates, just using round numbers and benefits, that this would cost at least $200,000 for the St. Louis County taxpayers and it is a position that we have not had in the length of our charter, so why is this now important?” asked Harder.

Councilwoman Rochelle Walton-Gray submitted the bill, saying they need someone working for the council. She argues they wouldn’t necessarily have to hire a new person for this role.

“There are 24 attorneys in the County Counselor’s Office. 24. Why don’t one of those people work for us? So we could move them to our office and be our staff person, or we could get another person and they could cut somebody. That has to be vetted. We haven’t made decisions like that yet,” said Walton-Gray.

Harder said the County Executive has 14 days to make a decision on whether or not to sign the bill.

If it is signed, Walton-Gray said the budget process would start in next few months on coming up with a salary for this position and then they would start to interview candidates.

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