Update: On July 25, specially appointed judge Judge Gael D. Wood struck down St Louis County Proposition 4. The St. Louis County Election Board will have notices at polling places that will tell voters that any votes cast for or against Proposition 4 will not count and will not be tabulated. You can read more by clicking here.
The Original Big B File on the subject is below.
The August 7th primary election ballot measures and the St. Louis County Executive race is the subject of this Big B File.
One week from today on August 7th, voters in the state of Missouri will be going to the polls to decide who will be the party nominee to represent the political parties for different federal (except for U.S. President), state, county and local races (elections for citywide offices are usually held in April) in the November 6th General Election…..as well as deciding State constitional amendments and other local ballot measures. In this Big B File, we’ll be focusing on the issues being voted on in St. Louis County.
First of all, I’ll begin with the most talked about and most advertised ballot measure, which is….the Right to Work ballot measure. Proposition A reads as follows:
Do the people of the state of Missouri want to adopt Senate Bill 19 (“Right-to-Work”) as passed by the general assembly in 2017, which prohibits as a condition of employment the forced membership in a labor organization (union) or forced payments of dues in full or pro-rata (fair-share); make any activity which violates employees’ rights illegal and ineffective; allow legal remedies for anyone injured as a result of another person violating or threatening to violate employees’ rights; and which shall not apply to union agreements entered into before the effective date of Senate Bill 19? State and local government entities expect no costs or savings.
Proposition A as it appears on the ballot
Before giving the Big B Files recommendation on how to vote on Proposition A, let me give you a little background.
A little over a year ago on February 6th 2017, then Missouri Governor Eric Greitens signed Senate Bill 19 into law bringing Right to Work to Missouri. Right after the right-to-work bill was signed into law, the unions and their allies conducted a mass petition drive and was able to get the required number of signatures to put a measure on the ballot to have the voters decide weather the then signed law went into effect or not.
This past session, the Missouri General Assembly voted to move Proposition A from being voted on in the November midterm general election, which is being held on November 5th, up to the Missouri State primary election, which is being held on August 7th.
That ballot measure as it turns out, became what is now known as Proposition A.
You would think that if it was the unions and their allies that conducted the petition drives in the first place and got the issue put on the ballot that the ballot language for proposition A would be phrased in such a way that if people voted for it, that the right to work law would be killed and never go into effect.
But that is not the case.
Here’s what it boils down to. If voters in Missouri vote for Proposition A, the right-to-work bill that was signed into law by former Governor Eric Greitens would officially go into effect. If voters vote no on Proposition A, then the vote will kill Senate Bill 19 and would prevent the law for going into effect… effectively killing the new Missouri right to work law. The Big B Files recommends that Missouri voters vote Yes on the Missouri Proposition A ballot measure.
In St Louis County, there are three ballot questions being put to the voters of St Louis County. I will deal with the St Louis County Propositions 3 and 4 first and leaving St Louis County Proposition 2 till last because it ties into my comments regarding the St. Louis County Executive race. Let me first give my analysis on St Louis County proposition 3, which reads as follows:
Shall the St. Louis County Charter be amended as proposed by Ordinance No. 27,058, enacted on the 29th day of May, 2018? Said charter as so amended would provide that the term employment as used in the County Charter, Section 2.170, shall be strictly interpreted as prescribed in state law, specifically 8 CSR 10-4.150, as that regulation existed on April 12, 2018..
CHARTER AMENDMENT – ST. LOUIS CO. – PROPOSITION 3
This ballot measure is a result of a controversy involving one of the St. Louis County Board members who, as an attorney, was providing legal services to a few school districts not in the St Louis metropolitan area. According to West Newsmagazine, this ballot measure “would ask voters to change the definition of “employment” in the county charter to the same test established under state law that distinguishes employees from independent contractors. The Big B Files recommendation is that St. Louis County voters vote yes on St Louis County Proposition 3.
Let me give you my analysis on St Louis County Proposition 4, which reads as follows:
Shall the Charter of St. Louis County be amended to provide for the regulation of campaign contributions, the regulation of interdepartmental fund transfers, and a website to publish certain county financial documents, as set forth in Exhibit A of Ordinance No. 27,059 on file with the St. Louis County Administrative Director and St. Louis County Board of Election Commissioners?
CHARTER AMENDMENT – ST. LOUIS CO. – PROPOSITION 4
According to West Magazine, this ballot measure consists of campaign finance contribution limits, disclosure of county funds available to the public online, and oversight of the county executive’s spending. According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch (Discrace), County Executive Steve Stenger said as to why he vetoed the measure was that the measure “does not go far enough in that it fails to address wealthy, self-funding candidates….”
Here’s the Big B Files analysis St Louis County Proposition 4. We have had campaign Finance laws for years. They have been modified, changed, and new laws added over years, and yet, people and organizations have always found ways around them.
The best campaign is this have no limits on the amount of campaign contributions to candidates, ballot initiatives, etcetera. In exchange, there should be full disclosure by the candidates of all the contributions they have received in their election campaigns… That sounds pretty fair, doesn’t it?
The Big B Files recommendation is for voters to vote no and reject St Louis County Proposition 4.
Let me give my analysis on St Louis County Proposition 2, which reads as follows:
Shall the St. Louis County Charter be amended as proposed by Ordinance No. 27,057 enacted on the 29th day of May, 2018? Said charter as so amended would provide that the council may appoint an attorney, licensed to practice law in Missouri, to its executive staff, and enter into a contract with outside private counsel, who shall be an attorney licensed to practice law in Missouri.
This ballot measure is a direct result of growing friction by the St. Louis County board and County Executive Steve Stenger. St Louis County Board is basically asking the voters of St Louis County to give them the authority to amend the county Charter and allow them to play and appoint their own attorney. The current attorney for Saint Louis County answers directly to the county executive and deals with all legal matters for the St Louis County, which includes all matters dealing with the County Board, County Personnel, and the county executive… among others.
The Big B Files believes this is a total political play going on here. Don’t believe that the Board needs its own attorney whatsoever and in fact I would recommend that the county attorney… Which is not the same as a County Prosecutor… Should be an independent County Office therefore eliminating conflicts of interest. Therefore, the Big B Files recommends that voters is St Louis County reject St Louis County Proposition 2.
The reason why I put this at the end of the St Louis County ballot measures is because it’s also ties into a hotly-contested race in St Louis County… The race for County Executive. The current County Executive for St Louis County is Steve Stenger, who is being opposed in the Democratic primary by Mark Mantovani.
The two candidates for the Democratic nomination for County Executive are basically trying to out liberal each other and play to the far left base of the Democratic Party. Steve Stenger is ending his commercials by saying that he is proud to “keep Trump hate” or “keep Trump racist hate” out of St Louis County. I would love for the county executive to Define exactly what “Trump hate” or “Trump racist hate” is, because I have yet to see a definition period. He is also proudly boasted his support of and endorsement by Planned Parenthood, the others….. ticking off a lot of St. Louis county voters, including some of the people that voted for him the last time he ran four years ago.
Steve Stenger only won election to the seat four years ago by just a few hundred votes in a County with just a little over a million residents. If he somehow survived the Democratic primary, the Big B Files believes Steve Stenger will be a very damaged man and this may be the first time in decades that a Republican will be elected St Louis County. The Big B Files believes that the man that would most likely beat the current County Executive this November will be Paul Berry III, who would be the first black Republican County Executive in St Louis County history.
If Steve Stenger had not taken the route that he has this election season, the Big B Files believes he would have had a really good chance of being reelected St Louis County Executive this November.
……And that’s the Big B Files. Click on the comments link below and tell me what you think……I’m Bryan V. Hewing.