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The St Louis Contrarian

Providing Independent and Intelligent Insight on St. Louis Public Policy Issues

Airport debt reduction

www.stltoday.com/news/local/columns/tony-messenger/messenger-city-leaders-used-to-back-airport-debt-reduction-then/article_de3bf35e-1f05-5675-b2d3-75c72e13bd2d.html

another great Messinger article.

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Bail Project

The Bail Project is a national organization that raises funds to provide bail to certain poor people accused of crimes who are sitting in jail. The purpose of the program is to help individuals get their lives back together after having been accused of committing a crime. If the people show up for trial, the bail of course will be refunded and the program will be self sustaining.

Last week in St. Louis an individual was released through the program who went home and murdered his wife. This guy should have never been entitled to bail and certainly not released as part of a social program. He had several drug convictions and documented violent behavior. The Bail Project is not supposed to use its’ resources to help dangerous people get out on the street. I hope they will be more careful in the future. This case is a real tragedy. Written by Paul Dribin

Saving Dunbar Elementary | Local News | stlamerican.com

The leadership of Saint Louis Public Schools and Dunbar Elementary School have joined a community movement to keep open the school, which had been considered for closure.
— Read on www.stlamerican.com/content/tncms/live/

St. Louis Is Back in the Nation’s Top 20 Metro Areas | News Blog

Last spring, the news was bleak. “St. Louis region falls out of the Top-20 metros in the U.S.,” the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported, in a…
— Read on www.riverfronttimes.com/newsblog/2019/04/18/st-louis-is-back-in-the-nations-top-20-metro-areas

Comptroller Green Blasts ‘Unacceptable Scrutiny’ Over Airport Bonds in Raucous Meeting | News Blog

It was something new for Darlene Green, the usually stoic St. Louis city comptroller. She wanted everyone in the room to know it. “This is…
— Read on www.riverfronttimes.com/newsblog/2019/04/17/comptroller-green-blasts-unacceptable-scrutiny-over-airport-bonds-in-raucous-meeting

This is why the city doesn’t work. Refinancing the bonds is a no brained. Comptroller Green has been an exemplary public official. Krewson and Reed are in bed with the folks wanting to privatize the airport. As I said what is difficult about refinancing bonds at a lower interest rate. Written by Paul Dribin

St. Louis County Affordable Housing Trust Fund

I just received an email with the initial results of the planning efforts of the proposed Affordable Housing Trust Fund for St. Louis County. I am delighted to see the recommendations which made terrific sense. The group is led by Chris Krehmeyer of Beyond Housing and the Clark-Fox Foundation is providing important support. I am glad they see that moving to communities of opportunity is the most important factor in success. I hope this program can get implemented. Written by Paul Dribin

Post Editorial About Stenger Improprieties

www.stltoday.com/opinion/editorial/editorial-the-appearance-of-impropriety-once-again-centers-on-stenger/article_bd94339c-34de-597d-900b-e0408fee3274.html

County Council Approves Funding for Convention Center Expansion

www.stltoday.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/st-louis-county-council-oks-financing-for-america-s-center/article_66ba307f-7054-5195-bdf0-aa3c49002071.html

this is good. It is nice to see city and county cooperating. This will also fund development in north county

St Louis schools Will Return to Local Cintrol

www.stltoday.com/news/local/metro/st-louis-schools-will-return-to-local-control-july-after/article_c038e09a-45fc-5a39-86b4-17f8318a188a.html

This did not work too well in the past. The schools have improved but have a long way to go.

Who or What is Responsible for Problem Conditions in City

I have worked my whole life in the field of housing and urban development. Billions of dollars have spent spent in cities to upgrade housing, provide needed social services and upgrade the quality of life. Major problems persist, many of which are the same from which I started. These problems are poverty, crime, poor school accomplishment, poor health, unemployment etc. The question becomes, who is responsible for these problems.

The journalist David Brooks addressed the issue well. He said that conservatives hold the individuals totally responsible for their problems, while progressives hold society totally responsible. In truth, the answer is somewhere in the middle. On the one hand there is still extreme racism, class warfare, insufficient housing, a dysfunctional health care system, and insufficient funding of education. On the other hand poverty does not necessarily equal crime, children are not raised to be successful in school, and many people make poor dietary and health care choices.

Two examples stick out that show that urban problems are more than racism. First, Black people from the Caribbean and Africa, without a penny to their name when they arrive here are very successful. They work 2-3 jobs, send their kids to school, and become middle class. Second, the University City School system is another example. When the schools were predominantly white and Jewish it was considered one of the best school systems in the country. Now it is predominantly Black, it is considered underperforming, even though the resources for the schools have actually increased. It would be refreshing if progressives would ever talk about individual responsibility. Written by Paul Dribin

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