Board of Aldermen Meeting (7-23-2019)

Here is the full agenda from this meeting.


A new ordinance was passed (8-0) that updated the existing City Code as it pertains to the Board of Adjustment and the Planning and Zoning Commission.   This ordinance clarified the structures and rules of these two organizations.   A similar ordinance was passed back in 2017 for all other boards, but since these two are bound by state law and would require additional legal research, they were deferred until now.


Former mayor Roby came to the podium to express his displeasure with Lindbergh's recent purchase of 9400 Watson Road (see my previous post for more on this purchase).   He was upset because this property could have had retail potential.   Later in the meeting aldermen Duncan and Ayouaz stated agreement with Mr. Roby, but Mayor Mabie stated a contrary opinion, that Crestwood now has a good working relationship with the District and doesn't feel that the City will be negatively impacted by the purchase.


Only two items were removed from the consent agenda (School Zone Speeding, and Central County Dispatch contract).   All other items passed 8-0.


There were many questions posed and answered during this discussion.   It was clarified that the new fines will only be applicable when the lower speed limits are activated (e.g. when the school zone lights flash on Sappington).   Crestwood Police currently patrol the two school zones on Sappington at the  start and end of the school day, and when possible two patrol cars are assigned to Long School and two to Crestwood School.    The other two schools have not had issues with speeding.

The proposed ordinance was amended for additional speeding fines:
  • 1-5 mph:    $50.50 (same as before)
  • 6-10 mph:  $121.00 (doubled)
  • 11-15 mph: $211.50 (tripled)
  • 16-19 mph: $301.50 (tripled)
  • 20-25 mph: $466.50 (tripled)
Tickets for all of the above also incur an additional $28.50 for court costs.

This amended ordinance passed 6-2.  The city hopes to have the new signs installed before the start of school in mid-August.   Note - I was one of the two aldermen that voted no - see my comments below.


Our current contract with Central County Fire Dispatch expires 12/31/2019, and a new one was up for approval.   Alderman Kennedy found some questionable language in the proposed contract and it was agreed (8-0) that staff and the City Attorney should continue negotiations with Central County to address this before the end of the year.


After a short discussion, lead by the Mayor, it was agreed that staff should investigate the costs and capabilities of this technology and present findings to the Police Board, which could potentially make a recommendation to the Board of Aldermen in the future.


Metro Sewer District has previously charged customers a surcharge for storm sewer repairs and projects.  That charge has been removed and they are investigating replacing it via an existing property tax that MSD is authorized to impose, but hasn't in previous years.   MSD has asked cities for input on how to use funds raised (e.g. share funds with metro cities for storm related projects, or MSD use it exclusively for projects).   The discussion was mostly an FYI, but it sounds like MSD will probably be reimposing this tax in the future.

The next scheduled BoA meeting will be August 27.


Prior to the meeting, I sent out a poll asking for citizen input on this issue.   In all, 49 residents participated in the survey - Thank You!

  Should Crestwood double speeding fines in school zones? 

  The results of that poll are:   55% YES    45% NO 

I also heard from several residents expressing their thoughts and ideas about this issue.   Many of the comments stated that the proposed (doubled) speeding fines would be too high.

During the Board of Aldermen meeting, the proposed fee schedule was amended to not only double, but triple speeding fines for anything over 10 mph, resulting in fines of $240 - $495 (including court costs).  Costs for "amended tickets" (higher fee to avoid points) are typically 30-100% higher, so you can do the math to determine the actual fines paid.

Alderman Charboneau and myself both stated that we felt these proposed fines were too high, and voted against the amended ordinance.

That said - I think all eight Aldermen strongly support school safety and also support our police officers.  Although I didn't agree with the new fine structure, I look forward to the new signage at our schools and hope that they work to slow down drivers when students are present.   If drivers slow down and obey the posted limits, then the fines won't really matter.