For Comments Contact: Jeff Roorda at 314.420.3861
St. Louis Police Officers Association Endorses Soccer Proposal
St. Louis, Missouri (March 31, 2017) – The St. Louis Police Officers Association (SLPOA) formally announced today their endorsement of Proposition 1 & 2 on Tuesday's ballot in St. Louis City. Funding for an MLS soccer stadium is the centerpiece of the two ballot initiatives, which seek voter approval for bonding authority and a sales tax increase in the city.
SLPOA Business Manager and spokesman, Jeff Roorda, said that his union, which represents about 1,100 police officers in St. Louis City, was reluctant at first to support the proposal but now that they have seen the numbers, he called supporting the project "a no-brainer."
Roorda and the leadership of the union have been in meetings with local politicians and the MLS investor group for about a week. Roorda noted, "once you look at the net revenue that is produced by this project through the millions of dollars in sales tax revenue it generates in excess of the city's investment, any one who cares at all about this region has to reach the same conclusion, this is a boon for the city and the entire St. Louis area. And then, when you hear straight from the mouths of the politicians who support this project and the businessmen who are investing their own money into it, how committed they are to seeing the revenue that this project generates invested in funding competitive police salaries in the city and ultimately growing the police force once wages are attractive enough to entice more qualified applicants, you'd have to be crazy to oppose this chance to re-invigorate downtown with a stadium and all of the other hospitality businesses that will grow up around it."
Roorda continued, "we are driving toward a cliff in the city. We will very soon be paying police 30% below the regional average wage for law enforcement. If we don't fill that void with some sort of downtown revival and the revenue stream that will spring from it, the city is doomed to a crisis of violence and lawlessness that will be impossible to fix once we go over that cliff. I'm trying to stand between a runaway train and that cliff and I'm glad to have business leaders and a handful of courageous politicians join me at that precipice."
Roorda said that the police union is asking every voter in St. Louis to cast a resounding yes vote on Propositions 1 and 2.