When I’m out in the community meeting with St. Louis County residents and discussing the important issues in our region, I frequently hear concerns about the current county executive’s leadership. Like many of you, this week I’m particularly baffled to read news reports that the St. Louis County Council may have to sue the county executive to secure the kind of audit staff it deems appropriate.
Mr. Stenger has been openly uncooperative and obstructive in securing sufficient audit staff necessary to effectively review the county financial records and contracts. My question is, “why?” What does the administration have to hide?
From my 30+ years of business, I submit that when an executive chooses not to cooperate with an auditing process, there is something to hide. There’s a pretty simple rule that most executives observe. If your Board or constituents desire to audit the business that you’re running, you cooperate. That’s just the way it works. Unless…?
County auditors provide oversight of government conduct for the public. They verify that standardized accounting practices are maintained and provide a system of checks and balances so procedures comply with the law. And, they help ensure that the region is able to meet the increasing demands of fiscal accountability in the future.
Bottom line: As we strive for a better, more ethical county government, supporting reasonable audit activities is essential. As county executive, I would work to deliver transparency and I would demand the same from my team. St. Louis County taxpayers deserve that much. That’s the way I’ve always operated my businesses, and that’s the way I’ll manage the St. Louis County government.
New Team Member: Jon Clancy is the new Organizing Director for the Mantovani for STL Campaign – welcome Jon! If you’d like Mark to attend a function, want to volunteer on the campaign or simply desire more information, contact Jon at 314-856-8322 or email him at email@example.com.
Meet our Policy Interns: The Campaign now has four interns hard at work on the policy side – Ian Davis, Destiny Borage, Corinne Anselm and Robin Saidenberg. We’ll give you a glimpse into who they are and what they’re doing.
First up is Ian Davis – Here’s his story:
Research is Ian’s passion. A third-year student at Washington University, majoring in environmental policy and economics, Ian currently works as an undergraduate research assistant analyzing campaign data to determine political leanings. Ian believes that improving policy is the best way for him to make a difference in the world. In addition to his research at the University, he has gathered and analyzed data as a policy analysis intern for a Federal Department of Transportation (DOT) contractor in Cambridge. He is adept at translating complex research findings into succinct and understandable reports.
Ian also has experience working on campaigns. Last summer he served as a field intern on the Chris Koster for Governor Campaign where he helped recruit and organize volunteers.
During his time on campus, Ian also gives tours and presentations to prospective parents and students and is an undergraduate teacher’s assistant in the Department of Political Science. He explains challenging statistics and research analysis concepts to 100 plus students in the Quantitative Political Methods course.
Ian is already putting his talents to work on the Mantovani for STL Campaign. In his short time on board, he has developed several policy summaries including research on minimum wage, right to work and municipal court reform. And, true to form, he’s initiated recruitment events at Wash U that helped secure additional interns for the team.
Originally from the Boston area, Ian opted to attend college in St. Louis so he could explore the country. He enjoys the friendly people here and hopes to stay. Thanks for your help, Ian!
Seeking Communications Interns: Know someone interested in a communications internship? Details and applications are available here.
Mark to Speak at Missouri Manufacturing Summit & Expo:
- Mark has been invited to speak at the Missouri Manufacturing Summit & Expo, Wednesday, September 27 at the Renaissance St. Louis Airport Hotel. Click here for more info.
IN THE NEWS
Here’s a look at stories shaping our county and Mark’s response:
Stockley Verdict: “For decades, our criminal justice system has frequently failed to deliver just outcomes for all of our citizens. All of us know this, and all Americans should demand more. All of us, of every race and background, should be committed to the goal of judicial equity. While we allow time for healing, it is my hope that we can refocus on the issues and opportunities that could unite us as people and a community. We can and must find ways to provide better training of officers and command personnel, enhance the use of body cameras and look to reconnect our communities with our police departments. We must find ways to address the root causes of crime which are joblessness and despair by improving our schools, stabilizing those communities that are losing investment and population, and by creating jobs and economic opportunities. To find the real solutions and make lasting changes the entire community must be invited to be engaged.”
Amazon HQ: Amazon is seeking a home for its second headquarters, and St. Louis should be a legitimate contender. It’s my hope that the responsible governmental and business leaders, who haven’t always had a strong record in such situations, will make a persuasive case for St. Louis. By all accounts, the St. Louis region has what Amazon needs: a highly educated and diverse workforce, world-class universities, a central location to easily establish efficient air, truck, and train shipping networks, a low cost of living, affordable housing, and a strong history of supporting major corporations. Those of us who love this community know that St. Louis is a great place to live and work with great people and a great quality of life. This is a $5 billion dollar opportunity, potentially offering employment to 50,000 employees. My hope is that those involved will energetically think outside of the box, develop an innovative model, and help our community achieve its potential by presenting a transformational foundation for Amazon’s future success.