Mayor Slay Pledges Full Support of Effort to Retain NGA

Sen. Ron Richard’s Bill Provides New Incentive

February 25, 2015 | 2 min reading time
National-Geospatial---Intelligence-Agency

St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay today pledged his support of Senate Bill 519, introduced by Senator Ron Richard as a new tool to help keep the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) and its 3,100 employees in the City of St. Louis and the state of Missouri.

The average salary at NGA is $75,000. The Agency generates $2.4 million in revenue for the City through the earnings tax, and its employees also pay nearly $8 million in state withholding taxes every year -- money that the City and state will lose if NGA moves to Illinois.

"Sen. Richard understands the importance of keeping Missouri jobs in Missouri," Mayor Slay said. "It is imperative that together we do everything we can to save thousands of jobs and bring the first large-scale economic development project to North St. Louis in decades."

NGA has outgrown its current space in South St. Louis City. It is pursuing construction and operation of a modern facility in theSt. Louisarea to better support its mission to provide timely, relevant, and accurate geospatial-intelligence to support national security. The proposed site –near Jefferson and Cass avenues within the Northside Regeneration Development area –is one site under consideration.

The City's Land Clearance for Redevelopment Authority (LCRA) is in the process of assembling 100 contiguous acres of land for NGA's new $1.6 billion high-tech facility to grow its operations and workforce. The development also is expected to create thousands of construction jobs in an area that has seen decades of private disinvestment.

"It is not only critical to retain NGA and its well-paying jobs in the City, but this project also can be the catalyst for additional development in an area that badly needs a substantial economic boost," Mayor Slay said.

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