On Friday, July 2, Mayor Tishaura O. Jones provided an update on the progress made by her administration on key issues of importance to St. Louisans. Updates included
Outlining her $80 million direct relief package. The proposal passed through the Board of Estimate and Apportionment on Wednesday. It includes millions of dollars in housing and utility assistance, community violence intervention programs, services to help small businesses connect to federal aid, mobile vaccination clinics and more. This is the first of several investments from the American Rescue Plan, and the White House has encouraged other jurisdictions to follow St. Louis’ lead in funding community violence intervention programs, which are shown to reduce violence by as much as 60 percent. The administration is ready to work with the Board of Aldermen to move these funds quickly to address the urgency of the moment.
“My $80 million direct relief proposal is a public health plan. It’s an economic relief plan. And it’s a public safety plan that will help us address the violence afflicting our neighborhoods.” ~Mayor Jones
Discouraging the personal use of fireworks out of consideration for our firefighters, EMT’s, and neighbors -- especially those with PTSD -- and instead visiting the many professional fireworks displays happening all weekend throughout the region. The City of St. Louis will be closed Monday, July 5, in observance of Independence Day weekend.
Continuing to encourage vaccinations, especially as the Delta variant takes hold in Missouri. Mayor Jones highlighted the Department of Health joining of the Shots at the Shop program, which offers grants to small black-owned businesses who host vaccination clinics within their shops and connect customers with resources. The mayor also highlighted the joint advisory from St. Louis City and St. Louis County Departments of Health to continue masking and social distancing as the Delta variant continues its spread.
Emptying the Medium Security Institution, commonly known as the Workhouse. Budget for the Workhouse has officially been zeroed out as of July 1, the beginning of the new fiscal year. Health and safety of detainees and staff remains top priority. Consolidation has resulted in the CJC being adequately staffed, and repairs to the facility are ongoing. The windows along Tucker have been replaced, and the locks and doors continue to be updated. The City’s new budget taking effect July 1 includes funding the Division of Supportive Reentry to reduce rates of recidivism, expanding the capacity of the Civilian Oversight Board to also oversee corrections, as well as investing in community visioning planning to repurpose the Workhouse, old SLMPD Headquarters and Municipal Courts buildings.
Ensuring families are aware of Child Tax Credit opportunities. President Biden’s American Rescue Plan provides the largest tax credits ever, with all working families making up to $150,000 receiving $3,000 per child 6-17 years old and $3,600 per child under 6 years old. To be eligible, applicants must have filed a 2019 or 2020 tax return and claimed the Child Tax Credit on the return or they signed up to receive a stimulus check from the Internal Revenue Service. With the first monthly payment starting on July 15, Mayor Jones, Treasurer Adam Layne, St. Louis Public Schools and service providers like the United Way are partnering to get information out to families regarding free tax preparation clinics and other resources.