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State lawmakers approve measure to raise zoo funds through ballot initiatives

ST. LOUIS (KTVI) - Missouri lawmakers on Thursday sent a measure to Governor Eric Greitens that would allow the Saint Louis Zoo to raise more money without having to charge an entry fee.

People who live in St. Louis City and St. Louis County already pay personal property taxes that support the zoo. If signed, this new bill would allow ballot initiatives to be brought into the city and county to raise taxes up to one-eighth of a percent to fund the zoo.

Originally, the bill included surrounding counties like St. Charles, Franklin, and Jefferson, but they were written out in later drafts.

Residents of St. Louis city and county said they don’t mind paying a little more to keep the zoo free and up to date, but they questioned why that would fall solely on their backs when people from all over the metro area enjoy the zoo.

The bill would also allow for the zoo to charge admission to the new facilities for people who live in counties that don’t adopt a zoo tax.