CLAYTON, Mo. – The St. Louis County Council decided Tuesday not to vote to override County Executive Sam Page’s veto of the bill aimed at banning people from streets when a sidewalk is present.
On May 16, the St. Louis County Council passed Bill 86 by a narrow 4-3 vote.
Councilman Ernie Trakas originally introduced the bill with the intent of improving public safety. It prohibits anyone from walking, running, sitting, or simply standing in an unincorporated county roadway when a sidewalk is there. If there was no sidewalk, people would have to walk on the left side with caution.
However, other council members and opposition in the community were concerned that the bill targets the homeless, runners, and those with disabilities who might have a hard time using cracked and uneven sidewalks.
One of those who opposed it was Page.
A little over a week ago, he announced he would veto the bill, urging that traffic violence is a problem but that making it illegal to walk in the streets is not the answer.
“We certainly heard more about this bill than just about anything this year,” Page said. “There are a lot of people that share the roadways who use the roadways to walk or walk their dogs or their kids, and a lot of runners use the roadways. We just don’t have a lot of good sidewalks, so we have to find a way to share.”
He noted there will be more of a push for education on how to be a safe pedestrian as well as discussions on how to use ARPA money for infrastructure improvements.
Page also vetoed another bill about tobacco sales within 1,000 feet of a school, allowing stores that already sell tobacco to continue sales.
That veto stayed at Tuesday’s meeting.