St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones holds first live stream news conference, talks COVID, Workhouse, police budget

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ST. LOUIS–Continuing a practice that began under her predecessor at the start of the coronavirus pandemic, St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones Thursday held her first live-streamed news conference after nine days in office.

It came just hours after Jones’ fiscal year 2022 budget proposal to reduce the city’s policing budget by $4 million was approved by the Board of Estimate and Apportionment Thursday. In the live stream, Jones said no officers would lose their jobs as a result of the decision to reduce the number of openings in the department to 50, while re-allocating the other vacancies to other roles. While the goal is to better manage the department’s overtime budget, the amount itself would not change under the proposal, which will now go to the full Board of Aldermen.

Jones also re-capped her visit to the State Capitol to meet with Governor Parson and other lawmakers, and the tours taken of the city’s Justice Center and Minimum Security Facility, also known as “The Workhouse”.

Next week, Jones promised news on several fronts:

  • The Mayor’s advisory board on how to spend $500 million in COVID relief funds, meets for the first time May 1.
  • An update on the city’s plan to combat shootings on Interstate 70, following the city’s agreement with the Missouri State Highway Patrol to provide additional enforcement.
  • An update on the city’s COVID-19 restrictions, in an announcement that would be in alignment with St. Louis County guidelines.

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