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ST. LOUIS – Voters in St. Louis City and St. Louis County will decide how the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District will pay for required improvements and how it will govern itself moving forward in the April 6 election.

Proposition Y

Proposition Y asks voters how they want $1.58 billion in required improvements to be paid for during the next four years. Nearly 300 upgrades, repairs and other projects will be made with the money.

Voting yes on Proposition Y lets MSD finance some of the work by issuing $500 million in bonds. They would repay the debt over 20 to 30 years. This would make resident’s MSD bills rise by about three percent through 2024.

Voting no on the measure would make bills rise by 15 percent per year through 2024.

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The official language of Proposition Y reads:

To comply with federal and state clean water requirements, shall The Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District (MSD) issue its sewer revenue bonds in the amount of Five Hundred Million Dollars ($500,000,000) for the purpose of designing, constructing, improving, renovating, repairing, replacing and equipping new and existing MSD sewer and drainage facilities and systems, including sewage treatment and disposal plants, sanitary sewers, and acquisition of easements and real property related thereto, the cost of operation and maintenance of said facilities and systems and the principal of and interest on said revenue bonds to be payable solely from the revenues derived by MSD from the operation of its wastewater sewer system, including all future extensions and improvements thereto?

There are five other bills on the April 6 ballot regarding MSD.

Proposition 1

Proposition 1 asks voters if MSD’s charter should remove “obsolete positions and titles,” replace the “‘city workhouse’ with ‘jail or detention facility,'” require MSD to only present annually to the City and County only if requested, add “gender, sexual orientation, familial status, ancestry or national origin and disability to the list of protected classes,” allow MSD customers to be notified of proposed rate changes by posting on MSD’s website, change the wording of MSD trustees political party from “affiliated with” to “a member of,” make documents submitted to the Board of Trustees in regards to annexation be made public, make hearings before the Civil Service Commission private.

Voting yes on Proposition 1 would make these amendments to MSD’s charter.

The official language of Proposition 1 reads:

Shall the Plan (Charter) of The Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District be amended to remove obsolete provisions, modernize certain provisions, references and language and change certain provisions to align with current practices of the District, includingbut not limited to (a) removing obsolete positions and titles, (b) replacing “city workhouse” with “jail or detention facility”,  (c) requiring that the District present annually to the City and County only upon request, (d) adding gender, sexual orientation, familial status, ancestry or national origin and disability to the list of protected classes, (e) providing that notice of proposed rate changes can be given byposting on the District’s website and other digital media, (f) replacing “affiliated with”with “a member of” with respect to the current requirement that no two Trustees appointed from the City or County be “affiliated with” the same political party, (g)clarifying that documents submitted to the Board of Trustees in connection with anannexation also be made available to the public and (h) recognizing, in accordancewith Missouri’s Sunshine Law, that hearings before the Civil Service Commission are notpublic hearings?

Proposition 2

MSD is governed by a six-person Board of Trustees, with three members appointed by the Mayor of St. Louis and three by the St. Louis County Executive. The current rule calls for two members of each city and county voting bloc to vote in favor of a proposal in order for said proposal to pass.

Proposition 2 asks voters if Article 5 of MSD’s charter should be amended to allow for an affirmative vote by unanimous consent and five trustees present so that any four “yes” votes would be good enough to pass any “ordinance, resolution, regulation, rule or order.”

Proposition 2 also asks voters if the charter should be amended to allow for ordinances to take effect immediately after they’ve been passed unless a later date is specified in them.

Voting yes on Proposition 2 would make these amendments to MSD’s charter.

The official language of Proposition 2 reads:

Shall Article 5 of the Plan (Charter) of The Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District relating to the passage of ordinances be amended to provide that (a) an affirmative vote by two members of the Board of Trustees appointed from the City of St. Louis and two members appointed from St. Louis County shall be necessary to pass any ordinance, resolution, regulation, rule or order, except that with at least five Board members present and unanimous consent of all Board members present, an affirmative vote of any four Board members shall be sufficient for passage. and (b) ordinances shall take effect immediately upon enactment unless a later date is specified therein?

Proposition 3

Proposition 3 asks voters if Article 7 of MSD’s charter be amended to give the Rate Commission Representative Organization only one voting Delegate, have the Rate Commission Report be issued to the “Board of Trustees no later than 165 days after receipt of a Rate Change Notice,” the Board of Trustees must accept or reject a Rate Commission Report “by resolution of of the Board of Trustees within 100 days from the date the Rate Commission Report is issued,” and a clarification will be made to the “criteria governing rates” so that “all classes of ratepayers is considered in determining a fair and reasonable burden.”

Voting yes on Proposition 3 would make these amendments to MSD’s charter.

The official language of Proposition 3 reads:

Shall Article 7 of the Plan (Charter) of The Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District relating to the Rate Commission be amended to provide that (a) a Rate Commission Representative Organization shall only have one voting Delegate, (b) the Rate Commission Report shall be issued to the Board of Trustees no later than 165 days after receipt of a Rate Change Notice, (c) the Board of Trustees is deemed to have accepted a Rate Commission Report if not rejected by resolution of the Board of Trustees within 100 days from the date the Rate Commission Report is issued, and (d) a clarification be made to the criteria governing rates so that the financial impact on all classes of ratepayers is considered in determining a fair and reasonable burden?

Proposition 4

Proposition 4 asks voters if Articles 5 and 8 of MSD’s charter be amended to compensate a Trustee $25 for each day they attend a public Board meeting, a member of the Civil Service Commission be compensated $25 for each day they attend a Commission meeting, and the compensation will not exceed $625 during one fiscal year.

Voting yes on Proposition 4 would make these amendments to MSD’s charter.

The official language of Proposition 4 reads:

Shall Articles 5 and 8 of the Plan (Charter) of  The Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District be amended to provide that (a) compensation of a Trustee shall be $25 for each day of attendance at a public meeting of the Board and (b) compensation of a member of the Civil Service Commission shall be $25 for each day of attendance at a meeting of the Commission, not exceeding $625 in any one fiscal year?

Proposition 5

Proposition 5 asks voters if Article 7 of MSD’s charter be amended to allow the District to use “the same independent auditing firm” for more than five consecutive years if MSD allows for a competitive bid for audits. Currently, MSD does hold competitive bids but the charter does not allow the same auditor to perform services over five years.

Voting yes on Proposition 5 would make these amendments to MSD’s charter.

The official language of Proposition 5 reads:

Shall Article 7 of the Plan (Charter) of The Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District be amended to permit the District to engage the same independent auditing firm for a period in excess of five consecutive years if the District lets a competitive bid for auditing services and the lead audit partner or concurring partner does not perform auditing services for the District in excess of 5 consecutive years?