ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. – This week marks the 22nd anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The St. Louis County Council is using this time to make its chambers more accessible to the disabled. The project will cost about $100,000. The work is being done by the county’s Public Works Department to save taxpayers money.

Space is being carved out for wheelchairs in the audience. Additional room is being made down front for disabled people who want to speak at meetings. The incline in the room will be reduced to make it safer for those in wheelchairs.

The head of Paraquad, an advocacy group for the disabled, says it’s a great idea.

“Super excited about the decision to spend money to make the council chambers accessible,” Aimee Wehmeier said. “We are very invested in giving people with disabilities a voice in the community, so we felt this is a very good change.”

The county council is going to have to hold virtual meetings until September while the work is underway.

Council Chairwoman Rita Days say she doesn’t mind.

“I’m very excited that we have finally come to get this project done. I am very surprised that we have not been cited for that because the chamber was not handicapped-accessible,” she said. “When you think of other people that may want to join us in person at these meetings, it was not a place that they could come and be comfortable in getting in and out.”