A way out for East St. Louis

June 15, 2013 

At the East St. Louis City Council meeting, Mayor Alvin Parks presented the council with an ordinance establishing the River's Edge Entertainment District. This ordinance would allow clubs from 10th Street to the riverfront to stay open all night effective July 1. It would have been approved if Councilwoman Emeka Jackson had not raised a few questions. The mayor then wanted a portion of the ordinance passed and Jackson again challenged him.

The city's attorney advised the mayor to wait until a public hearing could be held. The mayor continued trying to get parts of the ordinance passed and wanted to use his powers as liquor commissioner to issue licenses to certain establishments. Jackson and the attorney both agreed it would be legal and proper to wait for the public hearing.

After the mayor desperately tried to get the ordinance passed several more times, he finally conceded.

The mayor wants a public hearing at 6 p.m. June 26 and a special council meeting immediately following to approve an open-all-night River's Edge Entertainment District.

The mayor will ultimately get the ordinance passed, which leaves the citizens with only one hope: municipal dissolution of the city. Signing the petition that will be circulated for a municipal dissolution will allow it to be placed on the March 18, 2014, ballot as a referendum and citizens will regain control of their city.

Dorothy Joshway

East St. Louis

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