The East St. Louis City Manager announced the layoff of eight police officers with more layoffs to come. During his tenure as mayor, police and fire departments were the first to be considered for layoffs, jeopardizing the public safety of the city and citizens. Federal dollars have been pumped into this distressed city with an under-served population for more than two decades. Keeping the city crime ridden and drug infested feeds into the political narrative for entitlements. It allows the redistribution of funds that affords their highly paid political positions without an ounce of crime prevention.
The city has over a million dollars in political waste that can be eliminated before the layoff of police officers. A start would be the Board of Elections ($300,000 annually). TIF, with its director and staff, brings no viable businesses to the city and could shut down. The mayor and council salaries could be reduced by half — comparable to all other municipalities holding part-time positions.
With citizens having the courage to elect a new mayor, the city now has the lowest number of murders in eight years with 13 thus far. The highest were 22 murders January to September of 2010 and 2011. Believing that the politics of the city will not change or your vote doesn’t count has controlled the mindset of the community. Citizens can stop this madness by voting against who the political leaders are supporting in the election of 2016 because “all votes matter.”
Dorothy Joshway, East St. Louis