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Politically Speaking: St. Louis County Councilman Harder On Loop Trolley, Prop P Funds

St. Louis County Councilman Mark Harder, R-Ballwin
Jason Rosenbaum I St. Louis Public Radio
St. Louis County Councilman Mark Harder, R-Ballwin, poses for a portrait in the St. Louis Public Radio studios.

St. Louis County Councilman Mark Harder is the latest guest on Politically Speaking. St. Louis Public Radio’s Julie O’Donoghue and Jason Rosenbaum talked with the Ballwin Republican about a multitude of issues, including the ongoing saga of the Loop Trolley.

Harder represents the council’s 7th District, which takes in most of western St. Louis County. He is the council’s longest-serving member after Hazel Erby resigned to take a post in St. Louis County Executive Sam Page’s administration.

Since he’s not up for election this year, Harder could run in a special election for St. Louis County executive as a Republican and not give up his council seat. He said he hasn’t made a decision on whether he will run. 

Here’s what Harder discussed on the program:

  • The unsuccessful effort to have the Bi-State Development Agency take over running the Loop Trolley. That transit service shut down after encountering financial difficulties. 
  • Whether proceeds from a half-cent sales tax that were marketed to help law enforcement, known as Proposition P, have been spread too thin. Harder also talked about whether the proposal was a wise public policy move.
  • His opinion about an ongoing effort for St. Louis County to overhaul its vagrancy laws.
  • Whether changes instituted within St. Louis County’s jail have gone far enough. Page recently appointed Raul Banasco as director of the county’s Department of Justice Services.

Harder was first elected to the council in 2014, succeeding longtime Republican Councilman Greg Quinn. Before entering county politics, Harder was a member of the Ballwin Board of Aldermen.
Follow Julie O’Donoghue on Twitter: @jsodonoghue

Follow Jason Rosenbaum on Twitter: @jrosenbaum

Music: “Flagpole Sitta” by Harvey Danger