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St. Louis residents can now vote on ways to spend $250 million Rams settlement

A young St. Louis Battlehawks fans hoists up a sign referring to Los Angeles Rams owner Stan Kroenke, who pulled the team out of St. Louis in 2016, on Sunday, March 12, 2023, during the St. Louis Battlehawks’ XFL home opener against the Arlington Renegades at the Dome at America’s Center in downtown St. Louis.
Brian Munoz
St. Louis Public Radio
The Los Angeles Rams, owned by Stan Kroenke, left St. Louis in 2015. The city sued over their departure. Between now and Feb. 2, St. Louis residents can vote on how to spend the money paid to settle that suit.

St. Louis residents have another chance to weigh in on how the city should use the $250 million it won in the lawsuit over the departure of the Rams to Los Angeles.

Board of Aldermen President Megan Green’s office on Friday launched the next phase of its process to gather public input on how to spend the money. Any resident who registers through the citizen portal before Feb. 2, and those who are already registered, will have 10 votes they can cast among 20 ideas. The votes can be divided however a person wants.

The top vote-getters will be passed along to city staff members for additional research; the people who submitted those ideas will later be invited to present them to the Committee of the Whole sometime in the spring. Legislation appropriating the settlement money should be introduced at the Board of Aldermen later this year.

“I’m always thrilled to see the Board of Aldermen and city residents working together in this process, as our city has remained siloed for far too long,” Alderwoman Alisha Sonnier of the 7th Ward said in a statement. “Each step of this process has centered residents’ concerns and provided numerous opportunities to participate directly in making our city better for all who live here.”

Sonnier will chair the Committee of the Whole hearings.

The ideas up for additional research include bus rapid transit, updates to the city’s water infrastructure, free or cheap child care for city residents and employees, and a fund to loan money for redevelopment.

Yusuf Daneshyar, a spokesman for Green, said the president’s office would be working with other members to collect input from residents who can’t or won’t participate in the online voting.

Rachel is the justice correspondent at St. Louis Public Radio.