Jones becomes the third black mayor in the city’s history and the first since Clarence Harmon, who served from 1997 to 2001
ST. LOUIS – St. Louis treasurer Tishaura Jones will be the first black woman to serve as mayor of St. Louis. Louis, after defeating Alderwoman Cara Spencer in Tuesday’s parliamentary election.
Jones defeated Spencer by 51.68% of the vote. Jones and Spencer, both Democrats, went on to the parliamentary election after St. Louis’ first non-partisan primary election.
See all election results here.
Jones, the city̵
Jones will be the third black mayor in the city’s history and the first since Clarence Harmon, who served from 1997 to 2001.
When she joins, Jones will take the lead on what to do with U.S. rescue plan funds, questions about St. Louis City Justice Center and increased violent crime in the city.
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American rescue plan
Jones said the treasurer’s office has been working to develop a plan for the funds. Last month, she released the following statement regarding the estimated $ 450 million.
“The mayor’s office and the treasurer’s team have been in close communication regarding the US rescue plan. Programs and disbursements such as rent and mortgage assistance, assistance to small businesses and money for homeless services need to be moved quickly. We also need to make sure we set aside a small As mayor, I will work quickly and in partnership with regional and city leaders to identify areas where we can lift those most affected by this public health crisis. to the mayor, I take an active role in ensuring that no one is left behind in our recovery from COVID-19. “
Jones said she cleaned up the cashier’s office when she took over in 2013 and said she has the experience needed to solve problems plaguing the jail.
“Getting into a place where there are existing problems is not new to me,” Jones said. “I have experience getting in and taking over and arranging things. This will not be any different, just on a larger scale.”
She said a solution must come from cooperation between city leaders and courts to make the wheels of justice move faster for inmates. She also wants to fix infrastructure problems in the prison. She said it is a must to hire more guards.
“We need to get applicants ready to hire and move them through the process,” Jones said.
Jones addressed his plan for crime in St. Louis. Louis in an interview with 5 On Your Side Political Editor Casey Nolen:
Tishaura Jones: I would say that the number one problem that the city of St Louis is facing right now is our crime and security problem. And how I want to address it is a societal first approach to public safety, and it is simply to bring the public back into public safety and bring everyone to the table, because our problems with crime and public safety do not stop at King Boulevard or Mississippi. the river .
We need to approach it as a region, and that means using my existing relationship with County Executive Sam Page and St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Wesley Bell and our current circuit attorney Kim Gardner to bring all the necessary players to the table. is faith-based, it’s bourgeois, it’s business, it’s philanthropic and makes sure we adopt the mantra that we’re our brother’s goalkeeper. Our problems and our destinies are connected and we have to approach them them as such because we did not get into this overnight or by ourselves, we do not get out of this overnight or by ourselves.
We need to declare gun violence as a public health crisis and tackle it as such, as well as how we have tackled this current pandemic. We need to have the same laser-focused attitude when we look at the root causes that we did with the pandemic, we need to address the same root cause, focus on gun violence and public safety.
Casey Nolen: There may be some people who live in more areas of high crime in the city who agree with it, in the broader picture, but might want something more immediate. Right now, they might want more police officers on their block. Is there something in the short term, or is it more near term as I understand it.
Tishaura Jones: I think it’s more near term than people think. They say, ‘Oh yeah, that’s good, and yeah, we agree on that,’ but when we first adjust the focus to look at the root causes, it looks at the 20% of people who caused 80% of the problems.
Since Chief Hayden had a rectangle or some kind of polygon that talked about where crime was located, he was right, the crime was located in those areas, but our approach did not have to be the same old arrest and prison model. It also brings other tools and resources to the table.
What problems does the community in question have? And how do we bring these resources to the table? Is it mental resources? Is it childcare? Is it homelessness? Is it drug abuse and do we make sure we use the right professionals for the right call when we get calls in these neighborhoods? So it’s not just about arresting and imprisoning, it’s about providing the resources that our society needs to not just survive, but to thrive.
Casey Nolen: Do you think we need more police officers? Fewer police officers?
Tishaura Jones: I think we have enough. Honestly, I feel we have enough and I think we need to look at how our resources are being used. The recent Teneo report talked about how there are certain jobs within our current police department that do not need to be performed by authorized officers and can be performed by civilians.
We’ve seen in other cities like Berkeley, California, where they’ve deployed ordinary citizens to stop traffic instead of authorized officers, so again, do you know how we use our current resources? And we have to look at it from top to bottom.
Casey Nolen: Just for those who may not know, the report you are talking about was commissioned and paid for by private dollars, and it looked at both the city and the county.
Tishaura Jones: Yes exactly.
Casey Nolen: It’s interesting that you bring up the way they do things in other cities. Are there things that other cities do better than St. Louis, which you think we should look at and possibly adopt, and if so, what?
Tishaura Jones: Like I said, it’s definitely something we need to look at, using civilian resources for different calls. Focused deterrence was a program in Oakland, California, where they saw a marked drop in crime. So we should look at that, but I do not think we should have a discussion about just one solution. It is not just a solution. It’s not just basket violence, it’s not just focused deterrence, it’s not just body cameras, it’s how we combine all of these in addition to making sure we provide an environment where people can thrive, not just survive.
So how do we connect people to jobs, well paid jobs where they can support their families? How do we also invest in neighborhood development where people leave their homes in the morning and the first thing they see is not a dilapidated building or buildings falling down around them? Or vacant plots that are not being built up?
Just as investment in the central corridor and center was deliberate and deliberate, disinvestment in parts of northern St. St. Louis and Southern St. Louis deliberately and intentionally, so we should not be surprised that the population is leaving these areas. That our schools are closing because we do not have that many people living in St. The city of Louis that we have had in recent years. We have been at a constant loss of population since the turn of the century.