Notes:  This partial transcript of only Senator Michael Gibbons' comments tonight, will be replaced with a complete transcript whenever I can possibly get to it.  Accompanying Sen Gibbons was Ms Renee Kirkiewicz, 15th Dist Dir to Sen Michael R. Gibbons, 12325 Manchester Rd., St. Louis, MO  63131, 314-966-2526, fax 314-966-2607,  >  Unfortunately, there were only about 20 audience members present!


Present:  RH, DA, RS, JW, RC, BL.  Also DM, PP, EM.  Absent - (excused?):  TB


DM:  Call this regular bd mtg to order for 12/2/02.  PP, would you take roll please?  (he does - see above)  TB called & said he'd be late tonight or might not be able to make it at all due to having to work late.  (Everyone pledges allegiance.)  


Before we begin the rest of the mtg, we've got a distinguished guest tonight, State Senator Michael Gibbons & his assistant Renee Kirkiewicz.  I understand, Senator, you've been elected Senate Majority Leader.  I congratulate you on that & if you care to address the audience & the Bd for a few mins & if anyone has any ques's.  I certainly appreciate you coming by so there are open communications of all levels of gov't. 


Senator Gibbons:  Thank you, mayor & members of the Bd of Ald & residents of VP.  I mainly wanted to come by tonight just for a couple of reasons.  Our session starts Jan. 8th.  The LEG in this state is undergoing tremendous change as a result of term limits;  there's a lot of new people.  In the Senate, as you mentioned, I have the leadership position there.  I just really wanted to make sure that I stopped by & said hello & that we're here to help out the City of VP & its residents in any way that we can.  I wanted to make sure that you're aware of that & that you know that we're available. 


I also wanted to introduce Renee Kirkiewicz.  Renee used to be the Special Biz Dist Dir in Kirkwood for about 5 yrs.  She moved away, moved back, & we've been able to sign her up to help out part-time as a Dist Dir so that we've got somebody here who will be available to help out with things as they come up.  That's really the main reason for me coming tonight & if you had any questions.  If anybody here has any ques's involving the state, I'd be happy to address that, but otherwise I'll be happy to let you go back to your mtg.


DM:  Anyone on the Bd have any ques's for the senator?  DA:  I'd like to thank Sen Gibbons.  I know that when I've needed to reach your office, I've been able to get through & I've gotten good response.  So I do appreciate that.  Senator Gibbons:  Tku. 


RC:  YH.  DM:  Ald Causey.  RC:  Would you invite him to our levee mtgs & stuff like that so we've got somebody involved at the state level?  DM:  We do have mtgs as Ald Causey pointed out;  it's the 3rd Monday of every month at 5:00 here in the chambers.  They're over in about an hour, an hour & 15 mins, review the status of the levee development.  If you could send a rep, or care that we could have Mr. Causey as our liason between the city & the COE & _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ updated _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ . 


Sen Gibbons:  Yeah, I'd like to make sure that we'll leave, or maybe Renee already did, leave something with you to make sure that we're notified about all those types of things because I'd like to, if I can be there, I will.  During the session from Jan to the middle of May it's a little difficult to do that, but I can have somebody here.  And I want to make sure that we know what's going on so we can help out.  So Renee, I don't know - make sure you have me on the list or get it to us.  Renee Kirkiewicz:  The mtgs are held here?  DM:  Right here, in the back of this room here.  Renee:  Ok.  DM:  Is there anyone from the audience who would care to - have a question for the senator?


MM:  Sen Gibbons, I understand, er I don't understand TIF, but I do know that there was a recent change to it, uh - Senator Gibbons:  There's always been a lot of talk about how to address it, what to do about making changes to it.  There's been no real substantive changes made since I've been in the LEG, but I think that is an issue that we're gonna look at again.  & I think what the LEG has tried to do, is very difficult to do, is to try to find the right balance.  I mean there's a sense among a lot of people I represent that it's out of balance. 


How to address that & allow for development where it really ought to happen, & not create something that's just a subsidy for places that arguably don't need it, is something that we really need to deal with.  I, personnaly, have looked at issues on how to change the definition of blight, to make that a little more difficult to establish.  MM:  Thank you! 


Sen Gibbons:  & it's been - you start to do that & then you run the risk of screwing up bonds that are issued based on the old definition & it becomes an extremely difficult issue to change.  But I think there is, in fact I saw in the  paper here today, that there's some bills filed to address that.  So it's a, me personally, in the right circumstance, it can be a very valuable tool to help areas that really need the assistance, but then it can also become abused & depending on how cmtys use it, it can be very harmful to other taxing jurisdictions;  or if they work with them, like Des Peres worked with the Kirkwood School Dist, as an example, it can become a positive. 


But it's a, it's a hot issue.  & I think people concerned about the competition that's being created between municipalities & _ _ _ _ your legislators who really established a floor, were cities - devrs will come in & say we'd like to do this project in your area & it really seems like a good thing, but there's a condition;  you gotta be willing to do the TIF, & if you're not, then we're gonna go to the adjoining city where she said they will definitely do TIF.  It's creating some difficulties;  & I can't tell you what the answer is because I don't know, but I know we're looking at it.  MM:  Tku! 


DM:  Any other ques's?  Ok Sen, again we tku for attending & like I said, we'll get with _ _ _ _ _  RC recommended _ _ _ info here on the levee.  If you can't make the mtg, we'll have the info & _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _. 


Sen Gibbons:  & I would appreciate if you could keep me posted on just any mtgs of that sort & any events or activities happening in VP, or any issues that come up in VP where we, in any way, can offer assistance.  So tku very much. 


(The audience applauds & the guests leave.)