Judge declares people’s authority to change charter is Constitutional
St. Charles, Mo. – Judge Daniel Pelikan issued his Final Judgement and Order in Jim Pepper, et al., v St. Charles County Missouri, et al. finding in favor of the voters of St Charles County.
The City of St Peters, O’ Fallon, Lake St. Louis and two taxpayers sued voters to overturn their adoption in November 2014 of a County Charter Amendment outlawing the use of Red Light Cameras (RLC) throughout St. Charles County. The crux of the opposition’s argument was that St Charles County had no authority to ask the voters of the county whether or not they wanted to ban RLC’s and that by doing so, they violated state statute.
Judge Pelikan determined that Proposition Red Light Camera was in complete compliance with the powers granted in the Missouri Constitution to the people of a Home Rule Charter County and with the St Charles County Home Rule Charter. He pointed out that the Constitution trumps state statute upon which the opponents relied.
“Judge Pelikan is known to be a thoughtful jurist in St Charles County.” said Carl Bearden one of the intervenors in the case. “It’s clear the he took the information that was presented in the oral arguments and did a thorough legal review of them. His decision outlined that the Missouri Constitution is very direct and specific in the powers granted to Home Rule Charter Counties and more importantly to the people. Home Rule Charters are for the people to determine what is in them not the governments covered by them.”
Another intervenor, Dan RakDaners said, “Judge Pelikan’s decision is a victory for the voters of St Charles County and a victory for the rule of law. He has upheld the American tradition that governments receive their powers from the people they govern. Last November, the people clearly said ‘NO!’ to red light cameras. Today’s ruling ensures their votes were not cast in vain.”
Rumor is that St. Peters may intend to appeal the decision either directly or through their surrogate plaintiffs. That’s why we say We the People won Round 1!
We urge you to contact St. Peters City Hall and let them know you OPPOSE their continued wasteful spending on suing the taxpayers of St Peters and St Charles County! Here’s the numbers to call:
636-477-6600 (AT&T customers)
636-278-2244 (CenturyLink customers)