Steve Stenger, the Sixth District County Councilman who represents the Mehlville, Oakville, Affton and Lemay areas on the St. Louis County Council, says he’s "strongly considering" a bid for county executive in 2014.
Stenger told Patch July 24 that he was continuously frustrated with the , especially after the county reported a surplus at the end of 2012.
“They’re suggesting, 'Let’s starve off the parks so we can get a tax raise.' That’s the most ludicrous thing I’ve ever heard in my life,” he said.
When asked if he would contend for the executive position in 2014, he said, “I would strongly consider it, but I have not committed to that at all.”
“But every day that we go on and we experience these kinds of difficulties where there should not be difficulties, it brings me further along with my decision continuum.”
Mac Scott, a spokesperson for County Executive Charlie Dooley, said Stenger's representation of the budget is inaccurate.
"We have to maintain a reserve fund; to term it as surplus dollars is just misleading," he said. "These are intended dollars for our reserve fund and our reserve fund is down to a record low right now. He can call them surplus dollars and spend all your money in the budget, but that's not how you manage government that has to have a balanced budget."
Dooley said he would run for re-election in 2014 and has been county executive since 2003.
Stenger vehemently opposed Dooley’s 2012 budget that initially proposed closing 23 parks and eliminating more than 170 positions.
As council chairman, he formed a special budget committee and helped reach a compromise that left the parks open.
Stenger, a Democrat from Affton, was elected to a four-year term in 2008 and is running for re-election to represent the Sixth District against Republican Tony Pousosa in November.