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McKee wins more time to finance hospital project

CITY HALL – The Board of Estimate and Apportionment approved on Wednesday a nearly eight-month extension to NorthSide Regeneration developer Paul McKee to show evidence of financing for a medical facility on the old, infamous Pruitt-Igoe public housing site. 

As part of a TIF (Tax Increment Financing) agreement with the city, McKee’s deadline was initially Dec. 31. Now he has until Aug. 20.

After speaking with the St. Louis Development Corporation Board on Monday, team McKee attorneys were to report back to a board meeting on Thursday; but the extension was granted on Wednesday by E&A. 

The SLDC had requested an amendment for the “Healthworks Hospital” project. 

However, SLDC and the developers’s attorneys failed because they did not go back to the Board of Aldermen to amend the ordinance before it went to E&A for approval, said Tyson Pruitt, Green’s public information officer. 

The comptroller’s attorneys had previously advised McKee’s team to do so. 

Accordingly, the comptroller abstained from voting. 

The remaining members of E&A, Mayor Ldya Krewson and Board of Aldermen President Lewis Reed, voted to grant the extension, which also includes construction deadlines. 

“President Reed and Mayor Krewson both voted yes because they support providing access to health care for people living in north St. Louis,” said Jacob Long, the mayor’s spokesman. 

This is the latest bailout extension extended by the city to the NorthSide developer. 

In 2014, he was granted an extension to pay a $57,000 TIF-related legal bill for services that city had provided. 

This isn’t the first time Green has opposed McKee. In 2016, Green balked at McKee’s proposed 40-year, 1 percent sales tax in a financing package for north city development.

The deal was amended to shorten the period of the tax to 16 years. 

Bill Beene

bill.beene@thenorthsider.com Bill Beene was born and raised in north St. Louis. He has been a journalist for 12 years. He enjoys cooking and roller skating. He lives in the historic Ville neighborhood.

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