Under a proposed new law, the smaller police departments in St. Louis County would combine with those of other cities or contract with the county police department for services.
The legislation—proposed by Republican Representative Justin Hill—requires municipalities with fewer than 5,000 residents that span no more than two square miles to disband their police forces within five years.
According to the St. Louis Post Dispatch, Hill—a former police officer—has called into question the need for police departments that rely heavily on revenue from traffic tickets simply to remain alive as police departments.
"They have to rely on tickets to pay these officers," Hill said. "It's almost as if they're only keeping the police department just to justify having a police department and that is absurd."
This is the second time that Hill has proposed consolidation legislation. The effort last year failed to gain traction.