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Four appointed to St. Paul STAR Board, which awards revitalization grants

The St. Paul City Council has approved four appointments to the Neighborhood Sales Tax Revitalization (STAR) Board, the group that allocates loans and grants from the city's half-cent sales tax.

The competitive awards are used for capital improvements in the neighborhoods. Twenty-one people serve on the board, three from each of the city's seven wards.

The new appointments, made by Mayor Chris Coleman and approved by the city council are:

  • Jeremiah Ellis from Ward 1              
  • Brooke Hanson from Ward 1
  • Meredith Beeson from Ward 3 
  • Michael DeCourcy, Jr. from Ward 3

I have to admit that when I first saw the list, I thought the fourth one was former Judge Mike DeCourcy, a colorful jurist who has since returned to private practice. But it is the judge's son who's now on the board, I've learned.

I asked the younger DeCourcy why he applied for the board. His response:

"I applied for a position on the STAR Board at the recommendation of my friend and City Councilmember Chris Tolbert.  I am a proud resident of Macalester-Groveland (Ward 3), and I'm always looking for ways to stay involved not only in my neighborhood, but also the greater St. Paul area.  The STAR Board is a unique organization that gives St. Paul neighborhoods an opportunity to provide specific input to city leaders about loans and grants for capital projects to help revitalize our city.  After speaking with Councilmember Tolbert he suggested that, because of my community involvement and background as an attorney, I would be a good fit on the STAR Board.  I'm looking forward to representing not only my Ward 3 neighbors on the Board, but everyone living and working in our great city."

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