St. Clair County Board Chairman Mark Kern announced in early April that he committed additional resources to increase the number of St. Clair County Sheriff patrols on MetroLink. In addition, he pledged to work for a longer-term, regional security plan for the system. This week, St. Clair County Sheriff Rick Watson announced they will triple the number of sheriff’s deputies on the system with the additional $300,000 allocation from the St. Clair County Transit District. “These are real cops. These are certified policeman,” said Watson.
“Unfortunately, recent events have exacerbated what has been a deteriorating security condition on MetroLink. Our investment in this critical public infrastructure must be maintained, but most importantly the citizens of St. Clair County must have faith in the safety of the entire MetroLink operation in Illinois and Missouri. Therefore, I have directed the St. Clair County Transit District to contract directly with the St Clair County Sheriff s department to immediately bolster Sheriff security patrols on MetroLink. Additionally, my Missouri counterparts (Chairman Stenger & Mayor-Elect Krewson) and I have been in contact to forge a longer-term security plan aimed at public safety on our transit system. This problem must be solved and, changes must be made. The confidence and safety of the public warrants substantial action,” St. Clair County Board Chairman Mark Kern.