Better Together’s comprehensive studies look across the City and County to determine whether the region could improve both service and cost by streamlining and eliminating redundancies and better serve the people of St. Louis.

City-County Governance Task Force

The City-County Governance Task Force convened over 18 months using community input and research to develop recommendations for addressing our region's fragmentation. Their recommendations and related research can be found here.

Economic Development

The Economic Development studies endeavor to understand the impact of local government on businesses and the larger regional economic picture. These studies examine the use of economic development tools and incentives, investigate the processes and requirements for starting a business, and investigate how St. Louis can take steps towards a more inclusive workforce.

General Administration

The General Administration studies offer a comprehensive look at how local governments in the St. Louis region operate and at what cost. The studies examine the authority, funding mechanisms, and services of municipalities and their administrative and political structures, as well as the low voter turnout in municipal elections.

General TRends

These summary reports identify common themes across the Better Together studies and attempt to answer the question: Why does a region with world-class resources struggle to thrive and compete in a global economy?


Better Together’s examination of Public Safety focuses on three key areas of study: Municipal Courts, Policing, and Fire Protection. These studies examine key issues in each area and the delivery of services across the region.

Other services

The Parks and Recreation study provides extensive information about the 470 parks and other recreation facilities in the St. Louis region and the entities that maintain them, as well as recommendations for improvements.

The Public Health study examines the similarities and differences between the St. Louis City and County health departments and reports on impacts of the current structure, while exploring possibilities for future models. The report seeks to identify current practices and any potential benefits or challenges to a more regional approach to the delivery of public health services.

Additionally, you can search local financial reports here.

Better Together’s research was informed by data collected from municipal governments and other entities. Browse our data library.