“Improve Our Tulsa” meetings scheduled

TULSA, OK — Three more public meetings have been scheduled to receive comments on a revised proposal for the renewal of Improve Our Tulsa, which includes changes from Tulsa residents’ comments that were received at five public meetings held in the spring, and further discussions with City departments.

The next three meetings all will begin at 6 p.m. and Spanish translators will be available at each meeting. The dates and locations are as follows:

• Thursday, July 25, Girl Scouts of Eastern Oklahoma, 4810 S. 129th East Ave.

• Monday, July 29, Memorial High School, 5840 S. Hudson Ave.

• Tuesday, July 30, Booker T. Washington High School, 1514 E. Zion St.

After the three public meetings, the City Council is scheduled to vote on an ordinance in August which will call for a vote on Nov. 12 for Improve Our Tulsa., the City’s basic streets and infrastructure program.

“Because of voter support for Improve Our Tulsa in 2013, we’ve made critical progress in rehabilitating our roads after decades of neglect, but there is much more work to do,” Mayor G.T. Bynum said. “In order to continue making progress, we need to renew this program that funds not just our basic street and infrastructure work, but also police cars, fire trucks, our parks, and so much more.”

“Tulsa has vital, core components, which we all use and collectively fund: our neighborhood and major streets; the equipment that’s used to spread salt or rush to calls for help; the facilities where kids play, employees work, and treasured works of art are displayed,” City Council Chairman Phil Lakin said. “Renewing Improve Our Tulsa is essential in maintaining these basic, yet critical, elements of our City, to improve our quality of life and allow Tulsa to continue to grow and thrive. I encourage folks to come to our public meetings and help us prioritize how we invest our funds to better our Tulsa.”

Based on public response received in the five citywide town hall meetings, the draft proposal for the Improve Our Tulsa renewal would run 6½ years and total $639 million.

The current draft has 70 percent of the funding dedicated to street maintenance and transportation costs, including sidewalks and bridge maintenance. The remaining amount is divided into categories that will be used to fund public facility repairs, parks improvements, public safety and street vehicle replacements and create a standing rainy-day fund allocation, among other capital items.

Items that have been added since the town hall meetings include additional funding for bridges, matching funds for federal and other transportation grants, capital resources for the Route 66 Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Route, Arena District Master Plan implementation, and additional funds to adequately fund fire department apparatus replacement. Community development project funds were also added for each council district, which can be used for economic development infrastructure needs, neighborhood stabilization projects or other projects that meet certain criteria and follow the City’s comprehensive plan.

To view the draft Improve Our Tulsa outline, visit: www.cityoftulsa.org/media/10436/iot-draftproposal-62419.pdf

Tulsa voters first approved Improve Our Tulsa in 2013, which totaled $918.7 million. Tulsa residents now have the opportunity to vote for the renewal of Improve Our Tulsa on Nov. 12 this year. For more information about Improve Our Tulsa or to follow current construction progress, visit: www.improveourtulsa.com