Vision2 leads State of the City address
BY BRIAN BARBER World Staff Writer
Friday, September 07, 2012
9/07/12 at 7:15 AM
Read more about the proposal and the status of Vision 2025 projects.
Related story: Councils from Tulsa, OKC discuss city development.
Mayor Dewey Bartlett urged public support for the proposed $748.8 million Tulsa County Vision2 sales-tax package Thursday during his State of the City speech, holding up Oklahoma City as a role model.
"We can look down the turnpike to Oklahoma City as an example," Bartlett said during the Tulsa Metro Chamber-sponsored luncheon at the Tulsa Convention Center.
That city's successful Metro- politan Area Projects (MAPs) initiative, first approved in 1993, is now in its third wave of public improvement projects.
"Mayor (Mick) Cornett, we continue to look to you and Oklahoma City for inspiration as a leading example of rebirth, renewal and breaking new ground," Bartlett said.
"You've turned Oklahoma City into a destination, and we are so proud to be your sister city."
Now, Tulsa needs to continue its momentum started with Vision 2025 through the passage of Vision2, which will be on the Nov. 6 ballot, Bartlett said.
"Our renaissance is true and real, and our future is bright," he said.
"I encourage you to share in the vision. I encourage you to support Vision2. Working together for Tulsa, we can and we will move Tulsa forward."
Through two different propositions, the package would fund airport industrial park improvements and quality-of-life projects across the county.
The city of Tulsa would get $158 million for its selected quality-of-life projects. Public meetings are being held to gather ideas on how to spend the funds.
Bartlett highlighted Arkansas River development, the Gilcrease Expressway completion, Tulsa Zoo upgrades and Central Library renovations as some of the suggestions made.
"Our local business owners and employers say this investment in Tulsa is vital to the growth in business and attraction of new business and workforce," he said.
Bartlett received a round of applause from the crowd when he said the Arkansas River needs to have water in it to be attractive for development.
The raising and renovation of Zink Dam and a new south Tulsa dam, which could be funded through Vision2, would accomplish that, he said.
Two years ago, during the mayor's first State of the City address, he spoke of the river as "wild, woolly and wet," pledging to aggressively pursue its development.
Before Thursday's speech, Bartlett told the Tulsa World that the lack of a consistent water level in the river is the major obstacle.
"This would be the first step toward realizing its potential," he said.
Bartlett in his speech also defended the need for $254 million in airport industrial park improvements and equipment included in Proposition 1.
The money would be spent on city-owned, World War II-era facilities and would benefit its tenants, including American Airlines, Spirit AeroSystems and IC Bus.
"If we are to be competitive, we must have up-to-date facilities at our airport that will easily accommodate any airplane flying in the world today," he said.
"We need to support our airport and maintain our buildings because there are 13,000 jobs there that will go elsewhere if we don't."
Proposition 1 also contains a $53 million deal-closing fund to help lure and retain businesses in the metro area.
Tulsa must be able to effectively compete, Bartlett said.
"Like it or not, there are many cities, counties and states that have access to a lot of money that they can use to seal a deal," he said.
Tulsa, in the past, has come out "with the short end of the stick," Bartlett said, because it didn't have such a fund.
Election date: Nov. 6
Amount: $748.8 million
Tax impact: Extension of 0.6 percent Vision 2025 sales tax from 2017 through 2029
Proposition 1: Economic development
Airport industrial complex buildings and infrastructure - $122 million
Airport industrial complex equipment - $132 million
Closing fund - $52.942 million
Bond costs and interest - $79.938 million
Proposition 2: Quality-of-life improvements
Tulsa County - $92 million
Tulsa - $157.92 million
Bixby - $11.3 million
Broken Arrow - $44.1 million
Collinsville - $3 million
Glenpool - $5.9 million
Jenks - $9.2 million
Owasso - $14.38 million
Sand Springs - $10.1 million
Skiatook - $1.16 million
Sperry - $643,894
Bond costs and interest - $12 million
Remaining city of Tulsa Vision2 town hall meeting
Friday: 5:30-7:30 p.m., Oral Roberts University Mabee Center, 7777 S. Lewis Ave.
Also: The city is taking comments and suggestions on the Vision2 proposal online at tulsaworld.com/cityvision2 or by telephone at 918-596-2100.
Tulsa County Vision2 public hearing
Monday: 9:30 a.m., Tulsa County Administration Building, Room 119, 500 S. Denver Ave.
Original Print Headline: Vision2 tops State of City address
Brian Barber 918-581-8322
Tulsa Mayor Dewey Bartlett gives his State of the City address on Thursday at the Tulsa Convention Center. MATT BARNARD/Tulsa World