In search of the Vision 2025 financial plan

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Over at the TulsaNow public forum, in a discussion about the river tax plan, Kirby Crowe, program manager for Vision 2025 had this to say about the availability of information about those projects (he uses the handle Vision 2025 on the forum):

Despite what some say, Tulsa County goes farther than any other governmental agency that I know of in providing transparency on sales tax projects. Vision 2025 has an independent Sales Tax Overview Committee who is provided timely detailed reports identifying all expenditures and the revenue received....

Projects for Vision are reported on the web and the detailed monthly reports are provided to all project sponsors and are on file at the Central Library and each year a newsletter style report is delivered by direct mail and multiple distribution points to the voters of Tulsa County.

I responded with a compliment and a question. I'm crossposting it here to see if someone here has the answer. So far no one has answered it over there:

The monthly Vision 2025 reports are quite thorough and fairly straightforward. Do you think they could be posted on the site?

Anyone looking for them at Central Library should be aware that there are now five binders containing the reports, but (as of a couple of weeks ago) only two are on the local government shelf. The most recent three are in the reference workroom, and you have to ask at the 4th Floor reference desk to see them.

One thing the reports don't contain is the financial plan to which John Piercey, financial contractor on Tulsa County bond issues, has referred in recent public statements.

This plan would include sales tax revenue projections and expected expenditures -- debt service, pay-as-you-go projects (e.g. Oklahoma Aquarium), projects that have yet to be funded (e.g. American Indian Cultural Center), and anticipated administrative fees (e.g., payments to PMg and attorneys).

In other words -- how much money you have on hand, what you expect to come in, and what you're already committed to spend it on, as well as when you expect the money to come in and when you expect to spend it.

Piercey's revenue projections from August 16, 2006, were included in a spreadsheet in the end-of-June Vision 2025 report that PMg prepared. Piercey's projections plus actual receipts through June 2006 come to a grand total of $750,274,016.33. What the Vision 2025 monthly report lacked, something Piercey's plan apparently has, are the details of bond repayment schedules and other anticipated expenses.

I asked Kirby Crowe by phone if he had a copy of this plan. I'm not sure if I made my meaning clear, but I came away from the conversation with the impression that he did not have a copy of Piercey's financial plan.

I called Jim Smith, the County's fiscal officer, and asked if he had a copy of the financial plan. I thought he might, since his name is on the monthly memo in the Vision 2025 report listing tax receipts, the monthly wire transfer from the sales tax fund to the trustee, and the interest earnings on the sales tax trust account.

Smith said he didn't have the financial plan, but suggested I call John Piercey. Mr. Smith could tell me what the payment to the trustee would be for the next six months, at which point it would be recalculated, but couldn't tell me anything more about future expenses.

I called Capital West, and they gave me John Piercey's number. I called John, and he was very gracious. He said he'd e-mail it to me that evening or the following morning. He said something about recalculating based on more recent tax receipts. I'd really be happy seeing the most recent version, whatever he's been using as the basis for his statements about Vision 2025 surpluses.

That was a week ago Monday, the 20th. I gave him a reminder call on the 28th -- got his voicemail and left a message. Haven't heard back yet. I'm sure he's quite busy.

Can anyone suggest somewhere else I could find this information?

Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

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As I mentioned in last week's Urban Tulsa Weekly, a few weeks ago I began my search for the source of the numbers being cited in defense of the need to raise taxes to build the two low-water dams and the Zink Lake modifications promised in Proposition ... Read More

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on August 30, 2007 8:44 PM.

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