Tulsa Housing Authority meeting report: "The sheer arrogance of these people is stunning."

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Bill Kumpe was at the THA meeting today regarding the proposed facility at I-244 and Yale to replace the Downtown YMCA residence and has an eyewitness report. Here's an excerpt:

The class distinction between the people supporting the project and the people was striking. Almost all of the people supporting the project are professionals or wealthy donors. There are no such facilities located in THEIR neighborhoods. When was planned at 10th and Utica, the homeowners there killed it. On the other hand, most of the people opposing the project don't have a lot of options. Everything they have is tied up in their home and any reduction in its value will simply mean that they have to live with the consequences or let it be foreclosed since nobody in his right mind is going to buy a home near a homeless shelter. In effect, the people with money to live in a neighborhood without this type of facility are telling them that they will live with this problem and take the resulting financial hit as well.

The sheer arrogance of these people is stunning. They may actually succeed in getting the facility built. But, it will not be the wealthy donors running for election next time around. There was recall talk all over the room. Every city councilman who supported this project will hear about it again. There are about twenty thousand people in the affected neighborhoods and given the turnout at today's meeting, I would estimate that about ten thousand of them are hopping mad at Mayor Kathy Taylor, Ruth Kaiser Nelson, the City Council and anyone else remotely associated with this project. This is the type of political affront that does not go away and somebody, probably the elected officials and city employees who made it possible, will pay the price since they are the only people the voters can access.

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Pamela said:

When I heard about this meeting I had a picture of David going against Goliath. The comments of the woman (forget her name) saying smuggly that it would go in that neighborhood really fuels the hatred that some people have for rich people. That woman thinks her money makes her better and more valuable than the rest of us. This is a pretty sad state of affairs. If I were living in Gomez's district I would be screaming recall. Councilmen/women are not supposed to represent their own interests. I do not know the legal changes made with the last recall efforts but I would think dereliction of duty would be a great reason to get someone else.

Jean said:

Oy. I just gotta say, I'm so glad I'm moving to Tulsa soon, just so I'll finally have a vote. I'm so tired of reading about how screwed up this city is and being powerless to do anything about it because I reside in Rogers County. I wonder how many others are like me, who work, spend, and live the biggest part of each day in Tulsa but reside elsewhere, who are now trying to move into town to shorten their commute...and who are also paying attention to the way the city is (or is failed to be) run.

sbtulsa Author Profile Page said:

a couple of points to be made:

1) this facility will not solve the problem. the homeless congregate downtown for a reason. those reasons are things the neighborhoods don't have. like access to large number of people on the sidewalks. like large doorways to shield them from the cold. a new group of homeless will take up where the transported group left off.

2) you don't treat hoelessness. you treat the causes. the number of causes are legion just like the homeless themselves. a 78 room building might have the staff to treat people individually, but what are you going to do to get the "new homeless" who show up downtown to replace the old homeless, who are in someone's neighborhhod? is this another task the police will have to take on?

Jeff Shaw Author Profile Page said:


You have it 100% correct.

1. Doesn't anyone see any bigotry in all of this? Is it just me? I notice the Chinese got rid of all their migrant workers, in order to "clean up" the town before the Olympics started. How is this different?

2. Aren't these people just chasing money?

Bill Kumpe said:


You can buy a nice home in White City cheap. There are several on my block for sale that are incredible bargains right now. As a matter of fact, I'll make you a heck of a deal on mine.

White City Homeowner

Slappedtulsacitizen said:

Anyone affected by this and wants to join us, please visit www.whoownstulsa.org. Receive updates about what's going on and how to sign the recall petition.

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