Street talk express

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This afternoon at 2, City of Tulsa Finance Director Mike Kier, Assistant Public Works Director Paul Zachary, and City Councilor G. T. Bynum will be on the Chris Medlock show on 1170 KFAQ to talk about the sales tax and bond issue for street funding that will be on November's ballot. Earlier this week, the three were interviewed by KFAQ's Pat Campbell. (Click this link to listen to the podcast.)

Here's where I am: I would like to be able to support this package enthusiastically. I need to be persuaded, however, that this isn't just more money to spend on the same old failed approach to maintaining streets. I need to be convinced that Public Works is changing the way it does business.

Will the City aggressively advertise contracting opportunities to out-of-area firms so we can have a more robust competition for road work?

Will the City do a better job of coordinating projects with ODOT, so the City doesn't snarl alternate routes while ODOT is working on a freeway?

I see money in the package for rebuilding streets, as we've been doing. But where is the money for paving, crack sealing, milling and overlay? Is there adequate money in this package for the preventative maintenance we haven't been doing?

If I'm not persuaded, I'll vote yes on the sales tax proposition and no on the bond issue proposition. The overall sales tax rate doesn't go up if the sales tax proposition passes, and I want the city to call dibs on the 2/12ths tax when the County's Four-to-Fix sales tax expires. Also, allocation of the sales tax could be changed to spend money on paving and sealing, while a bond issue cannot be reallocated and cannot be spent on preventative maintenance.

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webworm Author Profile Page said:

I'm looking at the big color flyer sent out by N227KT and her "technicians" at City Hall. A lot of the color on the layout is for projects paid for by the 2005 bond issue. Why hasn't this work been completed? Where is the money we voted for these projects? I think I know........ and I'm voting NO..... and I wonder who paid for this big mailing piece? Could it be the local contractors? Nahhh.....

Bob said:

The city of Tulsa Public Works department is still lead by the same individuals, Director Charles Hardt, and Street Manager Paul Zachary, who put our streets in the mess they are in.

I do not reward incompetence. Those two appear unable to competently manage street projects and street maintenance.

It was under their leadership that they allowed routine street maintenance (crack sealing, patching, and re-paving) to significantly decline beginning back in Mayor Savage's administration.

They encouraged a "re-build" process instead of street maintenance, which used Third Penny Sales taxes instead of city operating budget money. And, their favored local road-building cartel simply could NOT re-build faster than the escalating decline in our streets.

I will not hand over even more money to the same incompetent bunch that caused our terrible local street deterioration.

For that reason, I am voting NO, and NO.

webworm Author Profile Page said:

Right on about those two incompetents. Charlie was "close" to Mother Savage, I hear; maybe that had something to do with it. But there are others downtown in their new digs who should be pitched out of the building! And a NO vote might start the action.

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on October 9, 2008 12:12 PM.

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