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Tulsans Take Final Chance To Give Feedback On Plan For Tax Dollars

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Twenty-six people stood in front of the crowd, many of those begging leaders to make Tulsa a more walkable city. Twenty-six people stood in front of the crowd, many of those begging leaders to make Tulsa a more walkable city.
"It's nonsense, Tulsa, you're a city, the good thing about a city is the convenience, not having to get in your car in go somewhere," said resident Alani Taylor. "It's nonsense, Tulsa, you're a city, the good thing about a city is the convenience, not having to get in your car in go somewhere," said resident Alani Taylor.
"It's a joke when people talk about the Gilcrease, because it's not finished. How much money did we spend on that? Throw out a number," said resident T.C. Ryan. "It's a joke when people talk about the Gilcrease, because it's not finished. How much money did we spend on that? Throw out a number," said resident T.C. Ryan.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

Tulsa citizens got their fifth and final chance to tell city leaders how they want their tax dollars spent Tuesday night.

In November, a capital improvement package worth nearly $920 million will go up for a vote.

There was a good turn out at the Carbondale Assembly of God church, where about 200 people showed up for the town hall meeting.

One big topic of the night was sidewalks.

Tulsa citizens lined the aisle at the Carbondale Assembly of God church to voice their opinions of where their tax dollar money should go.

Twenty-six people stood in front of the crowd, many of those begging leaders to make Tulsa a more walkable city.

"It's nonsense, Tulsa, you're a city, the good thing about a city is the convenience, not having to get in your car in go somewhere," said resident Alani Taylor.

7/30/2013 Related Story: Tulsans Give Feedback On Capital Improvements Proposals

The plan's total is just shy of $920 million. Nearly $23.5 million would be set aside for bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure. More than half of the total funds would be dedicated to pavement condition.

"Do you truly think that half this budget need to go to pavement condition? Come on, there are so many other things to spend money on in a city. It is nonsense, complete nonsense that half this budget should go to pavement condition.

Finishing the Gilcrease Expressway was another hot topic.

"It's a joke when people talk about the Gilcrease, because it's not finished. How much money did we spend on that? Throw out a number. I don't even know if we can count that high," said resident T.C. Ryan.

Mayor Dewey Bartlett said it may not be finished any time soon.

"At the rate we're going now, my beard would be very, very long. It would probably be another 20 years," Bartlett said. "So, we do hope that at some point in time we will be able to have a fairly large infusion of money. But it would probably be $100 million."

With close to a billion dollars on line, a few speakers voiced concerns that the package is simply too much, pointing out some of the projects don't even have finalized designs.

"How about we get a final design before we start allocating funds towards it? Let's get projects done and finished and then will give money towards it," Ryan said.

A number of speakers urged the city to save money and try a pay-as-you-go plan, to reduce future debt. Mayor Bartlett said it's not a bad idea for some projects, but won't work for some of the larger initiatives.

"If we have the money to build things, pay-as-you-go is a great way to do it, but there are some projects that, because they are so large, that a need should be considered to borrow money to build them," Bartlett said.

The City Council will decide by the end of the month which projects to include on the November 12 ballot.

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