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Tulsa Jail Authority Members Frustrated With Mayor Bartlett

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Criminal Justice Authority board members Ron Peters and Mamadou Ceesay. Criminal Justice Authority board members Ron Peters and Mamadou Ceesay.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

A special meeting of the Tulsa County Criminal Justice Authority got heated as members discussed who should run the county jail.

Tulsa County is going to consider hiring a private company to run it and voted Friday morning to start taking proposals.

Also at the meeting, authority members expressed frustration at Tulsa Mayor, Dewey Bartlett – one of three members missing from Friday’s meeting – a problem some say is holding up the process.

"The city of Tulsa has 20 attorneys. I'm just kind of frustrated that during that period of time, since Mayor Bartlett expressed so much concern about some things that would be in the document, that he couldn't find the time to send those comments into this authority," board member Ron Peters said.

Bartlett said he wasn't notified of the meeting until late Tuesday and that he was unable to change his agenda.

“I thought it would be best for us to have them discussed when all the trustees were available. I know that of the four mayors that are on that board, only one was able to attend," he said.

The mayor said he has some concerns with the plans as they are now.

"The document regarding the financing and the big alteration of the structure of the jail authority, I think is extremely important to have a long thorough discussion on it,” Bartlett said.

That’s something other members of the authority said they can't afford.

“If the jail is not being operated efficiently, obviously the taxpayer suffers; so that's one of the reasons we've done all these things, to make sure it is being run efficiently and this is just further action in that regard," Peters said.

The members present voted to discuss the issue at the next open meeting.

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