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KOTV - 10/7/2007 8:52 PM - Updated 10/9/2007 7:14 AM

Final Push For River Tax

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On Tuesday, Tulsa County voters head to the polls to cast their ballot on improvements to the Arkansas River. Supporters of the river say it will improve Tulsa County, but opponents, like residents in North Tulsa, believe their community will be paying for river development, without seeing any real benefits. On Sunday those voters had a chance to confront both the Our River Yes and No River Tax camps.

"I see nothin' for my tax dollars. The only thing I see coming down my street is the garbage truck and I pay dearly for that," said one Tulsa resident. "I don't get nothing in my community for my tax dollars."

"I don't see how this is destroying our community," Senator Judy Eason McIntyre said.

"I think this is a horrible tax," said Senator Randy Brogdon.

"If we vote yes, it will create economic benefit that will help all areas of the city, and will provide resources that will allow us to get done the other things that need to be done as well," river tax supporter Keith Bailey said.

"Sure it's just 4/10ths of one cent, but that's on top of everything else you're already paying," said river tax opponent John Eagleton.

"I've seen so many people of my friends, your children, folks' grandchildren in this room, leave Tulsa, and they're leaving Tulsa by the carloads," Representative Jabar Schumate said.

"And I am somewhat appalled myself at the token $5 million that was thrown at North Tulsa at the last minute. That bothers me," said Brogdon.

"I said I was in favor of it. Why? Not because the mayor or anybody asked me to do it, because I want to use it," said McIntyre.

"There are people who support this tax increase that honestly believe it will be good for the City of Tulsa and good for North Tulsa," Eagleton said.

"But taxes are an intricate part of America and that's how we are able as citizens in a community to pay for things," said Senator Judy Eason McIntyre. "Sure we would like the private sector like the Kaisers to make all these contributions, but we can't. I am not going to be able to change any of your minds, and you won't change mine."

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