Tulsa City Councilor Anna Falling is back in town and has some stern words for her colleagues. She's been in China on business and while she was away, the council took action against her and spoke harshly of her recycling program.
Falling missed last week's council meeting where she was a hot topic among her associates. She was compared to a teenager by one and accused of slapping the council in the face by another. "It's pretty brave isn't it, when I wasn't there,â€ she said.
Falling says she hasn't watched the videotape of the meeting. "I felt like it was pretty small of them,â€ she explained. â€œI haven't taken the time to listen to it because if they don't have the time to talk to me personally, then I don't have the time to hear what they had to say."
The council voted last week to order Falling to pay back up to $4,400 that the city auditor says she used for a private recycling program. She says the money was spent to publish her district four newsletter and she did nothing wrong. "I don't think I should have to pay any money back,â€ she said. â€œOne, it's a regular newsletter that is scheduled to go out and has always gone out. Two, it is an event, a project that is going on in my district."
The constant back and forth over the recycling funds is nothing new. For months it's caused quite a stir, even drawing the mayorâ€™s response at times. "She picked the wrong battle,â€ said Falling. â€œThere are battles that you pick and there are ones you choose not to pick. I think this was the wrong battle to pick,â€ she said.
Falling says the council's actions are an insult to her and to the citizens in her district. She says her district has worked with her to make the recycling program a success. She says fighting the tide has been worth it, but she hasn't decided if she will run for another term in the council seat next February.
Falling says her recycling program is doing better than ever. She says she has hundreds of people supporting her in the district she represents.