By Emory Bryan, The News On 6

TULSA, OK -- The three men running for Tulsa mayor all have plans to help small business. The candidates wanting to lead Tulsa into the future spent Thursday talking about getting its residents back to work.

"I think most businesses just want you to stay out of the way, and so long as we maintain and respect our safety and health requirements, I think we should do that," said Independent candidate Mark Perkins.

Dewey Bartlett agrees that city government should not interfere with business.

"What we can do as a government to ensure our small businesses will grow and prosper and what are we doing to impede that process?" said Dewey Bartlett, Republican mayoral candidate.

Tom Adelson believes city government can start helping by spending more with local companies.

"And perhaps most importantly, it gives a preference on city spending to make sure our expenditures are being spent on Tulsa businesses," said Democrat Tom Adelson.  "We have a $507 million dollar budget or so, and there's quite a bit of vendor contracting, and we want to make sure to give preference when it's possible to local businesses."

Adelson says his experience running an oil company office and state agency give him the background to help businesses.

"I met a payroll, had about 12 employees met a budget, and we were quite successful in our drilling program and it's a strong business today," Adelson said.

Bartlett says running his family business is better experience.

"Being a business man at this point in our time, especially with the financial problems that we're having, is extremely important for the voters to consider," Bartlett said.

For Perkins, education is the key to bringing new jobs to Tulsa.

"If our Tulsa Public School aren't performing at a level that some of the surrounding communities may, and the cost of setting us a business is similar, then that might be enough to create a condition where the business might choose another community and we would lose out on all those revenues," Perkins said.