Mayor Bartlett To Decide On Budget Cuts On January 7th
By Emory Bryan, The News On 6
TULSA, OK -- Mayor Dewey Bartlett said he is not sure how many city employees will lose their jobs and says the decision won't come until the first of the year.
The head of each department has made a plan to handle the cuts. They will turn those over to the mayor Friday.
While cuts are looming, the mayor says other cuts made previously might be soon restored.
Mayor Bartlett personally briefed the council for the first time Thursday night. He repeated his prediction the city might have to cut spending by $10 million over the next six months.
That kind of cut would mean layoffs for employees in every city department, including police officers and firefighters.
Bartlett says he's waiting on specific recommendations from each department.
"We haven't asked any department to that, we just asked please give us your best recommendation on how you would revamp, handle your department if we end up with five or ten million dollars less in the budget," Bartlett said.
At the same time,the mayor says he's pursuing new plans to get the police helicopter unit flying again, and through stimulus money might be able to turn the lights back on along expressways.
Mayor's Chief of Staff Terry Simonson announced a plan to use an existing stimulus grant to buy new streetlights.
"By employing the energy efficient street lamps, not only will it hopefully lower the cost down to something we can afford, but we also become eligible for the PSO model cities program, meaning we pay less per kilowatt, so there's another savings to it," Simonson said.
There is no timeline for the lights or the helicopters but both projects are not quick turnarounds.
As for the job cuts, the mayor says he will make that decision around January 7th.