Tulsa, State Leaders: Meeting With Williams Cos. Board Chairman Was 'Productive'

Friday, April 15th 2016, 9:32 pm
By: News On 6

At first, Williams Companies said it would keep a presence in Tulsa if the $37 billion buyout by Energy Transfer Equity goes through. 

Now, we know the merger would move Williams  headquarters to Dallas causing Tulsa to lose out on 1,000 jobs. But one group won't let them go easily.

Governor Mary Fallin, Mayor Dewey Bartlett, and Tulsa business leaders flew to New York City to meet with Williams Chairman Frank MacInnis.

Tulsa Chamber President Mike Neal says the group met to meet with Mr. MacInnis face to face and to discuss the issues and challenges. He says it was a good, productive meeting with open and ongoing dialogue.

"He was more than willing to listen and engage in a discussion about that and it was a very fruitful discussion," said Tulsa Chamber Chair Jeff Dunn.

"We were all about one thing: We were all about keeping this company and keeping these jobs."

The leaders think there's tremendous value in the 100-year partnership between Tulsa and Williams  They're not sure when Williams will have a final decision, but Dunn says when Mr. MacInnis calls, the phone will not ring twice.

I asked the chamber president if he's concerned that Tulsa has lost a lot of oil and gas jobs to Texas lately.  He challenged me on that, saying Tulsa has lost 2,500 energy jobs in the past year and a half, but we've gained 28,000 jobs over the past five years.