Vision2 Opponents Say Tax Is Blank Check To County Government

Monday, October 8th 2012, 5:28 pm
By: News On 6

The Vision2 sales tax extension would put $747 million into the Tulsa economy for infrastructure and economic development. But more and more residents are speaking out against it.

From development along the Arkansas River to a sports complex in Glenpool to rebuilding the Tulsa County Juvenile Justice Center, Vision2 would pump hundreds of millions of dollars into the Tulsa County economy.

But not everyone agrees the proposed sales tax extension is good for the Tulsa area.

"It's too much money; it's too rushed; it's too soon; it's too sloppy, and it's too vague," said Ronda Vuillemont-Smith, Vision2 opponent. "They're counting on uninformed voters."

Opponents of Vision2 stood in front of Tulsa's City Hall Monday to say enough is enough.

Calling themselves Citizens for a Better Vision, they say Vision2 has a number of problems.

10/4/2012 Related Story: Tulsa County Communities Make Big Plans For Vision2 Funds

For example, they don't agree with giving public money to help American Airlines, a company going through bankruptcy. But one of their biggest issues is they feel the Tulsa County Commissioners have tried to slide the issue before voters without a clear plan for the how the money will be spent.

"It's all they're asking for is a blank check for three-quarters of a billion dollars," said Vision2 opponent J.B. Alexander. "Probably by the end of 2029, it looks like it's going to be over $1 billion.

Karen Keith, Tulsa County Commissioner, disagrees.

"There is not a lot of flim flam in the initiative, and I think a lot of thought has gone into it," she said.

Keith says there's been plenty of public debate over Vision2 and that the sales tax extension is needed to improve the Tulsa economy.

"People who say no - they are always out there, and if those people always had their way this region would never move forward," Keith said.

Opponents say the voters need to take a close look at Vision2, especially whether it's wise to borrow money now and not be able to pay it back for another five years when the sales tax would be collected.

"We don't do that. That's not how we operate, that's not the way the county should be operating," said Ronda Vuillemont-Smith, Vision2 opponent.

Read More From Vision2 Opponents.

More from Vision2 supporters.