Tulsa City Council Slowing Down On Charter Change

Thursday, October 14th 2010, 8:44 pm
By: News On 6

By Emory Bryan, News on 6

TULSA, Oklahoma -- The Tulsa City Council is pushing forward with a plan to change the form of government, but pushing back the date by which they want it done.

Councilor Roscoe Turner had planned to get the charter change on a ballot for voters next February. Now he says a special election could come in April or May.

10/12/2010 Related Story: Proposal To Change Tulsa City Government Could Be Decided By Voters In February

The City Council held a first public hearing on the issue Thursday night. Only four people showed up to talk.

"All I'm saying men, ladies and gentlemen, slow down, there's no rush," Isaac Garnett said.

"Personally most of you guys, I'd replace," Steve Mendenhall said.

Councilor Turner wants to change the charter, diminishing the power of the mayor so a city manager can run things.

"After working with the city manager in Oklahoma City, I'm confident that having a city manager as part of our management team would help ensure that decisions are made in a very objective and knowledgeable way," John Sacra said.

While Mayor Bartlett opposes making changes to the charter, he's especially against rushing through the process.

"But to do something that fast, that soon, that big of change, I don't think it's very wise for us to do that so quickly," he said.

Some of the councilors support and some oppose the changes for now, but all agree that they'll need more time to study the issue before a change to the government is drafted into something for voters to consider.

Turner said the Council plans to meet with city government consultants and hold several public forums before drafting the possible charter changes