Tulsa City Council Wants Framework For Mediation With Mayor

Thursday, August 19th 2010, 6:45 pm
By: News On 6

By Emory Bryan, The News on 6

TULSA, OKLAHOMA -- The Tulsa City Council wants a list from Mayor Dewey Bartlett of what items he thinks might be appropriate for mediation.

Council Chair Rick Westcott sent a letter to Bartlett Thursday asking for details before the council votes next week on whether or not to enter mediation.

Read the letter

Bartlett has suggested that nothing should be off the table for mediation, but several city councilors are not interested in mediation without limits.

Late Thursday, Bartlett told the council as far as he was concerned all of the issues should be up for mediation. The Mayor compared their differences with those settled through mediation in the Black Officers lawsuit.

"Our issues are not that far apart, they're not that difficult," he said.  "Certainly not along the lines of what we've seen in the Black Officers lawsuit. Those are seriously difficult issues and they've now come to an end. We can do the same thing, I'm certain."

City Councilor Bill Christiansen is one who thinks the allegations of Bartlett lying to the council and a lawsuit claiming the council violated the open meeting act, should not be part of the mediation.

"I am for mediation on certain issues," Christiansen said. "I think we should get together and mediate our relationship and our business relationship with the administration. As far as mediating the investigation, I don't think we have the authority to say 'let's forget that laws may have been broken.'"

The council will discuss and possibly vote on entering mediation next Thursday. Two retired judges have volunteered to conduct the session.

Christiansen says he believes limiting the mediation would be of benefit to the Mayor.

"If there are issues of a potential conflict of interest" said Christiansen, "I think they need to run their course if for no other reason to exonerate the Mayor and Terry Simonson."

8/12/2010 Related Story: Tulsa Mayor And The City Council Consider Mediation