Bixby Taking Tulsa To Court

Monday, December 29th 2008, 5:06 pm
By: News On 6

By Richard Clark and Nicole Wiseman, News On 6

UNDATED -- A disagreement over drainage has the City of Bixby taking the City of Tulsa to court. The issue is a major new development just north of the border between the two cities.

Supporters of the project say Bixby is holding up progress, but Bixby city leaders say they're just looking out for their citizens.

Construction crews are hard at work near the intersection of 101st Street and Memorial. They're making way for a Target Supercenter and other shops, but the City of Bixby says they're not making proper preparations for handling runoff.

"We're not really, anything different than what we've had to do with our own developers, only in this case it's not in our city limits so we have no choice but to go to the courthouse to try to get some relief," said Bixby City Manager Micky Webb.

Webb says Bixby taxpayers have spent $35 million over the last 12 years to control rainwater.  He says that's far too much to let any neighbor be careless with runoff.

"We can't sit back and let a company or a city or anyone else flood our citizens.   We've paid too much for that," said Webb.

"You know, I think it's counterproductive for the citizens of Tulsa," said Tulsa City Councilor Bill Christiansen.

The City of Bixby has an unlikely ally in Bill Christiansen, a city councilor from Tulsa.

Christiansen also says the City of Tulsa hasn't handled the situation well, and that Bixby residents aren't the only ones who are worried.

"The Tulsa residents that live directly east of this development were very concerned during the permitting process about the, the additional storm water runoff," said Christiansen.

So Bixby has asked a judge to stop the project, at least until the developer provides a plan for handling the runoff, one that satisfies the City of Tulsa's own guidelines, not just Bixby's.

The City of Tulsa would not talk to The News On 6 about the lawsuit, with a spokesman saying it doesn't comment when it's named in litigation.

A Tulsa County judge will hear Bixby's request for a temporary injunction, Tuesday morning at 10:00.