Trump Campaign Paid $460K For Tulsa Rally Venue, Tax Dollars To Pay For Other Costs

Wednesday, June 24th 2020, 6:15 pm
By: Chinh Doan

TULSA, Okla. -

It was the first major event during a pandemic: Tulsa got a visit from the president and vice president on June 20.

From the coordination to traffic enforcement to safety measures, Tulsans have been asking, “Who’s paying for what?”

ASM, the company contracted through the City of Tulsa to manage the BOK Center, said the Trump Campaign paid $460,000 to use the venue.

Tulsa, Broken Arrow and Oklahoma City police departments, as well as Oklahoma Highway Patrol and Oklahoma National Guard will pay for their own crews who worked President Trump's rally, according to a City of Tulsa spokesperson.

The city also said this has been the case with previous presidential and vice presidential visits.

Agencies involved said it could be weeks before they calculate final costs.

Tulsa City Council Member Cass Fahler of District 5 said, "I believe it is important for us to be able to shed light or to show the citizens what is the cost for these type of events."

Fahler said leaders have made changes to the city budget after a loss of tax revenue during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"I think that we are going to be okay in the amendments, as we have made from the mayor's office and approved by the council just last week," said Fahler.

The city said no special event permits were issued because under a local ordinance, “activities conducted by a governmental agency acting within the scope of its authority are exempt.” 

"To me, it's important to have those just as it is to have our Martin Luther King parade or just like any other, like our veterans parade," said Fahler.

As to whether this was a private event or a government activity, the city called it both: “With the Secret Service and other government agencies providing security for the President, who was attending a private campaign rally.”

The Trump Campaign's only response to News On 6’s request for comment is that it is the U.S. Secret Service that coordinates with local law enforcement.

A campaign spokesperson said it does not contract with local governments.

This is a developing story. News On 6 will update when respective agencies provide cost totals.