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YOUR MONEY AT WORK: Mayor Bynum's proposed $1B budget

Tulsa skyline
Posted at 9:23 PM, Apr 17, 2024
and last updated 2024-04-18 15:39:35-04

TULSA, Okla. — Mayor GT Bynum said it will take more than a billion dollars to fund the City of Tulsa through Fiscal Year 2025.

During the April 17 city council meeting, Bynum highlighted some of the major points of the budget.

According to a release the budget will do the following:

  • Restore the City's emergency operating reserve to a level of 8.5% of the general fund
  • Protect compensation increases implemented over the past several years, providing for an across-the-board pay increase for all employees in the amount of 2% in the coming year
  • Enhance the Tulsa Fire side of the 911 Center by adding two positions
  • Provide for a new app that will give instantaneous direct connection between first responders and citizens
  • Follow through on significant capital projects, including operations of the new Public Safety Center and Zink Lake
  • Fund a 2-year program to convert City-owned highway lights to LEDs through the voter-approved PSO Franchise Agreement
  • Create a Homeless Program Lead who will collaborate with City leadership and external stakeholders in the development, implementation and monitoring of City-led homelessness efforts as part of the Path to Home initiative
  • Adjust Tulsa's utility rates to "keep Tulsa in line with the cost to deliver service."
    • 3% increase for water (does not impact residential customers inside city limits)
    • 3% increase for sewer
    • 15% for stormwater
    • 9% for refuse and recycling

Bynum called the budget "conservative" hoping it will set the next Mayor up for success. He hopes "they’re actually able to start immediately on implementing the things they told the voters they’re going to do. And not have to climb out of a fiscal hole."

2 News caught up with Robert Taylor near the Zink Lake site. He thinks the money earmarked for the project is great news, "if they keep it nice, where people can enjoy the view, it has so much potential."

Meanwhile, Lorrie Gant, who attended the council meeting, said city leaders should be careful, with rapid growth. She likes the perks of a mid-size metro.

"We’re small, but we can still go to a ballet. We’re small, but we can still go to an opera, and we’re not having to park twenty miles away, and pay ten dollars, to go to said opera."

Mayor Bynum noted he will only be mayor for about six months of the life of this budget.

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