Mautino Fights Tulsa Mayor

PROTEST RALLY: Tulsa City Councilor Jim Mautino speaks at an anti-Mayor LaFortune rally earlier this year. About 300 people attended, though organizers ann-ounced the crowd at 2,500.

GTR Newspapers photo

Tulsa continues to be a split city with the dissident five city council members opposing almost every move of Mayor Bill LaFortune and the Tulsa Metro Chamber. Some observers are worried that the city is becoming polarized into a ward-type political system similar to that of Chicago.

The latest flap concerns the Economic Develop-ment Ordinance, which will place the nine council members on the Economic Dev-elopment Cou-ncil. LaFortune wants the members to be selected at-large and has threatened a veto of the proposal. Mautino says he is protective of east Tulsa, which he says is being devoid of development and has become “the hole in the donut.”

The five dissidents are Mautino, Chris Medlock, Sam Roop, Roscoe Turner, and Jack Henderson. The four members who are more supportive of LaFortune and the Chamber are Randy Sullivan, Bill Christiansen, Susan Neal, and Tom Baker. The dissidents represent the less lucrative areas of Tulsa, which includes the west, north, and far east. A recall has been discussed to rid the council of two of the five dissidents.

GTR Newspapers will provide in-depth coverage of Tulsa’s political problems in future issues.

Updated 11-23-2004

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