Editor’s note: Tulsa Today offered each of the three primary mayoral candidates the opportunity to write an "open letter" to Tulsa voters.
This was designed to be an open forum whereby the candidates could "speak" directly to Tulsa Today readers. There were no restrictions other than a maximum of 750 words. Names were pulled from a hat and the order is: Mark Perkins, (Monday), Dewey Bartlett Jr., (Tuesday) and Tom Adelson, (Wednesday). The articles are printed as submitted.
It’s time to choose Tulsa’s next mayor, and I want to take this opportunity to tell you about my hopes and dreams for our city. I think you’ll see they’re like your own vision.
As a longtime public servant, I’ve demonstrated that I work hard for the people of Oklahoma, and as your next mayor, I’d like to prove that I’m going to work for you. From the beginning, I’ve focused on listening to Tulsans and expressing the changes they’d like to see. You want a stronger Tulsa. You want a city government that cooperates on all levels. You want a home that’s safe and healthy, for body and mind. You want Tulsa to excel in education. And you’d like to see fewer potholes, too.
You’re also tired of the negative attacks that seem to be clogging up airwaves and TV screens. For the past three weeks, you’ve been subjected to an inordinate amount of mudslinging from my opponent. I’ve taken the time to respond with fair criticism, but I’ve only challenged my opponent’s ideas, not his personal dignity. As you might imagine, his attacks aren’t working; instead, they’re taking their toll on my opponent’s campaign.
In this last week of our mayoral campaign, I’ll be speaking directly to you, and presenting a positive vision for Tulsa. Some of the ideas you’ll hear include:
A Vibrant Tulsa. Tulsa is teeming with a new urban synergy; your neighbors want to connect, participate, and get involved. Now is the time to harness and direct that energy in a productive, tangible direction. By investing in our city. We’ll make Tulsa more walkable. We’ll fix the areas that are in disrepair, and we’ll connect our neighborhoods in ways that encourage a stronger sense of community. And we’ll set a course for more efficient government. We’ll achieve this by making smart public investments that reflect the needs and hopes of Tulsans. As your mayor, I’ll keep your best interests in mind as we cultivate a more dynamic environment for our city.
An Efficient, Cooperative Tulsa. Tulsa’s heart is bigger than its borders. We care about our neighboring communities, and they rely on us as well. That’s why it doesn’t make sense to duplicate services, and it’s simply wasteful to spend dollars on uncoordinated infrastructure projects. Oklahomans don’t benefit when their municipalities compete with each other, and everyone loses in a fight over the tax base. Through better leadership, we’re going to earn a reputation as a fiscally responsible city. As your mayor, I’ll champion a progressive stand on regional cooperation and unity.
A Healthier Tulsa. There are a number of areas where Tulsa’s health and its economy intersect, and we need a leader who can understand how the two operate. As a civil servant long committed to healthcare issues, I’ll embrace health initiatives that focus on efficient, cost-effective answers. Together, we’ll make Tulsa a healthier city for people and for businesses.
A Safer Tulsa. Not long ago, I spoke with a woman who felt trapped in her home because of nearby gang violence. That’s not the Tulsa I grew up in, and that’s not the Tulsa we desire. There are ways to prevent, reduce, address, and punish gang violence, from beefing up our police force to maintaining programs like CompStat, a computer-based crime analysis system, and the Confidential Citizens Program, which trains locals to prevent neighborhood crimes.
An Exceptional Tulsa. Tulsa’s educational institutions are its treasures. We’re already a leader in early education, but we can still bolster the local educational systems by working with school superintendents to address and improve educational quality. As your mayor, I’ll support Tulsa education by fostering an atmosphere of achievement and collaboration among our various learning centers. And for our higher education institutions, I’ll nurture the kind of environment that will not only attract exceptional talent toward Tulsa, but retain it as well.
As you can see, my vision for Tulsa isn’t exclusive. It’s built on the hopes and aspirations of your neighbors and friends; it’s based on the feedback that you yourself give. My vision for Tulsa includes you, and that’s why I hope to earn your vote during our upcoming mayoral election on November 10. I love Tulsa, and I’m ready to work hard to make it an even better place to live, to work, and to raise a family.
If you’d like to know more about me, my values, and my vision for Tulsa, I invite you to my website, adelsonformayor.com.