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Monday, June 21, 2010

MAPS 3: Paying the Price

Like it or not, MAPS 3 has not accomplished what was promised.  There were promises that public safety would not be impacted, but there is this statement in a Bryan Dean story in the Oklahoman:

City officials said they will add uniformed police and fire positions if the unions accept pay cuts.
As it stands, 22 vacant police and 29 fire positions will be cut, though no police or firefighters will be laid off.
Sounds like extortion to me. 

The City of Oklahoma City has pushed aggressively to promote downtown, to promote Bricktown and there is no question that our "star is on the rise" in Central Oklahoma, but at the end of the day, consumers are paying the price and without strong public safety, it makes it exceptionally difficult to draw new businesses to the area.

People who have previously supported the MAPS projects are beginning to have that bitter taste in their mouths, realizing that while they have gained an NBA team and now a hockey team, the cost has been high and are backing away quietly from their support.  And it comes at a very bad time for Central Oklahoma as we're looking to find a way to fund a new county jail. 

Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett more than likely has sealed the deal on ever running for higher public office again.  But working for one of the nation's most aggressive and fast growing advertising agencies has proven to be much more lucrative.  Why would he want to? 

The guy to watch amid this whole mess is David Holt, candidate for Senate District 30 who is Mick Cornett's Chief of Staff.  If there is to be blowback, his campaign will be the first to experience it.  If there is no real anymosity, he'll sail through to victory and find himself without an opponent in November, thereby being the man to replace term-limited State Senator Coffee.