|Updated: 1/17 3:19 pm
||Published: 1/17 3:18 pm
During a news conference Friday afternoon, Mayor Dewey Bartlett announced several organizational changes within the city to help strengthen and improve.
Through an executive order, Bartlett created the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development to help streamline and simplify the city’s economic development efforts. This will be accomplished by bringing employees who focus on economic development, but are currently in several different departments, under a single chain of command.
Clay Bird will lead the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development and is responsible for industry retention and expansion, retail recruitment and marketing, the brownfields program, energy efficiency and sustainability programs and help assist with film and music and support the Downtown Coordinating Council.
Bartlett also created a new department, Asset Management, which is responsible for all activities related to fleet management, parking enforcement, repair and installation, security services, property/facility acquisitions, management and disposition. The interim director for Asset Management is Mark Hogan.
By executive order, the Department of 911 Public Safety Communications is now a division in the Tulsa Police Department and under Police Chief Chuck Jordan. This change will provide management for the training, supervision and oversight of E-911 communication functions.
“With this reorganization, we are focusing on economic development, public safety and efficiency which are vital to the future of our city,” Mayor Dewey Bartlett said. “In my first 100 days in office of my second term, it was important to make these reforms, as promised in my inaugural address, which will help improve efficiencies citywide.”
Another transition for the City is the reorganization of the Tulsa International Airport and R.L. Jones Airport. The Tulsa Airports Improvement Trust and the City of Tulsa have approved a new lease agreement transferring 150 City Airport employees to the Tulsa Airports Improvement Trust, which is assuming all financial, human resources and information technology services from the City of Tulsa. The agreement is anticipated to save money, provide more flexibility and make the airport more competitive.
“The agreement with Tulsa International Airport and R.L Jones is no different than what the City has accomplished with the BOK Center, Tulsa Zoo and the Gilcrease Museum,” Bartlett said. “With this transition, we are able to cut costs across the board, putting both airports at a competitive advantage, so we may lower our airline costs and attract vital air service to Tulsa.”
Bartlett added, “This transition also helps Tulsa stay in line with personnel trends in the industry and gives the Trust the authority to operate as its own entity, which helps with financing mandatory projects and needs for both airports. While I served on the Tulsa Airport Authority, this was an important topic of discussion, as many airports around the country have partnered with trusts to make their airports more competitive, and we are looking forward to the benefits this partnership will have for our city.”
The executive order with department reorganizations will take effect on Jan. 17, 2014. The Airport agreement is already in effect.
Bartlett also announced the consolidation of the Building, Housing, Fire Prevention, Electrical Examining, Mechanical Examiners and Plumbing Appeals into one consolidated Board of Appeals. This consolidation helps streamline the appeals process.
Mayor Bartlett will be looking at other authorities, boards and commissions for other efficiency efforts that helps simplify various processes for both the citizens and volunteers of the authorities, boards and commissions.