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Bynum, IC Bus Announce New, 20-Year Lease for Airport Facility

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Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum and IC Bus have put their differences behind them for the next two decades.

Bynum, IC Bus and parent company Navistar announced Thursday a new, 20-year agreement for the bus maker to stay at its 1 million-square foot facility at Tulsa International Airport.

Bynum and IC Bus publicly sparred over their lease renewal earlier this month, with IC Bus claiming Bynum was threatening them with eviction and Bynum saying the company hadn’t met maintenance requirements under their previous, $1 lease.

"But, I think we realized in the end that we both had the same goal, which was to have a facility that can last for the long haul that’s well-maintained so that the best bus manufacturer in the United States can continue to do great work and employ a whole lot of Tulsans," Bynum said.

IC Bus Plant Manager Rodney Tharp said the new lease involves all parties meeting every five years to lay out a work plan.

"We’re able to meet with the city on a regular occurrence and understand exactly where we’re at in reference to their expectations, where they’re at in reference to ours and have that good relationship moving forward. So, no surprises at these renewal periods," Tharp said.

The new lease sets an annual base rent of nearly $2.8 million. That increases 4% at every five-year period, but IC Bus can deduct a maintenance credit if it keeps at least 1,200 people on staff. 

The company currently employs about 1,600 people and supports several local vendors and suppliers.

Matt Trotter joined KWGS as a reporter in 2013. Before coming to Public Radio Tulsa, he was the investigative producer at KJRH. His freelance work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times and on MSNBC and CNN.
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