G.T. Bynum

City of Tulsa

While Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum and Tulsa Health Department Director Dr. Bruce Dart were clear that they believe Tulsans should be following the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines recommending universal masking regardless of vaccination status due to the current surge in COVID-19 infections, neither would comment Thursday on whether they support an ordinance currently working its way through the city council that would mandate the wearing of them.

City of Tulsa

The city of Tulsa announced Sunday the appointment of attorney Cassia Carr to serve as the city's deputy mayor, effective Aug. 30.

City of Tulsa

Leaders from several Tulsa health care systems joined with local officials Friday for an update on the increasingly precarious COVID-19 situation in the area, calling on residents to do their part in helping stem the rising tide of largely preventable hospitalizations and suffering stemming from low vaccination rates and the more transmissible Delta variant of the coronavirus.

Tulsa Police

Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum wants to put a permanent property tax for public safety on the ballot in August 2022.

Bynum told city councilors Wednesday that’s his plan under a new state law allowing public safety districts, which cities can create to dedicate generally stable property tax revenue to their police and fire departments rather than just sales tax.

Chris Polansky / KWGS News

With the national spotlight off Tulsa following substantial media coverage of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre centennial anniversary and President Joe Biden's visit to Greenwood to commemorate it, advocates for reparations for survivors and descendants say they aren't going anywhere.

Councilor Joe Deere

The Cherokee Nation Tribal Councilor representing the district that includes much of the historic Greenwood neighborhood destroyed in the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre says he believes reparations are due to the attack's survivors and descendants.

Councilor Joe Deere welcomed attendees of the Black Wall Street Legacy Festival's main event on Sunday at the Oklahoma State University - Tulsa campus to the Cherokee Nation reservation.

City of Tulsa

On the 100th anniversary of the second day of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre, with the president of the United States in town to commemorate the racist attack and meet with living survivors, the city of Tulsa on Tuesday began the process of exhuming remains discovered in a mass grave in the search for massacre victims.

Chris Polansky / KWGS News

Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum on Monday morning issued a statement apologizing on behalf of the city for the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre, exactly 100 years after the racist attack by white Tulsans began.

"As mayor, I hold our local government to the highest standard," Bynum said. "Tulsa’s city government failed to protect Black Tulsans from murder and arson on the night of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre, and from discrimination in subsequent decades."  

Chris Polansky / KWGS News

Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum says he is not spending much time thinking about the international media coverage of the upcoming Tulsa Race Massacre centennial events, instead focusing on what the anniversary means for Tulsans.

"I think about this event like when you're mourning as a family when you have the death of a loved one," Bynum said in a video message released Tuesday by City Hall. "You're really just concerned about your family and your friends and your neighbors. What people on the periphery have to say about it is of less importance."

Facebook / Mayor G.T. Bynum

Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum issued an executive order on Friday ending his civil emergency declaration because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The civil emergency that was declared March 16, 2020, officially ends at midnight Friday.

Bynum said the decision was made in consultation with the Tulsa Health Department and because just 1% of hospitalizations are now for COVID. In January, 25% of local hospital patients had COVID.

Amazon is building another large-scale facility in Tulsa.

The company chose a 40-acre site at Mingo Road and 36th Street North for a 270,000-square foot sortation facility, the point between fulfillment centers and Amazon’s last-mile delivery stations.

Mayor G.T. Bynum said the sortation center is a $32 million project, Amazon’s third large investment in Tulsa.

City of Tulsa

Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum said Thursday that while the city's mandatory COVID-19 mask ordinance will be expiring at the end of Friday -- including a requirement for food service employees to wear masks while working -- certain other restrictions will remain in place.

Food and Drug Administration

Mayor G.T. Bynum announced Wednesday he will lift a mask requirement for bar and restaurant employees in the City of Tulsa, effective at midnight on Friday when the city's mask ordinance is set to expire.

The mask ordinance applies to all people 10 or older while they're in public places where physical distancing can't be maintained. Bynum said earlier this month local COVID-19 trends and advice from the Tulsa Health Department supported letting the ordinance expire April 30th, but he planned to continue an executive order for bar and restaurant employees to wear masks at work.

Chris Polansky / KWGS News

The City of Tulsa announced Monday it plans to develop 11 acres on the Evans-Fintube property, the site of the former Oklahoma Iron Works building, for a mixed-use project potentially including up to 200 units of housing and 75,000 square feet of commercial and cultural space at the corner of Archer and Lansing.

City of Tulsa

At a virtual press briefing following his presentation of a proposed fiscal year 2022 budget to the Tulsa City Council, Mayor G.T. Bynum said Wednesday that while Tulsa Police Department staffing is not being targeted for an increase this year, he plans to pursue adding more than 100 patrol officers as part of next year's budget proposal.

Mayor G.T. Bynum told city councilors on Wednesday Tulsa is poised to rebound from the pandemic with his $799.4 million proposed budget for fiscal year 2022.

Chris Polansky / KWGS News

The Reverend Joe Crutcher says he's kept a close watch on happenings in Minneapolis since last May, when video of police officer Derek Chauvin killing George Floyd made international headlines and sparked a worldwide movement against systemic racism and police violence.

"Me and my wife, we'd sit up and watch the whole George Floyd episode as it unfolded last year," Crutcher said at a press conference in downtown Tulsa Tuesday afternoon, shortly after a Minnesota jury handed down a guilty verdict against Chauvin for Floyd's murder.

Courtesy

OSU-Tulsa and Tulsa Community College announced a new partnership Tuesday to help students earn their two- and four-year degrees in downtown Tulsa.

OSU-Tulsa President Dr. Pamela Fry said College Park builds on the two schools’ LinkeDegree program, which shows students how to get from TCC enrollment to an OSU bachelor’s degree.

"This is the difference between having a map to show how to reach a destination and having a navigator in the front seat with you making sure you don’t take the wrong turn," Fry said.

Chris Polansky / KWGS News

Mayor G.T. Bynum said Thursday he believes allowing the city's COVID-19 mandatory mask ordinance to expire at the end of this month, as is currently planned, is the right move.

"Our hospital capacity is not in danger any longer," Bynum told reporters Thursday morning at an in-person press conference at City Hall, the first held that way in months, since COVID-19 briefings were moved all-virtual due to the severe surge in infections this winter.

OKC Mayor Holt Publicly Receives COVID-19 Vaccine

Mar 16, 2021
Mayor David Holt

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The mayor of Oklahoma’s largest city publicly received his first dose of the coronavirus vaccine on Monday and urged others in the state to do the same.

“With most Oklahomans now eligible, I want our residents to hear the message that there is no need to delay your pursuit of the vaccine any longer,” Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt said in a statement after receiving his first dose of the Pfizer vaccine at the Oklahoma City-County Health Department.

Mayor G.T. Bynum

Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum celebrated receiving his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at the Tulsa County Fairgrounds Friday morning by quoting a notable historical figure in a statement.  

"'If you wanna keep an eye on me don’t look behind you, don’t look to the sides, look straight up, because I’m right on top of ya - Oh yeeeeeaaah!' -Randy 'Macho Man' Savage, OR my immune system to COVID-19 after getting vaccinated this morning!" Bynum wrote on Facebook.  

Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum is challenging local businesses to help close the city’s gender pay gap by signing a pay equity pledge.

The Tulsa Pay Equity Pledge was proposed by the Mayor’s Commission on the Status of Women after the city audited its employee pay and found disparities.

Tulsa County women earn 84 cents to every dollar earned by men. Mayor’s Commission on the Status of Women Vice Chair Dr. Meg Morgan said employers taking the pledge promise to tackle a variety of contributing issues.

Oklahoma State Department of Health

With COVID-19 vaccine eligibility now expanded to the vast majority of Oklahoma adults, the state health department is urging everyone who qualifies -- including community and government leaders -- to seek out their shots as soon as possible. 

Chris Polansky

Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum said Thursday he would welcome direct federal coronavirus relief funding from the federal government to help address the city's projected budget shortfall in the coming fiscal year caused by the pandemic. 

City of Tulsa

The Tulsa City Council's public works committee heard from multiple engineers Wednesday as councilors questioned whether it was possible to preserve the existing Arkansas River pedestrian bridge even as a replacement is constructed.

"We as Oklahomans tend to tear things down and regret it later," said Councilor Kara Joy McKee, who along with Councilors Jeannie Cue and Crista Patrick brought the agenda item before the committee. "And we've got this lovely old bridge that so many people have enjoyed."

Tulsa City Hall

Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum announced Thursday that applications are open for up to $6.5 million in grants for nonprofit organizations impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The novel coronavirus continues to spread in the Tulsa metropolitan area, as local officials said on Thursday some metrics are improving while others are continuing to go in the wrong direction.

"By Jan. 18, more than 9% of all Tulsa County residents had tested positive for COVID-19," said Dr. Bruce Dart, executive director of the Tulsa Health Department, at a virtual press conference Thursday morning. "We're on track to reach 10% of our population being positive within 12 days."

Matt Trotter / KWGS

After eight months, half-day furloughs every Friday have come to their expected end for hundreds of City of Tulsa employees.

The furloughs were implemented to help the city deal with with a $13 million budget shortfall. Mayor G.T. Bynum said current fiscal year revenue is staying within a range where extending the furloughs is not necessary, but he and the city council are gearing up for another budget shortfall in FY22.

City of Tulsa officials took their oaths of office Monday on an inauguration day with limited attendance because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Mayor G.T. Bynum’s uncle, Judge William LaFortune, administered his oath in Bynum’s office. It was broadcast online. After the two bumped elbows, Bynum gave a short speech calling on Tulsans to overcome divisive forces, especially as the city approaches the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre centennial.

The sixth time was the charm for the Muskogee City Council to pass a mandatory mask ordinance to combat the dramatic rise in COVID-19 infections. After five failed votes in recent weeks, the measure passed Monday night 5-3. 

The vote came the same day that Muskogee County declared a state of emergency due to a sharp increase in coronavirus infections and the possibility of overwhelming the already strained hospital system even further.

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