Tulsa City Council, auditor take oaths of office at the Performing Arts Center

TULSA, Okla. — The new class of the Tulsa City Council was inaugurated on Monday at the Performing Arts Center.

Districts 4, 5 and 6 got new city councilors – with two of those districts voting out their incumbents.

A sample of the city’s culture and fine arts ushered in the 2020 Inauguration of the City of Tulsa –with traditional Scottish bagpipes and drums, jazz music and a handmade flute.

Three newcomers to the council – Laura Bellis, Grant Miller and Christian Bengel – took their oaths of office along with the six returning councilors and the city’s auditor Cathy Carter.

Each of them has ideas to work on the city’s challenges.

For Bellis, it’s the city’s widespread homelessness. “The mayor put out a call to address our housing and homelessness issues and crisis in the city and I cannot wait to jump in and tackle that,” Bellis said, “I am just so thankful to be here when the city is going to be taking leadership on our housing crisis.” Miller’s top priority is to find money in the city’s budget to build up his district.

“I know that District 5 is not getting its fair share of resources,” he says, “We get overlooked for downtown projects, for Riverside projects and so I just want to really make sure that I dig into the budget and say, ‘Hey, where can we bring District 5′s fair share of resources.” Bengel wants to turn his district’s rich culture into a destination for revenue.

“I think as soon as we start spending some money in developing that and showing the different cultures that are over there in that district, specifically,” he says, “I think it will actually start generating a larger share of revenues within the city.”

And so they’ll take these ideas to start their first week on the job of city government.

The race for District 5 ended just last week as the Court denied Mykey Arthrell’s request for a new election and upheld the 28-vote victory voters gave Miller.

The new city council will begin working at their first city council meeting together on Wednesday.