Tulsa has become a national leader in municipal efficiency and effectiveness.
class="headline">Tulsa has become a national leader in municipal efficiency and effectiveness.
Our city government exists solely to serve the citizens of Tulsa. These past four years I have worked to ensure that our customers – the Tulsa citizens – are receiving the best value for their tax dollars. I don’t think it would be possible for us to accomplish that goal without being a data driven organization - you can’t manage what you don’t measure. So to that end, one of the key issues I ran on in 2016 was my plan to heavily rely on data to improve the city’s efficiency, performance and transparency. Data and facts would help guide the decisions we made for the city, not simply partisan ideology.
- We’ve heard for years that the City of Tulsa is a difficult place to invest, that people wanting to invest in our city have to wait extended periods of time to get plans reviewed and when time equals money this scares away a lot of investment that would otherwise occur. We dove into the numbers and found that we were averaging 25 working days, or 5 weeks to review permits. We identified bottlenecks and made the changes necessary to reduce that turnaround time from 5 weeks to 5 days.
- By using budgetary savings over the last two years, we have now tripled the size of the Rainy Day Fund. And thanks to a measure approved by the citizens of Tulsa, we are now one of the first cities in the nation to have a dedicated funding source for its Rainy Day Fund.
- We’ve created the Urban Data Pioneers Program - a program that empowers teams of city employees and community members to work together to learn data analysis techniques and inform the Mayor and city leadership with the results that eventually leads to policy.
Tulsa has been recognized nationally and internationally for our commitment to data-driven governance. We were awarded the What Works Cities Certification Honor Roll which identifies cities that govern with data and showcases them as the standard to follow for other cities nationwide. Internationally, Tulsa was recognized by the British Government’s National Leadership Conference and I was asked to be the keynote speaker at the conference to share about Tulsa’s experience using data to bring people together and solve problems.
One of the values I’ve tried to build into Tulsa city government is continuous improvement. Just as a business has to continually evolve to meet the needs of its customers, we will evolve Tulsa city government to be the best it can be for the Tulsans it exists to serve.