The buzz in Tulsa area politics, today; is the return of the Kathy Taylor machine.
|George Kaiser & Kathy Taylor|
Taylor is said to be a former board member of George Kaiser's Bank of Oklahoma. Once in office, she gave the BOk about $7 million of city money for what she personally justified as the city's moral obligation.
|Great Plains Airlines folded in bankruptcy|
Some of her political allies & friends had pitched a scam to the city council for an airline and got the city to guarantee loans with property. The Lorton family (the folks who control the Tulsa World) began selling the Airline idea in their media influences. Anyone who questioned the wisdom of a Tulsa-based airline was often discredited. Ultimately the city bought the pitch and accepted a role as a backer of a huge loan. The problem is, the entire deal violated federal law and years later was voided by federal courts. The BOk was too stupid to realize this at the time and lent the money to their midtown buddies in 2001.
In 2004, when the scam started going south, the BOK was left with a deadbeat airlines and a bad multi-million dollar loan.
The BOK started looking for folks to shake down in lawsuits. Among the targets was the City of Tulsa. Then-mayor, Bill LaFortune (a former district attorney) stood up to Kaiser's legal threats and defeated the ploy.
Kaiser then waited until he could get a better mayor and wada ya no! One of his board members decides to "give back to Tulsa" (Kathy Taylor).
There is much more to be said about the Taylor scourge. Michael Bates has a good preliminary primer for further reading...