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Attorney threatens lawsuit over MAPS 3

Filed by KOSU News in Local News.
August 29, 2013

In 2009, Oklahoma City leaders used vague language for the MAPS 3 initiative, calling it capital improvement projects. At the same time, the City Council passed a non-binding resolution on the eight projects. Attorney David Slane says not good enough.

“What we will challenge is the idea of capital improvements, meaning more than one. See, there’s a $777 million slush fund now that they could spend the money on anything and call it capital improvements.”

Slane sent a letter to Mayor Cornett today, arguing MAPS 3 violates the state’s single subject rule, and he says he’s prepared to go to court over it. The city has not commented on the lawsuit yet, but others familiar with MAPS say they’re confident it can withstand challenge. Slane refutes that argument.

“Oh, I think if they want to try to make that case, I think they’ll lose.”

City of Oklahoma City spokeswoman Kristy Yager says the city is “confident” the MAPS initiative is completely legal. She says in 2009, attorneys combed through the language to make sure it could withstand any legal challenge. Yager also says the city will make no concessions to avoid legal action from Attorney Slane.

As to the timing of the lawsuit, Attorney Slane says it was prompted by comments made by Ward 2 Councilor Ed Shadid at the Tuesday City Council meeting. Shadid, a candidate for Mayor against incumbent Mayor Mick Cornett, has repeatedly questioned the wisdom of some MAPS 3 projects. Slane insists he did not coordinate with Shadid, and denied any political motivation behind the lawsuit.

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