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Stillwater's First News with Bill Van Ness


The City of Stillwater’s July 2021 sales and use tax collection totaled $2,799,296. The collection is based off May transactions that were reported to the Oklahoma Tax Commission in June and apportioned to the City in July.

This is an increase from July 2020 total collections by $257,976 (10.15 percent).

The City of Stillwater’s sales tax collections in July 2021 were $2,537,538, which is up $248,193 (10.84 percent) from July 2020.

The City of Stillwater’s use tax collections in July 2021 were $261,758, which is up $9,783 (3.88 percent) from July 2020.

Hotel/motel tax remitted to the City in July 2021 totaled $72,799, which is up from July 2020 collections by $45,370 (165.41 percent).

While the increase in tax collections is encouraging, Stillwater is not experiencing overall growth due to the impact of COVID-19. Lack of growth in local sales tax generation limits future opportunities for expanding City services and capital investment. Still, the return of public activities and events, and the rebound of businesses, are hopeful signs.

For more information about the budget and taxes, visit the City’s Financial Center at http://stillwater.org/budget.

We also update a sales, use and hotel/motel tax report monthly at http://stillwater.org/document-center/detail/id/285.



The City of Stillwater will begin major street improvements in August after the Stillwater City Council approved the selection of outside contractors at its regular meeting Monday, July 11th.

The projects are:
·         Duck Street from 6th Avenue to Boomer Road -- mill the existing surface and place a new asphalt overlay
·         Husband Street from Elm Street to Hall of Fame Avenue -- mill the existing surface and place a new asphalt overlay
·         Brooke Avenue from Jardot Road to Young Street – full-depth asphalt repair (this repair will allow sanitation trucks to once again use Brooke Avenue)
·         Stillwater Regional Airport south taxi lane – resurface (paid by airport funds)
·         McElroy Road from Washington Street to Boomer Road – resurface
·         Western Road from 32nd Avenue to 19th Avenue – resurface
·         18th Avenue from Fern Street to Perkins Road – resurface
·         Lakeview Road from Perkins Road to Jardot Road – resurface
·         Quarter mile of Jardot Road north of Lakeview Road – resurface

The projects are part of the City’s Pavement Management Program and were approved previously by the Council. The projects were awarded to Haskell Lemon and TJ Campbell at a total cost of a little more than $2.2 million.

The projects will be funded by sales tax revenue through the Fiscal Year 2020 and Fiscal Year 2021 Pavement Management Programs; except for the airport project that will be covered by airport funds.

“These are important projects that will improve key Stillwater streets,” said Monty Karns, Director of City Engineering. “These projects are part of our ongoing work to effectively maintain and upgrade our streets to best serve the citizens of Stillwater.”

The upgrades will be staggered and should all be completed by April 2022.

For more details about where these projects are happening, view the Combined Project Map at stillwater.org



The City of Stillwater is notifying utility customers facing possible disconnects for non-payment and encouraging them to contact the City before losing electric, water and other services.

With the downturn of the economy due to COVID-19, the City saw a significant increase in late payments and non-payments. The City Council approved a moratorium on disconnects Dec. 14, 2020. The moratorium was lifted May 3, 2021.

As a result, the City began sending disconnect notices to some customers in late June. The City will send four rounds of disconnect notices with cutoff dates staggered through the month of July. The first cutoff date was July 6.

The City has more than 4,500 accounts that are delinquent for 30 days or longer. The accounts total nearly $1.9 million in uncollected revenue.

“We understand many of our residents have gone through difficult times as a result of the pandemic and its impact on their financial situation,” said Norman McNickle. “We are prepared to work with customers on a payment plan to address their situation.”

Customers who receive a disconnect notice should contact City of Stillwater Utility and Billing Services at 405-742-8245 to rectify their account, or work out a payment plan.

Any shortage of revenue from non-payments could impact future cost of service for all customers.

Stillwater residents unable to make rent payments and pay utility costs as a result of COVID-19 may be eligible for federally funded relief. To learn more and apply for relief, contact Our Daily Bread at 405.533.2555 ext.110 or visit https://www.ourdailybreadstillwater.org/



The Oklahoma State University Alumni Association and the 2021 Homecoming Executive Committee have announced former OSU President Burns Hargis and former First Cowgirl Ann will serve as this year’s grand marshals of the Sea of Orange Homecoming Parade in recognition of their service to OSU.

Rob McInturf, OSU Alumni Association president, made the announcement.

Hargis retired July 1 after a transformational 13-year tenure as OSU’s 18th president. Under his leadership, the university flourished, including the first-ever billion-dollar fundraising campaign, which raised more than $1.3 billion. OSU developed more than 2.5 million square feet of new or enhanced facilities on both its Stillwater and Tulsa campuses. Enrollment growth includes five of the largest freshmen classes in OSU history, and 24 percent of all OSU graduates have occurred during his presidency. Additionally, OSU Alumni Association membership increased by nearly 30 percent and added nearly 82,000 new donors.

Ann made her mark on campus by focusing on America’s Healthiest Campus initiative and starting the Pete’s Pet Posse pet therapy program, which has been nationally recognized. She was also frequently seen on campus with her orange golf cart, talking with and giving students rides to class.

This year is the centennial edition of America’s Greatest Homecoming. The nationally recognized celebration, which was first hosted by the Alumni Association in 1920, was postponed in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

OSU’s Homecoming week begins Oct. 24. The Homecoming parade is currently scheduled at 9 a.m., Saturday, Oct. 30, prior to OSU’s football game with the University of Kansas. If the game is selected for a morning kickoff, the parade will begin at 8 a.m. Updates and other details will be available at ORANGECONNECTION.org/homecoming.

ABC News

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