Proponents of the Oklahoma Museum of Popular Culture in Tulsa will ask the 2013 Legislature for a $42.5 million bond issue to build the proposed facility despite lawmakers’ rejection of a similar plan earlier this year.
Bob Blackburn, director of the Oklahoma Historical Society, said last week that the proceeds would provide $26.7 million to build the proposed OK Pop facility in downtown Tulsa, $10.7 million for a 650-space parking garage, and an additional $3 million for architectural fees.
Blackburn asked the 2012 Legislature for financial support, but later trimmed the bond proposal to $20 million. The Senate approved the measure in May, but it was not considered by the House.
Tickets and other revenue sources will be sufficient to support the annual debt service of $2.2 million on the proposed 30-year bonds, he said at a special session of the Oklahoma House of Representatives Appropriations and Budget Committee.
The history society’s outstanding bonds, which currently have annual debt- service of about $2.5 million, will mature in six years, Blackburn said.
Debt service on the proposed bonds would begin in three years, according to Brown, but private donations would support the outstanding bonds through maturity.
The city of Tulsa said it would provide the museum with $3 million, and Bank of Oklahoma said it would donate land valued at $2.5 million.
Rep. Lee Denney, R-Cushing, said the Legislature is skeptical of additional state bond issues.
“It’s going to be a hard sell,” he told Blackburn.
“All the stars are aligned,” Blackburn said. “We’ve got a way that we can make this thing work.”