City adjusts ward map
Choctaw City Council moved to approve a new ward boundary map during the second regular meeting of January.
The new boundaries were an effort to balance the city wards by current population based off of data from the 2020 U.S. Census.
The change comes just before the filing period for this year’s municipal election.
Four of the seven city leadership seats are up for election this year.
Voters will determine the bulk of city leadership for the next four years with an April 4 election.
City Council Ward 1, 3, 5 and the role of mayor will be up for election.
The City of Choctaw candidate filing period will be Feb. 6-8 with the Secretary of the Oklahoma County Election Board.
Candidates must be 25 years of age and a registered voter. In addition, City Council candidates must have lived in their ward for six months. Council members are elected by registered voters in their respective wards.
The mayor is elected at large by voters in all six city wards.
Winners will take office in April, and serve four-year terms, with commitments expiring in April of 2027.
Choctaw has been governed by the Council-Manager form of government since 1973. Seven citizens serve on the City Council with six elected by ward and the mayor elected at large, each for a four-year term.
The Council meets publicly on the first and third Tuesday of each month at 7 p.m.
The City Council chambers are located at Choctaw City Hall, 2500 North Choctaw Road.
Choctaw residents to vote on proposed charter amendment
Choctaw City Council took action during the second regular meeting of January to call for a public election to determine the future of development in “old town” Choctaw.
Modern plans call for high-density development to be allowed in the downtown district, while the city charter limits development to eight dwelling units per acre.
Officials say a charter amendment is needed to allow increased density housing options in the downtown area to align the law of the land with planning for future growth.
Since these dwelling limitations are set in the city charter, changing these regulations takes a vote of the people.
Council voted unanimously for the election to be conducted by the Oklahoma County Election Board.
The question should appear on the April 4 municipal election ballot.
“This is what we were trying to get on the ballot back in 2020, but the pandemic put it on the backburner,” said mayor Randy Ross. “This would allow for mixed-use buildings near the Markets at
Choctaw and downtown area. Think Schlotzky’s in Midwest City where people live above the restaurant.”
Officials say if approved by the people, these mixed-use buildings could only be developed within the city’s primary commercial and downtown area designated as historic “old town” Choctaw.
Resolution No. 23-03, calls for a municipal election for the City of Choctaw, for a proposed amendment to Section 9.1 (B) of the Charter of the City of Choctaw establishing an additional exception to the density of dwelling requirement for any council-approved development in the area defined as follows: north boundary NE 36th Street, south boundary NE 23rd Street, west boundary N
Henney Road, and east boundary N Choctaw Road.
Officials believe allowing high-density and mixed-use development within this one area of Choctaw will preserve the rural feel and charm enjoyed by many residents throughout most of the city limits, while allowing a different housing option in a more populated downtown area. Increased development opportunities would also allow the city to capitalize on future sales tax revenue needed to fund infrastructure improvements and city services.
“This is another one that has been a long time coming. The benefit of this is the rooftops that businesses are looking for to move here,” said City Councilman Chad Williams. “We want a grocery store here and things like that, and they want rooftops to come here. If they don’t come here, we don’t get those tax dollars.”