Officials of the League of Women Voters of Pulaski County have raised questions, though not formal opposition, about the the incorporation of Little Italy, the remote community in northwestern Pulaski County.
The Capitol Zoning District Commission will have a special meeting at 5:30 p.m. Thursday to adopt findings of fact relative to the commission's denial of a permit for a rooming house at 2000 Broadway for former first-offenders recovering from substance abuse.
A letter has been distributed to the board of the Little Rock Technology Park asking that it consider the Forest Hills neighborhood, a lower-income residential area between UAMS and UALR, for the site of the tech park.
I heard last night from an organizer of the residential neighborhoods that are the first choice of the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce and its cutouts on the Little Rock Technology Authority Board about the recent choruses of kumbaya being hummed at some show meetings — utterly without authority or consequence — in which neighbors have been allowed to air concerns to select members of the authority board about potential taking of their homes.
"Enough is enough," Planning Commissioner Keith Fountain and other residents of the Pettaway Neighborhood Association say: It's time for the city to condemn the vacant and derelict Job Corps building at 21st and Vance and bulldoze it.
For nearly three hours (6-9 p.m.) in a jam-packed alert center, downtown residents and business owners complained, sometimes angrily, to representatives of the Veterans Administration that their proposal to open a drop-in clinic in the former Cook Jeep showroom on Main Street would bring new homeless people to the neighborhood, some made violent by mental illness, and ruin the neighborhood's delicate recovery.
City Director Ken Richardson, who represents Ward 2, where the Little Rock Technology Park could be built, told the park Authority this afternoon that unless it acts swiftly to identify where it will build "misery merchants" will prey on unsuspecting residents to get them to sell their homes.
The Board of the Arkansas Schools for the Blind and Deaf last night rejected a proposal from Easter Seals to transfer its $1-a-year lease of almost 10 acres of Blind School land to Little Rock businessman John Chandler, who proposed to buy the former Easter Seals center on the property at the eastern end of Lee Avenue for business offices, including for his clothing business.
I'm in receipt of more details about an alternate proposal for the former Easter Seals training center property at the east end of Lee Avenue across a ravine from the owner of the land underneath the building, the Arkansas School for the Blind.
I've been reporting sporadically on the latest effort by Easter Seals to sell its derelict building on the eastern end of Lee Avenue, on state land across a ravine from the owner, the state schools for the blind and deaf.
Arkansas Times contributor Jacob Rosenberg is at the Cummins Unit in Grady filing dispatches tonight in advance of the expected execution of Ledell Lee, who was sentenced to death for the Feb. 9, 1993, murder of Debra Reese, 26, who was beaten to death in the bedroom of her home in Jacksonville.
Ledbetter, the former state Board of Education chair who cast the decisive vote in 2015 to take over the LRSD, writes that Education Commissioner Johnny Key "has shown time and again that he is out of touch with our community and the needs of the district." However, Ledbetter supports the May 9 vote as a positive for the district's students and staff.
The Arkansas Department of Correction is planning for the first double execution in the U.S. in 16 years tonight. Jack Jones, 52, and Marcell Williams, 46, are scheduled to die by lethal injection. They would be the second and third prisoners put to death as part of a hurried schedule Governor Hutchinson set in advance of the state's supply of one of the three drugs used in the execution protocol expiring on April 30.
Lee Short, the lawyer for Ledell Lee, the man Arkansas put to death just before midnight last night, posted on Facebook the following letter of thanks for personal support and a bit about Lee's last hours, distributing his possessions and talking to family.
The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in an appeal yesterday that asks the court to rule that indigent criminal defendants are entitled to an independent expert witness. The case, McWilliams v. Dunn, goes back to the 1984 capital murder conviction of James McWilliams, who raped and murdered a woman in Tuscaloosa, Ala., during a robbery. But the high court's decision will also directly affect the fates of Don Davis and Bruce Ward, Arkansas death row prisoners who were slated to die this month, but given a reprieve by the Arkansas Supreme Court, which issued a stay in each execution, pending the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in McWilliams in June.
Photos taken Thursday night by Brian Chilson and David Koon, at Cummins Prison in Grady, the State Police barricade away from the prison and in front of the Governor's Mansion, before and after the execution of Ledell Lee.