IT WAS A GOOD WEEK FOR …
DEATH WITH DIGNITY. After J.T. Scott buckled his terminally ill mother, Pamela Lowrey, into his car at the Little Rock airport, he noticed she had died. Rather than go through the formalities of a call to police or coroner, he drove her straight to a Conway funeral home. Paramedics on hand at the airport didn’t object. Scott said it was emotional but “a chance for me to spend a little bit of time with her.” He said he spoke to her en route about the beauty of the day and his gratitude that her suffering from cancer was over.
DROUGHT. The entire state is on the verge of being declared an agricultural disaster on account of lack of rain.
CLEAN FEET. Little Rock National Airport has begun distributing disposable slippers to people when they shuck shoes to walk through security checkpoints.
The FREE MARKET. Clary Development has proposed a plan approved by city officials to develop land at Interstates 430 and Shackleford Road once targeted for the Summit Mall. Clary says it will build its own freeway interchange improvements, not seek for help from taxpayers. What a pleasant switch.
IT WAS A BAD WEEK FOR …
JIM GUY TUCKER. A federal appeals court wouldn’t let the former governor withdraw a guilty plea to a tax charge. Tucker had learned that he was prosecuted during the Whitewater witch hunt under a law that had been repealed. The activist Republican judges on the panel weren’t of a mind to undo the work of Kenneth Starr, however.
DRIVERS. Everyone with a vehicle — the hordes of surbanites who commute to Little Rock daily come to mind first — are paying dearly for the privilege, with premium gas prices nudging $2.80 a gallon.
GOVERNMENT EFFICIENCY. Memos dug up by the Democrat-Gazette raise questions about the cost savings predicted by Gov. Mike Huckabee from the merger of the state Human Services and Health Departments. The memos also illustrated the real reason for the merger — fixing the chronically mismanaged Health Department.
Ted Suhl was sentenced this morning by federal Judge Billy Roy Wilson on four counts of attempting to bribe a state official to help his mental health business supported by Medicaid money. He received 84 months and a $200,000 fine and is to report to prison in early January. He will appeal.
Blogger Russ Racop raises an interesting question, as he sometimes does, about Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones' gift of free tickets for North Little Rock cops to attend a Dallas Cowboy football game.
Little Rock police responding to a disturbance call near Eighth and Sherman Streets about 12:40 a.m. killed a man with a long gun, Police Chief Kenton Buckner said in an early morning meeting with reporters.
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art is installing Sol Lewitt's 70-foot eye-crosser "Wall Drawing 880: Loopy Doopy," waves of complementary orange and green, on the outside of the Twentieth Century Gallery bridge. You can glimpse painters working on it from Eleven, the museum's restaurant, museum spokeswoman Beth Bobbitt said
Ted Suhl, the former operator of residential and out-patient mental health services, has lost a second bid to get a new trial on his conviction for paying bribes to influence state Human Services Department policies. Set for sentencing Thursday, Suhl faces a government request for a sentence up to almost 20 years. He argues for no more than 33 months.