Question answered | Arkansas Blog

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Question answered

Posted By on Tue, Mar 27, 2007 at 10:34 AM

I can see now why all the usual suspects hushed up about what they hope is a one-time raid on the trust fund built by the real estate transfer tax for parks, museums, Main Street rehabilitation and other cultural and heritage projects.

The $9 million -- at $4.5 million each of the next two years -- is being devoted to a pet project of the governor and legislative bigwigs -- The Arkansas Alternative Fuels Development Program.

Excuse me for repeating myself: But would it not make more sense to spend money on alternative fuels raised from depletion of finite resources -- such as the natural gas robbed from our ground at sometimes great environmental cost and then sold out of state with an almost invisible severance tax, much lower than that WE pay on gas received from other states?

Last I looked, Arkansas wasn't awash in overbuilt, Cadillac-quality parks and museums and symphony bandshells on the square of every stunningly restored downtown. Think of a state that WAS awash in such amenities.

PS -- As mentioned yesterday, there is other legislation out there that envisions tapping this tax. Little Rock legislators seek less than $1 million for homeless programs. A Blog reader said that bill got 20 votes this morning in Joint Budget, needing 27. Jeff Hankins of Arkansas Business reminded me last night that Sen. Nick Wilson shepherded this trust fund in the 1990s and the courthouse up in Pocahontas was one of the first beneficiaries. I reminded him that some honest people also favored this idea and fought for it over the years, including Jodie Mahony and Kay Kelley Arnold. And I still bemoan a legislature that provides first for industrialists, farmers and the wealthy and then lets starved cultural resources and the homeless battle it out for scraps -- particularly in a year with so much money to spread around.


Sign up for the Daily Update email


Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • The suffering children's open line

    Until it's fixed, nobody is doing enough to resist the Trump administration's cruel and thoughtless handling of asylum-seeking children.
    • May 27, 2018
  • Arming teachers: An insurance complication

    Gun lovers in the Arkansas legislature are spoiling to put more guns in classrooms at the earliest opportunity. Today, the Washington Post reports a complication — from insurance companies.
    • May 27, 2018
  • Razorbacks plan a return to real grass in 2019

    I don't know why the news of a return to real grass at Razorback stadium seemed like such good news to me. Old fogey, I guess.
    • May 27, 2018
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Trump immigration protest at LR: Quick and fierce

    It was not even 24 hours ago that Sophia Said, director of the Interfaith Center; City Director Kathy Webb and others decided to organize a protest today of Donald Trump's executive order that has left people from Muslim countries languishing in airports or unable to come to the US at all — people with visas, green cards,a  post-doc graduate student en route to Harvard, Google employees abroad, families. I got the message today before noon; others didn't find out until it was going on. But however folks found out, they turned out in huge numbers, more than thousand men, women and children, on the grounds of the state Capitol to listen to speakers from all faiths and many countries.
    • Jan 29, 2017
  • Trump's strangulation of Obamacare

    If he can't kill it outright, Donald Trump will do all he can to cripple Obamacare. Vox has detailed reporting on deep cuts in federal spending that support nonprofit agencies that help people sign up for coverage under the Affordable Care Act.
    • Sep 18, 2017
  • Your daily dose of Jason Rapert

    Sen. Jason Rapert really, really didn't like it when a KATV reporter asked him about the hypocrisy of his political arguments.
    • Feb 4, 2017

Most Recent Comments



© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation