Darr seeks corporate welfare for lignite | Arkansas Blog

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Darr seeks corporate welfare for lignite

Posted By on Tue, Mar 22, 2011 at 2:25 PM

Ain't it just like a double-talking Republican? Lt. Gov. Mark Darr, in a year when Republicans had to be pressed hard to increase Arkansas School for the Deaf spending by $6,000, is begging for taxpayer money to study lignite mining in South Arkansas.

Forget for a minute the environmental disaster of mining and burning lignite. Forget we live in a state with at least one coal plant too many under construction and a gas-fired power plant begging taxpayer subsidies to operate.

This one is real simple. If there's profit to be made in mining lignite, let the free market work. Let private enterprise put up the study money, let private investors raise the capital and then let private investors convince us they can operate without poisoning the rest of us.

These guys have no shame. Do Republicans EVER pay their own way? Or must they always take state tax money, as Darr wants here and as Jake Files is trying to do to subsidize would-be developers in Fort Smith? To name just two.

Tea Party, where are you?


Arkansas Lieutenant Governor Mark A. Darr’s statement regarding the funding for the exploration of lignite.

Time is running out in the 88th General Assembly. With less than two weeks remaining there still remain several important state needs to be addressed. I firmly believe the Governor and the Legislature are doing their best to address such needs. In addition it is my hope that elected officials will not forget to supply needed funding for a study of the extraction of lignite (coal).

According to the Arkansas Bureau of Legislative Research, Arkansas has at least four billion tons of lignite available and possibly as much as nine million tons. The bulk of this lignite has been identified in an area forming a triangle between Texarkana, Crossett and Benton.

The funding of this study is the first step in a deliberate and thoughtful process. The study itself involves evaluating the performance of Arkansas lignite as a gasification and liquid fuels feedstock. It would also develop data on the actual performance of the lignite in a facility that would produce liquid fuels by direct and indirect liquefaction. Of course, future study of any potential environmental impact will be vital.

Currently there are several appropriation bills which would provide the necessary funding; for example Senate Bill 700 by Senator Jeremy Hutchinson and Senate Bill 106 by the Joint Budget Committee. The funding for these appropriation bills will ultimately be decided by the Revenue Stabilization Act. If legislation is not passed during this session, it will be another two years before such funding could be decided.

Tags: , , ,

Sign up for the Daily Update email

Comments (21)

Showing 1-21 of 21

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-21 of 21

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • A response to police arrests becomes a tutorial on race, class and policing in Little Rock

    John Walker, the 79-year-old civil rights lawyer, and his associate, Omavi Shukur, 29, a young lawyer devoted to criminal justice reform, talked to press this afternoon about their arrests Monday by Little Rock police for supposedly obstructing governmental operations in observing and attempting to film a routine police traffic stop. It was a tutorial on sharp views of race, class and governance in Little Rock.
    • Sep 29, 2016
  • Arkansas legislature rejects bipartisan effort to study race relations

    On Friday, the Arkansas Legislative Council soundly rejected a bipartisan effort by two senators to to create a temporary legislative subcommittee to study race relations in the state.
    • Sep 15, 2017
  • Donald Trump declares war on Hillary Clinton's marriage

    Donald Trump gave a remarkable interview to the New York Times yesterday in which he declared open season on the marriage of Bill and Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton's past infidelity. Seems like a loser, but I've been wrong before.
    • Oct 1, 2016

Most Viewed

  • The yawning teacher pay gap between Arkansas school districts

    Before Arkansas congratulates itself for outpacing Oklahoma on teacher pay, we should take a look at the huge disparity in salaries within the state. New teachers in Bentonville may make almost $46,000 a year, but new teachers in many other districts will start the 2018-19 school year earning $31,800 — less than the starting salary in Tulsa.
  • Anonymous Harding University students relaunch LGBTQ publication, campus security removes copies

    A group of anonymous Harding University students on Friday published an "HU Queer Press 2.0" zine, covering issues of gay rights at the private, Churches of Christ-affiliated campus in Searcy. A similar publication, "The State of the Gay at Harding University," set off a firestorm of controversy at Harding seven years ago. Shortly after the publication was distributed, campus security officers began gathering the copies of the zine and throwing them in the trash.
  • Attorney General Rutledge rejects full marijuana legalization ballot initiative

    Speaking of weed, Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today rejected a proposed ballot initiative to fully legalize marijuana in the state.
  • Chelsea Clinton to come to Little Rock for Clinton School talk

    Chelsea Clinton will come to Little Rock Sunday, May 20, to talk about her new children's book, "She Persisted Around the World." It's a companion to her bestselling "She Persisted." The location is still to be determined. She'll be interviewed onstage and the Arkansas Repertory Theatre will do a reading of the book.
  • Finally, a memorial to the 21 boys who were burned to death at Wrightsville in '59

    It has been 59 years since 21 teen-aged boys incarcerated at the so-called Negro Boys Industrial School were burned to death in their locked dormitory. The Times wrote about the event in 2008, after the brother and mother of one of the boys approached the Times looking for someone to remember the event, and headlined the story "Stirring the Ashes." But on Saturday, a monument to the boys was placed at Haven of Rest Cemetery, where 14 of the boys were buried.

Most Recent Comments


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