UPDATE: Legislative update: Nonpartisan prosecutor bill clears House | Arkansas Blog

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

UPDATE: Legislative update: Nonpartisan prosecutor bill clears House

Posted By on Wed, Mar 20, 2013 at 2:09 PM

At the legislature today:

* NONPARTISAN PROSECUTORS: The House approved, 63-24, a bill to provide for nonpartisan election of prosecuting attorneys. The bill had bipartisan support and bipartisan opposition. One Republican who spoke in opposition, Rep. Stephen Meeks, said that partisan labels served as a useful tool for informing voters about political philosophy and he said his local Republican prosecutor opposed the bill. The prevailing argument was that the bill would remove any possibility of partisan taint of prosecutorial decisions, though nobody offered any examples of that happening. And it was noted that candidates already may run as independents.

* 'TORT REFORM': I note some movement on a hot issue, the competing efforts to craft a constitutional amendment to overcome Arkansas Supreme Court decisions that have overturned earlier legislative efforts to curb awards in damage lawsuits. Sen. Eddie Joe Williams, who's carrying the chamber of commerce interests on the issue, has amended his proposal that originally stripped the court of rule-making power on damage lawsuits. I'm trying to find out if this will have the effect of undercutting a competing proposal from Sen. Jeremy Hutchinson, who surprised Williams with a proposal backed by bipartisan sponsors that also had support from plaintiffs' lawyers. It would institute some limits, but is something of a compromise with the more extreme approach favored by the business lobby.

UPDATE: The chamber will make a run at pushing Eddie Joe Williams' constitutional amendment out of committee tomorrow, I"m told by opponents. The plaintiffs' bar remains in opposition. The chamber has shown no willingness to compromise. It continues to push with the amendment and companion legislation to reinstate a way for the legislature to strip the Supreme Court of jursdictional power, put caps on non-economic damage, make losers pay in lawsuits, remove the nursing home patients bill of rights and just about everything else a corporate interest could love. In this legislature, you have to like their chances.


From the ArkTimes store


Comments (11)

Showing 1-11 of 11

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-11 of 11

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • IHOP coming down, but .....

    I always scan the Little Rock City Board for items of interest this week and this one caught my eye: A zoning measure required by a proposal to tear down the IHOP at Markham and University.
    • Apr 30, 2016
  • Little Rock school activists announce events for 60th anniversary of Central High crisis

    The group is not affiliated with the official "Reflections of Progress" commemoration of the 60th anniversary. However, at least two of the Little Rock Nine may be joining the group for an event at 2:30 p.m. at the state Capitol in the Old Supreme Court Chamber.
    • Sep 14, 2017
  • The long and winding road: No exception yet for 30 Crossing

    The Arkansas highway department's representative on the Metroplan board of directors told the board today that the department is requesting an exception to the planning agency's cap on six lanes for its 30 Crossing project to widen Interstate 30 from six to 10 (and more) lanes.
    • Jun 29, 2016

People who saved…

Most Shared

  • Industrial hemp pilot program coming soon to Arkansas

    One of the booths at this week's Ark-La-Tex Medical Cannabis Expo was hosted by the Arkansas Hemp Association, a trade group founded to promote and expand non-intoxicating industrial hemp as an agricultural crop in the state. AHA Vice President Jeremy Fisher said the first licenses to grow experimental plots of hemp in the state should be issued by the Arkansas State Plant Board next spring.

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments



© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation