Legislature 2015 under new 'ethics amendment': More pay, per diem for no-shows and still plenty of free grub | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Legislature 2015 under new 'ethics amendment': More pay, per diem for no-shows and still plenty of free grub

Posted By on Thu, Feb 19, 2015 at 8:32 AM


If I'd been Sen. Keith Ingram's speech writer in his statement opposing a pay raise for legislators made possible by Amendment 94, I couldn't have resisted throwing in other niceties of the new amendment in addition to a 150 percent pay increase. Such as: Longer time in office to accrue more power and perks with an easing of term limits. Also, despite language that seems to bar lobbyist spending on legislators, it has continued unabated, perhaps even at a greater level by a ruse — so far unreviewed by the Ethics Commission — in which a dinner or cocktail party is termed a "scheduled activity" and exempt from the gift ban.

Here's the freebie report for today:

BREAKFAST: 7:30-9 a.m., Capitol H/ill Building, UAMS Area Health Education Centers Regional Programs.

LUNCH: 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., Capitol Hill Building, Arkansas chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

LUNCH: 11:30-1:30 p.m., Capitol Square Apartments, #13, Arkansas Health Care Association (nursing home lobby).

The agenda is light because the Senate won't meet Friday and the House isn't currently scheduled to convene. Only one committee meeting is on the schedule at the moment. So many legislators won't be in town Friday at all and likely will head home this evening. Even if they don't come to town Friday, they will continue to be paid per diem for "expenses" under a continuing abusive practice that hasn't been remedied, either, by Amendment 94.

As official scheduled activities of the General Assembly, all these entertainments should be open to the public. The Constitution says so.

Tags: , , ,


Comments (4)

Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • Among the last words from Kenneth Williams: 'Finger Lickin' Good Fried Chicken'

    What's purported to be a final-words essay from condemned prisoner Kenneth Williams was distributed today by Deborah Robinson, a freelance journalist in Arkansas.  He reflects on his execution, his victims, reactions of inmates and big servings of fried chicken, which he says are given to all inmates on execution days.
    • Apr 27, 2017
  • The LR chamber does the public's business. Is it accountable? Blue Hog on the case.

    Matt Campbell, lawyer and Blue Hog Report blogger, has sent a Freedom of Information Act request to Jay Chessir, director of the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce, and Mayor Mark Stodola related to the publicity stunt yesterday  built around withdrawing from the mayor's rash pronouncement that the city would seek an Amazon HQ2 project even though the city  didn't meet the company's criteria.
    • Oct 20, 2017
  • Presidential thriller, co-author Bill Clinton, coming to bookstores in 2018

    June 2018 is the expected publication date for a novel collaboration by former President Bill Clinton and crime writer James Patterson.
    • May 9, 2017


  • Arkansas vs Ole Miss at War Memorial stadium in Little Rock, Saturday, Oct. 13, 2018. After leading for much of the game, Arkansas lost 37-33 when Ole Miss scored the game winning Touchdown with less that 2 minutes left. 
  • Margaret Clark Adventure Park
    New sculptures, preschoolers play area dedicated in Riverfront Park in Little Rock.

Most Recent Comments


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