Favorite

A deficit hawk's deficits 

A deficit hawk's deficits

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported last week that Rick Crawford, the Republican candidate for First District Congress, had declared bankruptcy in 1994 to discharge more than $12,000 in personal debt, including credit card charges and medical bills. It was a touch embarrassing, you'd think, because is a deficit hawk and also opposes health reform legislation which has extended health coverage to the uninsured. A quote from his campaign website:

"If businesses in America spent money the way the federal government does, they would be in bankruptcy. If people ran their personal finances the way Congress does, they would be in jail."

Or maybe running for Congress as a Republican.

Rural school days

From the July issue of Rural Policy Matters:

"Question: In which 14 states are more than 50% of schools located in rural communities?"

"Answer: South Dakota (76.9% of schools are located in rural communities); Montana (74.9%); North Dakota (72.1%); Vermont (71.3%); Maine (67.4%); Alaska (65.5%); Nebraska (59.6%); Wyoming (57%); Arkansas (54.2%); Iowa (54.2%); Oklahoma (52.5%); New Hampshire (51.9%); Alabama (51.6%); and West Virginia (51.4%)."

Watching the carpool grow

The state government controversy of the day is the growth of the state vehicle fleet. Republican gubernatorial candidate Jim Keet has made it a signature campaign issue and faulted Gov. Mike Beebe for not doing more to curb vehicle spending. It's not simple, of course. Vehicles are spread among many agencies outside the governor's direct control and a significant number of vehicles are the sort no taxpayer would criticize — highway trucks, police cruisers and the like.

An overview: Of the 8,653 current state vehicles, 4,495 are owned by independent constitutional agencies — the state Game and Fish Commission, the Highway and Transportation Department and colleges and universities. Of the rest, 1,823 are with law enforcement agencies, 775 with natural resource agencies, 570 with the Department of Health and Human Services, 108 with constitutional officers and elected officials (the most controversial segment, though relatively small) and 882 for 52 agencies, boards and commissions (most of these are motor pool vehicles). Noted: 1,896 (or 21 percent) of all vehicles are greater than one ton in size — trucks, buses, ambulances, construction machinery.

A solid total state car count doesn't go back further than 1998. That year, when Mike Huckabee was governor, the state counted 7,465 cars. At the end of 2006, as Huckabee was leaving office, the count was 8,508. That's an increase of 1,043, or an average of 130 vehicles a year. Since 2006, under Beebe's tenure, the increase has been about 36 a year. Keet, so far, hasn't emphasized the difference in Republican and Democratic administration vehicle growth.

Favorite

From the ArkTimes store

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Most Shared

  • ASU to reap $3.69 million from estate of Jim and Wanda Lee Vaughn

    Arkansas State University announced today plans for spending an expected $3.69 million gift in the final distribution of the estate of Jim and Wanda Lee Vaughn, who died in 2013 and 2015 respectively.
  • Bad health care bill, again

    Wait! Postpone tax reform and everything else for a while longer because the Senate is going to try to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act one more time before September ends and while it can do it with the votes of only 50 senators.
  • Sex on campus

    Look, the Great Campus Rape Crisis was mainly hype all along. What Vice President Joe Biden described as an epidemic of sexual violence sweeping American college campuses in 2011 was vastly overstated.
  • The inadequate legacy of Brown

    LRSD continues to abdicate its responsibility to educate poor black students.

Latest in Smart Talk

  • Better than Texas

    Arkansas's tax system is slightly more friendly to the poorest people, but only slightly.
    • Aug 24, 2011
  • Small-school champions

    Two Arkansas congressmen are among the 14 sponsors of a bill that would "correct" a provision of the federal school-funding formula they say favors large school districts over small districts.
    • Aug 24, 2011
  • Bipartisan race

    The rise of Republicanism in Arkansas has brought a rare two-party race to the state Senate in Southeast Arkansas, traditionally a Democratic stronghold.
    • Aug 24, 2011
  • More »

Event Calendar

« »

September

S M T W T F S
  1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

 

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