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It was a good week for the private option 

It was a good week for ...

THE PRIVATE OPTION. After four previous tries, Arkansas's version of Medicaid expansion received the super-majority necessary in the Arkansas House of Representative to refund it.

THUNDER SLEET. After Sunday's deluge turned into the latest round of "wintry mix," Gov. Mike Beebe called out the National Guard on Tuesday to help the State Police and others bring aid to motorists stranded on ice-covered stretches of Interstates 40 and 55 in Northeast Arkansas. In Little Rock, Monday's high of 28 was the lowest high temperature recorded on that date.

NORTH LITTLE ROCK. A new State Veterans Home will be built on a site next to the North Little Rock Veterans Administration Hospital at Fort Roots, state Veterans Affairs Department head Cissy Rucker announced Tuesday.

GOP MAJORITY. At Monday's filing deadline, Republican candidates led Democrats 35-27 in races where no major party opposition existed, giving the GOP an edge in holding its legislative majority.

It was a bad week for ...

HOT SPRINGS. The landmark Majestic Hotel, vacant since 2006 and recently boarded up, caught fire last Thursday and kept burning as dozens of firefighters worked to extinguish the flames. Coverage of the spectacular fire kindled memories among thousands of Arkansans from the resort hotel's happier days.

CIRCUIT JUDGE MIKE MAGGIO. The judge, a candidate for the state Court of Appeals, is under investigation by the State Judicial and Disability Commission for inappropriate comments he made on an LSU fan website under the pseudonym "geauxjudge." The comments revealed that actress Charlize Theron had adopted a child through a Faulkner County court, a proceeding that is supposed to be confidential. Geauxjudge also ridiculed Arkansas and made sexist remarks about women.

LITTLE ROCK. A new survey based on FBI data shows that among the top 10 most dangerous mid-sized cities, Little Rock, ranked fifth and was one of only three that showed no improvement in its overall crime statistics in the first half of 2013 over the same period in 2012.

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