Re-elect who?

The way we’ve always understood it, the word “re-elect” is reserved for use by incumbents in political campaigns. But Little Rock City Board candidate Erma Fingers Hendrix stretched that definition: Her campaign signs asked voters to “re-elect” Hendrix, a real estate broker who represented Ward 1 on the board from December of 1993 to December of 1994.

“Maybe that’s the norm, but we can do freedom of speech,” Hendrix said. Campaign volunteers suggested she use the phrase, she said.

Hendrix, who currently serves on the state parole board, came onto the Little Rock board of directors in a special election held right after voters approved a change from a 7-member at-large board to the current 11-member ward and at-large structure, but was defeated in the general election a year later. She’s also run unsuccessful campaigns for school board and as a Republican for the state House of Representatives.

Bumpers bumped

Gov. Mike Huckabee’s official portrait was to be unveiled Nov. 9 at a State Capitol ceremony. This will eventually set off a shuffle at the Capitol.

There is a longstanding protocol governing where the portraits of former governors are hung.

The portrait of the immediately preceding governor looms over the Governor’s Conference Room, located on the second floor as you come up the stairs on the north side of the building. That’s where Jim Guy Tucker’s portrait has hung for the last 10 years.

During that same period, the four previous governors’ portraits (Bill Clinton, Frank White, David Pryor and Dale Bumpers) have graced corners of the Capitol rotunda.

After the new governor takes office in January, Huckabee’s portrait will go up in the conference room, and Tucker will join Clinton, White and Pryor in the rotunda. Bumpers will be relegated to the first floor of the Capitol with his predecessors.

Birds on the air

Ken Smith, state director of Audubon Arkansas, says that the conservation group has bought an antenna and equipment, and will begin broadcasting an AM radio station dedicated to ecology and conservation in late 2007, after renovations are completed on a new Audubon nature center near Gillam Park in Southeast Little Rock. The new 6,100-square-foot center will be located in the former Granite Mountain community center.

The radio station, broadcasting from the new center, will have a five-mile radius signal range — far enough to reach downtown Little Rock, the Little Rock National Airport and all the major freeway hubs on the east side of town. Metal signs on the freeway will alert motorists to tune to the station, which Smith said will feature weather, information about programs at the nature center, birding and wildlife programs, interviews with biologists, ecologists and other scientists, and reports from students and interns studying at the Audubon center. Smith said it will be the only Audubon nature center in the country with its own radio station.


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