The week that was Jan. 19-25, 2005 

IT WAS A GOOD WEEK FOR … FREE LUNCHES. The same day the Democrat-Gazette reported a rise in the number of school kids qualifying for subsidized school lunches on account of rising poverty, the newspaper reported across the page how state legislators can get fed free just about every day by lobbyists. Heavens, no, it would never influence their votes. ATTORNEY GENERAL MIKE BEEBE. U.S. Rep. Mike Ross announced he wouldn’t run for governor in 2006. That seems to clear the field to the Democratic nomination for Beebe, who’ll likely face the winner of a Republican cage match between Lt. Gov. Win Rockefeller and Asa Hutchinson. JOCKS. A report concluded that, yes, after the University of Arkansas loosened up its rule on transferring D grades, athletes tended to be more successful than others in getting credit for Ds. Why? Because they get help from the athletic department in making application, you ninny. Other students are on their own. SCHOOL VOUCHERS. The UA received $20 million from anonymous and Walton sources to fund a department of education “reform.” Whaddya bet they’ll soon be ginning out reports favorable to vouchers, charter schools and other pet Walton “reforms”? PINNACLE VALLEY. The Little Rock sewer committee followed the law and recommended a site in Little Rock rather than in the unincorporated valley, where residents had put up a fuss. Now upscale neighbors are screaming about the new site. IT WAS A BAD WEEK FOR … PUBLIC HEALTH. Because planned chemical weapons incinerators may not come on line as expected in Colorado and Kentucky, more hazardous waste may be shipped through Arkansas to the Pine Bluff Arsenal. STAN HEATH. The honeymoon is over for the Hog basketball coach. Sportswriters are openly questioning his coaching. The radio talk show experts are getting restless. He needs to do more than beat Auburn.

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