by Max Brantley
The Little Rock Board of Directors took a rare step Tuesday night and voted to rescind zoning approval for Judge Willard Proctor's Cycle Breakers probation program in a former school district building near the Carver Magnet School in the East End. Neighbors and school parents had objected to putting hundreds of criminal offenders on the streets near the school in a central location for a project that had been scattered previously around the city.
Even though Proctor's lawyers offered two amendments to address concerns about hours of operation and to exclude sex offenders, the proposal to reinstate the zoning with amendments failed 5-6. Mayor Stodola and Directors Fortson, Hurst, Wright, Keck and Wyrick voted against the zoning. "This is not a vote on the program, it's a vote on the location," Stodola said. Proctor said he was concerned the School District wouldn't refund the $300,000 he'd spent on the building at 800 Apperson.