Friday night open line | Arkansas Blog

Friday night open line

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The line is open. Final note:

* The University of Arkansas Board of Trustees met today and approved tuition increases announced earlier. No movement on the search for a new UA System president except some discussion about logistics of the search. Dr. Carl Johnson, the board chairman, told me afterward that he remains committed to an open process. He said potential candidates might visit Arkansas prior to applications, but if they are to be seriously considered they will have to apply and their names be released. Dr. Johnson said he would not approve of meetings in which two trustees met. The UA counsel thinks — but I and many legal authorities don't — that the FOI law allows two trustees to meet on business without notifying the public. "We can't go forward that way," Dr. Johnson said.

He said, however, that it likely would be vital to attracting good candidates to get some preliminary visits by potential candidates before applications. He said he has several promising prospects on his radar and hope they'll eventually choose to apply and be interviewed. Until such candidates emerge, local lobbying will continue for a couple of political candidates and former trustees, farmer Stanley Reed of Marianna and banker Frank Oldham of Jonesboro.

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