by Max Brantley
* TAKE OR LEAVE WATER DEAL: Kathy Wells, president of the Coalition of Greater Little Rock Neighborhoods, in an e-mail to neighborhood groups, distills the ongoing debate on land use rules for the Lake Maumelle watershed to their essence. County Judge Buddy Villines on the Deltic Timber-influenced rules, which allow intensive residential development: "Take it or leave it." Graham Rich, head of Central Arkansas Water, which depends on Lake Maumelle for most of its water, says: "I'll take it."
Villines is undoubtedly right as a matter of politics, particularly given the absence of leadership from elected or other public officials. Between Deltic and Koch-backed lobbying, wackjobs and a retrograde county planning body and Pulaski Quorum Court, it'll be a miracle if anything passes. What the hell. Stick the next generation. By the time Lake Maumelle is full to the brim of sediment, I'll be long gone. And it'll be too hot to grow anything here, no matter how much sprinkler water we have.
The water commission votes on the rules tomorrow afternoon.