by Max Brantley
Occupy Little Rock, which has made protection of the Lake Maumelle watershed one of its key issues, has announced on Facebook that it will attend a barbecue at 1 p.m. today at Joe T. Robinson Middle School that is a fund-raiser for a group attempting to block land use rules in the watershed.
Occupy LR calls this event, with plenty of justification, the Koch Brothers Property Owners BBQ. The Koch-sponsored Americans for Prosperity, whose lobbyist in Arkansas also represents major watershed land owner and developer Deltic Timber, has been fomenting opposition to ANY form of regulation of land use on the acreage that drains into Central Arkansas's water supply. The Quorum Court soon will review a proposal backed by Central Arkansas Water and others that would impose some restrictions on land use, though still allow development of 39,000 homes in the watershed. This apparently isn't enough for the Koch/Deltic combine. (CORRECTION: Deltic can build 39,000 homes in the Pulaski County portion of the watershed only, only 40 percent of the total acreage. Who knows how many they can build elsewhere?)
It's unclear if Occupy LR plans to buy tickets to join or to merely occupy a patch of ground at the public school while Koch-heads come and go. Presumably the Koch-heads recognize Occupy LR's right to assemble on public property. On the other hand, they don't recognize a public interest in protecting the public's water supply, so .....