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High living

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You’ll notice in the real estate transactions list in our classified section that sales are closing on 300 Third, the Moses-Tucker high-rise condo nearing completion at Third and Cumberland. Campbell Ranch LLC scores the top sale, $2.4 million, this week for three condos on two floors that will form one expansive residence. We understand that the Campbell in question is Craig Campbell, a new member of the state Game and Fish Commission and son-in-law of the late tycoon Witt Stephens. We presume Campbell was just having a little fun when he talked recently to a Democrat-Gazette reporter about his hunting and fishing activities. “I’m primarily a cane pole man when it comes to fishing,” Campbell said. “I love bream and crappie. I went through my bass phase, but I couldn’t afford it and had to see a psychiatrist.”

Not in the deeds this week but soon to come is Joe Johnson, the Little Rock native NBA star, who will stack units on the 14th and 15th floors into a two-story residence with an internal stairway.


We tend to circle the wagons around here anytime someone attempts to restrict our drinking privileges. Given that, imagine our horror when a look at the calendar found that New Year’s Eve falls on a Sunday this year. Some readers will no doubt remember the bad old days, when the folks at Arkansas Alcoholic Beverage Control shut off the spigot two full hours before the ball dropped on Sunday-falling New Year’s Eves.

This year, however, drinkers and those who serve won’t have to worry about such restrictions, at least not in the handful of Arkansas cities with Sunday drink permits.

Milton Lueken, an attorney with the ABC, said that in February 1995, state lawmakers amended the law on the subject. Now, in years when New Year’s Eve falls on a Sunday, the law allows those establishments with Sunday liquor sales permits to begin serving at noon on New Year’s Eve and continue until 2 a.m. New Year’s Day.

“Normally they would have to quit at 10 on Sunday, but with a special act of the legislature, they go from 12 noon to 2 a.m. Monday morning,” Lueken said. “That should be long enough for anybody, I would think.”

Those looking to imbibe at home better stock up on Saturday, however. The law did nothing to change the Sunday restrictions on retail alcohol sales.

Changing sides

We’ve been meaning to mention more episodes of revolving door political support in Arkansas, such as when former Huckabee finance chair Ron Fuller announced he’d be supporting Democrat Mike Beebe in this year’s governor’s race.

A couple more: Former Sen. Bill Walker, the recent mayoral candidate, serves in a $70,000-a-year job on the state Parole Board, courtesy of a Mike Huckabee appointment. Walker was rewarded for supporting Huckabee in 2002 against Democrat Jimmie Lou Fisher.

That was then. Walker was one of the Beebe One Hundred — 100 people responsible for raising $10,000 each for Gov.-elect Mike Beebe’s first million in campaign fund-raising. (He eventually got more than $6 million.) Walker said he and Little Rock lawyer Richard Mays were the only African-Americans in the 100. Mays, you might recall, received a paid appointment to the state Banking Board from Huckabee. Mays, a Democrat like Walker and former major supporter of Bill Clinton, has been a contributor to several Huckabee-related accounts.

Not overlooked

Gary Green, the owner of 4.5 acres on Overlook Drive at the west end of Rebsamen Park Road that he once considered developing with townhouses, may have an offer on the land, neighborhood sources say. Green declined comment.

Green purchased the land in October from Our House, a non-profit agency that had obtained the land, where a pavilion once provided a view of the Murray Lock and Dam, from the federal government after the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers deaccessioned it. Our House got about a third of the $550,000 sale price and the federal government the rest.

The property is in a neighborhood of high-dollar single family homes, and Green, who talked to residents about his plan, got some negative feedback about development. Residents are hoping that the rumored sale will produce a single-family home and spare them a battle over condo development on the steep and narrow strip of land.

An online ad put the asking price of the land at $1.2 million. Green, a lawyer, originally intended to build 30 luxury townhouses on the property, one for himself, in a development he said would be worth $25 million.

Double trouble

State Court of Appeals Judge Wendell Griffen, object of a relentless pursuit by state judicial regulators for his propensity for making speeches on public policy, may have another matter to contend with. Talk is circulating of a Pulaski circuit judge gearing up to challenge his re-election bid in two years.

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