Sept. 16-22, 2009
It was a GOOD week for …
GOV. MIKE BEEBE. Despite legislative pressure, he nixed a request to release money for a tunnel between the Capitol and new legislative offices in Big MAC. There are about 100 feet to cover, or $28,000 per foot.
DOUBLE-DIPPING TEACHER RETIREES. Retirement System Director George Hopkins suspended efforts to collect millions in overpayments of state pensions to retirees who went to work for colleges and universities. He said new legal research indicated they might have an argument.
JENNINGS OSBORNE. He got a $3 million judgment in a suit over unrealized profits from sale of his drug research company to investors led by the wealthy Stephens family. The jury trial allowed Osborne to put on testimony — and grill Stephens Inc. CEO Warren Stephens — about what Osborne said were buyer misrepresentations.
It was a bad week for …
U.S. REP. MIKE ROSS. Polling shows that more people in his district SUPPORT a public option than oppose it, contrary to what he's been saying. New investigative reporting also showed he'd received a smelly windfall from sale of his family pharmacy to a drug chain and that he's been toting water for drugstore chains in Congress. Coincidence?
BOBBY PETRINO. The Hog football coach proved that his team can score through the air. Unfortunately, his team demonstrated little by way of defense or kicking skills. Bottom line: Georgia 52, Arkansas 41.
The CLINTON LIBRARY. The presidential center has been voluntarily paying half (more than $200,000 a year) of park maintenance costs although the city of Little Rock was supposed to pick up all the cost starting in 2007. The library's reward? A front-page story in the Democrat-Gazette, based on a complaint from long-time critic Gene Pfeifer, that the voluntary payment wasn't backed up by a written contract. The paper then had to explain several days later that oral contracts with cities are commonplace. Oh, never mind.