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The Insider, Nov. 1

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Truckin'

Though many former holders of the Miss Arkansas title wind up parlaying their year in the statewide spotlight into a modeling or public relations job after passing on the crown, one recent Miss Arkansas has taken a decidedly different path: Long haul trucking.

A native of Hazen, Eudora Mosby-Evans won the title of Miss Arkansas in 2005 — only the second black woman in the history of the state to have done so — and went on to place in the top 10 at the Miss America pageant. After her reign, she tried the standard route, working in public relations. Then, seven months ago, she took an off-ramp from her career and hit the road with her truck driver husband, Larry.

Reached by phone on the way to Indianapolis, Mosby-Evans said that the experience has been interesting enough that she's thinking about getting her own license to drive the big rigs. She said that she and her husband get back to their home in Sherwood every two or three months.

“It's been a lot of fun,” she said. “We've seen the good, the bad and the questionable.”

Judge denied

Some Arkansas officeholders consider Hillary Clinton sort of a favorite-daughter candidate in the Democratic presidential race, but Barack Obama was the candidate Circuit Judge Marion A. Humphrey wanted to endorse when he asked the state Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission if judges could support candidates for political office. The Commission said no, although it has abandoned some of its other rules forbidding politically-related activity by judges.

West Memphis Three

This will reach some readers too late, but we wanted to get out word that supporters of the West Memphis Three have scheduled a panel discussion at 10 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 1, at the UALR Law School's Friday Court Room to discuss a new court filing in the case of three men convicted of the slaying of three West Memphis children in 1994. The filing, through DNA tests and other expert testimony, argues that the three could not be guilty of the crime and points a finger at the stepfather of one of the slain children.

Loose ends

As we indicated earlier, County Judge Buddy Villines is feeling better as he gets medication adjusted to cope with a heart condition and he's now telling people that he'll positively seek re-election in 2008. … KUAR plans to add a Spanish-language news channel at the end of the year.

Land bank

A Little Rock ordinance has been drafted that would establish a city land bank to hold abandoned and neglected properties for later sale to developers. The ordinance, which will be sent to the City Board by the Community Housing Advisory Board, takes advantage of a law passed by the General Assembly that allows the state Land Commissioner to donate to cities tax-delinquent properties held for a year. The land bank could also take possession of properties the city has liens against.

Little Rock had 800 properties identified as unsafe and vacant last year, Housing and Neighborhood Programs Director Andre Bernard said. A work group will meet at 9 a.m. Nov. 9 at the Willie Hinton Neighborhood Resource Center to give the draft, which creates the land bank commission and rules on acquiring property, the once-over before the advisory board presents it.

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