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The week that was Jan. 5-11

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IT WAS A GOOD WEEK FOR …

REP. BENNY PETRUS. He easily won a race for House speaker in 2007 over Rep. Will Bond. Some legislators who committed to Bond apparently broke their promises. Shocking.

TAXES. The state continues to report rising surpluses, a couple hundred million halfway through the year. There’s no excuse not to spend a bit of it on schools.


IT WAS A BAD WEEK FOR …

RAIN. Whoever heard of turning on sprinklers in January? (But hours after the governor issued a statewide call for prayer, a light rain came.)

TOM COUGHLIN. The former Wal-Mart vice chairman will enter a guilty plea to defrauding his former employer, various newspapers reported. There’s growing evidence that the multimillionaire’s alibi that he was diverting the money to a company anti-union campaign was a dodge (and a readily believable one given the company’s antipathy toward unions) to cover his fraud.

NORTH LITTLE ROCK. Costs are rising on the new minor league baseball park, requiring $2 million worth of changes in specs, and the city has upset Arkansas Traveler management and fans by saying it will charge to park at lots near the new stadium. Parking at Ray Winder in Little Rock is free.

KARK. Channel 4 joined another cowardly NBC affiliate, in Indiana, in refusing to show “The Book of Daniel,” a soap opera about an Episcopal priest. It bowed to a pressure campaign from the Religious Right. WB 42 picked up the show and a lot of curious viewers.

REGGIE CORBITT. After years of saying annexations had no impact on sewer costs, wastewater utility CEO Corbitt defended the need for $181 million in sewer rate increases by telling the Democrat-Gazette that his agency has little voice in the new development that is a big factor in the need for money. It could and should. If only it had.

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