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The week that was May 2-8

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It was a good week for …

The DOUBLETREE HOTEL. An expensive makeover is promised by an investment group proposing to buy the downtown hotel.

LU HARDIN. The UCA president was voted a $100,000 bonus by the college board for his work in increasing enrollment and scholarships and otherwise creating a buzz about what is now the state’s second-largest university.

STEVE DOZIER. The director of the State Police landed a golden parachute — a new job as a vice president for security at Wal-Mart, where another State Police director, Tom Mars, works as corporate counsel.

GOV. MIKE BEEBE. He wasted no time in splitting the Health and Human Services Department as new legislation allowed. The merger was done in the Huckabee era to paper over mismanagement in the Health Department.

It was a bad week for …

The LITTLE ROCK SCHOOL BOARD. The legal battle escalated as Superintendent Roy Brooks went nuclear in federal court with an unending string of filings and irrelevant arguments intend to delay his inevitable forced departure, desired by a majority of the elected School Board.

SCHOOL BOARD PRESIDENT KATHERINE MITCHELL. She wants Superintendent Brooks gone. She perhaps has good reason to fire him summarily. But the district would be better served if she’d use her leadership to negotiate Brooks’ peaceful departure (with pay) and indicate her willingness to work toward a consensus on a replacement.

MIKE HUCKABEE. Given national exposure in a televised debate with other Republican presidential hopefuls, he put himself in the extremist corner by joining Tom Tancredo and Sam Brownback in a show of hands signaling they did NOT believe in evolution. He hastened to explain himself the next day, but the damage — like Dukakis’ tank helmet — was done. He’s the anti-science candidate.

DRIVERS. Regular gas neared $3 a gallon.

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