IT WAS A GOOD WEEK FOR …
ARKANSAS. The care of people displaced by Katrina went smoothly, with a drop in numbers at mass shelters and acts of kindness in the tens of thousands. The arrivals aren’t without cost — some 700 unexpected children in public schools and several hundred new Medicaid recipients.
ASA HUTCHINSON. After some early Bush administration cheerleading, the Republican gubernatorial candidate and homeland security expert finally acknowledged that the department he once helped lead, Homeland Security, hadn’t been too sharp in its initial response to Katrina.
GOV. MIKE HUCKABEE. He also criticized the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s cluelessness.
LAKE MAUMELLE. Central Arkansas Water will condemn Deltic Timber’s lakeside acreage to prevent pollution from a proposed residential development.
The HELENA-WEST HELENA SCHOOL DISTRICT. The state took over the financially beleaguered and politically divided district. Maybe education will resume.
IT WAS A BAD WEEK FOR …
SIMON PROPERTY GROUP. Federal court testimony indicated near-scandalous maintenance of the dying University Mall by the world’s largest shopping center operator. Simon, you may recall, long deadbeat the city on a promised $25,000 contribution to a University Avenue redevelopment study. It also strong-armed city board members into approving the Summit Mall, which would have been University’s death knell but for a successful battle by taxpayers. Remember these things the next time these highwaymen ask for a favor. (We’re talking to you, would-be Mayor Graves.)
UA FOOTBALL COACH HOUSTON NUTT. The Hogs have long wanted to get SEC cupcake Vanderbilt on the schedule. We get them and what do the Commodores do? Beat the Hogs, in Fayetteville.