MOORE ON MAUMELLE: My Take 

Dare we get optimistic? The Covid numbers are moving in the right direction. Those who can are getting their vaccines. Unfortunately, many are ignoring the directives and continue to do as they please. And now we have variants that are attacking us, which is even more reason to double up on being safe and doing the right things. You know the drill. 

It appears that we are getting ready for a dog fight in Maumelle, literally. The pit bull ordinance has come up again with Council Member Chad Gardner introducing an ordinance that would amend the city code to revise enforcement procedures, eliminate the categories of “potentially dangerous animal” and “hazardous animal,” change the current definition of “dangerous animal” and remove the ban on certain breeds of dogs.

Council members are already taking sides, with Council Member Steve Mosley adamantly opposing the new ordinance in a letter to constituents. 

This will be a divisive discussion but will certainly spice up the upcoming Council meetings with the second and third readings coming up. 

I’m not sure how I feel about it but, like many of you, was complacent with the existing ordinance. I will be watching the debate closely. 

With everything going on the world, I’m not sure I agree with tackling this issue when there are so many other important things to consider. Did Mr. Gardner need something to keep him busy?

Ultimately, the decision should probably go to the voters to decide.  It would be a shame for a Council member to lose their seat because of the dog vote. 

Lowery’s Bill Goes Down 

House Bill 1231, by Rep. Mark Lowery, R-Maumelle, didn’t make it out of committee. His ill-conceived, offensive bill to control the teachings of our history teachers was soundly criticized by students, teachers, fellow lawmakers and the head of the Arkansas Education Department. The message sent to Rep. Lowery was that legislators don’t need to be in the curriculum business. And threatening to withhold funding if schools didn’t comply is simply abuse of power. 

Mr. Lowery has embarrassed himself, his district and our state by his bill to disallow the complete study of the past and his other bill to suppress voter freedom through mandatory I.D. to vote with no alternative. Voters deserve better and thank goodness, he has announced he won’t run again. Unfortunately, I have a hunch he may take a shot at a Senate seat. 

Conscientious voters don’t forget. 

Griffin Exits Race; Do You Blame Him? 

Lt. Gov. Tim Griffin is smarter than I thought. He has bailed out on the governor’s race and shifted his time and money to the attorney general race, which so far makes him the only serious announced candidate. I don’t blame him. He looked at facing Sarah Huckabee Sanders and the current AG, Leslie Rutledge, and figured that it would be a losing cause with Sanders the current favorite. Thus, the only semi-qualified candidate has left the race and we face having a governor not only unqualified but both closely connected to former President Trump, unfortunately an advantage in Arkansas. 

Please run, Jim Hendren. 

Bella Rustina Returns 

The Bella Rustina Modern Vintage Market will take place Feb. 12-14 at 9300 Maumelle Boulevard in North Little Rock.  Bella Rustina is locally owned out of Maumelle (Ashley Norris, wife of Mayor Caleb Norris) and is the largest vintage market in Central Arkansas. Exhibitors will fill 200+ booths with everything from vintage to handmade creations to vintage-inspired décor. 

The organizer said they also have food trucks and many indoor food choices.  The vintage market will be open Friday - Saturday, Feb. 12-13, from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sunday, Feb. 14, from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. Early-buying admission on Friday is $8 for adults. Regular admission is $5 Saturday and Sunday for each adult. Admission is free for children 12 and under. Admission is good for re-entry all weekend and parking is free.

Arkansas Department of Health Covid-19 event directives will be followed and include: Masks required for all workers, exhibitors and customers, sanitizing stations at the entrance and throughout the building. A limited number of customers will be allowed in the building at once.  

Super Bowl TV

The expectations are extremely high each year for the Super Bowl.  We expect a great game, great commercials and a great halftime show. The game was not great, some of the commercials (at $5.5 million for a 30-second ad) were good and the halftime show was just OK. Obviously, I am not the target audience for The Weeknd.  “God Bless America” performed by H.E.R. was fantastic. See, I am pretty hip. 

The National Anthem performed by Eric Church and Jazmine Sullivan was not that great to me. I much prefer the version sung by Whitney Houston in 1991.  

The Super Bowl keeps trying to become a reflection of our conscience with some commercials offering to provide a moral compass for us. I appreciate your effort, but that’s not really the job of beer and car companies.  

Stay Safe. Wear your mask. Keep your distance. Get your shot when you can. 

See you on the Boulevard. 

Neal Moore is a public relations consultant and resident of Maumelle. Send your Maumelle news or comments to neal.moore@sbcglobal.net. Thanks, PJ. 

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