OBITUARIES >> 3-8-06

JOHN WILEY, 61John F. Wiley, 61, of Jacksonville died March 3. He was a retired mechanic from Smurfit Stone.Wiley is survived by two sons and daughters-in-law Chris and Jackie Wiley of Jacksonville and Travis and Bertha Wiley of Houston, Ark., one brother, Walter Van New of California; one sister, Phyllis Kimbell of Collinsville, Ill.; three grandchildren, Joanna Wiley and Elizabeth […]

SAT 3-8-6 EDITORIAL >> Beebe sues payday lenders

Hats off to Attorney General Mike Beebe, who asked a circuit court this week to close a hybrid check-cashing business at Jonesboro that is charging up to 520 percent interest. Money in a is a particularly blatant scam so the attorney general and Democratic candidate for governor feels secure in going after one of its outlets.Money in a […]

SAT 3-8-6 EDITORIAL >> Ruling goes against TIF

Circuit Judge Kim Smith deserves the state’s thanks for striking down a scheme to divert school taxes for downtown business development in Fayetteville. Judge Smith ruled in the only way that the law really permitted but that big development interests refuse to acknowledge. He said that 25 mills of state-levied property taxes for the schools could not be used to […]

WED 3-8-6 EDITORIAL >> Health plan first in nation

We knew Mike Huckabee pretty well. When he is not in out-of-state Republican precincts bashing gays, abortion and Democrats, Gov. Huckabee is a big-government liberal working to preserve and expand the welfare state. But we frankly were surprised this week by the news that the Bush administration had signed off on a big expansion of government health care, even if […]

SPORTS >> Mentor gone, but won’t be forgotten

By RAY BENTONLeader sports editorJacksonville lost one of its most dedicated supporters last week when Jacksonville Softball Association director Sam Ashabranner died at the age of 61.Ashabranner ran the JYSA for the last 12 years and was instrumental in making Dupree Park one of the busiest ballparks in the state. He also played a major role in putting on some […]

SPORTS >> Lady Panthers beaten in semis

By JASON KINGLeader sports writerAn amazing run came to an end on Saturday afternoon at the UALR Stephens Center when the Cabot Lady Panthers lost their AAAAA semifinal game to North Little Rock 50-39. Cabot led from the tip-off until 2:57 left in the first half, when the Lady Wildcats took their first lead of the game. Unfortunately for the […]

NEIGHBORS >> Remembering Dakota

By SARA GREENELeader staff writerThose left behind will never forget himHundreds attended celebration services for Henry Dakota Hawkins Sunday afternoon at First Baptist Church in Cabot, a testimony to the many lives he touched. After beating acute myeloid leukemia last spring, Dakota passed away at his home last Thursday morning. Services started with videotaped presentations of Dakota’s grandfathers, Frank Hawkins […]

FROM THE PUBLISHER >> Author says ivory bill is alive here!

GARRICK FELDMANLeader PublisherLast weekend’s Call of the Ivory-billed Woodpecker Festival drew hundreds of birdwatchers to Brink-ley, where ornithologists remained upbeat about the bird’s existence after several reported sightings over the past two years.“The ivory bill lives!” That was the inscription Tim Gallagher wrote in my copy of his wonderful book, “The Grail Bird: Hot on the Trail of the Ivory-Billed […]

FROM THE PUBLISHER >> Dubai buys off Bill, but not Hillary

GARRICK FELDMANLeader PublisherSen. Hillary Clinton and her husband, the former president, should get their heads together and decide where their family stands on handing over control of our ports to an Arab company.She is against it, but he’s for it, and they both have their reasons. Mrs. Clinton thinks the port take-over is a terrible idea because she’s running for […]

TOP STORY >> Naturalists can obtain a four-color guide

By EILEEN FELDMANLeader Managing EditorThe Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism and 12 partners have produced “Birding and Watchable Wildlife,” a guide to help wildlife enthusiasts catch glimpses of creatures in their natural surroundings. Also provided are viewing tips and viewing ethics.The oversize folding brochure features full-color photography and sections devoted to wildlife found in Arkansas and highlighting the ivory-billed […]