County recreation grant requests top $400,000

November 4, 2010 It was special requests night Monday for the Independence County Parks and Recreation Committee.The requests were coming from nonprofit agencies, towns and schools across the county wanting the committee to help fund programs special to them.The biggest special request, of the 54 made to the committee, came from the Batesville Recreation Department to the tune of $149,132.80.No one from the city of Batesville was present to give a verbal request, so the county committee just mentioned the dollar amount briefly before moving on to other requests.

Legalize-marijuana loses in California

November 3, 2010 SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Californians heeded warnings of legal chaos and other dangers and rejected a ballot measure Tuesday that would have made their state the first to legalize marijuana for recreational use.The spirited campaign over Proposition 19 pitted the state’s political and law enforcement establishment against determined activists seeking to end the prohibition of pot.It was by far the highest-profile of the 160 ballot measures being decided in 37 states. Other topics included abortion, tax cuts and health care reform.

Voters approve amendments

November 3, 2010 LITTLE ROCK (AP) — Arkansas voters on Tuesday gave their approval to a trio of constitutional amendments, including one that ensures the right to hunt and fish.A measure that gives the Legislature the power to issue bonds to help lure companies to the state was approved, as was an amendment to raise the state interest-rate limit for business and government loans. Included in that proposal was a provision to allow bond financing for energy-efficiency projects.

Library board eyes activities

November 3, 2010 The Independence County Library Board will meet at 3 p.m. Thursday in the juvenile courtroom of the Jess B. Carpenter library building at 368 E. Main St., Batesville.Library activities will be discussed.

Post office to hold meeting on moving some operations

November 3, 2010 LITTLE ROCK — The U.S. Postal Service will hold a public meeting to discuss its proposal to move some mail processing operations from the Batesville Post Office into the Northeast Arkansas Mail Processing Center in Jonesboro.The meeting will take place at 7 p.m. Nov. 17 at the Citizens Bank Annex, 285 East College. A summary of the proposal and presentation materials will be made available to the public on usps.com prior to the meeting.

Clark, Boone counties OK booze

November 3, 2010 ARKADELPHIA (AP) — Voters in southwest Arkansas’ Clark County and northern Arkansas’ Boone County have approved the sale of alcoholic beverages.In Clark County, the Daily Siftings-Herald newspaper reported that final but unofficial results show 4,305 votes cast to approve alcohol sales, with 3,380 voting to keep the county dry.In Boone County, the Harrison Daily Times reported that unofficial results showed 7,582 votes in favor of alcohol sales, 6,771 votes against, with all but 431 absentee ballots counted.

Three indicted for burning cross

November 3, 2010 LITTLE ROCK — The burning of a cross in Salado last summer has resulted in a federal indictment.James Bradley Branscum, 22, and Tony Branscum, 24, both of Salado, and Curtis Coffee, 18, of Batesville, were indicted by a federal grand jury on charges related to their roles in burning a cross in the yard of an African-American resident on Aug. 28, announced Jane W. Duke, U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas.

Sharp — Votes count for sheriff

November 3, 2010 ASH FLAT — Democratic candidate Mark Counts of Cave City swept to victory over independent Jim Estes of Ash Flat with 71 percent of the vote (4,157 to 1,690) in Tuesday’s general election, but County Judge Larry Brown had it a little tougher.Brown, also a Democrat from Cave City, was barely ahead of Republican challenger Phillip Hood of rural Williford, 1,018 to 1,012, after the early voting box was counted, but made slow but steady gains throughout the night to finish with 3,127 votes (almost 52.73 percent) to 2.803 for Hood.

Izard — Road tax bites dust

November 3, 2010 MELBOURNE — A sales tax that would have sunset in six years and was designed for county roads bit the dust Tuesday night when 67 percent in Izard County overwhelmingly said no. Two run-off races developed with a mayoral race in Horseshoe Bend and Justice of the Peace District 5.Izard County Sheriff Tate Lawrence won overwhelmingly with nearly 65 percent of the vote. Walter Hagan came in second with approximately 21 percent while Eddie Edmondston received 14.

Republicans take key seats

November 3, 2010 LITTLE ROCK — Democrats in once-reliably blue Arkansas now face a political identity crisis, grappling with an election that handed Republicans a Senate seat and a majority of the state’s congressional seats for the first time since Reconstruction.The grim night for Democrats in Tuesday’s election included Republican U.S. Rep. John Boozman’s victory over incumbent Blanche Lincoln in the U.S. Senate race, and the loss of congressional seats in eastern and central Arkansas. It marked the biggest political shift in the state since the 1870s.