Thumbs: Dr. Robbins, Mayflower, March Madness

Strong bloodline. Conway product Dr. Jerry Robbins, named a distinguished alumnus by the University of Arkansas, is the son of Hal Robbins, well remembered and highly respected by older local folks as Conway High School principal. The Robbins family moved to Conway from De Queen in the late 1940s.


Not a stopping point. No one should assume the Mayflower oil spill is “over” despite generally positive reports by ExxonMobil and other entities. We favor the stance of the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission — continue monitoring all factors including plant and animal life indefinitely. There is no rush for closing the door on the incident.

Curious at the least. Pine Bluff has a most interesting controversy — whether or not there will be an elect for mayor this year. A former mayor, defeated last time, says he is running in a May primary. The current mayor says there will be no election until 2016. Yep, sounds like something out of a third world nation.

There is a future. With basketball formally over this season for the Arkansas Razorbacks, a quick assessment is two-fold. One, the Hogs improved from a year ago despite the three-game letdown at the finish. Two, a point guard and a couple of other key components must be found along with the essential element of playing as a team.

Call it March Madness. Not having a favorite in the field, we find the current NCAA basketball tournament highly interesting. So many upsets have already taken place. One significant factor in this annual event is that whoever does well must be able to perform on the road. There is no home court advantage.

Not a surprise. A national survey has told us that the highest paid public employees in 40 of the 50 states are college coaches — football or basketball. Before giving a head shake of disgust, remember that nearly all coaching salaries come from stand-alone athletic programs, not from taxes. Yes, Arkansas is one of the 40.

“I see it getting a lot of better going forward. I’m ready for Mayflower to move forward. It’s time.”

— Randy Holland, mayor of Mayflower.



Wed, 12/13/2017 - 10:58

Guest Column: Legalize Gambling in the State of Arkansas

The state of Arkansas voted in November of 2008 to legalize the sale of lottery tickets in the name of scholarship money for higher education. Arkansas should legalize gambling in casinos as well because of the increase in tax revenues both locally and state wide, as well as other benefits the decision would carry. According to statistics provided by, the two commercial casinos in our neighboring state of Oklahoma are taxed at rates of up to 30 percent on gaming revenues, and at a 9 percent rate on horse racing revenues. This increase in tax revenue could mean many great things for the state of Arkansas and its communities.

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