It appears Maumelle citizens have a pretty clear direction on bond issues. You can go to the city website (Maumelle.org) and see the results, but here is a summary: About 772 folks responded, about four percent of our 17,500 population, not a very big sample and a typical lack of interest from the electorate.
Maumelle Boulevard Pedestrian Over/Underpass — no way say the citizens. Some suggest we just need to have better pedestrian crossings. I don’t think that will make some drivers less crazy and keep them from continuing to text while driving.
Dean Files City Center or City Hall Renovation — by a slim margin, it seems we would support this, although there is some momentum and discussion to build a city center including a senior center on the land that was newly acquired for the fire station. More to come on this.
Event Center Renovations —Maumellians wisely say, "I don’t think so." We’ve wasted enough money on this.
Maumelle Senior Wellness Center or Senior Services Center — it appears that over 300 of the "yes" voters said they would use this facility, which tells me that a great majority of those completing the survey are probably 55 years of age or over. That parallels voting in elections. We older Americans will exercise our right to vote. Don’t mess with us.
Indoor Aquatic Center — 55 percent say they would not support it; almost 60 percent say they would not support a sales tax. The price tag is too big, the annual maintenance costs are astronomical and the debt goes on too long.
Diamond Center T-ball Fields and Softball Fields — we all agree that ball fields are a good thing. Play ball!
However, the best reading is the comment pages that follow the results, all 19 pages of them. They range from sensible suggestions to just downright kooky. I’ll let you judge for yourself, but most want the traffic situation fixed and on that, we can all agree.
I am eager to hear from our City Council and mayor on where we are going from here and which items will end up on the ballot. This is a crossroad for Maumelle and its leadership. We’ll all be waiting and watching.
It was a predictable election last week, with no real surprises. Even when I was a kid, I remember watching election coverage and this year was no different, except it was hard to find, especially quality coverage. All of the stations directed you to watch their online coverage until they went "on the air" around 9 or during the 10 o’clock news.
The coverage was mediocre at best, with old hands like Roby Brock, Rex Nelson, Bill Vickery and John Brummett anchoring some of the the coverage and cutting back and forth to interviews with the main players who easily won their primaries. The new, younger reporters just don’t seem ready to do the interviews and don’t really know what to ask the candidates. Maybe they could get Steve Barnes to have prep classes for the new kids before November.
We didn’t really have any races in Maumelle with the exception of the justice of the peace position. The incumbent, Paul Elliot, won fairly easily with over 60 percent of the vote. The controversy in the race came over an "anonymous" letter sent to Maumellians accusing Belinda Harris-Ritter of some pretty serious offenses while in California. Elliot claims to have had no knowledge of the letter or its origin.
Now we move on to the fall with the Ross/Hutchinson race for governor, the Pryor/Cotton matchup for the U.S. Senate, the Hays/Hill shootout and the Whitt/Westerman battle for Second and Fourth District congressional races, respectively. All four races will be tough races and require a ton of money.
The races will occupy a great of TV and radio time and probably drive us all to wearing out the switch-channel button on our remotes and screaming, "STOP IT!" while driving. Breathe deep. It’s a long haul until November.
Soccer girls take it to state championship
For the second time in one school year, Maumelle High School had a team go to a state championship. Earlier in the year, our wrestling team won the state title.
The Maumelle Lady Hornets soccer team battled its way to a berth in the state championship played last weekend in Fayetteville. The girls fell short and were defeated by Valley View. So they become the runner-up and the second-best team in Class 4A. Not a bad showing at all. Congratulations, ladies, and thanks for representing Maumelle so well.
See you on the Boulevard.
Neal Moore owns a creative consulting firm, Neal Moore Creative. He has lived in Maumelle over 10 years. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Facebook or on Twitter, @kneelmore.