Still cold. Still not much else to report except a chance of snow in the forecast every day through next Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service. Other odds and ends as I open a line early::
* PLANS FIRMED UP FOR OTTER CREEK OUTLET MALL: The New England Development Co., which builds outlet malls, has announced its plans for an outlet mall at Otter Creek adjoining the new Bass Pro Shops development. Developer Tommy Hodges has been anticipating this announcement for some time. The 325,000-square-foot development, with familiar national retail names, will be called The Outlets at Little Rock. It is to open by 2015. It will buy 30 acres for the project, a deal in the $5 million range. City, county and school taxpayers are subsidizing the cost of the project by contributing $2 million, plus interest, of property taxes that would otherwise go to schools and other public uses to build the main parkway in the outlet mall/Bass Pro development, thanks to a tax icnrement finance district approved by the Little Rock Board of Directors. More from Arkansas Business.
* PUBLISHER CHANGE: Roby Brock of Talk Business confirms that he’s ended a publishing arrangement with the publishers of AY magazine to publish his Talk Business magazine. But no changes are anticipated. He writes: ” No real changes for me. I will continue to produce our Talk Business magazine on the same schedule six times a year. No changes in advertiser rates or distribution. I will just produce it through my company, River Rock Communications, which is where I handle all of my TV, radio, web and other business.”
* SO MUCH FOR ETHICS: Since state Reps. Bruce Westerman and Ann Clemmer are running for Congress, there was a sudden interest in dumping the House rule that prevents campaign fund-raising while the legislature is in session, at least for federal candidates. That struck some other members of the House as unfair — unfair for them to be left out of scrounging money from the hovering lobbhyists like federal candidates. So today a House committee approved dumping the rule for everybody. I propose they all hang a sign on their back with the maximum contribution possible in their race and postoffice box to which to send it.
* UNIVERSITY OF ARKANSAS TO RETIRE JERSEY IN HONOR OF CLINTON: I gather from Twitter that some Hog fans don’t like this idea. But as part of the 20th anniversary of the Razorbacks’ national basketball championship, a ceremony is scheduled at Fayetteville sometime this month to retire a “42” basketball jersey, in honor of President 42, Bill Clinton. He was a big fan who followed the Hogs to the NCAA tourney and appeared on a Sports Illustrated cover. He didn’t attend UA, but taught law school there before turning to politics. Only Sidney Moncrief’s jersy has been retired among Hog players.