Pulaski County notebook

Clean-energy plan gets JPs' approval

The Pulaski County Quorum Court on Tuesday night approved establishing a Property Assessed Clean Energy program and board overseeing it.

Under the program, a business, for example, would apply for a loan and pay it back through an add-on to its property tax bill that would be funneled back to the improvement district. The business would be required to save more money through energy efficiency than the cost of the loan.

Funding for the loans can come from private funds, public funds or bonds, according to the Pulaski County attorney's office.

Justices of the peace approved starting the program 12-0, with District 2 Justice of the Peace Tyler Denton, D-Little Rock; District 7 Justice of the Peace Teresa Coney, D-Little Rock; and District 11 Justice of the Peace Aaron Robinson, R-Jacksonville, absent from the meeting.

Fayetteville was the first city in Arkansas to establish an energy improvement district, and it is already up and running. Little Rock and North Little Rock have approved establishing districts but have not set them up yet.

Sign aims to deter trucks from tracks

The Pulaski County Road and Bridge Department will place at least one sign deterring trucks and other large vehicles from traveling over a railroad crossing near MacArthur Drive and Kelly Road outside North Little Rock, acting Public Works Director Barbara Richard told the Quorum Court on Tuesday.

Large vehicles have been leaving Interstate 40 to take a shortcut via Crystal Hill Road, officials said.

But the roads and the railroads that pass over them are not built to withstand those vehicles, sometimes leading to the trucks getting stuck and having to be rescued, Richard said.

County officials and Quorum Court members expressed support for additional signs, but Oak Grove Volunteer Fire Department officials have asked that the county also consider raising the road around the railroad tracks, facilitating easier crossing for trucks.

A truck carrying a tanker of gasoline has spilled over the tracks before, firefighter Roger O'Neill told the Quorum Court.

ABarry Hyde, county judge of Pulaski County, expressed concern for the safety issues caused by the situation but said that the time it would take for the county to pursue an engineering contract to raise the road could last longer than the construction that's leading trucks to pursue the short cut anyway.

Planning Board gets new member

Virgil Dexter Doyne of College Station will join the Pulaski County Planning Board after a 12-0 Quorum Court vote approving his appointment by County Judge Barry Hyde.

Doyne, 60, is president and CEO of Doyne Construction Co. in North Little Rock and has been a member of the county board that oversees Verizon Arena.

Doyne's term expires in July 2019.

Businessman OK'd to join CATA board

Business owner Jay Freeman will join the Central Arkansas Transit Authority board after a 12-0 Quorum Court vote.

Freeman, 62, owns Jay Freeman Insurance Agency and is a Cammack Village resident.

Pulaski County gets to name two to the 12-member board, to be appointed by the county judge and approved by the Quorum Court.

Freeman's term expires in March 2019.

Mulch giveaway set for April in LR

Pulaski County will give away mulch April 10 and 11 near the county Road and Bridge Department building in Little Rock, according to a county news release.

The mulch comes from recent storm debris, the release stated.

County crews will be available from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days -- or until the mulch is gone -- with a front-end loader to help load vehicles at 2901 W. 31st St.

Metro on 03/25/2015