March 23, 2011 Edition

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Many attend Black
River Bridge meeting

Randy Ort with the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department (from left) discusses the new weight limit on the Black River Bridge at Black Rock with Reggie Holland of Vulcan Materials and Roma Aaron of Aaron Trucking at a public meeting on Thursday night at the Lawrence County Courthouse in Walnut Ridge.
TD Photo ~ Gloria Wilkerson

The only good news at Thursday night's public meeting at the Lawrence County Courthouse in Walnut Ridge concerning the Black River Bridge at Black Rock is that the bridge is safe for motorists to travel across, according to the Arkansas State Highway Department. The bad news is that five-axle trucks carrying more than 66,000 pounds cannot cross the bridge or they will be fined. The weight limit is causing serious problems for area businesses and citizens.

State Rep. James Ratliff of Imboden and Lawrence County Judge Dale Freeman scheduled the meeting after the AHTD lowered the weight limit on the bridge from the standard 40 tons to 33 tons on Feb. 14. Notices of the impending drop in weight limit were released earlier.

Chamber seeks to learn more about local businesses

Lawrence County Chamber of Commerce Board Chair Mike Montgomery said a recent tour of Eagan Manufacturing in Black Rock was the first of what he hopes will be many.

"The purpose is to get to know our county businesses and industries better," he said.

State's first peanut production meeting held

Walnut Ridge was the site for the state's first peanut production meeting on Friday as approximately 30 gathered at the Northeast Arkansas Education Cooperative.

Herb Ginn, Lawrence County Extension staff chair, said county agents, specialists, peanut company representatives and farmers from both Lawrence and Randolph counties attended.

WR Council discusses industrial gowth

Walnut Ridge Mayor Don House updated the city council on economic development news at their meeting on March 2.

"We have been contacted by a factory who already has an existing plant in Arkansas and is looking to expand," House told the council. "We are first or second on their list, and they are talking about 50 jobs. They will be doing out-of-plant expansion in the fall.

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