LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Tonight Little Rock Board of Directors had a lengthy meeting with a packed agenda. Among many things, the board voted to add an entertainment district in SOMA for eight weeks starting tonight.
We were at the meeting and this is what was decided tonight.
Two big things we were looking at in the meeting were:
- Talking about postponing evictions
- Upping the punishment for hate crimes
Starting with the decision surrounding hate crimes. On Tuesday, the directors voted to pass an ordinance to ‘Enhance the Penalty’ for misdemeanors that qualify as a hate crime or hate intimidation.
The ordinance states that a person 18 or older who is charged with a hate crime can be fined several hundred dollars to several thousands of dollars and can also be sentenced to time in jail. This is all depending on what the crime was.
“We want to continue to be a leader in that aspect to understanding cultural competency and to address situations of hate crimes,” said Mayor Frank Scott Jr.
This ordinance was passed on July 7, and Mayor Scott Jr. says it will be in effect in 30 days.
Another hot topic tonight was an agenda item to ‘strongly urge’ owners of rental properties to stop current evictions and delay future evictions due to COVID-19.
Board members spoke strongly from both sides of the argument saying, this should be passed to give people some peace of mind while others think it’s just giving renters false hope since the city cannot enforce it.
“We shouldn’t sit up here and do those things unless we can enforce it because its false hope for some people and its just putting fear in other people and that’s not what I’m about,” said Director Joan Adcock.