By Ray King

A request for a street topper sign to honor the late Rev. Lorenzo Jones III won approval from the Traffic and Aviation Committee of the Pine Bluff City Council during a virtual meeting Tuesday.

Council members Win Trafford and Donald Hatchett voted to send the recommendation to the full council with a Do Pass recommendation.

“I don’t think you will have any issue with support,” Council member Joni Alexander, who chairs the committee said to supporters of the proposal who had logged into the meeting. Those supporters included Rev. Lorenzo Jones IV, who pastors a church in Texas. He described his father as “More than just a pastor in Pine Bluff.”

The street toppers will be placed on Ohio Street near 34th Avenue, which is the site of New St. Hurricane Baptist Church, which Jones pastored for 24 years before retiring in 2012.

Street Department Director Rick Rhoden said it would take a couple of weeks to get the street topper made once the council approves it.

Also, during the meeting Tuesday, Council Member Ivan Whitfield, who is the former chairman of the Traffic and Aviation Committee asked Alexander to reopen discussions about a racetrack which Whitfield started last year.

Hatchett reminded Whitfield that current state law prohibits the location of a racetrack inside the Pine Bluff City limits and Whitfield should start there and try to get the law changed. Whitfield responded by saying he was going to do that, but he wanted the support of the committee first.

Alexander said that even if the law can’t be changed, the city can “be a voice with the county” in supporting the idea of a track outside the city limits.

The committee also dealt with the following requests from Pine Bluff residents.

  • Approved the placement of no parking signs in the 300 block of Young Street.
  • Rejected a request to replace a yield sign with a stop sign at 3rd Avenue and Franklin Street.
  • Rejected a request for speed limit signs on West 32nd between Hazel and Cherry.
  • Approved no parking signs in the 4200 block of West 17th
  • Approved no littering signs on West 34th Avenue at Apple Street and on Apple Street to Edgewood Elementary School.
  • Rejected no parking signs on Chapel Gardens Drive at Ryburn Road.
  • Approved children at play signs on 26th Avenue between Ohio Street and Indiana Street and on Indiana Street and rejected speed limit signs at those locations.