KAWX News

Weekly Fishing Report

Weekly Fishing Report

 

This is the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission’s fishing report for June 20, 2018. If there is a body of water you would like included in this report, please email AGFCfishingreport@outlook.com with information on possible sources for reports about that lake or river. Reports are updated weekly, although some reports might be published for two weeks if updates are not received promptly or if reporters say conditions haven’t changed. Contact the reporter for the lake or stream you plan to fish for current news.

 

Central Arkansas

 

Noth Arkkansas 

 

Northwest Arkansas

 

Northeast Arkansas

 

Southeast Arkansas

 

Southwest Arkansas

 

South-Central Arkansas

 

West-Central Arkansas

 

East Arkansas

 

Arkansas River and White River levels are available at: http://water.weather.gov/ahps2/index.php?wfo=lzk

 

For real-time information on stream flow in Arkansas from the U.S. Geological Survey, visit: http://waterdata.usgs.gov/ar/nwis/rt

 

For water-quality statistics (including temperature) in many Arkansas streams and lakes, visit: http://waterdata.usgs.gov/ar/nwis/current/?type=quality

 

6-20-18 4:10 p.m. kawx.org 

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Federal Judge Again Blocks Pro-Life Law in Arkansas

Federal Judge Again Blocks Pro-Life Law in Arkansas

Little Rock – Late Monday afternoon U.S. District Judge Kristine Baker issued a temporary restraining order against Arkansas’ 2015 Abortion-Inducing Drugs Safety Act.

The law requires abortion-inducing drugs to be administered according to FDA protocols and ensures clinics that perform drug-induced abortions contract with a physician who has hospital admitting privileges to handle any complications from the abortion. In May the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear arguments over a 2016 order Judge Baker issued against the law, allowing it to go into effect. Judge Baker’s latest restraining order once again blocks the law in Arkansas.

Family Council President Jerry Cox released a statement saying, “Judge Baker’s decision to block this law means women who experience complications from abortions will have to drive themselves to the nearest emergency room, where they will be seen by doctors and nurses who know nothing about their medical history. This law passed with strong support in the Arkansas Legislature, and it has already survived one round of legal challenges in federal court. It protects the health and safety of pregnant women in Arkansas. Judge Baker’s decision undermines the health and safety of Arkansans.”

Cox dismissed Baker’s claim that the law created an undue burden. “Arkansas has about 6,000 licensed physicians, and a majority of them have admitting privileges with one or more hospitals. It is not unreasonable for the State to require abortion clinics to contract with a doctor who has hospital admitting privileges.”

Cox said he is confident the law will be upheld on appeal. “Ultimately, this question is going to end up in a higher court. Attorney General Rutledge’s office has done an excellent job defending this law. Her team won some big victories in federal court last year, and I believe this law will be upheld on appeal.”

 

6-20-18 8:33 a.m. kawx.org 

 

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Polk County Sheriff's Log For June 11th Through June 17th

POLK COUNTY SHERIFF’S LOG
 
The following information was received from Polk County Sheriff Scott Sawyer for the week of June 11, 2018 – June 17, 2018.  The charges against those arrested are allegations and the cases are still pending in the courts.  Individuals charged and whose names appear in this column may submit documentation to us at a later date that the charges have been dismissed or that they have been found innocent and we will include that information in this space in a timely manner.
 
June 11, 2018
Report of a disturbance on Coon Hound Lane near Cove led to the arrest of Taylor D. Dees, 25, of Cove, on Charges of Terroristic Threatening 1st Degree, Possession of a Firearm by Certain Persons, Domestic Battery 3rd Degree, Resisting Arrest and two counts of Endangering the Welfare of a Minor.
 
June 12, 2018
Report from a Mena woman of the theft of a vehicle, valued at $5,000.00.  The vehicle was recovered and returned to the owner.  Additional information has been provided to the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office for further consideration.
Arrested by an officer with the Grannis Police Department was Carlos Hernandez-Abarca, 20, of Glenwood, on Charges of Speeding , No Driver’s License and Possession of a Schedule VI Controlled Substance.
Arrested was Charles L. Houser, 62, of Wickes, on a Warrant for Failure to Comply with a Court Order.
 
June 13, 2018
Arrested was Rachel D. Crow, 38, of Mulberry, on three Warrants for Failure to Comply with a Court Order.
 
June 14, 2018
Report from complainant on Polk 51 near Mena of financial identity fraud using prepaid cards, totaling losses at $350.00.
Arrested was Dana M. Davis, 56, of Wickes, on Warrants for DWI and Reckless Driving.
Arrested was Eric T. Cannon, 26, of Mena, on a Warrant for Failure to Comply with a Court Order.
 
June 15, 2018
Report of a disturbance on Polk 121 near Mena led to the arrest of Matthew P. Owen, 22, of Mena, on Charges of Public Intoxication, Disorderly Conduct, Criminal Mischief, Theft of Property and Obtaining a Controlled Substance by Fraud.
Request for welfare check on Highway 246 West near Hatfield.  Deputy responded.
Report from complainant on Polk 54 near Mena of the theft of keys, knife, flashlight and jewelry, all valued at $215.00.  Investigation continues.
Report from complainant on Polk 44 near Mena of the theft of aluminum items.  Investigation continues.
 
June 16, 2018
Report of a disturbance on Highway 71 South near Wickes led to the arrest of Herbert O. Aikin, 39, of Cove, on Charges of Disorderly Conduct and Assault 2nd Degree.
 
June 17, 2018
Report from Mena Regional Health System of an assault victim.  Deputy responded.  Victim refused to press charges.
Report from complainant on Polk 269 near Hatton of the break-in to a vacant residence.  Investigation continues.
Arrested was Joseph W. Bond, 49, of Cove on a Warrant for Failure to Pay Fines.
 
Polk County Sheriff’s Office worked two vehicle accidents this week.
 
Polk County Detention Center Jail Population: 17 Incarcerated Inmates, with 5 Inmates currently on the Waiting List for a State Facility.
 
PC18-00380
 
6-19-18 3:27 p.m. kawx.org 

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Mena Police Department Report June 10th Through The 16th

Mena Police Department Reports for weeks of June 10, 2018 through June 16, 2018 follows:
 
June 10, 2018
 
A Polk County woman reported that she is being harassed by her soon to be ex-husband.  Case is pending.
 
John Howard, 54, of Mena was charged with disorderly conduct after officers responded to a call at a local residence.
 
June 11, 2018
 
Report was taken of someone breaking into a local shop and taking several items.  Case is pending further investigation.
 
Evelyn Wexler, 59, was charged with theft of property (shoplifting) and contributing to the delinquency of a minor after officers responded to a call at a local retail store.  Also charged in the incident with theft of property (shoplifting) was a 15-year-old Mena girl.
 
A Mena man turned in two counterfeit fifty dollar bills to authorities.  He had found them near train tracks in Mena. 
 
June 12, 2018
 
Renee Deann Veal, 46, of Hatfield was charged with theft of property (shoplifting) after officers responded to a complaint at a local store.
 
June 13, 2018
 
A local woman reported that she is being harassed by her children’s father.  Case pending.
 
A Mena man reported that he is being harassed by an acquaintance.  Case is pending location and interview of suspect.
 
Bruce Merrill Huber, 30, of Mena was arrested on several outstanding warrants for failure to pay fines and court costs and for probation violation.
 
June 14, 2018
 
Isaac Cain, 24, of Mena was arrested and charged with violation of an order of protection, resisting arrest, and fleeing after they responded to a complaint and conducted an investigation.
 
A local man reported that his former girlfriend had damaged his vehicle.  Case is pending.
 
June 15 & 16, 2018
 
Report was made of vandalism and theft to several campaign signs throughout Mena.  Case is pending further investigation.
 
6-18-18 9:10 a.m. kawx.org

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Attorney General Warns Of "Grandchild Scam"

ATTORNEY GENERAL ALERT: The Favorite Grandchild Scam

 
LITTLE ROCK – A panicked phone call from a person claiming to be a relative needing money right away to get him or her out of some sort of trouble pulls at the heartstrings of elderly Arkansans, but this is more than likely a scam. Con artists continue to disguise themselves as close relatives or favorite grandchildren caught in serious trouble and in need of money wired immediately, often to a location out of the country. With wire transfers similar to cash, the money cannot be retrieved.
 
“These criminals are ruthless and will stop at nothing to take advantage of innocent Arkansans,” said Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge. “The favorite grandchild scam is common and scary. Protecting the elderly is a priority of my office and it is important to educate all Arkansans about this issue.”
 
Attorney General Rutledge recommends the following strategies to avoid falling victim to the “favorite grandson” scheme:

  • Resist pressure to act quickly.
  • Never give or wire money based on any unsolicited phone call.
  • Verify the family member’s location by directly calling another family member or the grandchild.
  • Do not send money to an unknown account or entity.
  • Ask the caller for his or her name, and if they cannot provide it, hang up immediately.
  • Have a plan in place when family members are traveling to easily identify whether or not a need is genuine. 

For more information and tips on how to avoid a scam, call the Arkansas Attorney General’s Office at (800) 482-8982 or visit ArkansasAG.gov or facebook.com/AGLeslieRutledge.

6-16-18 2:34 p.m. kawx.org 

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Law Enforcement Cracking Down On Illegal Dumping

Agriculture Law Enforcement Officers Stop Illegal Dumping

 

STATEWIDE, ARK. –  A restored dumping site in Columbia County is the most recent success story of Arkansas Agriculture Department (AAD) law enforcement officials, who worked with the local Sherriff’s Office to remove dumped debris and track down the individuals responsible. In 2017, 43 illegal dump sites were fully removed from property across the state. Arkansas residents can report illegal dumping to AAD Law Enforcement Officers by completing an online complaint form, here.

 

“A dump site is a problem that no landowner should have to deal with. The discarding of trash on another person’s property is illegal and there is no excuse for it,” says Law Enforcement Officer Chris Ludwig. “We work with local officials and community partners to ensure that when an illegal dump is discovered, landowners understand their options for removing debris and restoring the area. This isn’t only about prosecuting those that commit these crimes, it’s also about protecting Arkansas’s natural resources.” 

 

AAD Investigators work with state, local and county law enforcement officers to investigate crimes and prosecute when necessary. The Columbia County dump was removed after Ludwig and Columbia County Ranger Scott Morehead worked with local officials and private landowners to establish consistent surveillance of the area. Violators were identified after capturing footage through surveillance from multiple devices, and by connecting individuals to the site by items dumped there. In this case, the individuals responsible for dumping items were given the option to clean up the site or face prosecution. The site was cleaned up, as pictures (attached) show.

 

AAD Law Enforcement officers are fully certified, but specialize in the investigation of agricultural crimes. Common cases include wildfire arson, timber theft, livestock theft, agricultural and forestry equipment theft or vandalism, illegal dumping, and enforcement of an array of AAD regulations. More than $167,000 in restitution was returned to Arkansas landowners involved with cases like these last year. Learn more about AAD Law Enforcement and the investigation of agricultural crimes, here.

 

“This is one of many success stories that demonstrate why it is so important to have dedicated law enforcement officers with expertise in responding to crimes that affect our state’s largest industry,” says Arkansas Agriculture Secretary Wes Ward. “The needs of Arkansas landowners and agricultural producers are our top priority. Our three fully certified officers and 12 part-time officers make sure all corners of the state are covered in order to keep our industry strong and successful into the future.”

 

The Arkansas Agriculture Department is dedicated to the development and implementation of policies and programs for Arkansas agriculture and forestry to keep its farmers and ranchers competitive in national and international markets while ensuring safe food, fiber, and forest products for the citizens of the state and nation.  Visit www.agriculture.arkansas.gov  

 

Below are pictures of an illegal dump site before and after it was cleaned up.

 

 

6-16-18 2:25 p.m. kawx.org 

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Governor Hutchinson Weekly Radio Address: Lifting + Handle = Father, Son Success

 
LITTLE ROCK – This was a big week at Walmart’s headquarters as entrepreneurs from around the country pitched their products at the company’s fifth Made in America event. It is an open call where new products are presented to Walmart with the goal of creating new manufacturing jobs in the United States.
This annual gathering is a celebration of America’s love of innovation and Americans’ unrivaled vision for improving the world. And the event puts some hard-working dreamers on the path to success.       
The story of Brad and David Hill, father and son physical therapists in Bentonville, illustrates what can happen when creators find a way into the system. It is also a terrific story of a home-grown family company that has grown to include other Arkansans, who created a company of their own to take over the manufacture and sale of The Landle.
 
Brad and his dad invented The Landle, which is shorthand for the lifting handle, an idea that came to Brad in a dream. It is a heavy duty, extra wide strap with plastic handles that minimizes the strain and the risk of injury when you lift heavy or hard-to-handle articles such as couches, dressers, large boxes, and landscaping materials.
 
Over the next ten years, the Hills built a prototype, showed it around, refined the design, and found a manufacturer. Their first clients included DIY Network. It became a family business. Brad’s young children helped him box up the straps, label the boxes, and ship them.
 
Last year, the Hills presented The Landle at the fourth open-call, and Walmart picked up their product.
 
Suddenly, they found themselves with a Walmart-size order. Brad contacted childhood friends Weston Geigle and Michael Rateliff, whose education and experience were in business and mass retail. Weston and Michael bought the Hills’ company, and founded 12 Stone Brands through which they produce and market The Landle.
 
The Landle is made entirely in the United States. An injection molding company in Bentonville manufactures the handles. A company in Pryor, Oklahoma, sews it together.
 
The Landle is in more than 1,700 Walmart stores. QVC has shown it twice. It’s available on Amazon, and several other retailers have shown interest in The Landle. Brad attended this year’s open-call to pitch a new version of The Landle.
 
The Landle story has so many interesting elements, and it’s the kind of story a governor loves to tell because it embodies so many things that I think are important to making a state great.
 
There is the obvious entrepreneurial spirit that led to the creation of a product and two companies. There is a faith-based element: Weston and Michael took the name of their company from the story in the Bible in which God instructed Joshua to build an altar with twelve stones as a reminder of what God had done. There is the family element – a grandfather, son and grandchildren working together.
 
With Father’s Day on Sunday, I thought it would be appropriate to mention the special relationship between Brad and David Hill. From the first time Brad mentioned his dream, his father was supportive. His father’s positive reaction was all he needed to pursue his dream. Brad tells people that without his dad, The Landle would not exist.
 
Congratulations to the Hills and to 12 Stone Brands. And thanks to Walmart, a company that constantly expands the vision of Sam Walton. These are the elements that have combined to make Arkansas a great place to live and work.
 
6-15-18 6:55 p.m. kawx.org 

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State Representative John Maddox's Weekly Column

Rep. Matthew Shepherd is now the Speaker of the Arkansas House.
 
We convened for a special House Caucus Friday morning.  The House voted by acclamation  to name Shepherd as Speaker for the remainder of the 91st General Assembly.
 
Rep. Matthew Shepherd is serving his fourth term in the Arkansas House of Representatives. He is from El Dorado and represents District 6, which includes part of Union County.
 
He was previously elected as Speaker-designate and expected to be confirmed as Speaker for the 92nd General Assembly which begins in January.
 
Rep. Shepherd is serving his second term as chair of the House Judiciary Committee.
 
Last week, Speaker Jeremy Gillam submitted his resignation letter to Governor Asa Hutchinson as he announced he has accepted an employment opportunity at the University of Central Arkansas.
 
Although we are not expected to go back into session for the remainder of the year, it is still essential that the House addresses this leadership position.
 
The Speaker is also in charge of overseeing all House management functions throughout the year. 
 
During session, his or her duties include supervising and directing the daily order of business, recognizing Members to speak, preserving order in the House, deciding all questions of order, certifying all measures passed, assigning committee leadership, and naming members to committees. 
 
Speaker Gillam was the 5th person in Arkansas history to serve two terms as Speaker. He says the years he served have been the greatest honor of his professional life. Speaker Gillam addressed members before stepping down saying, “I leave here knowing they will continue to bring out the best in Arkansas.
 
I want to thank them for allowing me to serve as the Speaker.  I also want to thank the people of District 45 who elected me to represent our district.  It has been an honor.”
 
The caucus meeting can be found online at www.arkansashouse.org.
 
6-15-18 6:45 p.m. kawx.org 

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Senator John Boozman's Weekly Column

Countering the Role of Opioids in the Veterans’ Mental Health Crisis

 

This is the final in a series of columns on efforts to help veterans struggling with mental health issues. Read the first entry on veteran suicides here, the second one on PTSD here and the third one on homelessness here.

 

It is clear that our nation is in the throes of a deadly and dangerous epidemic. Widespread abuse of opioids has fueled a major spike in overdoses across the United States, both accidental and intentional. Our veterans’ population is not immune to this horrific trend.

 

Veterans, particularly those from the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, often return home with high levels of chronic pain. Frequently, they were prescribed a pain management routine during active duty that placed a heavy emphasis on opioids. For far too long, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) followed suit with a reliance on opioids to help veterans continue to cope with chronic pain. This is a dangerous road to continue down.

 

Several large studies have shown an increased risk of suicides among Americans, including veterans, addicted to opioids. For example, one National Institutes of Health (NIH) study which examined five million veterans struggling with substance use disorders found women were eight times as likely as others to be at risk for suicide, while men face a twofold risk.

 

The question this study, and others like it, have not been able to answer is whether this trend is the result of underlying mental health issues or if an opioid addiction triggers a mental health crisis for an individual. Equally as hard to pin down is an accurate number of intentional versus unintentional opioid overdose deaths. What is clear is that opioid addicts struggling with despair have the means by which to carry out suicide at the ready and we should be doing more to reduce that tragic ending.   

 

For its part, VA is making strides, albeit belatedly. Earlier this year, VA became the first health-care system in the country to publicly post information on its opioid prescribing rate. At the time of the announcement, the administration called it “an innovative way to raise awareness, increase transparency and mitigate the dangers of over-prescribing.” This effort, along with others to address over-prescribing, has helped the VA reduce its opioid prescription rate by 41 percent over the past five years.

 

Among those other efforts is a program to educate VA providers on best practices related to pain management and the optimal use of opioids. This is welcome news. I have long advocated that VA needs to “think outside the box” and seek alternatives to opioids as part of its comprehensive pain management practices. Treatments such as physical therapy, acupuncture and yoga are now among the therapies VA considers for veterans to manage chronic pain.

 

This is not to say there isn’t a need for medication in VA’s pain management treatment practices, but that must be moderated given the mounting evidence of the dangers of long-term opioid use. Mental health concerns aside, VA’s data suggests veterans are twice as likely to die from an accidental overdose compared to the rest of the population. That alone would be enough to trigger concern about prescription rates. Add to it the link between opioid abuse and suicide, and you have reason to sound the alarm.

 

I am pleased to see the VA taking steps to turn the corner. These efforts will clearly help us save lives. I am committed to working with the VA to build on this progress and help our veterans recover from their physical ailments without putting their mental health in jeopardy.

 

6-15-18 4:53 p.m. kawx.org 

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State Capitol Week in Review From Senator Larry Teague

State Capitol Week in Review From Senator Larry Teague

June 15, 2018

 

LITTLE ROCK – In the first six months of this fiscal year, the state Office of Child Support Enforcement suspended drivers’ licenses of 4,344 non-custodial parents who had fallen behind on their legal obligation to help with financial support for their children.

 

That represents a 14 percent increase in suspended drivers’ licenses over the previous year.

 

The office also suspended 1,343 hunting and fishing licenses during the first six months of this fiscal year, a 17 percent increase over last year.

 

Also, the office suspended 778 professional and business licenses, a 71 percent increase over last year, and 664 motor vehicle tags, a 13 percent increase.

 

Total collections of child support through the office were about $137 million, a drop of 1/5 percent from the previous year.

 

The Office of Child Support Enforcement is required by law to report on its activities every six months, and it made its semi-annual report at the June meeting of the Legislative Council. The report covered July 1, 2017 through December 31, 2017.

 

Act 1184 of 1995 made sweeping changes in the Arkansas child support enforcement system and gave the office broader powers to locate deadbeat parents and collect overdue payments.

When the legislature enacted the law, one of their motivations was to hold down growth in the costs of welfare and food stamp programs. Research indicated that children were more likely to need public assistance if their non-custodial parents failed to keep up with financial support.

 

In 1993 the Office set up a paternity acknowledgement program, with the goal of teaching mothers the long-term benefits of establishing paternity. Under the program, hospital staff helps the mother fill out paperwork that acknowledges the father of the newborn.

 

In the first six months of this fiscal year, 5,305 paternity acknowledgements were submitted to the office. That information will help the office in any future attempts to locate and collect child support from non-custodial parents.

 

Lottery Revenue

The Arkansas lottery, which provides money for the state’s most popular college scholarship program, is on pace to have its best year since 2013.

 

Revenue in May was about $40 million, up from about $38 million for May of last year. That’s the most collected in lottery revenue for May since 2013.

 

For the first 11 months of this fiscal year, which ends on June 30, revenue is about $463 million. Of that amount, more than $78 million will go towards college scholarships. That is the most since 2013, when $81 million for scholarships was generated during the first 11 months of the fiscal year.

 

It appears likely that revenue for scholarships this fiscal year will exceed the official estimate of $83.6 million for Fiscal Year 2018.

 

In addition to revenue from the lottery, scholarships are funded with state general revenue from tax collections.

 

Theories for the growth in lottery ticket sales include heightened interest created by enormous jackpots in Powerball and Mega Millions games, new advertising campaigns and new scratch off games. Also, the legislature voted to allow players to buy tickets with debit cards.

 

6-15-18 4:48 p.m. kawx.org 

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ANNUAL STATE POLICE AWARDS CEREMONY: TROOPER LEVI FLEMING RECEIVES TOP HONORS, LOCAL TROOPER BEN HARRISON HONORED

 (LITTLE ROCK) – Trooper Levi Fleming, 26, of Brinkley, was presented the prestigious Arkansas State Trooper of the Year Award today during the annual state police awards ceremony.
 
  Trooper Fleming was among a group of more than 30 Arkansas State Police personnel recognized today for cumulative work or assignments involving particular incidents during the 2017 calendar year.
The recipient of the Trooper of the Year Award personifies the highest standards of public service and has demonstrates a record of esteemed law enforcement action.
 
  Trooper Fleming, a four-year veteran of the department, was specifically recognized for his January 21, 2017 action in response to a disturbance call at a DeValls Bluff residence.  An intoxicated individual had forced his way into the residence, armed himself with a shotgun, and doused a portion of the garage and himself with gasoline.  While Trooper Fleming was present, the individual then ignited a fire which consumed the individual and a portion of the garage.
 
  Trooper Fleming armed himself with a fire extinguisher, activated the device and entered the garage, successfully extricating the victim who had sustained serious burns across more than forty percent of his body.
 
  Trooper Fleming was also among eight state troopers today to receive the department’s life saving award.
 
  Kim McJunkins, 55, of Hempstead County, was presented the Arkansas State Police Civilian Employee of the Year Award.  McJunkins joined the department twenty-eight years ago and serves today as an administrative specialist for the Criminal Investigation Division, Company C, headquartered at Hope.
 
  McJunkins was recognized for her cumulative record of service, in particular for her work in case research, management of the administrative duties within Company C, and her most recent training assignments related to the implementation of the division’s new records/case management system. 
  Other award recipients recognized today are:
 
  Distinguished Meritorious Service – (The highest award presented by the department for meritorious service or clearly outstanding achievement.)
 
  Special Agent (Sergeant) Larry J. Carter, 44, of Atkins, was presented the Distinguished Meritorious Service Award for his efforts on May 11, 2017 in Yell County when he negotiated with a man suspected of killing three individuals, including a sheriff’s deputy.  S/A Carter was able to arrange the release of a hostage during the encounter and the eventual surrender of the suspect to state troopers and local authorities.
 
  Special Agent (Corporal) Becky Vacco, 43, of Flippin, was presented the Distinguished Meritorious Service Award for her cumulative work across three north Arkansas counties between September 21, 2017 – February 1, 2018 involving the murder of a 23-month old child and the battery of two other infant children.  S/A Vacco successfully closed the cases with the conviction of the individuals responsible for the crimes.
 
  Trooper’s Cross – (*Presented to a trooper or civilian employee who demonstrates extraordinary courage.)
 
  Trooper Justin Williams, 37, of Pine Bluff, was presented the Trooper’s Cross for his valiant effort to save a woman whose vehicle had been engulfed by fire following a collision.  Without regard for his own life as flames ignited part of his uniform, Trooper Williams persisted in finding a means to eventually pull the woman from the burning car.
 
  Lifesaving – (*Presented to a trooper or civilian employee who through direct personal intervention, sustains another person’s life.)
 
  Sergeant David Williams, 44, of DeValls Bluff, received a lifesaving award for his aid to a fellow trooper who had entered a burning garage to save an armed intruder.
 
  Sergeant Jeff Plouch, 37, of Benton, received a lifesaving award for his rapid response after noticing the passenger in a vehicle he had stopped was unresponsive and appeared to be in cardiac arrest, possibly from a heroin overdose.  Sergeant Plouch administered a lifesaving drug (Naloxone) and began chest compressions to assist the victim until emergency personnel arrived.
 
  Corporal Benjamin Harrison, 51, of Pencil Bluff, received a lifesaving award for his response to assist another law enforcement agency and their officers who had encountered an individual who appeared to be unconscious from a drug overdose.  Trooper Harrison administered Naloxone to the individual and was able to revive the victim while awaiting the arrival of emergency medical personnel.
 
  Corporal Brandon Cook, 53, of Malvern, received a lifesaving award for his response to an attempted suicide in Garland County.  Upon his arrival he entered a lake, swimming nearly sixty yard to rescue the woman who had jumped into the lake.
 
  Corporal David Outlaw, 41, of Monticello and Trooper Lukas Tankersley, 24, of Lake Village both received life saving awards for saving the life of a Monticello gunshot victim.  Both troopers used their training to stop the loss of blood from the victim and provide medical care until the arrival of emergency medical personnel.
 
   Trooper First Class Chris Aaron, 35, of Almyra, received a lifesaving award for his assessment of an Arkansas county man who had sustained an accidental gunshot.  Realizing that waiting for emergency medical assistance may further endanger the life of the victim, Trooper Aaron exercised his training to control the loss of blood and stabilize the victim, then transported to individual to a local hospital.
 
   Official Commendations (*Presented for acts of exemplary service and awarded before the Arkansas State Police Commission during the course of 2017 prior to the today’s ceremony.  Supporting information available upon request.)
 

Major Forrest Marks 

Highway Patrol Division, Western Region Commander
  
Special Agent (Corporal) Mark Brice

Criminal Investigation Division, Company E 
  
Corporal Todd Harris

Highway Patrol Division, Troop C (Greene County)
  
Special Agent (Corporal) Jackie Stinnett

Criminal Investigation Division, Company E
  
Special Agent (Corporal) David Small

Criminal Investigation Division, Company E
  
Special Agent (Corporal) Tony Haley

Criminal Investigation Division, Company E
  
Corporal Michael Bowman

Highway Patrol Division, Troop H (Crawford County)
  
Trooper First Class Kurt Ziegenhorn

Highway Patrol Division, Troop D (Woodruff County)
  
Trooper First Class Corey Skarda

Highway Patrol Division, Troop D (Prairie County)
  
Trooper First Class Andy Metcalf

Highway Patrol Division, Troop C (Greene County)
  
Trooper First Class Derek Nietert

Highway Patrol Division, Troop H (Franklin County)
  
Trooper First Class Matt Price

Highway Patrol Division, Troop H (Crawford County)
  
Special Agent (TFC) Buster Rinks

Criminal Investigation Division, Company E
  
Trooper First Class Mark Blackerby

Highway Patrol Division, Troop A (Lonoke County)
  
Trooper Ben Ibarra

Highway Patrol Division, Troop H (Franklin County)
  
Trooper James Taylor

Highway Patrol Division, Troop D (Prairie County)
  
Trooper Gabe Monroe

Highway Patrol Division, Troop A (Pulaski County)
  
Trooper Jason Fagan

Highway Patrol Division, Troop C (Poinsett County)
  
Trooper Matthew Schanzlin

Highway Patrol Division, Troop F (Ouachita County)
  
Trooper Steven Payton

Highway Patrol Division, Troop D (Crittenden County)
  
Trooper Matthew West

Highway Patrol Division, Troop D (Saint Francis County)
  
Trooper Josh Elmore

Highway Patrol Division, Troop H (Crawford County)
  
Trooper Andrew Pannell

Highway Patrol Division, Troop B (White County)

 

Daniel Baker

(administrative headquarters, auto shop mechanic)

 
Distinguished Service Award – (*Presented to local citizens at large or law enforcement officers of another agency who have rendered aid to Arkansas State Troopers during the course of their duties.)
 
   Clifton Cabaness, Sr. and Clifton Cabaness Jr., both of Fort Smith received Distinguished Service Awards for stopping to assist an Arkansas State Trooper and their effort to seize one suspect and render aid to the trooper who had been met with resistance by a second suspect.
 
  Joe Johnson, of Lonsdale, received the Distinguished Service Award for his roadside stop and assistance to a state trooper being met with resistance by a suspect being taken into custody.
 
  Terry Davis, of Pine Bluff, received the Distinguished Service Award for coming to the aid of an Arkansas State Trooper who battled fire that had engulfed a damaged car and its driver trapped inside the vehicle.
 
  Ranotta Moser, of Batesville, received the Distinguished Service Award for her heroic life saving measures following a shooting incident that left a Batesville police officer critically wounded.
 
6-13-18 3:37 p.m. kawx.org 

 

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Arkansas, DU Canada Mark 50 Years of Waterfowl Conservation

SASKATCHEWAN, Canada – Under a perfect windswept day in the Allan/Dana Hills of Saskatchewan, Ducks Unlimited Canada last week unveiled a monument dedicated to 50 years of support from Arkansas waterfowlers and the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission. 

 

The landscape produces waterfowl and other migratory birds that winter in and migrate through Arkansas.


The 160-acre tract was purchased with funding support from the AGFC, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Ducks Unlimited Inc., Ducks Unlimited Canada, the government of Canada and the province of Saskatchewan.

 

The Prairie Pothole region of Saskatchewan geologically has little in common with the Mississippi Alluvial Plain of eastern Arkansas, yet millions of waterfowl rely on both.

 

Steve Cook, chairman of the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, said the area is crucial to Arkansas’s hunters. “All of this habitat that’s being protected wouldn’t have occurred without the waterfowl hunters of Arkansas. We wouldn’t have the wonderful duck hunting without their help,” he added.

 

The area is dotted with ponds gashed by glaciers illustrates the difficulty any waterfowl would have creating a nest, producing eggs and nourishing fledglings to the point they’re strong enough to fly 2,000 miles during winter migration.

 

AGFC Director Pat Fitts noted that the area has plenty of water and that bodes well for Arkansas duck hunters. “There are a lot of ducks harvested in Arkansas that are banded in Saskatchewan. This is the core of Arkansas’s waterfowl. Everything’s looking good for Arkansas’s waterfowl season.”

 

Located in the heart of the province, the Allan/Dana Hills is one of the most productive areas for waterfowl on the continent. The unique landscape boasts waterfowl breeding densities up to 100 pairs per square mile and has been a primary work area for Ducks Unlimited Canada.

Dave Kostersky, manager of state grants for Ducks Unlimited Canada, says the broad landscape of wetlands and grasslands is needed to give a ducks a chance at survival. “Every duck nest has about an 85 percent chance of failing.”

 

DU Canada and partners in the U.S., including the AGFC, are dedicated to maintaining or creating every acre of habitat possible. It’s a monstrous task that gets more foreboding each year.

 

“The Prairie Pothole region holds about 70 percent of the birds’ brooding waterfowl; it’s an absolutely critical area,” Kostersky said. “The Allan Hills are like the diamond in the middle of that whole thing. You’ve got this area that’s got this extremely high wetland density.”

 

During a good production year, it’s easy to overlook the problems waterfowl and DU Canada face. Saskatchewan is almost five times the size of Arkansas, yet has about a third of the state’s population; Saskatoon and Regina account for almost half the province’s 1.1 million people. About 40 percent of all field crops in Canada grow in Saskatchewan, including wheat, canola, flax, oats, peas, lentils and barley. Saskatchewan also holds the second-largest cattle herd among Canada’s provinces.

 

Kostersky highlights the challenge by posing a question: “How do we make a difference? We put more grass on the ground. We put the right types of habitat on the ground. We work with landowners and make a landscape change that really results in sustainable habitats for waterfowl up here in Saskatchewan.”

 

DU Canada’s goal doesn’t sound unreasonable until the rest of the picture is revealed. These wetlands that nurse ducks are a nuisance for farmers. Any wrinkle in the land makes their job tougher, which means sloughs and ponds are liabilities.

 

“Wetland drainage is something that’s real in this province,” Kostersky said. “We don’t have wetland policy that really protects wetlands. We have landowners that are trying to make another dollar on their farm – you can’t blame them for that – but they drain the wetlands, which loses the productivity of the landscape for waterfowl. We want to provide incentives. We want to work on ecological goods and services for landowners.”

Incentive and habitat programs run on money, and partners are vital to DU Canada, which began in 1938, a year after Ducks Unlimited was founded in the U.S. When the North American Wetlands Conservation Act passed in 1989, the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies in the U.S. set goals for matching funds from member states.

 

“The state dollar gets matched by DU, then by NAWCA,” Kostersky said. “It comes to Canada and Canadian partners like DU match it. It results in conservation on a large scale.”

6-13-18 2:42 p.m. kawx.org

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Be A Hero, Give Blood-Annual Boots and Badges Blood Drive In Mena June 25th

Local firefighters and law enforcement officers team up once a year for a great cause, encouraging residnets to donate blood. Donated blood saves lives daily, so by donating you really are a hero! The annual Boots and Badges Blood Drive will be Monday, June 25th, from noon until 6:00 p.m. in Classrom #1 at the National Guard Armory on North Morrow in Mena.Donors will get some special gifts, inlcuding a limited edition Boots and Badges T shirt. For additional information, see any local firefighter or law enforcement officer. To schedule an appointment to donate, call Christina at (479) 652-2364. 

 

6-13-18 2:17 p.m. kawx.org

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POLK COUNTY SHERIFF'S LOG FOR JUNE 4TH THRU JUNE 10TH

SHERIFF’S LOG

The following information was received from Polk County Sheriff Scott Sawyer for the week of June 4, 2018 – June 10, 2018. The charges against those arrested are allegations and the cases are still pending in the courts. Individuals charged and whose names appear in this column may submit documentation to us at a later date that the charges have been dismissed or that they have been found innocent and we will include that information in this space in a timely manner.

June 4, 2018

Report of a disturbance in the Polk County Courthouse led to the arrest of Shane R. Venters, 25, of Mena, on a Charge of Disorderly Conduct.

Report of a structure fire on Highway 88 East near Ink. Deputy responded.

June 5, 2018

Report from complainant on Polk 67 near Cherry Hill of the break-in and theft of an ATV and a firearm, totaling losses at $3,200.00. Investigation continues.

Request for a welfare check on Medlin Lane near Hatfield. Deputies responded. Information has been provided to the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office for further consideration.

June 6, 2018

Report from complainant on Napier Lane near Mena of the break-in and theft of clothing. Investigation continues.

Report from complainant on Polk 290 near Cove of the theft of a dryer, valued at $250.00. Investigation continues.

Report from complainant on Polk 125 near Rocky of the discovery of a firearm. Investigation continues.

June 7, 2018

Report of an assault on Dove Lane near Hatfield. Deputy responded. Investigation continues.

Report from complainants on East Hornbeck Avenue in Hatfield of the break-in and theft of several household items. Deputy responded. Investigation continues.

June 8, 2018

Report from complainant on Frontier Lane near Potter of vandalism done to a tractor. Investigation continues.

Report from complainant on Polk 50 near Mena of being harassed by an acquaintance. Information has been provided to the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office for further consideration.

Report from complainant of being struck by another vehicle, while traveling in their vehicle, on Polk 121 near Mena. Investigation continues.

Arrested was Jeffrey D. Dollarhyde, 30, of Mena, on a Body Attachment Warrant.

Arrested by an officer with the Grannis Police Department was Robert W. Terry, 70, of Grannis, on a Charge of DWI.

June 9, 2018

Report from complainant on Highway 71 South near Vandervoort of the break-in and theft of jewelry, cash, Iphone and medication, all valued at $11,800.00. Investigation continues.

June 10, 2018

Report of an ATV accident on Polk 40 near Potter. Deputies responded.

Traffic stop on Highway 71 near Mena led to the arrest of Michale B. Kelley, 25, of Mena, on Charges of DWI 2nd and Careless/Prohibited Driving.

Report of a disturbance on Highway 8 West near Rocky led to the arrest of Allen W. Brown, 30, and Makayla J. Smith, 26, both of Mena, each on a Charge of Disorderly Conduct.

Polk County Sheriff’s Office worked three vehicle accidents this week.

Polk County Detention Center Jail Population: 21 Incarcerated Inmates, with 11 Inmates currently on the Waiting List for a State Facility.

PC18-00367

6-11-18 4:11 p.m. kawx.org

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Mena Police Department Report For June 3rd thru June 9th

Mena Police Department Reports for weeks of June 3, 2018 through June 9, 2018 follows:
 
June 3, 2018
 
Jeffrey Dollarhyde, 30, of Mena was charged with driving on a suspended driver’s license, having no proof of insurance, having expired tags, and running a stop sign.
 
Brandon Everett, 27, of Mena was arrested on seven outstanding warrants.
 
June 4, 2018
 
Isaac Counts, 19, of Wickes, was arrested on several warrants for failure to pay fines and court costs and failure to appear.
 
Charles Edward Downing, 41, of Hatfield was arrested on an outstanding warrant from LeFlore County, Oklahoma.
 
June 5, 2018
 
Report was made of a local woman being harassed by her children’s father.  Case pending.
 
June 6, 2018
 
Report was taken of a man being harassed by his girlfriend’s children’s father.  Case is pending.
 
June 7, 2018
 
Officers responded to a spill on Highway 71 in Mena.  A tractor/trailer rig hauling chicken bi-products.  The area was treated by the highway department, and city employees cleaned the spill.
 
June 8, 2018
 
Officers responded to an altercation at a local residence.  After an investigation, the complaining party decided that they did not wish to press charges.
 
Richard Lee Smiley, 60, of Mena was charged with public intoxication after a call to a local restaurant.
 
June 9, 2018
 
After having responded to several complaints by various retail businesses and the local hospital, Richard Lee Smiley, 60, of Mena was charged with disorderly conduct and filing a false police report.
 
Samantha Coleman, 25, of Hulbert, Oklahoma was charged with theft of property (shoplifting) after officers were called to a local retail store.
 
Johnny Howard, 54, of Mena was charged with disorderly conduct after officers were called to a residence in Mena.
 
6-11-18 4:05 p.m. kawx.org 
 

 

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Governor Hutchinson's Weekly Address: LumoXchange's 'Venture' to Arkansas

 
LITTLE ROCK – Maf Sonko, who was born in Gambia, traveled many miles and lived in many places on his way to settling in Little Rock to launch his company here.
Maf’s choice of Arkansas affirms that the economic development initiatives we have undertaken in Arkansas are working.
 
Maf officially launched LumoXchange this week in a ceremony at the Little Rock Chamber of Commerce. He describes his company as hotels.com for cross-border currency exchange.
The idea for LumoXchange occurred to Maf when he was sending money to Gambia. The cost for sending the funds could be as much as 20 percent of the amount he was sending. There was no easy way to compare the fees of one company to another or to find the best rate of exchange for U.S. dollars.
 
Through LumoXchange’s website, you can shop for the best rates, and the cost is as much as 50 percent less than alternatives in the marketplace.
 
Although Maf’s company makes the transaction simple, the path to his grand opening was fraught with challenges. He was able to leap those barriers through his own determination, which was undergirded by the spirit of cooperation in Arkansas that you don’t find everywhere.
 
LumoXchange’s journey to Arkansas was made possible eleven years ago when local leaders created a Technology Park Authority. In 2014, a group of entrepreneurs and business leaders opened The Venture Center.
 
The Venture Center partnered with FIS, which produces financial technology – or FinTech, as it is called – for companies around the world.
 
Then to help attract entrepreneurs, my administration set aside funds for the Accelerator program, which is designed to accelerate the growth of technology-based startups and enlarge the stable of high-tech talent in Arkansas.
 
While all of this was happening in Arkansas, Maf was in New York City, working his day job as a Supply Chain Operations Manager with PepsiCo while building his money-exchange platform by night.
In 2016, The Venture Center and FIS chose LumoXchange to participate in its first class of 10 startups. On Wednesday, many of the mentors and partners who helped make this happen gathered for Maf’s announcement that LumoXchange was up and running in five countries.
 
Maf could have picked any number of places in which to start up LumoXchange, but few offered the intangibles that he found in Arkansas, such as the cooperative spirit, the quality of people, the relationships that are so easy to form, and our excellent quality of life.
 
One of our state’s many strengths is the diversity of opportunity. Agriculture and tourism are our top two industries, followed by retail and manufacturing. But technology is crucial to our economy, and we have made great strides in preparing our young people with our statewide computer-science initiatives.
 
When people ask me what I’m doing as governor to prepare for the future, I say that we are training a new generation of coders and entrepreneurs, which creates a talent pool that will attract businesses to Arkansas.
 
I am proud of the success of the Venture Center, which provides, the content, connections, and capital to help entrepreneurs move quickly and grow here in Arkansas.
 
This program is one of the ways we attract innovators such as Maf Sonko and his six-foot-eight chief technology officer, Daniel Pollock. This is part of our future.
 
6-8-18 6:08 a.m. kawx.org 

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Senator John Boozman's Weekly Column

Time, Bipartisanship, Good Faith: The Recipe for Government Funding

 

I’ve been calling for Congress to break the cycle of continuing resolutions and omnibus spending deals for quite some time. For too long, we’ve relied on these short-sighted solutions to fund the government rather than approving the 12 individual appropriations bills. I’m pleased to see that there is a renewed commitment to return to this regular process.

 

In his announcement canceling the August in-state work period, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell expressed his “goal of passing appropriations bills prior to the end of the fiscal year.” As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, I believe this is a worthwhile and attainable goal.

 

Continuing resolutions prevent Congress from reining in spending and wasting taxpayer dollars, because they maintain current funding levels for outdated and inefficient programs and restrict agencies from launching new initiatives since they are required to operate under last year’s priorities. 

 

For months, the Senate Appropriations Committee has held hearings with agency officials about the funding needs for the next fiscal year which starts in October. My colleagues and I have spent countless hours crafting appropriations bills that reflect today’s priorities and return predictability to agency leaders.

 

In early June, committee members advanced funding bills for transportation infrastructure development, housing assistance and community development as well as military construction and veterans’ programs.

 

As chairman of the Senate Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies (MilCon-VA) Appropriations Subcommittee, I am proud of the bill we crafted that supports critical housing, infrastructure and facilities for U.S. military forces and their families and provides increased funding for veterans’ health care and benefits.

 

Keeping the promise we made to our veterans is an important responsibility of the federal government. Just as essential is that we ensure our military has the infrastructure it needs to defend our nation and its allies. This bill reflects these priorities by increasing resources to prevent veteran suicide, increasing rural access to healthcare, supporting critical mental health programs, preventing veterans homelessness and providing robust funding for innovative medical research. 

 

This is particularly important as it also initiates funding to support reforms to the VA’s healthcare delivery system that was signed into law by President Trump this month. This will provide our veterans with more choices and fewer barriers to care.

 

Four appropriations bills, including those that support federal agriculture and nutrition programs and our energy and water infrastructure, have been approved by the committee and are ready to be considered on the Senate floor. I am pleased that Leader McConnell intends to put the appropriations bills at the top of the Senate's to-do list for the summer. I look forward to debating the MilCon-VA bill and other appropriations bills in the coming weeks.

 

Debating and passing these funding bills is a basic responsibility of the federal government that provides accountability and transparency. Having the ability to amend these bills before the full chamber allows all senators a voice in the spending process, regardless of whether or not they serve on the Appropriations Committee.

 

Before signing the Fiscal Year 2018 spending bill in March, President Trump made it clear that he would not approve another last-minute funding package. Having more time this summer to advance appropriations bills will ease that concern.

 

6-8-18   5:11 p.m  kawx.org

 

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State Representative John Maddox's Weekly Column

Although budget hearings for the next fiscal year do not begin until the fall, we frequently review revenue reports to ensure our budget is on track.  This week, we received the General Revenue Report for May showing net available general revenue totals for the year at $4.9 billion.

 

After 11 months into the 2018 fiscal year, revenue is $159.9 million or 3.3% above this time last year.  It is also $44.2 million more than had been previously forecasted.

 

July 1st is the beginning of a new fiscal year for state government in Arkansas.  As we approach that date, state officials pay close attention the revenue forecast for the previous year and where our current budget stands in relation to that forecast.  This gives insight into what they might expect for the upcoming fiscal year.

 

Arkansas’s two largest sources of general revenue are collected from a portion of the state sales/use tax and from the Arkansas individual income tax.  Other general revenue sources include: taxes on alcohol and tobacco products; gaming and pari-mutuel betting on horse and dog racing; severance taxes on oil, minerals, gravel, and natural gas; corporate franchises and corporate income; and real estate transfers.

 

So far this year, individual incomes taxes and sales tax have generated more revenue than the previous year.  Corporate incomes taxes are down.

 

Our unemployment rate now stands at 3.8%.  The national rate is 3.9%. We rank 20th in the nation for the lowest level of unemployment.  When more Arkansans are working, our economy strengthens. This is positive news as we approach the next year.

 

Our Tax Reform Task Force has been diligently studying ways to reform our tax structure.  They are in the final months of drafting their recommendations.  Positive revenue reports and unemployment rates help guide our decision making process.  We will continue to update you on the progress.

 

6-8-18 4:48 p.m. kawx.org 

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State Capitol Week in Review From Senator Larry Teague

State Capitol Week in Review From Senator Larry Teague

June 8, 2018

 

LITTLE ROCK – Legislators and business leaders have made it a priority to encourage more Arkansas students to graduate from college with a degree or a certificate proving that they have learned a core set of job skills.

 

The overall prosperity of a state depends in large part on the educational level of its citizens.

 

That was one of the reasons the legislature changed the funding formula for state colleges and universities last year. State aid to higher education will no longer rely so much on enrollment, and instead will be based more on the number of graduates who successfully complete their studies.

 

After changing the method of funding colleges and universities, the legislature then added $10 million to state aid during the fiscal session earlier this year. The hope is that additional state aid will allow institutions to hold down tuition increases.

 

In a letter to presidents and chancellors of Arkansas universities, the governor noted that tuition at their institutions had gone up from 3 percent to more than 6 percent a year over the past 10 years. He challenged universities to freeze tuition next year, and he challenged two-year colleges to hold any increase to the level of inflation.

 

According to a report by the Southern Regional Education Board on the affordability of higher education in Arkansas, “Tuition and fees at both public four-year and public two-year institutions in Arkansas have been growing much more rapidly than either inflation or family income.” That report described tuition increases from 2006 through 2014.

 

Research indicates that one of the important reasons that students don’t finish college is that they have problems paying for it. Even for students with financial aid, tuition and fees eat up a high percentage of their family’s income.

 

In the past few weeks, the boards of trustees of higher education institutions have been meeting to set tuition and fees for the 2018 fall semester. The universities have accepted the challenge and held tuition to this year’s levels, but they have increased mandatory fees.

 

Tuition will remain unchanged at the five four-year campuses in the University of Arkansas system. They are in Fayetteville, Fort Smith, Little Rock, Monticello and Pine Bluff. However, fees will go up at all the campuses. Tuition for the system’s seven two-year colleges will go up, but by less than 2.1 percent.

 

Arkansas State University in Jonesboro will also hold tuition to current levels, although fees will go up. The ASU system has four two-year colleges, and fees will go up slightly at three of them. ASU Mid South in West Memphis will not raise either tuition or fees.

 

Henderson State University in Arkadelphia, Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia, Arkansas Tech in Russellville and the University of Central Arkansas in Conway will do the same.

 

State Revenue Report

The state fiscal year ends on June 30. The May report from the Department of Finance and Administration indicates that for the first 11 months of the fiscal year, revenue collections are on a pace to generate a budget surplus of $44 million.

 

Net general revenue for the year-to-date is about $4.9 billion, or 3.3 percent more than last year.

 

6-8-18 7:55 a.m. kawx.org 

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Free Fishing Weekend In Arkansas For Everyone, Five Free Fishing Derbies for Kids

This weekend marks Free Fishing Weekend in Arkansas, as proclaimed by Gov. Asa Hutchinson. And as part of the big weekend, five AGFC hatcheries throughout the state will be hosting free fishing derbies for children ages 15 and under on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., so it's a great opportunity for parents (or grandparents, or aunts and uncles) to introduce fishing to the kids. And on this weekend, NO ONE NEEDS A LICENSE.


Free Fishing Days begins at noon Friday, June 8, and runs through midnight Sunday night. No angler will need a fishing license or trout permit to fish anywhere in Arkansas.


At Saturday's free derbies, each child must be supervised by an adult. Kids can catch and keep up to three catfish (or three trout at the Jim Hinkle Spring River State Fish Hatchery). Along with fishing, participants can compete in casting contests and win prizes for fish caught.


Contact the hatchery nearest you for details on its derby: Andrew Hulsey State Fish Hatchery, Hot Springs, 877-525-8606; Charlie Craig State Fish Hatchery, Centerton, 877-795-2470; William Donham State Fish Hatchery, Corning, 877-857-3876; Joe Hogan State Fish Hatchery, Lonoke, 877-676-6963; and the Jim Hinkle Spring River State Fish Hatchery, Mammoth Spring, 877-625-7521. 

 

6-7-18 6:22 a.m. kawx.org

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ATTORNEY GENERAL ALERT: Apps Allow Teens to Hide Photos from Parents

With kids home for the summer, parents need to know about dangerous phone apps available that allow their kids to actively conceal information, photos and texts from their parents. These apps can easily be downloaded onto any mobile device and have unassuming icons designed to mislead a casual observer and veil their secretive nature. One popular application or app appears to be a calculator. It even functions as a calculator, until the user enters a specific code. The app then opens up to a secret vault of photos and videos that can be stored in the app for sharing, without being detected in the phone’s photo album.
 
“The world of secret apps is scary for parents across Arkansas,” said Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge. “Parents should dig deeper into their child’s phone and ask questions about new apps that have been downloaded. The best way to educate our children about internet safety is to be educated ourselves.”
 
Attorney General Rutledge and Common Sense Media shared the following tips for parents to consider when discussing this topic with their children.

  • Talk to teens about using phones responsibly and respecting privacy. 
  • Remind teens that taking and/or sharing embarrassing or revealing pictures often comes back to haunt people, so resist the temptation.
  • Consider that kids might not be trying to hide photos from parents but from nosy friends. If that is the case, try to find out why.
  • Do a spot check to see which apps have used the camera. This will reveal any camera apps disguised as something else. (On iPhones go into Settings -> Privacy -> Camera)


There are also apps available to help parents monitor their child’s device. Apps like SecureTeen Parental Control or Parental Control Board are helpful to parents to know who kids are texting, what music they are buying and many other things.
 
The Attorney General’s office also produces materials for students of all ages, along with parents and guardians to learn more about online and internet safety.
 
For more information and tips to avoid scams and other consumer-related issues, contact the Arkansas Attorney General’s office at (800) 482-8982 or consumer@arkansasag.gov or visit ArkansasAG.gov or facebook.com/AGLeslieRutledge.

6-6-18 8:12 p.m. kawx.org 

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Lake Ouachita Fisheries Management Plan Update Meetings June 7 and 26, 6-9 p.m.

Lake Ouachita reigns as one of the best fisheries in Arkansas. Its crystal clear waters accommodate many species of fish that anglers of all types enjoy. The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission is undergoing its scheduled review and revision process for the lake’s fisheries management plan, and would like to hear directly from the anglers who use this treasured resource.

 

At the first meeting, 6 p.m.-9 p.m. June 7 at the Hot Springs Convention Center, biologists will talk about the lake’s booming largemouth bass fishery and information on the latest genetic testing that is one method biologists are using to evaluate the success of experimental stocking of Florida largemouth bass that took place from 2007 to 2014. They also will cover the results of the most recent angler mail surveys and boat ramp surveys on the lake, as well as the components of striped bass and crappie management activities on Ouachita. Biologists covering each topic will be available for one-on-one discussion during the first hour of the meeting.

 

Once the presentations are over, all attendees will be able to participate in focus groups where they will be able to identify the things most important to them as the AGFC moves forward in fisheries management on Ouachita. The biologists will collect the results of these group findings and incorporate them into a revised plan.

 

The second meeting, 6 p.m.-9 p.m., June 26 at the Hot Springs Convention Center, will be held to review a draft of the revised plan, with opportunity for additional input on some issues.

 

All interested parties, especially Lake Ouachita anglers, should plan to attend both meetings in June. Your voice will help shape the new plan that will serve as a guideline for the management of the Lake Ouachita fishery for the next five years.

 

6-6-18 5:47 p.m. kawx.org 

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WMA Deer Hunt Permit Application Period Open

 If you want to hunt on some of the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission’s most popular deer-hunting destinations this fall, you’ll want to apply for a special WMA deer hunt from June 1 until July 1.  

Wildlife management areas developed and cultivated by the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission offer some of the best opportunities to bag your deer during hunting season, but popular hunting areas can become crowded or overhunted without special restrictions. The AGFC conducts special draw hunts on WMAs prone to overcrowding to maintain healthy deer herds and high-quality hunting experiences.

Applicants for WMA Deer Hunt Permits must provide a $5 nonrefundable processing fee at the time of their application. If successful, they will receive their permit without the need for any additional fees. If any hunts have more permits available than applicants, those will be available on a first-come, first-served basis in late July for the same $5 processing fee.

Each hunter may submit one application for each type of permit hunt: youth hunt, archery, muzzleloader and modern gun. Hunters who are not able to apply online may visit any AGFC regional office to apply in person.

Hunters must be at least 6 years old, and hunters applying for youth hunts must be at least 6, but no older than 15, the day the hunt begins.

Call 501-223-6440 or 501-223-6359 for more information on AGFC permit hunts.

6-6-18 5:32 p.m. kawx.org 

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Life jackets ticket to sweet rewards

Wildlife officers throughout Arkansas will be looking to hand out some of the sweetest citations an angler could ask for this summer. Thanks to Sonic Drive In, AGFC wildlife officers will be armed with 10,000 special “ice cream citations” for youths on Arkansas waters when they’re caught wearing their life jackets.

According to AGFC Boating Law Administrator Stephanie Weatherington, these special tickets entitle youth who receive them to a small ice cream cone from their local Sonic restaurant.

“We’ve been able to offer this program for the last six years,” Weatherington said. “Some officers have a few already, and we’ll really ramp things up as we get closer to Independence Day weekend.”

Weatherington says adults with those kids may even get a special citation if the wildlife officer sees them leading by example.

“It’s important that everyone wears a life jacket,” Weatherington says. “Even people who think they can swim well can fall victim to drowning if they are tossed overboard far from shore or fall into the water unconscious.”

Many people drown because they fall out of a boat and are not wearing a fitted life jacket, Weatherington says.

“Some don’t believe they need one because they can swim. Others may wear one that has dry rot or is not the right size. The most important thing about riding in a boat is to wear a life jacket,” she said. “By law, anyone 12 or younger must wear a life jacket while in a boat. Also, all vessels must have at least one approved, wearable life jacket for every person on board. There must also be a throwable device on any vessel 16 feet or longer,” she explained. “We hope this will also encourage the parents to also wear their life jacket, so everyone can have great memories of a day on the water,” Weatherington added.

6-6-18 5:28 p.m. kawx.org 

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State Report Shows Arkansas Abortions Remain Near Record Lows

On Tuesday the Arkansas Department of Health published its annual report on the number of abortions performed in Arkansas. The report shows abortion remained near record lows last year, with 3,249 abortions performed in Arkansas in 2017.

Family Council President Jerry Cox released a statement saying, “3,249 abortions were performed in Arkansas last year, slightly up from 2016 to 2017, but overall, the number has fallen by more than a thousand since 2014, and it is less than half of what it was in the early 1990’s. For two years in a row, abortion in Arkansas has remained at its lowest levels since 1977, and Arkansas is now the second most pro-life state in the U.S., according to Americans United for Life. Arkansans are winning the fight to protect unborn children.”

Cox credited a series of pro-life laws passed in recent years with much of the decline in abortion. “In 2015 Arkansas passed one of the best informed-consent laws in the nation. It ensures women are given all the facts about abortion up front, including information about abortion’s risks, consequences, and alternatives. According to state reports, over the past two years more than seven hundred women have chosen not to have abortions after being given that information. Last year the legislature improved this pro-life law and passed more than half a dozen others.”

Cox said abortion in Arkansas could decline even more in the future thanks to last week’s U.S. Supreme Court decision. “In 2017 921 drug-induced abortions were performed in Arkansas. Three years ago Arkansas passed a law requiring abortion facilities that do drug-induced abortions to contract with a physician who has admitting privileges at a hospital. Federal courts have upheld that law, and last week the U.S. Supreme Court chose not to hear a legal challenge against it. As a result, Planned Parenthood has chosen to stop doing drug-induced abortions in Arkansas for the time being. The Arkansas Legislature has passed good, pro-life laws. Attorney General Leslie Rutledge is defending those laws successfully in court, and the lives of unborn children are being saved as a result.”

Cox also praised the work of Arkansas’ pregnancy resource centers. “Pregnancy resource centers help women with unplanned pregnancies. They provide everything from ultrasounds and adoption information to maternity clothes, diapers, and baby formula free of charge. Pregnancy resource centers give women real options besides abortion. That’s why Family Council is working on a program to help provide funding for these centers. We hope to have that program in place within the next year.”

Cox said Family Council will continue working to end abortion in Arkansas. “While we are glad the number of abortions is near historic lows, it’s important to remember that the vast majority of the abortions performed last year were on healthy women carrying healthy babies. Abortion is a tragedy. We intend to continue working to end abortion in Arkansas.”

Family Council is a conservative education and research organization based in Little Rock, Arkansas.

6-5-18 9:38 a.m. kawx.org 

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PCSO Releases Statement On Drowning, Victim Was From Nashville, AR

At approximately 11 AM on Saturday, 06/02/2018, the Polk County Sheriffs Office received a report of a drowning victim at the Mt. Fork River on Polk 37 at the old iron bridge. Officers from the Polk County Sheriffs Office, Arkansas State Police, SouthWest EMS, and area fire department personnel responded. The victim, a 10-year-old girl from Nashville, Arkansas, was visiting relatives in the area at the time of the accident. The victim was transported to Mena Regional Medical Center, where she passed away at 12:56 PM. The thoughts and prayers of the Sheriffs Office are with the family in this time of need.

 

6-5-18 12:22 p.m. kawx.org 

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Sheriff's Log For May 28th thru June 3rd

SHERIFF’S LOG

The following information was received from Polk County Sheriff Scott Sawyer for the week of May 28, 2018 – June 3, 2018.  The charges against those arrested are allegations and the cases are still pending in the courts.  Individuals charged and whose names appear in this column may submit documentation to us at a later date that the charges have been dismissed or that they have been found innocent and we will include that information in this space in a timely manner.

 

May 28, 2018

Report from complainant on Polk 22 near Cove of possible harassment via the phone.  Investigation continues.

 

May 29, 2018

Arrested by an officer with the Grannis Police Department was Jennifer K. Pierce, 36, on Charges of Possession of Meth/Cocaine and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia and a Warrant for Child Support.

 

May 30, 2018

Traffic stop on Highway 71 South near Potter led to the arrest of Lori-Ann Barber, 43, of Hatfield, on Charges of DWI and Defective Equipment.

 

May 31, 2018

Report from complainant on Highway 8 West near Mena of a family member that had possibly been scammed.  Investigation continues.

Report of a disturbance on Highway 71 South near Mena.  Deputy responded.

Report from complainant on Polk 199 near Cherry Hill of fraudulent activity regarding a phone account, totaling losses at $2,500.00.  Investigation continues.

Arrested by an officer with the Grannis Police Department was Leslie N. Gillaspy, 40, of Wickes, on a Warrant for Theft by Receiving.

Arrested was Billie C. Jennings, 57, of Mena, on a Warrant for Possession of Drug Paraphernalia and Possession of Meth/Cocaine.

 

June 1, 2018

Report from complainant on Polk 659 near Board Camp of damage done to a vehicle.  Investigation continues.

Arrested by an officer with the U.S. Forest Service was Domingo P. Perez, 29, of Pine Bluff, on a Parole Hold.

Arrested was Stetson Bissell, 22, of Mena, on a Warrant for Battery 3rd Degree.

 

June 2, 2018

Arrested was Daniel R. Parnell, 40, of Gillham, on Warrants for Probation Violation and Failure to Comply with a Court Order.

 

June 3, 2018

Report of suspicious behavior led to a 17-year-old male being issued a Juvenile Citation for Possession of a Schedule VI Controlled Substance.  The juvenile was released to the custody of a parent/guardian.

Report from complainant on Gaze Lane near Cherry Hill of unauthorized person(s) on their property.  Investigation continues.

Arrested was Gary D. McLellan, 36, of Hatfield, on a Warrant for Harassing Communications.

 

Polk County Sheriff’s Office worked four vehicle accidents this week.

 

Polk County Detention Center Jail Population: 24 Incarcerated Inmates, with 9 Inmates currently on the Waiting List for a State Facility.

PC18-00349

 

6-4-18 8:56 p.m. kawx.org 

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NRB Praises Supreme Court's Affirmation of Religious Liberty in Masterpiece Cakeshop Case

WASHINGTON (NRB) – National Religious Broadcasters praised today’s Supreme Court decision overturning Colorado’s discrimination against Jack Phillips for upholding his religious convictions in the practice of his business, Masterpiece Cakeshop.

"The Supreme Court was absolutely correct to overturn the clear religious discrimination perpetrated by the state of Colorado against Jack Phillips,” said Dr. Jerry A. Johnson, president & CEO of NRB. “A 7-2 ruling is a strong affirmation of the central importance of religious liberty to our nation. This decision affirms Americans’ freedom to believe, to speak, and to live their faith. Politicians who are still intent on currying favor with the well-funded radical Left should take a hard look at this case and correct their course of intolerance before they further trample on America’s fundamental freedoms. I thank Jack for fighting on the front lines for us all. I also commend NRB member Alliance Defending Freedom for yet another victory before the highest court in our land.”

Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, was ordered by the Colorado Civil Rights Commission to create custom cakes for same-sex ceremonies even though they communicated a message in violation of his religious beliefs. The commission also included in its order a requirement for Phillips to file quarterly compliance reports demonstrating that he had re-educated his staff about state nondiscrimination law. That ruling was ultimately upheld by the Colorado Supreme Court, which the U.S. Supreme Court overruled today.

Since its founding nearly 75 years ago, National Religious Broadcasters has steadfastly championed freedom of speech and religious liberty. During the 2018 annual convention, NRB’s Board of Directors, a body of approximately 100 key leaders among Christian communicators, unanimously adopted a resolution, “Urging Respect for the Freedom to Believe,” that asserted the federal government “must faithfully preserve, protect, and defend the U.S. Constitution’s guarantee that all citizens are free to speak and free to exercise the tenets of their faith in daily life.”

6-4-18 10:47 a.m. kawx.org 

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Mena Police Department Report May 27th - June 2nd

Mena Police Department Reports for week of May 27, 2018 through June 2, 2018 
 
 May 27, 2018
 
Cheryl Smith, 28, of Mena was arrested on an outstanding warrant .
 
May 28, 2018
 
Zachary Watts, 24, and Britney Watts, 20, both of Mena were arrested and charged with disorderly conduct after officers responded to a call of a verbal dispute at a local store.
 
Gray Lynn Berg, 59, of Mena was charged with public intoxication after officers were called to a local neighborhood.
 
May 29, 2018
 
Report was made regarding an attempt by unknown persons to gain entry to the back of a local business.  Entry was not made.  Case is pending.
 
May 30, 2018
 
John Howard, 54, of Mena was charged with criminal trespass after a call to a local residence.
 
May 31, 2018
 
Officers traveled to Sebastian County and brought Ashley Nicole Laughter-King, 28, of Mena to the Polk County jail on outstanding warrants for failure to pay fines and court costs.
 
June 1, 2018
 
Neisha Fay Wikel, 25, of Cove was arrested on five outstanding warrants for failure to pay fines and court costs.
 
June 2, 2018
 
Jamie Odom, 25, of Mena was charged with theft of property and possession of drug paraphernalia after officers were dispatched to a local apartment complex.
 
A 32-year-old Mena man lost control of his bicycle on a steep downhill grade on a local street.  He eventually crashed onto the pavement with several injuries to his head.  A motorist saw the wreck and notified dispatch.  When officers arrived, the man was unconscious.  He was taken by ambulance to the local hospital, stabilized, and then air lifted to a hospital in Hot Springs.
 
6-4-18 10:27 a.m. kawx.org 
 

 

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Taking It to the Schools III: Community Experiences in Fine Arts

Taking It to the Schools III: Community Experiences in Fine Arts
 
In partnership with the Arkansas Arts Council and Arkansans for the Arts, the Arkansas Department of Education offers its third summer of the popular Taking It to the Schools: Community Experiences in Fine Arts professional development workshop series.

Teachers, teaching artists, and community arts participants are invited to attend one-day trainings which focus on the potential collaborations between school arts programs and community arts organizations. Participants will take away a series of instructional modules developed by the team of trainers. These modules will provide arts educators with rich resources that are specific to the artistic discipline they teach and aligned to the Arkansas Fine Arts Academic Standards.
Registration is open for classroom teachers with accounts through escWorks (search ‘All’ co-ops and enter ‘Community Experiences’. Registration is open for all other interested parties at this link:https://goo.gl/forms/FvelRVPMg6sCJOFn2
 
Taking It to the Schools III: Community Experiences in Visual Art
Presenters: Joy Schultz (Episocopal Collegiate) and teaching artist Jeri Hillis (AAC Arts in Education) will combine a look at collage artists and making collage art with a discussion of choice-based art.

Host:  Mena Art Gallery in Mena on June 14 from 9am to 4 pm.
 
6-3-18 8:27 p.m. kawx.org 

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Celebrate Arkansas Statehood June 9 at Old State House Museum 2nd Friday Art Night on June 8 will feature music from 106th Army Band

Old State House Museum will host a free family-friendly event June 9 from noon to 5 p.m. to celebrate the 182nd anniversary of Arkansas becoming a state. The actual date of Arkansas Statehood is June 15, 1836,

 

This year’s theme is Work and Play. Visitors will learn what industries and trades were in Arkansas in 1836, the worth of goods and services and what pastimes were pursued by early Arkansans. Some of the characters that visitors will meet that day include a carpenter, a basket-weaver, a quilter, a teacher, a drover, a land surveyor, a preacher, a snake oil salesman, a dry goods proprietress and a tavern-keeper.

 

There will be period games like faro, checkers, skittles and graces for kids — and those who are young at heart — to play that day. In addition, the Arkansas Pioneers Association will be on hand to serve refreshments.

 

Prior to the June 9 event, the Old State House Museum will put guests in the Statehood spirit during 2nd Friday Art Night (2FAN), 5-8 p.m. on June 8. The 106th Army Band will play period music to transport guests back in time on the lawn of the Old State House Museum.

 

The Old State House Museum is located at 300 W. Markham in Little Rock. Admission is free and open to the public; the museum can validate parking at the DoubleTree hotel. Metered marking near the museum is free on weekends and after 6 p.m. on weekdays. For more information, call (501) 324-9685 or visit www.oldstatehouse.com.

 

The Old State House Museum is a museum of the Department of Arkansas Heritage and shares the goal of all eight Department of Arkansas Heritage divisions, that of preserving and enhancing the heritage of the state of Arkansas. The divisions are are Arkansas Arts Council, Arkansas Historic Preservation Program, Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission, Arkansas State Archives, Delta Cultural Center in Helena, Historic Arkansas Museum, Mosaic Templars Cultural Center and the Old State House Museum.

 

6-2-18 11:44 a.m. kawx.org

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Senator John Boozman's Weekly Column-Working Together for Rural Arkansas

Washington is working together to help our rural communities, which is good news for the forty-two percent of Arkansans who live outside our urban areas. When we work together in a bipartisan manner, we can get a lot accomplished that will help rural America, and in turn rural Arkansas, continue to grow.

 

Infrastructure investment is one way to bring enormous benefits to our rural communities. Not only do smart infrastructure investments boost our economy and create immediate jobs, but they produce long-term positive results as well. The quality of a state’s infrastructure is near the top of the list of factors that business owners consider when deciding where to locate a business or enterprise. Sensible, productive investments in our state’s infrastructure will foster economic development in rural Arkansas.

 

Those benefits are easy to see with the traditional three R’s of infrastructure—roads, runways and rails. But we are working to broaden the scope of traditional infrastructure investment to also include water and broadband, both of which are vital to rural Arkansas’s future and can earn bipartisan support.

 

Recently we scored a major bipartisan victory with the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee’s unanimous approval of a comprehensive bill to address shortfalls in our nation’s water infrastructure.

 

The bill includes a provision I authored that proposes an innovative solution to updating our water and wastewater infrastructure in a way that communities of all sizes can afford. By including my bill in the committee’s comprehensive water infrastructure bill, state and local governments will be able to more effectively meet underserved or unmet infrastructure needs.

 

On the broadband front, we are working on bipartisan solutions to close the digital divide in rural America. The bipartisan Senate Broadband Caucus, of which I am a co-chair, is leading the charge to encourage President Trump to include initiatives to promote the deployment of high-speed, reliable broadband for all Americans as part of the conversation for our nation’s overall infrastructure plans.

 

The Farm Bill is another area where we can typically find bipartisan agreement to help rural America. Agriculture is Arkansas’s largest industry, adding around $16 billion to our economy every year and accounting for approximately one in every six jobs, so this legislation is extremely important to the economic livelihood of rural Arkansas.

 

The current Farm Bill is set to expire at the end of September so I am working with my colleagues on the Senate Agriculture Committee to write a new one that is fair, equitable and addresses the key needs of farmers and ranchers. Programs authorized by the Farm Bill are vital to making sure that, as a nation, we do not become dependent on other countries for our food supply.

 

The legislation is responsible for much more than just risk management tools for our farmers. The Farm Bill also helps our rural communities by authorizing key economic development and job creation programs. It helps rural Arkansans with everything from home financing to internet access to small business loans.

 

There is a consensus building around this legislation in the Senate and it is my hope that it will be the next bipartisan victory for rural Arkansas. Working together is the strategy we need to continue to follow to create opportunities for our rural communities to succeed. If our rural communities are prosperous, the entire state of Arkansas will see the benefits.

 

6-1-18 5:20 p.m. kawx.org 

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State Representative John Maddox's Weekly Column

Once a year, we get an incredible opportunity to see the future leaders of our state in action.

 

That opportunity took place this week as we greeted the participants of Boys State and Girls State in our Capitol.

 

The National American Legion established the Boys State program in 1935.  The American Legion Auxiliary established Girls State in 1937. 

 

Arkansas Boys State and Girls State is an immersive program in civics education designed for high school juniors across the state.  More than 20 of our current members participated in Boys State or Girls State the summer before their senior year.

 

Upon arrival, each participant is assigned a mock political party, city, and county. Throughout the week, delegates administrate this mock government as if it were the real government.

 

By week’s end, Boys State and Girls State have created their own state government including their own governor and staff of state officials.  They establish their own Supreme Court and legislature.

The mock legislative session is held in the Capitol with many of our members assisting the students through the bill presentation and voting process.

 

The bills they present always give insight into the issues important to this generation.  This year, Girls State presented bills aimed at combating opioid overdoses, preventing school shootings through mental health training for teachers, and implementing toll roads.  Participants of Boys State presented mock legislation to require law enforcement officers to complete sensitivity training and a bill to increase the legal age to purchase cigarettes from 18 to 21.

 

Boys State and Girls State provides our students with an opportunity to learn how our government operates without using a text book.  It teaches them through a real-life experience they will never forget. 

 

       If you know a young man or woman interested in serving, encourage them to visit with their high school guidance counselor who can provide information on how to participate in next year’s program. 

 

6-1-18 5:15 p.m. kawx.org 

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Planned Parenthood Has Stopped Performing Abortions in Arkansas

Planned Parenthood has stopped performing chemical abortions in Arkansas, leaving only one abortion facility in the state.  The number of women seeking help at Little Rock’s pro-life crisis pregnancy center is up so much that they have issued a call for more volunteers to help.  Planned Parenthood’s abortion doctors say they can’t find a hospital or any other doctors who will help them meet the requirements of a new law requiring them to have admitting privileges at a hospital or have a contract with someone who does.
 
On Tuesday, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected a challenge by Planned Parenthood against a pro-life law passed by the Arkansas Legislature in 2015.  On Thursday, the Eight Circuit Court of Appeals issued an order that law must be enforced. This is great news on the pro-life front.  This means that the ruling by the Eight Circuit Court of Appeals upholding the law will stand. This law, championed by Rep. Charlene Fite (R), Van Buren and Sen. Linda-Collins Smith (R), Pocahontas passed the Arkansas Legislature with only 12 dissenting votes.  Signed into law by Governor Asa Hutchinson, it requires doctors who perform drug-induced abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital or have a contract with a doctor who has admitting privileges.  Presented with evidence that drug-induced abortions are more dangerous than surgical abortions, the Arkansas Legislature found that to protect the health and safety of women, a law was needed to require doctors who perform abortions to operate by the same standards that most doctors already follow. 
 
Now that his law is in effect, the two existing Planned Parenthood facilities in Arkansas have stopped performing chemical abortions.  According to Planned Parenthood, their doctors have been unable to find a hospital that will grant them admitting privileges and they say no doctor who has admitting privileges will contract with their doctors to help them follow the law.  Arkansas has about 6,000 licensed physicians and a majority of them have admitting privileges with one or more hospitals.
 
Little Rock’s Caring Hearts Pregnancy Center, a pro-life organization that helps women with unplanned pregnancies, reported on Thursday that the number of women seeking their help had increased.  This increase has been attributed to the burning of the Little Rock Pregnancy Resource Center and changes at Planned Parenthood.    
 
The ACLU and Planned Parenthood are now building their case for another legal challenge in Federal Court.  We expect them to try to present evidence that enforcement of this law is creating an “undue burden” to a woman seeking an abortion. 
 
With the help of Americans United for Life, Family Council worked with the Arkansas Legislature to draft this law and Family Council staff members Charisse Dean and Ken Yang led the lobbying effort for the bill’s passage.  This was a team effort made possible by scores of people all working together. 
 
It is important to note that several other good pro-life bills from Americans United for Life and Family Council are pending in the courts.  If these laws are upheld, Arkansas will be taking giant steps toward being the most pro-life place in the nation. 

Jerry Cox is the founder and president of Family Council and the Education Alliance.  Between fundraising, public speaking, leading the staff, lobbying, and writing, Jerry maintains an active role in ensuring that Family Council continues to serve the people of Arkansas as it has since 1989. He and his wife reside in Little Rock. They have four sons.

 

6-1-18 5:09 p.m. kawx.org 

 

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Governor Hutchinson's Weekly Radio Address: The New Work Requirement for Arkansas Works

As many of you know, we’ve wanted to establish a work requirement in Arkansas Works for a long time. We were unable to garner support for this reform under the previous administration in Washington, but the Trump Administration is encouraging states to pursue this important innovation. As a result, we secured federal approval in March, and today, Arkansas has become the first state in the nation to implement a Medicaid work requirement.
Under this new requirement, certain able-bodied working-age adults in Arkansas Works will be required to work, train, volunteer, or go to school at least 80 hours a month in exchange for Medicaid benefits. To put it another way, Arkansas is requiring participants in its Medicaid program to engage in their communities and enjoy the satisfaction of self-sufficiency, while linking them to the work that will help them pursue their independence.
Those who fail to meet the minimum 80 hours per month for three months in a calendar year will lose Medicaid coverage for the rest of that year. We hope affected individuals will take the steps necessary to keep their coverage, and the Department of Human Services and the Department of Workforce Services are working hard to inform enrollees of the new requirement.
I have often said that Arkansans understand the dignity of work, and I believe that. One of the core objectives of the Medicaid program is to help individuals achieve independence. The ability to work full-time is fundamental to self-sufficiency. A healthy, well-trained workforce will attract greater investment in Arkansas and help sustain long-term growth. With our historically strong state economy, now is the right time to prepare these individuals for full-time, year-round work. 
A fundamental goal of the work requirement is to help people escape from poverty. Even at minimum wage, a person who works full-time for a full year will earn his way above the federally established poverty level.
With this development, Arkansas has become a national leader in rethinking the delivery of public assistance. Although Arkansas’ work requirement is one of the most stringent in the nation, it is not designed to be punitive, but to better serve the needs of Arkansans by creating incentives for individuals to take steps toward financial independence.
The requirement to work presents an opportunity to learn new skills, broaden horizons, overcome current challenges, experience the dignity of work, build for the future, and give back to the community. The benefit of work is far greater than earning a paycheck. Work has a positive influence on an individual’s physical health, mental health, and general well-being. People who work are healthier and live longer. 
People in Arkansas want to work, but they may be hampered by inadequate training and opportunities. A work requirement is designed to increase opportunity, and as I said, the purpose is not punitive.
With the new waiver, Medicaid coverage for adults in Arkansas is more than just access to medical services. It offers a path out of poverty and a path to the dignity of self-sufficiency and achievement. 
6-1-18 2:37 p.m. kawx.org 

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Mena Art Gallery Announces 16th Annual Photography Show

6-1-18 12:21 p.m. kawx.org 

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State Capitol Week in Review From Senator Larry Teague

State Capitol Week in Review From Senator Larry Teague

June 1, 2018

 

LITTLE ROCK –Each year there are more babies born in Arkansas with illegal drugs in their systems.

 

The state Division of Children and Family Services has been keeping records since the legislature enacted Garrett’s Law in 2005. It is named after a child who was born in 2004 with crystal methamphetamine in his body, and who lived only a few months.

 

The law expanded the legal definition of child neglect to include causing a newborn child to be born with illegal substances in his or her body, as a result of the mother knowingly using illegal drugs.

 

Although the presence of drugs is sufficient to substantiate an allegation of neglect, under Garrett’s Law the mother’s name is not automatically placed on the state’s Child Maltreatment Registry, because of concerns that a listing would prevent the mother from getting a job.

 

In 2006 there were 416 reported instances in Arkansas of babies being born with drugs in their bodies. The number has steadily gone up each year, by an average of seven percent until 2011. From 2012 through 2017 it went up more sharply, at an average growth rate of 14 percent a year. Last year there were 1,241 babies born in Arkansas with illegal drugs in their bodies.

 

For the past four years, marijuana has been the most commonly reported illegal drug found in newborns. Each year about two thirds of the filings made under Garrett’s Law indicate marijuana use by the mother, either by itself or in combination with other drugs.

 

The second most widely abused drug among pregnant mothers, at a rate of 25 percent, was methamphetamine or amphetamine. Opiates were abused by 18 percent of the mothers, based on the drugs found in their babies. Opiates include heroin, morphine, codeine and oxycodone. Ten percent had tranquilizers and five percent had cocaine.

 

The median age of the mother is 26, and over 90 percent of the mothers are under the age of 30. Those percentages have has been consistent over the past several years.

 

Last year 70 percent of the newborns did not have any reported health problems. That is an improvement over the previous two years, when 60 percent to 65 percent had health problems.

About 14 percent of the newborns needed treatment in a neonatal intensive care unit, and about 13 percent had respiratory distress or other breathing problems. About five percent suffered from withdrawal symptoms related to the presence of addictive drugs in their bodies.

 

The mortality rate last year was about a third of a percent, or 0.3 percent. That is the same as in 2016 and an improvement over 2015, when one percent of the newborns died.

The babies born with cocaine in their bodies had the highest rate of health problems (47 percent), followed by those born with tranquilizers (41 percent), with opiates (38 percent) and with methamphetamines (37 percent).

 

The least likely to be born with health problems were those born with marijuana in their bodies (27 percent).

 

Newborns whose mothers used cocaine were more likely to require treatment in intensive care (31 percent), followed by those born with methamphetamines (15 percent).

 

After the Division looked into the 1,241 cases reported under Garrett’s Law in 2017, about 18 percent of the babies were removed from their mothers’ homes. If the trend from the previous year holds steady, we can expect that 37 percent of those babies will be returned to their mothers within a year.

 

More than 38,000 babies were born in Arkansas during 2017, according to the U.S. Census.

 

6-1-18 12:09 p.m. kawx.org 

 

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Chism Maye Receives Arkansas Tech Scholarship

 

 

Arkansas Tech University is pleased to announce that Chism Maye has received a Transfer Scholarship for the fall 2018 semester.  This $2000 scholarship is awarded on academic merit and has a total potential value of $12,000 over three years.

 
Parents:  Vicky Maye and Bryan Maye
 
Chism's honor and awards include the following:
  • Arkansas Game and Fish Conservation Scholarship ($1500 per semester)
  • 2016 University of Arkansas Rich Mountain President Scholarship 
  • Arkansas Challenge Scholarship
  • General Studies Degree from UARM, Mena, AR
  • Works as technician assistant for the Rich Mountain Conservation District Office, Mena, AR
  • Will pursue Agriculture Business Degree at Arkansas Tech University, Russellville, AR-Fall, 2018.

 

6-1-18 7:37 a.m. kawx.org

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Acorn School Announces Honor Rolls

Acorn High School

2nd Semester Honor Roll

All A’s

2017-2018

 

7th Grade:

Cora Bell

Brookelyn Goss

Kaelin Harding

Michael Laing

Reed McGee

Rachael Miller

Jayden Willborg

 

8th Grade:

Kiersten Larucci

Jacob Lyle

Justice Neufeld

Raeghan Weddle

 

9th Grade:

Corryn Holland

Halli Holland

Sarah Wallace

 

10th Grade:

Makenna Goss

Kacey Head

Brady Lyle

 

11th Grade:

Makayla Anderson

Tessa Kesterson

 

12th Grade:

Makenzie Goss

Elizabeth Hachtel

Josey Webb

 

Acorn High School

2nd Semester Honor Roll

A’s & B’s

2017-2018

 

7th Grade:

Charish Hill

Olivia Maechler

Lori Richardson

Rachael Weddle

 

8th Grade:

Damian Bohlman

Sunshine Butterfield

Abigail Nance

 

9th Grade:

Hunter Davasher

Emmy Goss

Jayden Miller

Trysten Richey

Harlee Rodgers

Tyler Smedley

Kimberly Strasner

Autumn Strother

 

Acorn High School

2nd Semester Honor Roll

A’s & B’s

2017-2018

 

10th Grade:

Matthew Nance

Justin Richmond

Haley Sandoval

Brody Webb

 

11th Grade:

Kendra Branson

Mekinzie Kyle

Christian Marschall

Rachel Murr

Haley Richardson

Braxlie Strother

 

12th Grade:

Faith Hill

Bridgette Magness

Ashley Sides

 

Acorn High School

4th Nine Weeks Honor Roll

All A’s

2017-2018

 

7th Grade:

Cora Bell

Brookelyn Goss

Kaelin Harding

Reed McGee

 

8th Grade:

Kiersten Larucci

Raeghan Weddle

 

9th Grade:

Emmy Goss

Corryn Holland

Halli Holland

Autumn Strother

 

10th Grade:

Makenna Goss

Kacey Head

Brady Lyle

 

11th Grade:

Makayla Anderson

Tessa Kesterson

Braxlie Strother

 

12th Grade:

Makenzie Goss

Elizabeth Hachtel

Josey Webb

 

Acorn High School

4th Nine Weeks Honor Roll

A’s & B’s

2017-2018

 

7th Grade:

Cora Bell

Michael Laing

Rachael Miller

Addyson Prewett

Lori Richardson

Rachael Weddle

Emily Whorton

Jayden Willborg

 

8th Grade:

Sunshine Butterfield

Kayla Curry

Jacob Lyle

Abigail Nance

Justice Neufeld

 

9th Grade:

Hunter Davasher

Jayden Miller

Harlee Rodgers

Tyler Smedley

Kimberly Strasner

Sarah Wallace

 

Acorn High School

4th Nine Weeks Honor Roll

A’s & B’s

2017-2018

 

10th Grade:

Corinne Branson

Sophie Jackson

Matthew Nance

Haley Sandoval

Brody Webb

 

11th Grade:

Kendra Branson

Mekinzie Kyle

Rachel Murr

Haley Richardson

Jeb Willborg

 

12th Grade:

Faith Hill

Bridgette Magness

 

6-1-18 7:30 a.m. kawx.org

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Public meetings to update fisheries management on Lake Ouachita, June 7 and 26

 Lake Ouachita reigns as one of the best fisheries in Arkansas. Its crystal clear waters accommodate many species of fish that anglers of all types enjoy. The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission is undergoing its scheduled review and revision process for the lake’s fisheries management plan, and would like to hear directly from the anglers who use this treasured resource. 

At the first meeting, 6 p.m.-9 p.m. June 7 at the Hot Springs Convention Center, biologists will talk about the lake’s booming largemouth bass fishery and information on the latest genetic testing that is one method biologists are using to evaluate the success of experimental stocking of Florida largemouth bass that took place from 2007 to 2014. They also will cover the results of the most recent angler mail surveys and boat ramp surveys on the lake, as well as the components of striped bass and crappie management activities on Ouachita. Biologists covering each topic will be available for one-on-one discussion during the first hour of the meeting. 

Once the presentations are over, all attendees will be able to participate in focus groups where they will be able to identify the things most important to them as the AGFC moves forward in fisheries management on Ouachita. The biologists will collect the results of these group findings and incorporate them into a revised plan.

The second meeting, 6 p.m.-9 p.m., June 26 at the Hot Springs Convention Center, will be held to review a draft of the revised plan, with opportunity for additional input on some issues.

All interested parties, especially Lake Ouachita anglers, should plan to attend both meetings in June. Your voice will help shape the new plan that will serve as a guideline for the management of the Lake Ouachita fishery for the next five years.

6-1-18 7:17 a.m. kawx.org

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Freedom Water Association To Flush Water Lines

Freedom Water Association will be flushing their water lines the week of June 4th. As lines are flushed, you may experience low water pressure, see some cloudiness or sand in your water. Flush your house water lines if this occurs. Freedom Water regrets ann incovenience the flushing may cause. For more information, contact Freedom Water Association at (479) 394-7500.

 

5-31-18 8:30 p.m. kawx.org

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Mena's McMillan Park Pool Hours

Mena's McMillan Park swimming pool is open for the season. The pool is located at 1205 Vivian Street in Mena.

 

Hours

12pm until 5pm Monday thru Saturday for general admission

 

1pm until 5pm Sunday for general admission

 

10am until 12pm Monday thru Saturday for Adults (16 and up) and Lap Swims

 

For additional information, call the pool at (479) 394-8312.

 

5-31-18 8:17 p.m.

 

For the Mena, Arkansas Time, Temperature and Forecast dial (479) 394-5600

~Always A Free Call, Always Available~

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Arkansas Fishing Report

Hot Spots All Over

The full moon on Tuesday night (the last full moon in May) typically means bream are spawning and it makes for a great time to fish for bream, as well as for bass that are looking to feed on the bream. Andrews Bait Shop on Lake Nimrod tells us that bream are excellent this week. Look for bream in 3-6 feet depth and around rocky points. Worms or crickets both will get a response. All species are quite active, they tell us.

Lisa's Bait Shop in Benton says that customers are heading over to Lake Ouachita to haul in big slabs of crappie. They're using No. 4 and 6 crappie minnows. Bream and bass are also very good at Ouachita.
Our reporters covering Lake Conway report that bream are good to excellent. 
Lake Sequoyah in Springdale says that the catfish bite is excellent. It's also a good time to hook some bluegill.
Nice catches of trout continue to be evident in the tailwater of Bull Shoals Dam, according to our reports from Cotter Trout Dock. The brown trout are loving sculpins, they say.
Both guides Lou Gabric and Tom Reynolds at Norfork Lake tell us that the lake was unbelievably busy during the three-day holiday weekend. The striped bass, hybrid bass and white bass bites have been outstanding, and topwater action has been intense. But that's about to drop off as the water temperature rises (it's already reached the 80s there), so take it in while you can.
5-30-18 9:29 p.m. 

 

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Rutledge Announces 7th Annual Never Forgotten – Arkansas Takes Action Event

Rutledge Announces 7th Annual Never Forgotten – Arkansas Takes Action Event

Registration is available for July 17 event in Benton

 

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge will host the Never Forgotten – Arkansas Takes Action event on Tuesday, July 17 at the Benton Event Center. The event was established to raise awareness of the challenges associated with missing persons cases and recognize Arkansas’s missing children and adults.

 

“The Never Forgotten event brings these families together to remember their loved ones and provides law enforcement training to continue the search for our missing,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “There are numerous families across Arkansas who live every day with the pain of missing a loved one. Together, we can raise awareness because someone, somewhere has information about each of our missing loved ones.”

 

From 9:30 to 11:30 a.m., a panel discussion will be held for the families of missing persons on available resources to assist them with locating their loved one. Participating agencies include Arkansas State Police, Arkansas State Crime Lab, Arkansas Crime Information Center, FBI, the Morgan Nick Foundation and others.

 

From 8:30 to 11:30 a.m., a law enforcement training will be held. Sarah Krebs, a detective sergeant-forensic artist with the Michigan State Police, will explain how her evidence-based drawings and three-dimensional reconstructions aid in the investigation of unidentified remains, the apprehension of suspects and the resolution of missing person cases.

 

Officers will also hear from Derek VanLuchene, a law enforcement consultant for Fox Valley Technical College and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and President and Founder of Ryan United. VanLuchene will present the case study of 4-year-old Maci Lilly, who was diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome and was abducted from a playground in Montana in February 2016. Maci’s disappearance led to a statewide Amber Alert and a successful recovery. He will discuss working with child witnesses and how to locate resources in an active search and recovery.

 

Rutledge will also host a luncheon, which will include a ceremony to honor families of missing children and adults and to recognize law enforcement officials who work to solve missing persons cases.

 

In 2016, Rutledge was part of a collaborative effort to launch a new website, NeverForgotten.ar.gov, which enables the public to access information on missing persons cases with an simple, searchable database.

Every service offered at the event is free.

 

Registration can be found at ArkansasAG.gov. The Attorney General’s office has applied for three hours of Continuing Law Enforcement Education (CLEST).

 

The Attorney General’s office serves as an information clearinghouse for reports on Arkansas’s missing children and acts as the main point of contact between the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and nonprofit missing children organizations in the State. For information about Never Forgotten – Arkansas Takes Action, call (800) 448-3014 or emailoag@arkansasag.gov. To reach the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children Cyber Tipline, call (800) THE-LOST (843-5678).

 

5-30-18 9:27 p.m. 

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Faith Walk Organized for Prayer, Encouragement

Faith Walk Organized for Prayer, Encouragement

By: Andy Philpot 

 

A Faith Walk has been organized for Saturday, June 9, from 8:00 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. in Mena, beginning and ending at Janssen Park. This Faith Walk event is open to everyone to participate in, with no cost or commitment required to take part in an opportunity of spending time walking, praying, shedding stress, and communicating with God through a peaceful stroll at your own pace. The purpose of this walk is not competition, but rather connection.

 

The Faith Walk will begin at 8:00 a.m. inside Janssen Park, with all participants leaving out from the circle driveway, but the journey of the walk then becomes the choice of each person. A path the equivalent of a 5K course will be mapped out throughout residential neighborhoods for anyone who wishes to go a full 3.2 miles on their Faith Walk. This course is completely optional, as each walker is encouraged to walk a path they can find peace and comfort in, no matter how long or short the journey, or where it leads them as they pray, connect with God, and find peace and encouragement. Walkers are encouraged to conclude their walk back at Janssen Park for water and snacks.

 

According to Toni Tilotta, event organizer, she was attending church on a Sunday morning, when she heard the pastor include the phrase “faith walk” in the sermon. She repeated the phrase within her mind, then felt a spiritual motivation to create an organized Faith Walk for area residents to take part in for faith and prayer. Multiple area churches have become involved, helping to create this opportunity for anyone who wishes to take part in it.

 

With the event scheduled from 8:00 a.m. until 11:00 a.m., the amount of time spent walking is up to each walker, again with this not being a competition, but organized to be an opportunity. Upon returning to the park, participants will have the opportunity to visit with other participants, pray together, or just have a snack and enjoy the live music in the park. Church officials will also be available for anyone who would like to be prayed with or prayed for.

 

For those who aren’t able to be at the park as early as 8:00 a.m., they are still encouraged to join in as they can, taking part in the Faith Walk at their convenience, and rejoining the participants in the park as the conclude their path. For those seeking areas to pray for, there is a continual need for prayers for leaders, elections, our youth, our communities, our schools, the world, and so much more. This Faith Walk can also be an opportunity be grateful for all the blessings that fill our lives.

 

Registration will take place beginning at 7:30 a.m. on site at Janssen Park for this free event. The awards for this walk will be the blessings each walker will experience during their Faith Walk through peace, comfort, encouragement, enlightenment, and strength.

 

For more information, call 479-243-8459. Rain is not expected to cancel or postpone this event.

 

5-29-18 8:03 p.m. 

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U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Arkansas Pro-Life Law, Governor Hutchinson Comments

U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Arkansas Pro-Life Law, Governor Hutchinson Comments 

The U.S. Supreme Court refused on Monday to hear a challenge to an Arkansas Law that requires abortion providers to have contracts with doctors who have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital.  The Court’s refusal to hear the challenge means that a previous ruling upholding the Arkansas law issued by the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals will stand. 

 
Family Council Executive Director, Jerry Cox, said in a statement on Monday, “This is very good news for people who care about the safety of women in Arkansas.  It’s not too much to require an abortion doctor to have a contract that allows him or her to have their emergency patients to be admitted to a local hospital.  Women who are bleeding from a botched abortion shouldn’t have to drive to the emergency room and admit themselves into the hospital.  They deserve better treatment and this good law does that.”
 
According to reports from legal experts watching the case, now that the U.S. Supreme Court has refused to take up the case, the ruling by the Eighth Circuit that upheld the law will stand. 
 
“Until the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals issues an order making the law binding, it is my understanding that opponents of the law can hurry to Federal Court and ask Judge Christine Baker, the federal judge who initially declared the law unconstitutional, to issue some type of injunction barring enforcement of the law.  This could delay enforcement, but likely not prevent it.”  Cox said.
 
The Arkansas Legislature passed the Abortion Inducing Drugs Safety Act in 2015. The law was sponsored by Representative Charlene Fite (R) Van Buren, and Senator Linda Collins-Smith (R) Pocahontas.  Cox said, “We were pleased to work with these lawmakers and the rest of the Arkansas Legislature and with Governor Hutchinson to get this good law passed.  Special credit should go to Attorney General Leslie Rutledge who vigorously and successfully defended this good law.”
 
“This is a pro-life victory not only for the women of Arkansas, but for women across the nation.  I’m sure other states will be looking at Arkansas and considering following our example.” Cox said.

Governor Hutchinson Issues Statement in Response to 
Supreme Court’s Rejection of Planned Parenthood Appeal
 
LITTLE ROCK – Governor Asa Hutchinson has issued a statement in response to the Supreme Court’s refusal to hear a challenge to Arkansas Act 557, a law that requires physicians who provide medically induced abortions to contract with a doctor who has hospital-admitting privileges. Planned Parenthood sued to stop Arkansas from implementing the law, which the Arkansas legislature passed in 2015 to create safeguards to protect women in case of a complication with abortion-inducing medication.
“The Supreme Court’s decision today was good news for those who are concerned about health and safety in the administration of medically induced abortions,” said Governor Hutchinson. “Not only does the Court’s action uphold Arkansas law but it also underscores the importance and necessity of protecting women, as well as the unborn, with common-sense measures.”

 

Family Council is a conservative education and research organization based in Little Rock, Arkansas.

 

5-29-18 5:58 p.m. 

 

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Governor Hutchinson's Weekly Radio Address: Helping Rural Communities in Arkansas

Governor Hutchinson's Weekly Radio Address:
Helping Rural Communities in Arkansas
 
LITTLE ROCK - Governor Hutchinson's weekly radio address can be heard by clicking on the link below and then pressing the "play" button, or you can read the text here.
 
 
Every year at the end of May, leaders from rural communities around the state gather for the Rural Development Conference to attend workshops and panel discussions about issues unique to small towns.

At this year’s conference, which was in Little Rock, Rural Services handed out 54 competitively awarded grants worth a total of $736,000. Among the grants are $4,000 to the Grant County Fair Association to build a new livestock show barn; $13,000 to Big Flat in Baxter County to purchase five sets of self-contained breathing equipment for firefighters; and $65,000 to Calhoun County to build a 62-foot bridge and to elevate County Road 3 to prevent flooding and erosion. 

For those counties and towns, these are real needs that impact safety and the quality of life.

But to appreciate the positive impact of these grants, we can look to the city of Marvell, which has received two similar grants in the past several years from the Delta Regional Authority, a different program with the same aim – to help struggling rural communities.

With the first grant, Marvell retired its dilapidated water tower and installed a new tank that supplies water to the town.

Now, the town is wrapping up its second project, the rehabilitation of its sewage system, which it paid for with $800,000 from the Delta Regional Authority.

In Marvell, the deteriorating pipes sent raw sewage into the ground and filled ditches. Septic tanks at many older homes had caved in and contributed to the problem. Sometimes, especially after a big rain, the sewage would back up into houses.

Barbie Washburn, who has been office manager for the Marvell Water Department for 34 years, said the situation was more than an unpleasant inconvenience. The raw sewage was a threat to the health of the 11,000 residents. And that’s just inside the city limits. Another 1,000 people outside the city limits suffered with the same problem.

To make things right, the city laid miles of pipe, connected all the houses to the city system, and replaced a couple of pumps. Now, some people have city sewer service for the first time in their life.

A year after Marvell received the money, the project is complete except for some cleanup.

The local economy and a few Marvellites enjoyed another benefit from the infusion of money when the city hired them to work on the project.

Barbie said the improvement is a huge blessing to residents, who now no longer have to worry about where their wastewater is going.

The Rural Development Conference ended Thursday afternoon. The city and county leaders have returned to their rural communities ready to fix things up, and they have the money to pay for it. 
 
5-26-18 7:25 p.m. #KAWX 93.1 #MenaCommunityRadio 

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State Representative John Maddox's Weekly Column

It is estimated that for every dollar you spend at the grocery store, only 11 cents goes to a farmer. More than 30 cents of every dollar goes to pay for processing, packing, and transporting.

 

This summer, Arkansans have an opportunity to give our farmers a larger share of the profit all while accessing fresh locally grown produce.

 

There are more than 100 farmers’ markets across the state.  While some operate year round, you will never have trouble finding one near you in the summer months.

 

The markets provide a low-barrier entry point for beginning farmers, allowing them to start small, test the market, and grow their businesses.  Arkansas Farm Bureau estimates that 13 jobs are created for every $1 million of revenue from a market.

 

Farmers’ markets aren’t just an opportunity to buy food.  They provide a family friendly opportunity to interact with your neighbors and community. Additionally, the social connections that are facilitated by farmers' markets allow producers and consumers to build relationships. Farmers’ market vendors educate their shoppers. In fact, four out of five farmers selling at markets discuss farming practices with their customers, and three in five discuss nutrition and how to prepare food.

 

 

Farmers’ markets have fruits and vegetables at the peak of the growing season. This means produce is at its freshest and tastes the best. The food is typically grown near where you live, not thousands of miles away or another country.

 

In the summer, Arkansans can find locally grown strawberries, blackberries, peaches, and watermelons just to name a few. 

 

Because of the nutrition and affordability, many vendors have now started accepting EBT cards from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.  In some cases, SNAP recipients can double their purchasing power at a participating market.

 

Arkansas is home to more than 43,000 farms.  97% of those farms are family owned. Take the time this year to support our state’s number one industry.

 

You can find a farmers’ market near you by visiting www.arkansasfarmersmarketassociation.com

5-25-18 4:46 p.m. 

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Arkansas Flags To Fly Half Staff On Monday Until Noon In Observance Of Memorial Day

In observance of Memorial Day (May 28, 2018), the United States flag and the state flag of Arkansas is to be displayed at half-staff until noon on Monday, May 28, 2018.

The Governor's Proclamation for Memorial Day can be found HERE.

The President's Proclamation can be found HERE.

 

5-25-18 3:57 p.m. 

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Memorial Day United States Flag Display

Memorial Day United States Flag Display

Memorial Day, which is observed on the last Monday of May (May 28, 2018), commemorates the men and women who died while in the military service.  In observance of Memorial Day, fly the United States flag at half staff from sunrise until NOON , and then raise it to full height from noon to sundown. 
 
5-25-18 1:45 p.m.

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Senator John Boozman's Weekly Column

A Unified Effort to Help Veterans Receive Quality Care

Congress recently came together to uphold a promise to our veterans by passing the VA MISSION Act. The bill, which is set to become law, will strengthen and streamline the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) healthcare services and its community care programs. This is important because veterans should have access to the best healthcare and services in a timely manner regardless of where they live. With these reforms, a veteran and his or her doctor will decide where that veteran will receive care—taking into consideration the veteran’s healthcare needs and the availability and quality of both VA and community care. For largely rural states like Arkansas, this makes all the sense in the world. We have two VA Medical Centers in the Natural State—Little Rock and Fayetteville—as well as facilities in neighboring states that often serve Arkansas veterans. The healthcare providers and staff at those facilities, and our Community-Based Outpatient Clinics (CBOCs) in Arkansas, truly do an excellent job in caring for our veterans. But the VA Medical Centers are in populated areas, which in cases where veterans need more advanced care than a CBOC can provide, means a full day trip for many veterans. It is unnecessary when a veteran could receive similar quality care outside the VA system in his or her community. The service options provided in this bill will give veterans who live far from a VA facility and need frequent follow-up care easier access to local providers and walk-in clinics. As noted in a letter signed by over thirty VSOs supporting the VA MISSION Act, the legislation is an effort to “supplement, not supplant VA healthcare.” That is important to highlight. Much like the Choice Program that preceded it, the new system that will be established by the VA MISSION Act is not meant to replace VA healthcare. Rather it builds on the foundation laid out by the Choice Program, which addressed many shortcomings within the VA system that led to the wait time crisis. Last year, I launched a listening tour to hear from Arkansas veterans about their experiences with the Choice Program so we can better meet their needs. I heard from Arkansas veterans who have been able to get quality care from private providers in their own community when the VA system could not meet their needs. That is a good thing. But as the veterans I met with noted, the Choice Program has its share of troubles. I heard repeated stories of difficulties navigating the complex and confusing bureaucratic process. This legislation aims to alleviate those problems. While VA implements the new system, we cannot afford to let care slip for our veterans. That is why we made sure that the VA MISSION Act authorizes funding to continue the current Choice Program for one more year. In addition to the improvements to healthcare delivery, the VA MISSION Act will enable us to conduct better and more consistent oversight into how the VA spends money on veterans’ healthcare, improve the VA’s ability to hire high-quality professionals and create a process to evaluate and reform VA facilities so they can best serve veterans. These are all big steps in the right direction and the unified efforts of both parties, in both chambers of Congress, made sure the VA MISSION Act would pass. If we continue to work together in this vein, we can help ensure our nation’s promises to our veterans are kept. 

 

5-25-18 1:40 p.m.

 

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HAVE A FUN MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND, BUT BE SAFE

HAVE A FUN MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND, BUT BE SAFE

 

The summer recreation season officially begins with Memorial Day weekend festivities, and officials of the Little Rock District of the Army Corps of Engineers want you to have fun but be safe at one of the many Corps parks.

 

These parks offer a wide range of facilities, to include various combinations of boat ramps, picnic areas, group picnic shelters, game courts, playgrounds, hiking trails and campgrounds. A day at the lake wouldn’t be complete without partaking in one of many water sports, such as fishing, swimming, boating, skiing or scuba diving.

To be fun, a day at the lake must also be a safe day. Here are a few water safety tips:

 

Boaters

* Wear your life jacket.

* Don’t drink alcoholic beverages and drive.

* Check all equipment before getting underway.

* Know your boat and follow the rules.

* Stay abreast of the weather.

* Task everyone in the boat to help keep proper lookout.

 

Swimmers

* Never swim alone.

* Know your limits.

* Don’t swim and drink alcoholic beverages.

* Swim in designated areas.

* Don’t swim in rivers subject to strong currents.

* Pay attention and obey all buoys and markers.

 

More recreation information can be found on the Internet at www.swl.usace.army.mil, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/littlerockusace, and on Twitter at https://twitter.com/#!/usacelittlerock.

 

5-24-18 8:29 a.m. #KAWX 93.1 FM #MenaCommunityRadio 

 

Click on the scanner below to listen to the Mena - Polk County, AR Online Police & Fire Scanner, compliments of KAWX.

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Attorney General's Mobile Office In Mena June 26th

Rutledge Sets June Mobile Office Locations

 

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today announced mobile office locations for June.

 

Attorney General Rutledge created this initiative during her first year in office to make the office accessible to everyone, particularly to those who live outside the capital city. Office hours were held in all 75 counties in 2015, 2016 and 2017 and assisted nearly 1,000 Arkansans last year.

 

Rutledge believes in face-to-face conversations to truly hear from Arkansans. The Attorney General Mobile Offices assist constituents with consumer related issues by filing consumer complaints against scam artists as well as answering questions about the office and the other services it offers to constituents.

 

This year, the Cooperative Extension Service will be on hand at each mobile office to also provide information on the services they provide statewide.

 

Rutledge continues her partnership with local law enforcement across Arkansas to offer prescription drug take back boxes at each mobile office. Law enforcement will be at all mobile offices to handle a secure box and properly dispose of the prescriptions collected. Rutledge encourages Arkansans to bring their old, unused or expired prescription medications to an upcoming mobile office.

 

For more information about services provided by the Attorney General’s office, visit ArkansasAG.gov or call (501) 682-2007. Rutledge can also be found on Facebook at facebook.com/AGLeslieRutledge and on Twitter at twitter.com/AGRutledge.

 

The upcoming mobile office schedule is below:

 

Cleburne County

Tuesday, June 5

10:30 a.m. – noon

Heber Springs Community Center

201 Bobbie Jean Lane

Heber Springs, AR 72543

 

Miller County

Thursday, June 7

10:30 a.m. – noon

Southwest Arkansas Electric Cooperative, Texarkana Office

2904 E. 9th St.

Texarkana, AR 71854

 

Fulton County

Tuesday, June 12

10:30 a.m. – noon

North Arkansas Electric Cooperative in Salem

225 S. Main

Salem, AR 72576

 

Hot Spring County

Thursday, June 14

9:30 to 11 a.m.

Central Arkansas Development Council Malvern Senior Activity Center

1800 W. Moline

Malvern, AR 72104

 

Ouachita County

Tuesday, June 19

10:30 a.m. – noon

Ouachita County Cooperative Extension Service

2760 Mount Holly Road

Camden, AR 71701 

 

St. Francis County

Thursday, June 21

10:30 a.m. – noon

St. Francis County Cooperative Extension Service

313 S. Izard St. 

Forrest City, AR 72335

 

Polk County

Tuesday, June 26

10:00 – 11:30 a.m.

Mena-Polk County Senior Center

401 Autumn Drive

Mena, AR 71953

 

Pope County

Thursday, June 28

10:00 – 11:30 a.m.

Pope County Senior Wellness and Activity Center

1010 S. Rochester Ave.

Russellville, AR 72802

 

5-24-18 9:39 a.m. #KAWX 93.1 FM #MenaCoomunityRadio

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State Senator Larry Teague's Weekly Column

State Capitol Week in Review From Senator Larry Teague

May 24, 2018

 

LITTLE ROCK – The state not only funds education for children, but also provides various classes for more than 50,000 adults every year.

 

GED classes are some of the most well known programs for adults. Last year 3,312 Arkansas residents took the GED tests and 2,885 passed, for a passing rate of 87 percent. That puts Arkansas above the national passing rate of 79 percent. In 2015 Arkansas test takers did even better, with a GED pass rate of 95 percent.

 

About 470,000 adults in Arkansas never finished high school, and a GED is a great first step for them to improve their jobs skills and continue their educations.

 

Another way for adults to get better jobs is to get a WAGE certificate from the state Department of Career Education. Most classes are held at Adult Education Centers. They teach entry level job skills for bank tellers, office and industrial workers. Last year more than 2,000 adults earned a certificate, and according to research by the Department they averaged a salary increase of almost 18 percent.

 

WAGE certificates and GEDs are provided by the Department’s Adult Education Division, which also offers English classes for adults who grew up speaking another language.

 

According to studies cited by the Department, people who earn a high school diploma or its equivalent will earn, on average, $568,000 more in their lifetimes than people without a diploma.

 

At a recent ceremony at the state Capitol, the top 25 scorers on this year’s GED tests were honored. Several of them spoke of plans to attend college.

 

At another ceremony at the Capitol, a group of adult graduates gathered on the steps to hear a graduation speech. They were dressed in caps and gowns, and at the end of the ceremony they tossed their caps in the air.

 

The Division also sends teachers to local businesses, at no cost to the business, through Workplace Education programs. Employers host the classes on their premises to improve the literacy and computer skills of their workers.

 

Besides learning technical skills, the adults also learn what are called “soft skills” that are often necessary to land a better job. Soft skills include punctuality, knowing how to dress appropriately, good personal hygiene and effective communication with others.

 

The Division is relatively small, with fewer than 20 employees, but it coordinates programs offered statewide by 36 local agencies that include school districts, community colleges and non-profits.

 

The Division also taught classes to about 3,500 inmates in state prisons, as well as to more than 5,000 people who get food stamps or welfare and who are required to take job training in order to qualify for benefits.

 

The Adult Education Division is separate from the Division of Career and Technical Education (CTE) Division, which is responsible for vocational offerings for students who are still in high school.

 

A Fordham Institute study found that high school students who took more than one CTE class increased their likelihood of graduating, and increased their opportunities for college and employment. The study counters the long-standing stigma that vo-tech and “shop” classes were academic dead ends.

 

5-24-18 10:26 a.m. #KAWX #MenaCommunityRadio

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Memorial Day Holiday Highway Safety

Arkansas Drivers Reminded to use IDriveArkansas.com for

Memorial Day Holiday Travel Information

 

LITTLE ROCK - The Arkansas Department of Transportation (ARDOT) reminds drivers to “know before you go” and visit IDriveArkansas.com before traveling this Memorial Day holiday weekend.

 

Extensive highway improvements continue through the state. With those improvements come work zones. To aid in your holiday travel, ARDOT has been working hard to open as many lanes as possible. Still, travelers will likely face work zones and possible delays due to increased traffic volume.

 

The American Automobile Association (AAA) predicts that more than 41.5 million Americans, nearly 5% more than last year, will travel more than 50 miles from home.

 

To help motorists find ways around accidents and work zone backups on Interstates, ARDOT has an Alternate Routes feature on IDriveArkansas.com. It displays linkages between the Interstate corridors and secondary routes that motorists may consider when travel is delayed. You can also follow us on Twitter @myARDOT.

 

Below is a list of closures on Arkansas’ Primary Highway Network during the holiday weekend. Motorists are encouraged to look at IDriveArkansas.com to find closures that are on secondary and low traffic volume routes.

 

Route County City Mile Marker Distance Lanes Closed Time

Hwy 67 Randolph Pocahontas 7-8 1 mile Both Northbound 24 hours

I-555 Poinsett Marked Tree 12-18 6 miles Both Outside Lanes 24 hours

I-530 Jefferson Pine Bluff 41-46 5 miles Both Northbound 24 hours

I-30 Miller & Hempstead Fulton 16-19 3 miles East & Westbound 24 hours

Hwy 23 Franklin Cass 22-23 1 mile Middle Northbound 24 hours

Hwy 59 Washington Evansville 14-16 2 miles Middle Northbound 24 hours

Hwy 59 Crawford Van Buren 23-24 1 miles Middle Southbound 24 hours

 

5-24-18 9:11 a.m. kawx.org

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