KAWX News

Upcoming Activities At Queen Wilhelmina State Park Near Mena, January 24th and 25th

For more information about the activities listed below at Queen Wilhelmina State Park, or the park in general, dial (479) 394-2863 or visit the park's website by clicking here.

 

Friday, January 24

 

Wonder House Tour starting at 2:00 pm and lasting about 30 minutes. Meet at the Wonder House. Do you ever wonder what the Wonder House is about? Join Park Interpreter Melissa and step back into history to see one of the first vacation homes built in the 1930’s.

 

Arkansas Symbols starting at 3:00 pm and lasting about 30 minutes. Meet in the Hearth Room. Do you know the symbols of Arkansas? Join Park Interpreter Melissa and find out our state drink, cooking vessel, bird and much more!

 

Pinecone Bird feeders starting at 7:00 pm and lasting about 30 minutes. Meet in the Hearth Room. Join Park Interpreter Melissa to make a pinecone bird feeder. This fun filled craft will make your back yard birds sing with delight as they chow down on their homemade birdie buffet!

 

Saturday, January 25

 

Reservoir Hike  starting at 11:00 am and lasting about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Meet at the Reservoir Trailhead. Join Park Interpreter Melissa on a hike to what used to be the old water system for the 1898 hotel.

 

Wonder House Tour starting at 2:00 pm and lasting about 30 minutes. Meet at the Wonder House. Do you ever wonder what the Wonder House is about? Join Park Interpreter Melissa and step back into history to see one of the first vacation homes built in the 1930’s.

 

Winter Walk starting at 3:00 pm and lasting about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Meet on the west side of the Ouachita Trailhead. Join Park Interpreter Melissa and enjoy a serene winter walk on top of the mountain to catch a glimpse of the changes the season brings with it. This will be an easy hike for all ages.

 

1-20-20 11:49 a.m. KAWX.ORG 

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December 2019 Lottery Ticket Sales Over $43 Million In Arkansas

Lottery ticket sales in Arkansas during the month of December 2019 totaled $43,169,925.50 according to a report recently released by the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration Office of The Arkansas Lottery.

 

The highest sales for any county in the state were in Pulaski County and totaled $7,932,542.50.

 

The lowest sales for any county were in Montgomery County and totaled $29,872.00.

 

Sales in Polk County totaled $180,298.50.

 

According the the Family Council, only fourteen cents of each dollar will actually make it to a student.

 

1-20-20 6:45 a.m. KAWX.ORG 

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Governor Hutchinson's Weekly Radio Address: It's the Right Thing to Do

Governor Hutchinson's Weekly Radio Address: It’s the Right Thing to Do

 

To listen to the Governor's weekly radio address, click anywhere on this line, then click on the play button, or you can read the text below.

 

LITTLE ROCK – Today I’d like to discuss my decision to allow a limited number of refugees to relocate legally in Arkansas after they have been vetted and cleared by agencies of the United States. The refugees are coming here after suffering violence and religious persecution. Others are allowed in because they supported United States military forces, which puts them in danger.

 

Last year, President Trump issued an executive order that capped the number of refugees allowed into the United States at 18,000. His executive order returned to states the right to accept or refuse refugees. I applaud President Trump for recognizing the need to give state and local governments a greater role in the decision to relocate refugees. President Trump also tightened security checks to further minimize the risk that we would accept a refugee who might be a risk or might not assimilate to our American values.

 

It is important to understand who qualifies as a refugee. A refugee is not someone who crosses our borders illegally, or someone who enters our country and claims asylum. The refugees coming to America under this resettlement program often wait years for admission. The lives and history of these refugees are scrutinized more closely than any other category of immigrant.  

 

The vetting includes biographic and interagency security checks; Homeland Security interviews; fingerprint scans; biometric security checks; and a medical exam. Once a refugee is approved, he or she goes through a cultural education program by the United States.

 

Our agreement to allow refugees into Arkansas is not unlimited. This year, we expect to receive fewer than 50.

 

I decided to say yes to the refugees because it’s the right thing to do. The federal government and private contributions cover 100 percent of the cost of resettlement. The move doesn’t cost the state a dime.

 

Most of the refugees come from the Democratic Republic of Congo and other African nations. A few came from Iraq and Afghanistan.

 

Lusia and Kalulu Akilimali are refugees who left the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2000 because of the civil war. They fled to Kenya, where they waited for 18 years to be resettled. While they waited, Lusia opened a small grocery store, and Kalulu planted a Baptist church. They adopted two orphaned Congolese children.

 

They were all resettled in Arkansas in 2018. Lusia has recently completed training as a Certified Nursing Assistant and is working at a senior care facility. Kalulu works for a manufacturing company in Springdale. Their oldest son attends Northwest Arkansas Community College and is hoping to transfer to the University next year to complete a bachelor’s degree in engineering. They are active members of Cross Church in Springdale.

 

Homayoon Abdullah is a refugee who came here because for years in Afghanistan he worked with United States authorities at great risk to his life and that of his family. We did the right thing to welcome him.

 

I will always put the interests and safety of Arkansans first. I know we will benefit from the love for America that each refugee brings to our state.

 

1-17-20 4:52 p.m. KAWX.ORG 

If you have local news tips or would like to place an item on our KAWX.ORG Community Calendar, email us at communityradio@live.com.

 

 

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State Representative John Maddox's Weekly Column

Research tells us that 61% of low-income families have no age-appropriate books in their homes. Middle-income homes have an average of 13 books per child.

 

On average, children in poverty have been exposed to only 25 hours of one-on-one reading, compared to middle-class children who have been exposed to 1,000-1,700 hours of one-on-one reading. Only 48% of young children are read to daily. 

 

Exposure to books provides significant academic advantages as 85% of the brain is developed between the ages of 3-5.

 

To provide Arkansas families with more resources, a state 501 (c) (3) partnered with the Dolly Parton Imagination Library in July 2017. Arkansas is 1 of 4 states to partner with the organization.

 

In 1995, singer-songwriter Dolly Parton launched the Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, to benefit the children of her home county in East Tennessee. Her vision was to foster a love of reading among her county’s preschool children and their families. The new program gave each child from birth to age 5 a specially selected book each month. 

The program has expanded and now delivers 1.4 million books each month to children nationwide.

 

Recently, the House and Senate Education Committees were updated on the progress of the Arkansas Imagination Library.

 

Approximately, 39,000 books are delivered each month to Arkansas children enrolled in the program. And in the last year, more than 427,000 books have been delivered to Arkansas homes. The number of books mailed monthly grew 87.3% in just two years.

 

Thousands of families could still benefit from the program. Any family with children ages 5 and under can sign up regardless of income. We have provided a link on our website www.arkansashouse.org

 

1-17-20 4:28 p.m. KAWX.ORG 

Listen to KAWX in the Mena area on 93.1, or in the Hatfield-Cove-Vandervoort area on 94.9.

 

Listen on the go with a free KAWX app available at the App Store or Google Play. Listen on any smart device with the TuneIn app, or on Amazon Echo.

 

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US Senator John Boozman's Weekly Column: Commemorating the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

 

Commemorating the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

 

The National Mall is dotted with memorials and monuments that honor our nation’s most influential leaders. It’s appropriate that the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial is situated along this treasured area.

 

Dr. King was a humble public servant who dedicated his life to pursing justice and fairness for all people. His leadership in the civil rights movement was about spurring America to live up to the ideals of our founding: liberty and equality under the law, for all. In their righteous pursuit of that goal, the leaders, activists and participants championing this cause for African Americans helped make the United States a more perfect Union.

 

The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once visited Arkansas where he addressed the 1958 graduating class of Arkansas AM&N College (now the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff). He told the crowd of over 1,000 that each of us “must be measured by his soul,” and continued, saying, “we are challenged to enter the new age with understanding in our hearts.”

 

The civil rights movement, at its foundation, was intertwined with faith and spirituality. The call to ensure equality and justice for every American was just as much based on a biblical ethic as anything else, so it’s fitting prayer breakfast events are held all over the country to celebrate Dr. King’s memory and contributions. I recently attended the annual MLK Prayer Breakfast at the University of Central Arkansas to celebrate this remarkable leader’s legacy.

 

Dr. King’s faith certainly played an undeniable role in shaping his perspective and activism. He, alongside so many others in the movement, echoed the belief that a higher power demanded all his children be afforded the value and dignity they inherently possess.

 

We can all be encouraged by how far we’ve come in this regard, and that progress bears the unmistakable mark of Dr. King. Our nation owes him so much and his legacy richly deserves this reverence and admiration.

 

Just five short years after addressing the students at AM&N, Dr. King led the March on Washington and gave his famous “I Have a Dream” speech.

 

To this day, school children learn of the memorable, moving refrains of that address. Thankfully, today those same children sit in integrated classrooms, learning about what makes each of them different and unique from one another, but also about how much they share in common with their friends who might look different than they do.

 

That may seem ordinary now, but it is something worth reflecting on and celebrating. And no reflection or celebration would be complete without acknowledging the immense contributions of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

 

As we celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day let us join together to continue the important work of striving for justice, equality and unity.

 

1-17-20 4:22 p.m. KAWX.ORG 

If you have local news tips or would like to place an item on our KAWX.ORG Community Calendar, email us at communityradio@live.com.

 

 

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Senator Larry Teague's Weekly Column

 

State Capitol Week in Review From Senator Larry Teague

January 17, 2020

 

LITTLE ROCK – Thanks to legislation enacted in 1993, Arkansas continues to experience a competitive market for workers’ compensation insurance.

The state Insurance Department performs an annual study of the market and reports to the Senate Committee on Insurance and Commerce.

 

According to the latest study, “Arkansas’s voluntary workers’ compensation market would have disappeared and many employers would have found themselves unable to afford workers’ compensation coverage, facing the choice of either closing down their business or operating outside the law, had Act 796 not become reality.”

 

To emphasize its conclusion, the report states that “the impact of the Act on workers’ compensation premiums is clear and significant. Prior to its enactment rates were increasing significantly.”

 

In the two years immediately before the legislature approved Act 796 of 1993, rates increased 15 % and 18 %.

 

However, the year in which the act passed was the first time in 10 years that workers’ comp rates did not go up.

 

The act created a division within the Insurance Department assigned to investigate fraud, and set financial penalties for fraudulently making workers’ comp claims. In 2005 the division’s authority was expanded to investigate all forms of insurance fraud, and it was renamed the Criminal Investigation Division of the Insurance Department.

 

Workers’ comp fraud makes up four % of the total number of insurance fraud cases investigated by the division.

 

Since 1993, when the investigation division was created, it has referred 166 cases to local prosecutors. Those referrals resulted in 123 convictions and three acquittals. The remaining cases were not acted on by prosecuting attorneys.

 

Arkansas companies can get workers’ comp from two categories. The most affordable plans are in the voluntary market. The other plan is an assigned risk pool for companies that do not generally qualify for the more affordable coverage available on the voluntary market.

 

The Insurance Department annual report concludes that without the changes made by the legislature in Act 796 of 1993, it is doubtful that a voluntary market would still exist in Arkansas. The assigned risk pool, which is typically considered the market of last resort, would likely have become the Arkansas workers’ comp market of “only resort,” the insurance officials reported.

 

Deficit Spending

 

The state’s chief fiscal officer recently appeared before a Congressional committee in Washington, D.C. He briefed federal officials on the history of the Arkansas balanced budget amendment, and how state government can operate efficiently under a balanced budget every year.

 

The U.S. government is expected to run a deficit of $984 billion this fiscal year.

 

Arkansas voters approved Amendment 20 to the state Constitution in 1934, which prohibits the state from borrowing money without approval by citizens in a statewide vote. Amendment 20 was placed on the ballot by the 1933 legislature.

 

In 1945 the legislature approved the Revenue Stabilization Act, which prioritizes state spending. If revenue declines due to a slowdown in the economy, state agency spending is reduced accordingly.

 

1-17-20 11:50 a.m. KAWX.ORG 

 

Listen to KAWX in the Mena area on 93.1, or in the Hatfield-Cove-Vandervoort area on 94.9.

 

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Listen anywhere at KAWX.ORG (Listen Live Tab) or by clicking on the radio below.

 

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Polk County Circuit Court Arraignments January 13th, 15th

All criminal information is merely an accusation and the Defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. Prosecuting Attorney Andy Riner, within and for the 18th-West Judicial District of the State of Arkansas, of which Polk County is a part, in the name and by the authority of the State of Arkansas, on oath, do hereby accuse the defendants of committing in Polk County, Arkansas the following crimes: 
 
State of Arkansas Vs. Darrell G.C. Garrett, White Male, age 28, Count I: Sexual Assault In The Second Degree, a Class "B" Felony. Count II: Harassment, a Class "A" Misdemeanor. Count III: Indecent exposure, a Class "A" Misdemeanor. 
 
State of Arkansas Vs. Krishna K. Turner, White Female, age 27, Count I: Failure To Appear, a Class "C" Felony.
 
State of Arkansas Vs. Windal Loyd, White Male, age 39, Count I: Domestic Battery In The Third Degree, a Class "D" Felony.
 
State of Arkansas Vs. Austin C. McCulley, White Male, age 25, Count I: Domestic Battery In The Second Degree, a Class "C" Felony.
 
1-16-20 4:34 p.m. KAWX.ORG 

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Weekly Arkansas Fishing Report

 

Weekly Fishing Report

 

This is the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission’s weekly fishing report for Jan. 15, 2020. If there is a body of water you would like included in this report, please email jim.harris@agfc.ar.gov 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 listed for the lake or stream you plan to fish for current news. Note: msl = mean sea level; cfs = cubic feet per second.

 

Click on the area of the state below where you would like current fishing information from.

 

Central Arkansas

 

North Arkansas

 

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: https://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: https://waterdata.usgs.gov/ar/nwis/current/?type=quality.

 

1-15-20 5:38 p.m. KAWX.ORG 

 

If you have local news tips or would like to place an item on our KAWX.ORG Community Calendar, email us at communityradio@live.com.

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Resurfacing Of Parts of US 71 and Hwy 88 In Mena to Begin Within Four Weeks

 

Arkansas Highway Commission Approves Bid for Improvements in Polk County POLK COUNTY

 

(1-15) - The Arkansas State Highway Commission has approved a bid for improvements to roadways in Polk County, according to Arkansas Department of Transportation (ARDOT) officials. The purpose of this project is to resurface selected sections of 3.7 miles of U.S. Highway 71 and State Highway 88 in Mena. Crow Group, Inc. of Morrilton was awarded the contract at $1,881,608.15. Construction is scheduled to begin in two to four weeks, weather permitting. Completion is expected in mid 2020. 

 

1-15-20 4:58 p.m. KAWX.ORG 

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Pine Crest Cemetery Annual Meeting January 20th

 
Pine Crest Gardens, Inc. dba Pine Crest Cemetery will have their Annual Meeting on January 20, 2020 starting at 5:00 p.m. at the Cemetery on Bethesda Road in Mena.
 
The purpose of the Annual Meeting is to make any needed changes in the By Laws and elect officers for the coming year.
 
Anyone interested in the Cemetery is invited to attend.
 
The regular monthly meeting for January 2020 will immediately follow the Annual Meeting.
 
For additional information, contact Chris Daniel at 479-234-5428 or email pinecrestmena@gmail.com.
 
1-15-20 8:28 a.m. KAWX.ORG 

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Polk County Spelling Bee Winners

 

 

County’s Top Spellers Compete

 

The county’s top spellers poured through the doors of the Ouachita Center on the Mena campus of UA Rich Mountain Tuesday, January 14, for the chance to earn the coveted Polk County Spelling Bee champion title. The event is co-sponsored by the DeQueen/Mena Educational Co-Op and Union Bank of Mena and hosted annually on the campus of UA Rich Mountain.

 

Each student begins at their grade level and the first place winner then advances on to the next grade to compete.

 

This year’s top honors go to:

1st grade – 1st place: Rajesh Dandikar, 2nd place: Lilly Arender, 3rd place: Brody Ward

2nd grade – 1st place: Amelia Espinola, 2nd place: Adelyn Barton, 3rd place: Channing Wimberly

3rd grade – 1st place: Drew Mabry, 2nd place: Amelia Espinola, 3rd place: Lindsey Munoz

4th grade – 1st place: Ayden Dong, 2nd place: Shooter Davis, 3rd place: Jaylie Brantley

5th grade – 1st place: Ryan Jiang, 2nd place: Adileni Herrera, 3rd place: Ayden Dong

6th grade – 1st place: Ryan Jiang, 2nd place: Brandon Dong, 3rd place: Lacy McEntire

7th grade – 1st place: Bradley Harwood, 2nd place: Yennette Tecson, 3rd place: Elijah Smith

8th grade – 1st place: Shantal Tecson, 2nd place: Kenzie Daniels, 3rd place: Jocelyn Biard

 

“We applaud the efforts of all of these students and the amount of time they have obviously committed to compete at this level. It’s always a privilege to have them on our campus and we appreciate all of the efforts from everyone at the Co-Op each year as well as the continued support of Union Bank to truly make this such a memorable event for these students,” said UA Rich Mountain Chancellor Dr. Phillip Wilson.

 

1-14-20 8:47 p.m. KAWX.ORG 

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Public Hearing, Mena City Council Meeting Recap

 
There was a Public Hearing Tuesday prior to the Mena City Council meeting to allow citizen input concerning two grants that will be applied for on behalf of the City and the Mena - Polk Senior Citizens Center by Western Arkansas Panning and Development District (WAPDD).
 
Tracee McKenna with WAPDD conducted the hearing before a full house at City Hall. 
 
Numerous people commented about the many benefits of the Mena - Polk Senior Citizens Center. There were a number of needed updates and improvements mentioned that grant money could be used for that would allow the Center to continue operating without cutbacks, including repairs to the concrete floor that is buckling, updating the heating and air system, enclosing a carport to make room for a larger walk in freezer and pantry, and improving the insulation. The grant would be a matching grant from the Arkansas Community and Economic Development Program (ACEDP).
 
The second part of the hearing concerned a separate grant for outdoor recreation projects. Some of the possible uses for this grant included shade at the city pool, trees, updating playground equipment at Janssen Park, additional ball fields at Tapley Park to accommodate 13 and 14 year olds that have no field to use at this time, and a walking trail. This grant would be from the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism Outdoor Recreation Matching Grant Program.
 
Both grants are in the development stages and will be applied for later this year. Mayor Seth Smith is working with WAPDD and will also be requesting support for the grants from Mena's State Senator and State Representative.
 
Immediately following the hearing the City Council met for their regular monthly session. All aldermen were present, along with the Mayor, City Clerk/Treasurer, City Attorney and Department Heads.
 
The Council took care of routine business and heard reports from Department Heads.
 
A Resolution was passed in support of the continuation of the one half percent sales tax for highways and bridges, county roads, and other surface transportation.
 
An ordinance was passed approving the application of Little Italy for a private club to be located at their location on Hwy 71 North in Mena. Little Italy will now have to apply to the Department of Finance and Administration Alcoholic Beverage Control Division.
 
The Council approved the purchase of two new police interceptor sedans bought on the state bid.
 
The February City Council meeting was changed to February 18, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. so as to not conflict with an Arkansas Highway Commission  Public Hearing in Mena scheduled for February 11, 2020.
 
1-14-20 8:28 p.m. KAWX.ORG 

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Polk County Sheriff's Report for January 6th - 12th

 

SHERIFF’S   LOG


The following information was received from Polk County Sheriff Scott Sawyer for the week of January 6, 2020 – January 12, 2020.  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.


January 6, 2020
Report from complainant on Polk 59 near Board Camp of a suspicious vehicle led to the arrest of Jacob W. Seago-Moga, 23, of Mena, on Charges of Driving with a Suspended Driver’s License, Careless/Prohibited Driving and Driving Left of Center.


January 7, 2020
Report of an abandoned vehicle on Polk 82 near Big Fork.  Deputy responded.
Report from complainant on Heritage Lane near Hatfield of an unauthorized person at a residence, and the theft of a phone, valued at $60.00.  Information has been forwarded to the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office for further consideration.


January 8, 2020
Report from a Cove woman of the discovery of a suspicious material in their residence.  Deputy responded.
Arrested was Teresa L. Destrini, 54, of Mena, on a Drug Court Sanction.
Arrested was David T. Sinyard, 44, of Mena, on a Drug Court Sanction.
Arrested was Kenneth R. Fry, 48, of Hatfield, on a Warrant for Theft of Motor Fuel.


January 9, 2020
Report from a Cove woman that her 15-year-old son was missing.  The juvenile was located and returned to the custody of a parent/guardian.  Additional information has been forwarded to the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office for further consideration.
Report of a domestic disturbance on Highway 71 South near Hatfield.  Deputy responded.


January 10, 2020
Report from a 17-year-old female of being harassed by an acquaintance.  Deputy responded.
Report of a disturbance on Polk 31 near Hatfield led to the arrest of Windal Loyd, 39, of Hatfield, on Charges of Battery 3rd Degree and Domestic Battery 3rd Degree.
Arrested was Jamie R. Arce, 36, of Hatfield, on a Warrant for Harassment.
Arrested was Krishna K. Turner, 27, of Vandervoort, on a Warrant for Felony Failure to Appear.


January 11, 2020
Report from complainant on West Dover Street in Hatfield of finding suspicious items in their residence.  Deputy responded.  Investigation continues.
Arrested by an officer with the Grannis Police Department was Scott J. Flournoy, 35, of Dequeen, on two Warrants for Failure to Comply with a Court Order.


January 12, 2020
Report of a disturbance on Airport Lane near Mena led to the arrest of Lisa G. Overturf, 52, of Mena, on Charges of Disorderly Conduct and Battery 3rd Degree.
Report from complainant on Polk 30 near Hatfield of problems with a neighbor’s dogs.  Deputy responded.  Information has been forwarded to the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office for further consideration.
Report of a disturbance on Highway 88 East near Yocana led to the arrest of April Poor, 40, of Mena, on a Charge of Disorderly Conduct.
Report of an unattended death on Highway 88 East near Mena.  Deputy responded.


Polk County Detention Center Jail Population: 33 Incarcerated Inmates , with 8 Inmates currently on the Waiting List for a State Facility.

PC20-00032

 

1-14-20 1:14 p.m. KAWX.ORG 

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Polk County Spelling Bee Tuesday At UARM's Ouachita Center

 
The annual Polk County Spelling Bee will be Tuesday, January 14th in the Ouachita Center at UARM.

The Spelling Bee will get underway at 9:00 a.m.
 
Participants will be 1st through 8th grade students representing all the schools in the county.
 
1-13-20 5:17 p.m. KAWX.ORG

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Volunteer Firefighters Needed In Polk County, Introduction Course Offered January 16th and 17th

 
Persons interested in becoming volunteer firefighters for one of Polk County's Volunteer Fire Departments are encouraged to attend a two night class, Introduction To Fire Protection, Thursday and Friday night, January 16th and 17th.
 
James Hale at the Polk County Office of Emergency Management said that the class would last three or three and a half hours each night, start at 6:00 p.m., and be held at Mena Fire Station #1 on De Queen Street.
 
This is one of three courses new firefighters will need to complete.
 
There is no cost to attend the class. Volunteer firefighters need to be at least 18 years of age.
 
For more information, call the Polk County Office of Emergency Management at (479) 394-8141.
 
1-13-20 4:04 p.m. KAWX.ORG 

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Voter's Guides Available From Arkansas Family Council

 

The Arkansas Family Council is once again making voter's guides available to Arkansans. You can pre-order voter's guides for the 2020 primaries by clicking here.

 

The guides are completely free and will be mailed to those requesting one or more. 

Arkansas Voter's Guides are nonpartisan. They tell voters where candidates stand on issues like life, education, and economics.

 

The Primary Election is March 3rd and the General Election is November 6th.

 

Click here for more information about Arkansas Family Council.

 

1-13-20 11:31 a.m. KAWX.ORG 

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Mena Police Report for January 5th - 11th

 

Mena Police Reports from January 5, 2020 through January 11, 2020 

 

 

January 5, 2020

Richard Silverman, Jr. of Mena was charged with domestic battery and resisting arrest after a call to a local residence. While incarcerated, he violated his no-contact order by calling one of the victims.

 

Robert Pierce, 41, of Mena was charged with possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was also served two outstanding warrants.

 

Terrie Williams, 32, of Mena was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia. The arrest followed a vehicle stop.

Benjamin Gheorghiu, 44, of Mena was charged with disorderly contact. The arrest followed a traffic stop.

 

January 6, 2020

Tearesa Denton, 47, of Mena was charged with criminal mischief and three counts of possession of a controlled substance. The arrest followed a call to a local retail store regarding someone breaking into a vending machine.

 

Vicky Franz, 56, of Mena was charged with driving on a suspended driver’s license, having no insurance, and having no vehicle tags.

 

Lester Wright, 57, of Baton Rouge, Louisiana was charged with public intoxication.

 

January 7, 2020

Report was made of someone vandalizing a vending machine at a local laundromat. After an investigation and review of surveillance tape, three Mena youths, two aged 16, and one 15 were charged with criminal mischief. The case has been sent to the juvenile department.

 

January 8, 2020

Two local women reported that someone had pried the lock on their house and stole several prescription bottles while they were out. Case pending.

 

January 9, 2020

A local man reported that someone had used his debit card. He had lost his wallet, and someone had used his debit card for airline tickets. Case pending.

 

Employees at a local gas station reported that someone had struck a pump, causing significant damage. Case is pending location of suspect.

 

January 10, 2020

Paul Mahoney, 26, of Mena was charged with domestic battery after a call from one of their neighbors.

 

January 11, 2020

Cody Dees, 34, of Mena was taken into custody and served two warrants.

 

1-13-20 11:13 a.m. KAWX.ORG 

If you have local news tips or would like to place an item on our KAWX.ORG Community Calendar, email us at communityradio@live.com.

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Upcoming Activities At Queen Wilhelmina State Park Near Mena

 

For more information about any of the activities listed below, or the state park, dial (479) 394-2863, or visit the park's website by clicking here.

 

 

Friday, January 17th

 

Unnatural Hike starting at 1:00 pm and lasting about 30 minutes. Meet at the Amphitheater. How attentive do you really think you are? Join Park Interpreter Melissa to test your powers of observation in this fun interesting hidden item hunt along the Spring Trail.

 

Touch Table starting at 4:00 pm and lasting about 1 hour. Meet in the Hearth Room. There will be different things that you can see and touch. Join Park Interpreter Melissa for a fun, interactive way of exploring things found in our park, and find out what they are.

 

Arkansas Furs  atarting at 7:00 pm and lasting about 30 minutes. Meet in the Hearth Room. What animals do we have here at Queen Wilhelmina State Park? Join Park Interpreter Melissa and she will talk about the animals that we have here in the park, and you will get to feel their furs.

 

Saturday, January 18th

 

Wonder House Tour starting at 2:00 pm and lasting about 30 minutes. Meet at the Wonder House. Do you ever wonder what the Wonder House is about? Join Park Interpreter Melissa and step back into history to see one of the first vacation homes built in the 1930’s.

 

Silent Hike starting at 3:00 pm and lasting about 1 hour and 30 minutes. Meet on the North Side of Lovers’ Leap Trail. Have you ever been on a trail and never seen an animal? Join Park Interpreter Melissa as we hike silently down to the Lovers’ Leap platform. Along the way we will observe what we can see and hear as we silently walk through the woods.

 

Slithering Snakes starting at 7:00 pm and lasting about 30 minutes. Meet in the Hearth Room. What type of snake slither over the forest floor at Queen Wilhelmina? Join Park Interpreter Melissa to learn a few of the venomous and non-venomous snakes we have here at Queen Wilhelmina.

 

Sunday, January 19th

 

Wonder House Tour starting at 10:00 am and lasting about 30 minutes. Meet at the Wonder House. Do you ever wonder what the Wonder House is about? Join Park Interpreter Melissa and step back into history to see one of the first vacation homes built in the 1930’s.

 

Champion Trees starrting at 2:00 pm and lasting about 30 minutes. Meet in the Hearth Room. Do you ever wonder what the largest tree of its species are called? Join Park Interpreter Melissa and she will talk about the Champion Trees in Arkansas and where their located.

 

Bird Watching starting at 3:00 pm and lasting about 1 hour. Meet on the  North side of Lovers' Leap. Whether you’re a beginner or pro at birding, join park interpreter Melissa as we hike to the observation deck. We will be watching for birds along the way. Bring your binoculars and we will see how many birds we can identify.

 

1-12-20 1:20 p.m. KAWX.ORG 

 

Listen to KAWX in the Mena area on 93.1, or in the Hatfield-Cove-Vandervoort area on 94.9.

 

Listen on the go with a free KAWX app available at the App Store or Google Play. Listen on any smart device with the TuneIn app, or on Amazon Echo.

 

Listen anywhere at KAWX.ORG (Listen Live Tab) or by clicking on the radio below.

 

 

 

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US Senator John Boozman's Weekly Column: Marking One-Year of the Farm Bill

 

Marking One-Year of the Farm Bill

 

Often, after I’m introduced at events, I’ll joke that I’d rather be identified as an optometrist than a senator.

 

Given Congress’ low approval rating, many of my colleagues probably share my tongue-in-cheek preference of being identified by a previous profession instead of their current one.

 

It’s not hard to see why most Americans have a very negative view of Washington. Partisan fights are the norm. Advocates of the most extreme positions get the spotlight and the attention is always focused on drama and gridlock. Unfortunately, these characterizations dismiss all that Congress has accomplished this past year.

 

In the 116th session of Congress, the Senate has, among other things, confirmed over 100 federal judges, repealed costly Obamacare taxes and increased security at the border. We’ve passed laws vital to the future of our nation, including measures to secure our elections, and we’ve tackled smaller concerns, such as those annoying robocalls that frustrate Americans on a daily basis.

 

Along with our aggressive legislative agenda, Congress is also working to ensure recent landmark laws are being properly implemented. The 2018 Farm Bill—which became law just over a year ago—sits at the top of that list. 

 

As a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, I can attest to how much work went into passing the 2018 Farm Bill. The reality of agriculture policy is that our divisions often don’t fall along partisan lines, rather they tend to occur between regions. There is no one-size-fits-all solution for agricultural policy across a country as large and diverse as the United States. Agriculture in western, northeastern and coastal states differ from both the South and the Midwest, which in turn, have needs that vary. What works for farmers in Iowa often times does not work for farmers in Arkansas and vice-versa.

 

To pass a farm bill that was workable for the entire nation, members of Congress had to put aside our differences to ensure the needs of each region were met. It was a fine line to walk, but we managed to find a common ground among the many distinct demands—largely due to the leadership of Chairman Pat Roberts (R-KS) and Ranking Member Debbie Stabenow (D-MI).

 

The challenges facing our farmers and ranchers made passing the farm bill in a timely manner imperative. Agricultural producers have been facing intense pressure: farm bankruptcies are up, financing has become more expensive, commodity prices have dropped and the trade outlook has been uncertain to say the least.

 

In light of the adversity facing agriculture today and in recent years, producers needed assurances that Washington will enact policies that provide a path toward a secure future for their operations and livelihoods. The 2018 Farm Bill brought some much-needed stability by reauthorizing and improving key risk management tools, enhancing economic development programs, protecting conservation opportunities and providing regulatory certainty. While significant challenges remain, we have seen some confidence return to rural America in the year since the 2018 Farm Bill became law.

 

It took a heavy lift to get this bill passed through two chambers with very diverse views and then signed into law by the president. That accomplishment set an example of what we can achieve when we work together, and also established a clear precedent to follow during implementation. It is my hope the 2018 Farm Bill will serve as a blueprint for more bipartisan successes in 2020 and beyond.

 

1-12-20 9:34 a.m. KAWX.ORG 

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Governor Hutchinson's Weekly Radio Address: The Final Report of the Arkansas Levee Task Force

Governor Hutchinson's Weekly Radio Address: The Final Report of the Arkansas Levee Task Force
 
 
LITTLE ROCK – Today I would like to talk about the recommendations that the Arkansas Levee Task Force submitted to me this week in its final report.
 
I created the task force and appointed 27 members in June last year.
 
The events that led to the need for the task force began in late May. I will never forget that telephone call from an engineer with the Tulsa district of the Corps of Engineers.
 
The day he called was a sunny, cloudless day. I could see the Arkansas River from the north window of my office, and everything looked normal.
 
That was about to change. The engineer informed me that they were preparing to release a record amount of water from Oklahoma into the Arkansas River. He said we were going to see river levels we’d never seen before, and that we should prepare for a mandatory evacuation. Little did we know just how bad the flooding would get before it was over.
 
As the Arkansas River overtopped the levees and poured into towns and farmland along its path, I flew by helicopter from Little Rock to Fort Smith. As I observed the power of the rain-swollen river from the air, I understood like I never had before the critical role of our levees in protecting lives and property. The historic flood of 2019 exposed the weaknesses in our physical levee system. It also exposed short-comings in the maintenance and oversight of our levee system.
 
I asked the task force to address four objectives:
 
  • analyze the condition of the levees;
  • identify sources and requirements for funding levee repair and maintenance;
  • study the monitoring and reporting of needed repairs and adequacy of our levees;
  • and determine whether our laws need to be updated.

 

The members of the task force hit the ground running. They visited levees. They interviewed people who live and work along the river. They built an inventory of every mile of levee along the river. They interviewed experts and studied the data. They worked closely with the Corps of Engineers.
 
The Task Force produced a report with seventeen recommendations that are thorough, thoughtful, and a solid guide for the future. The recommendations also have the right balance in terms of federal, state, and local responsibility.
 
The Task Force recommended that we create an inventory of all levees for each of our river systems, and that we consolidate levee districts that are dependent upon each other.
 
Another recommendation focused on the need for improved oversight and reporting. And in terms of funding, the Task Force recognized the need for a state grant program to support our levy districts.
 
This report is a necessary step in shoring up the banks of the Arkansas and our other rivers. Now we must act on the recommendations as quickly as possible. We can’t put off the work until another flood puts us to the test.
 
1-10-20 4:31 p.m. KAWX.ORG 
If you have local news tips or would like to place an item on our KAWX.ORG Community Calendar, email us at communityradio@live.com.
 

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State Representative John Maddox's Weekly Column

 

In an age where technology moves at a rapid pace, electronic devices often become e-waste in only a few years after manufacturing.

 

Electronic waste is commonly known as e-waste. It is defined as used electronics that are nearing the end of their useful life, and are discarded, donated or given to a recycler.

 

The amount of worldwide e-waste generation in 2018 exceeded 50 million tons. And it’s growing at a rate of 5% every year.

 

This week, a House City, County, and Local Affairs Planning Sub-Committee held a meeting to discuss e-waste, the impact it has on our state, and what is being done to address the problem.

 

Many electronics contain elements – lead, mercury, and cadmium, for example – that are safe when the items are used as directed but can be hazardous if disposed of in household trash and compacted at landfills.

 

There are 19 Regional Solid Waste Management Districts across the state. Representatives from several of those districts testified to members of the committee about their e-waste recycling efforts.

 

In that testimony, we learned that e-waste represents 2% of America's trash in landfills, but it equals 70% of overall toxic waste. We also learned that only 12.5% of e-waste is currently recycled.

 

An estimated 6,000 tons of e-waste in 2018 were collected and processed in Arkansas.

 

Recycling one million laptops saves the energy equivalent to the electricity used by more than 3,500 US homes in a year. For every million cell phones we recycle, 35 thousand pounds of copper, 772 pounds of silver, and 75 pounds of gold can be recovered.

 

For all the benefits of recycling electronics, collection efforts can be costly. And with Arkansans disposing more each year it is an issue that demands our attention.

 

While the legislature continues to study ways to address e-waste collection efforts, there are things all of us can do to reduce the amount of products we discard. Proper maintenance of electronics can extend their usefulness.  And before discarding, consider selling or donating your used device.

 

Many Arkansas communities offer electronic waste collection centers or events. We posted a link to find an e-waste collection center in your area on our website www.arkansashouse.org.

 

1-10-20 4:24 p.m. KAWX.ORG 

Listen to KAWX in the Mena area on 93.1, or in the Hatfield-Cove-Vandervoort area on 94.9.

 

Listen on the go with a free KAWX app available at the App Store or Google Play. Listen on any smart device with the TuneIn app, or on Amazon Echo.

 

Listen anywhere at KAWX.ORG (Listen Live Tab) or by clicking on the radio below.

 

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Senator Larry Teague's Weekly Column

State Capitol Week in Review From Senator Larry Teague

January 10, 2020

 

LITTLE ROCK – Over the past decade, greater numbers of Arkansas children have been diagnosed with disabilities that require them to receive education.

 

Consequently, Arkansas public schools are spending greater amounts of money on special education.

 

Last year there were almost 64,000 students with a diagnosed disability in Arkansas public schools. That is 13.4 percent of the state’s total student enrollment.

 

Arkansas school districts spent $458 million on special education services, or about $7,382 per pupil with a disability. In the 2012-2013 school year, Arkansas schools spent $412 million on special education for 54,000 students.

 

Those are the specific costs of services, and don’t include costs that schools incur to educate all students, such as utilities and administrative salaries.

Last year the equivalent of 3,788 full time employees worked as special education teachers in Arkansas.

 

Schools get revenue from local, state and federal sources. The state provides funding for an average of 29 special education teachers for every 500 students enrolled in the district.

 

There are 12 categories of disability used to determine a student’s eligibility for special education. They include autism, vision and hearing impairment, speech language impairment, traumatic brain injury, intellectual disability and emotional disturbance.

 

There is a category titled specific learning disability that includes dyslexia and developmental aphasia. It represents the largest category of disability, and applies to 31 percent of the students in special education.

 

About 25 percent have a speech language impairment, about 12 percent have intellectual disabilities and about 8 percent receive special education services because they are on the autism spectrum.

 

Except for the category of children with multiple disabilities, all other categories have shown increases, with autism growing the most over the past few years. The number of students diagnosed with autism has gone up 55 percent since 2013. The increase is attributable to an increased awareness among educators and others of the characteristics of autism.

 

The growth in children diagnosed with dyslexia has followed a similar trend. In 2014, for example, 957 students received therapy for dyslexia. In 2014 only 89 school districts and one charter school reported results from screening for dyslexia.

 

Last year, 251 school districts and charter schools screened for dyslexia and more than 23,000 children received therapy.

 

Act 1294 of 2013 required districts to screen every student in kindergarten through second grade for dyslexia.

 

Just like all other students, children with disabilities must take standardized tests like the ACT Aspire. Last year 12.2 percent of students with disabilities scored at the “ready” or “exceeding” level in math. That compared to 52.5 percent of students without disabilities.

 

Last year legislators worked on changes to a category of special education known as high-cost or catastrophic occurrences. They happen when services for an individual student are extraordinarily higher than what is regularly provided in state funding categories.

 

In the 2019 regular session, the legislature approved Act 877 to appropriate $13.2 million for special education high-cost occurrences.

 

1-10-20 11:30 a.m. KAWX.ORG

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Weekly Arkansas Fishing Report

 

This is the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission’s weekly fishing report for January 8, 2020. If there is a body of water you would like included in this report, please email jim.harris@agfc.ar.gov 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 listed for the lake or stream you plan to fish for current news. Note: msl = mean sea level; cfs = cubic feet per second.

 

For current fishing information, click on the area of the state below that you are interested in. 

 

Central Arkansas

 

North Arkansas

 

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: https://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: https://waterdata.usgs.gov/ar/nwis/current/?type=quality.

 

1-8-20 4:17 p.m. KAWX.ORG

 

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Polk County Circuit Court Arraignments January 6th, 8th

 
All criminal information is merely an accusation and the Defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. Prosecuting Attorney Andy Riner, within and for the 18th-West Judicial District of the State of Arkansas, of which Polk County is a part, in the name and by the authority of the State of Arkansas, on oath, do hereby accuse the defendants of committing in Polk County, Arkansas the following crimes: 
 
State of Arkansas Vs. Robert I. Pierce, White Male, age 41, Count I: Possession Of Methamphetamine With The Purpose To Deliver, a Class "B" Felony. Count II: Possession Of Drug Paraphernalia, a Class "D" Felony.
 
State of Arkansas Vs. John Robertson, White Male, age 45, Count I: Possession Of Drug Paraphernalia, a Class "D" Felony. Count II: Possession Of A Schedule II Controlled Substance, a Class "D" Felony. The State of Arkansas intends to pursue enhanced penalties due to the fact that he has been convicted of four (4) or more felonies.
 
State of Arkansas Vs. Brianna M. Ramirez, White Female, age 20, Count I: Possession Of A Schedule II Controlled Substance, a Class "D" Felony.
 
State of Arkansas vs. Tearesa M. Denton, White Female, age 47, Count I: Possession Of A Schedule II Controlled Substance, a Class "D" Felony. Count II: Possession Of Drug Paraphernalia, a Class "D" Felony. Count III: Criminal Mischief In The 2nd Degree, a Class "B" Felony.
 
1-8-20 4:05 p.m. KAWX.ORG 
Listen to KAWX in the Mena area on 93.1, or in the Hatfield-Cove-Vandervoort area on 94.9.
 
Listen on the go with a free KAWX app available at the App Store or Google Play. Listen on any smart device with the TuneIn app, or on Amazon Echo.
 
Listen anywhere at KAWX.ORG (Listen Live Tab) or by clicking on the radio below.
 
 

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Attorney General Urging Arkansans To Upgrade To Real ID When Renewing Drivers Licenses

 

LITTLE ROCK – If it is time to renew your driver’s license, consider making the transition to the “REAL ID” now. Beginning October 1, 2020, the REAL ID driver’s license or identification card will be required to board a domestic flight or enter a federal building or facility, including military bases.

 

“When you make sure your family members have a REAL ID, you are taking the next step in protecting their personal identity from criminals,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “From everyday travel to national security, the REAL ID will enhance our safety from threats both foreign and domestic.”

 

According to the Department of Homeland Security, the REAL ID improves the security of state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards as well as help fight terrorism and reduce identity fraud.

 

To receive the enhanced ID you must present qualifying forms of identification that confirm your full legal name, date of birth, Social Security Number, proof of address and lawful status. Visit the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration website, here, to find out which qualifying documents you need, or click here for a full list of qualified documents.

 

Arkansans can get a REAL ID by bringing with them the qualifying forms of identification to these specific regional offices around the State. The cost of the enhanced license remains $40, the same amount as the standard non-enhanced state license. If your license is current, you can convert your license to a REAL ID for a $10 duplicate card charge. REAL IDs have a yellow circle with a white star in the middle on the upper right side of the license.

 

Though a REAL ID does not expire for 8 years, the renewal process is simpler than when the original enhanced license is obtained. You will only need to bring qualifying forms of identification if your name, gender or Social Security Number have changed or if your date of birth was amended.

 

The standard driver’s license will remain valid for state-related purposes such as driving, banking and voting. A valid passport will be accepted to board airlines.

 

For more information or to report fraud, contact the Arkansas Attorney General’s Office at (800) 482-8982 or consumer@ArkansasAG.gov or visit ArkansasAG.gov or facebook.com/AGLeslieRutledge.

 

1-8-20 3:47 p.m. KAWX.ORG 

If you have local news tips or would like to place an item on our KAWX.ORG Community Calendar, email us at communityradio@live.com.

 

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