Chris Hickey / KUAR News

Arkansas Soldiers Receive Purple Hearts After 2009 Attack

Purple Heart medals have been awarded to the family of an Arkansas soldier who was killed and to another soldier who was wounded in a shooting outside of a Little Rock Army-Navy recruiting center in 2009.
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The Washington County prosecutor says a capital murder charge against a Springdale man has been dropped because a key witness died.

The charge against 29-year-old Rico Tavarous Cohn was dropped Wednesday and he was released from jail. Prosecutor Matt Durrett told reporters the witness died unexpectedly earlier this year and that the remaining evidence was not sufficient to go to trial.

Durrett declined to release the witness' name.

Bill and Hillary Clinton Airport Sign
Jason Burt / Arkansas Business

Flights with nonstop service to Little Rock, Arkansas, are set to return to Lambert-St. Louis International Airport after a two-year absence.

Southwest Airlines announced it will fly two daily non-stop flights to the Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport starting Jan. 6. The Lambert-St. Louis airport has also recently announced the launch of three new nonstop flights.

Flights to Austin, Texas, and Jackson, Tennessee, began Sunday. Nonstop flights to Portland, Oregon, are set to begin Wednesday.

Lt. Governor Tim Griffin (R) speaking in the rotunda of the Arkansas Capitol in the spring of 2015.
Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

Lieutenant Governor Tim Griffin said the Council on Common Core Review will not issue recommendations as early as he had hoped but a report will still be compiled “well in advance” of Governor Asa Hutchinson’s early fall deadline.

In a June 8 joint meeting of the House and Senate Education Committees Griffin told lawmakers he wanted to have a report from the council completed by the end of June.

It’s déjà vu all over again.

A longtime Jonesboro company broke ground on a $12 million, 62,000 square foot facility that will bring up to 75 new jobs to the company.

The expansion groundbreaking for Hytrol Conveyor Co. was the 10th one at its facility on Arkansas 18 and the first one since 1999, the company’s chairman, Robert Jones, said before the shovel-turning event.

The company, which makes conveyors for companies like Dick’s Sporting Goods, Macy’s and Fed Ex, moved to Jonesboro in 1962.

Arkansas should continue its efforts to establish a state-based insurance exchange, the executive director of the state’s Health Insurance Marketplace said Monday, even though a recent Supreme Court ruling makes it less necessary to do so.

Flood Waters

Residents in nine Arkansas counties declared disaster areas because of recent storms, tornadoes and flooding may be eligible for disaster unemployment assistance. 

same-sex marriage license
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

A county clerk in Arkansas plans to resign effective June 30 because of a moral objection to issuing same-sex marriage licenses.

Cleburne County Clerk Dana Guffey said Monday she has notified the county judge of her plans to resign. She says she has a moral objection to issuing the marriage licenses following Friday's U.S. Supreme Court ruling legalizing gay marriages nationwide. She said the decision to leave the post after 24 years was not made out of hate.

Office officials say no same-sex marriage licenses had been issued as of Monday afternoon.

The director of a state board says Arkansas' work toward setting up its own insurance exchange will give the state more flexibility as it looks at changes to its Medicaid system.

Arkansas Health Insurance Marketplace Executive Director Cheryl Smith Gardner told a legislative panel that there are many benefits to the state moving forward with its own marketplace for consumers to purchase insurance policies under the federal health law. Arkansas is currently using the federal exchange, but has been given preliminary approval to switch to a state exchange.

Officials Stress Importance Of Water Safety For Kids

Jun 29, 2015
Arkansas Children's Hospital

Arkansas has the 7th highest drowning rate in the nation according to findings released by the Arkansas Infant and Child Death Review program, which is made up by representatives from legal, law enforcement and health agencies.

With the abundance of open water in the state and sometimes a lack of supervision, parents need to be certain they are aware of their children’s location and basic water safety skills, says Dr. Pamela Tabor, the director of the ICDR.

Even water levels that seem low, they can still pose a risk to children.

Sarah Whites-Koditschek / KUAR

  Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson signed a memorandum of understanding with officials and business leaders from Vietnam Monday. 

"We've already had some discussions and I love the interest they've expressed in terms of commodity purchasing, but we'll also look for continued points of commerce between us," said Hutchinson. 

he said Dong Nai Province, a rural region in Vietnam, plans to develop an on-going business relationship with the state.


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