An official with the Arkansas Department of Higher Education told lawmakers Thursday the department is moving ahead with forming procedures to try to address sexual assault on college campuses.

The Department is approaching a November 3 deadline to create a plan for preventing sexual assault and for providing more comprehensive education on how sexual assault is legally defined.

In 2004, a Harvard graduate, Michelle Kuo, arrived in the Mississippi Delta town of Helena-West Helena as a volunteer teacher. While spending two years teaching at an alternative school for students with disciplinary issues, Kuo struck up a friendship with Patrick Browning, a quiet student who did well in her class. A few years later, Kuo returned to Helena to read with Patrick again: this time in the visitation room of the county jail, where Patrick was being held on a charge of murder.

Example of someone holding a chicken by its feet in a processing plant.
Image via U.S. Department of Defense

The ACLU of Arkansas is investigating claims that an organization in Oklahoma known as Christian Alcoholics and Addicts In Recover (CAAIR) "is operating forced labor camps disguised as rehabilitation centers", according to a press release.

Members of Arkansas' Supreme Court say the state must change a law that kept same-sex couples from listing both of their names on birth certificates, but disagree on who should do it.

The U.S. Supreme Court in June ruled the Arkansas law invalid, and state justices Thursday sent a case back to a lower court. Three justices say Pulaski County Judge Tim Fox impermissibly rewrote the statute and needs to write a new order, while another justice wants Fox to hold additional hearings. Three justices said legislators alone can change the law.

Police say they have arrested the person suspected of firing first during a mass shooting at a Little Rock rap concert last summer.

No one died in the July 1 melee, but 28 people sustained injuries. Little Rock police Capt. Russell King said Wednesday that 19-year-old Tyler Jackson was the first to fire a weapon as Ricky Hampton performed at the Power Ultra Lounge under the name Finese2Tymes.

When the winds are just right on an October afternoon, clouds of smoke can be seen from the rural highways of Mississippi County. 

Once in a while, an out-of-state motorist calls 911 to report a fire, but most people who live and work in the county are familiar with the phenomenon.  It’s agricultural burning, a widely used but controversial practice that allows the farmers to clear their fields quickly after a harvest and get ready for the next season.

State Sen. Bart Hester (R-Cave Springs) and Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department Director Scott Bennett presenting the governor's highway bill to a committee.
Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

Arkansas highway officials are leaving open the possibility they'll take a road funding proposal to lawmakers in 2019 rather try to put it on the ballot next year. The move comes after the state's governor said he'll oppose any plan to take general revenue to fund road improvements.

Arkansas Department of Education Building in Little Rock near the state Capitol building.
Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

Arkansas will be handing out cash to high school students who pass an Advanced Placement test in computer science. The Arkansas Department of Education announced the launch of the Arkansas Advanced Placement Computer Science A Incentive Program designed to encourage computer science education by rewarding students as well as schools.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R) talking to reporters in his Capitol office.
Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

In advance of an Arkansas Highway Commission meeting, Governor Asa Hutchinson said he will not support directing general revenue funds to highways. He told reporters on Tuesday that he will oppose any ballot initiative that would re-direct general funds for roads.

“Those are funds that are necessary for education, for public safety and all the other needs of our state. So, I say no we can not divert that general revenue stream that’s needed for education, higher education, and other needs over to highways,” said Hutchinson. “That’s an important principle that needs underlining.”

A lobbyist and former Arkansas state representative who served on President Donald Trump's Commission on Election Integrity has died. His business partner, Melissa Moody, said Tuesday former Democratic state Rep. David Dunn of Forrest City died Monday during surgery to repair an aortic aneurism. He was 52.

Pages

KUAR Sponsored Event

Stay Connected

Weekly News Roundup

The KUAR stories you want, delivered to your inbox. Subscribe below or text MYNEWS to 22828 to sign up.

KUAR Shop

Every purchase supports programming!

E-News Sign Up

Receive e-newsletters about public radio stuff.

Vehicle Donation

When you donate a vehicle to benefit public radio, you are turning your car into financial support for the community programming you trust and rely on.

Another Way To Support Public Radio

Alternative Giving

A donation to your non-profit public radio stations in honor or memory of a loved one can be made easily online. You can add a personalized message and print the honor card immediately.

Classical Music: Our Sister Station

KLRE Classical 90.5

Classical music 24-7. Tune in or listen online.