Local & Regional News

Arkansas local and regional news

Chris Hickey / KUAR News

Many gathered for events throughout Little Rock celebrating Dr. Martin Luther King Junior Day, from the annual "marade" organized by the Arkansas chapter of the NAACP, to a day of service at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.

While Arkansas also marked Robert E. Lee Day Monday, few events around the state honored the Confederate Civil War general. Supporters, including the state chapter of the Sons of the Confederacy, say they will celebrate Lee's actual Jan. 19 birthday Tuesday.

Angelsharum / Wikimedia

The Arkansas Public Service Commission will meet Tuesday to consider a settlement with Entergy Arkansas over a rate increase.

The agreement could result in an 8.3 percent increase to the monthly bills of the utility's customers. Entergy says the rate hike would allow it to improve its electrical infrastructure and purchase one-fourth of the Union Power Station natural gas plant near El Dorado. 

Hot Springs will soon have a new Civil War museum that will focus on the Trans-Mississippi Theater of the 1861-1865 American conflict.

The Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports (bit.ly/1n4xqgu) that The Civil War Museum West is expected to open later this year and will feature a collection of artifacts, flags, photos and other items.

The museum will offer tours through 10 areas of various subjects about the war. Visitors will see collections of swords, guns, bullets, flags, and various other artifacts and Civil War relics.

Snow
Lesa Taschetti / KATV, Channel 7 News

Light snow and ice has left roads in much of the northern half of Arkansas slick in spots and numerous auto accidents are reported in the Little Rock area.

The National Weather Service says one to two inches of snow fell Sunday night and Monday morning in an area from Harrison and Jasper to Clinton and Searcy. Police in Searcy, about 50 miles northeast of Little Rock, compared some city streets to ice rinks.

On Monday, several events around central Arkansas are commemorating and celebrating the work and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 

--At the UALR Jack Stephens Center, the state Martin Luther King Jr Commission is holding a "Mega King Fest" from 7am to 3pm. Doors Open at 6:30am. The day will start out with an interfaith prayer breakfast lasting until 8:30am. It's expected to be attended by Governor Asa Hutchinson, Senator Tom Cotton, Attorney General Leslie Rutledge and others. 

March for Life pro-life anti-abortion abortion
Talk Business & Politics

Several thousand people, along with most of the state’s leading elected officials, marched in opposition to abortion Sunday at the 38th Annual March for Life at the state Capitol.

The marchers wound behind the Capitol and then gathered at the steps, where they heard short speeches by Gov. Asa Hutchinson, U.S. Sens. John Boozman and Tom Cotton, R-Ark., and U.S. Reps. French Hill, R-Little Rock, and Bruce Westerman, R-Hot Springs.

Governor Radio
Office of the Governor

The following is a transcript of Gov. Asa Hutchinson's Radio Column for the weekend of Jan. 15, 2016:

This afternoon I will be visiting three schools in Gravette, a small town in Northwest Arkansas. As a Gravette native, I am excited to get back to the place where I grew up on a farm on the Spavinaw Creek south of town.

Arron Lewis
Brian Chilson / Arkansas Times

      

A man convicted of capital murder and kidnapping in the suffocation death of an Arkansas real estate agent has been sentenced to life in prison without the chance of parole. 

Arron Lewis was accused of kidnapping and killing 50-year-old Beverly Carter, who disappeared after telling her husband that she was showing a house to a prospective buyer in a rural area near Little Rock. 

Prosecutors said Lewis and his estranged wife, Crystal Lowery, set up the fake house showing with Carter, then kidnapped her as part of a ransom plot. 

Five school districts in Arkansas have been named AP Honor Roll Districts. The distinction is handed down by the College Board, which sets standards and course materials for Advanced Placement classes in high schools. The five districts are among 425 in the US and Canada named to the most recent Honor Roll for increasing access to AP classes and for increasing the percentage of students who score a 3 or higher on the exams.

 

prison jail department of correction
Sarah Whites-Koditschek / KUAR

Arkansas inmates will no longer be prohibited from growing facial hair. The state’s Board of Corrections voted Thursday to modify the state’s grooming policy. 

 In 2015 inmates were allowed to grow beards based on sincerely held religious beliefs, following a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in January. The state had argued beards in prison were a security risk. 

According to Department of Corrections spokesperson Cathy Frye, 5,675 inmates cited religious reasons for growing facial hair in 2015.

Pages