Arkansas cotton growers have battled pests and disease this year, and the emergence of a fungus late in the season indicates a potential threat in the years ahead.
State growers are expected to harvest estimated 270,000 acres of cotton in 2013, down by more than half from 600,000 acres a year ago.
As recently as 2006, Arkansas growers planted nearly 1.2 million acres of cotton. Agriculture officials say growers will suffer yield losses due to tarnished plant bugs. And the emergence of Corynespora leaf spot is a new challenge for Arkansas growers.
Health assessments for Mayflower residents affected by the March oil spill will be provided by the state, Gov. Mike Beebe's office announced Thursday.
Beginning next week, the Faulkner County Health Unit in Conway will offer appointment with nurses and specialists from the Arkansas Department of Health and the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. These initial meetings will be used to evaluate a high number of patients who may have developed symptoms, such as lung and heart problems, as a result of the ruptured pipeline.
With an appeal to be heard next month, the superintendents of two Arkansas school districts are defending programs to arm teachers and staff.
Wednesday a legislative panel heard arguments about whether having guns on campus is the best way to protect students.
Lake Hamilton Superintendent Steve Anderson told members of the Joint Judiciary Committee that in addition to two full-time armed security officers, his district has had several staff members, including himself, who have quick access to firearms if the need arises.