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10:21 am
Tue May 13, 2014

Saline & Marion Counties Stop Issuing Marriage Licenses For Gays

Couples lined up Monday to get marriage licenses in the Pulaski County Courthouse.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

A chief deputy clerk in Saline County says her office will suspend issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples until they hear from the state's highest court.

The office Monday issued six certificates. Chief Deputy Clerk Darlene Westbrook said Tuesday they're waiting for the Arkansas Supreme Court to rule on whether same-sex marriages are legal in the state.

In east Arkansas, the Marion County clerk says her office will also stop issuing same-sex marriage licenses. County Clerk Dee Carleton said Tuesday two men from Yellville received their license on Monday.  

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Local & Regional News
9:13 am
Tue May 13, 2014

11 Counties Added To Tornado Disaster Relief Declaration

Arkansas' congressional delegation says Gov. Mike Beebe has added 11 counties to the state's major disaster declaration request to help in the recovery from last month's deadly storm.

The two senators and four U.S. House members say in a news release that they wrote to President Barack Obama and the head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency earlier Monday in support of Beebe's request.

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Local & Regional News
6:14 am
Tue May 13, 2014

Republican Primary 4th Congressional: Bruce Westerman

Bruce Westerman
Credit Arkansas Times

This week KUAR talks to the two candidates seeking the Republican nomination for Arkansas’s 4th Congressional District as part of an ongoing series covering select contested primaries.

Democrat James Lee Witt is running unopposed and Libertarian Ken Hamilton already has his party’s nomination.

The second installment for 4th District is with Bruce Westerman of Garland County. He’s an engineer, State Representative, and former state House Majority Leader. Westerman faces Tommy Moll.

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Local & Regional News
5:49 pm
Mon May 12, 2014

Deadline Tuesday For Parties In Same-Sex Case To File With Ark. Supreme Court

A couple kisses while waiting in line at the Pulaski County Clerk's office to apply for a marriage license.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

The Arkansas Supreme Court is giving parties involved in the case that tossed out the state’s ban on same-sex marriages until noon Tuesday to respond to a request for a stay. Meanwhile scores of gay couples are taking advantage of the opportunity to wed after Eureka Springs became the first location Saturday where couple could get marriage licenses.

At the Pulaski County Courthouse in Little Rock Monday, gay couples began lining up before sunrise. When the doors opened, the crowd was greeted by Pulaski County Clerk Larry Crane.

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Local & Regional News
5:43 pm
Mon May 12, 2014

Tom Cotton and Mark Pryor Both Argue For Keystone But Still Don't Get Along

Senator Mark Pryor and Representative Tom Cotton
Jacob Kauffman KUAR

Both Democratic Senator Mark Pryor and his challenger for the office Republican Representative Tom Cotton, stood side by side at a plant in Little Rock Monday, where pipeline is being made for the Keystone XL, to call on the President to approve the project. KUAR’s Jacob Kauffman reports.

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Local & Regional News
4:57 pm
Mon May 12, 2014

Flash Flood Watch Issued for Western Half of State

National Weather Service
Credit http://www.srh.noaa.gov

  The National Weather Service has issued a flash flood watch effective through Wednesday for much of Arkansas as several rounds of showers and thunderstorms prepare to move into the state over the next few days. Meteorologist Charles Dalton says the risk of flooding is greatest in the western portions of the state, where much of the ground is already saturated from storms late last week.

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Local & Regional News
9:51 am
Mon May 12, 2014

Arkansas Attorney General Seeks Stay As Gay Couples Wed

Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel has asked the state's highest court to suspend a judge's ruling striking down the state's gay marriage ban.

McDaniel asked the Arkansas Supreme Court on Monday to stay Pulaski County Circuit Judge Chris Piazza's ruling that a 2004 constitutional amendment and a 1997 law banning same-sex marriage are unconstitutional.

Dozens of gay couples have received marriage licenses since Piazza's ruling was issued late Friday afternoon.

McDaniel has already told Piazza he's appealing the decision to the state Supreme Court.

Local & Regional News
9:44 am
Mon May 12, 2014

On-The-Spot Weddings Occurring At Little Rock Courthouse

Pulaski County Circuit Judge Wendell Griffen signs the marriage certificate as James Paulus and Christopher Shelton of England, Ark. were married inside the Pulaski County Courthouse.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

Multiple weddings are occurring in the Pulaski County courthouse as same-sex couples receive wedding licenses.

Beverly Best and Ashley Mueller were among the couples who wed Monday after the county began issuing the licenses.

Julie Gerlinger, an ordained minister and notary public, performed the wedding ceremony in the courthouse rotunda.

Best and Mueller exchanged rings during the brief ceremony and the crowd gathered in the rotunda erupted in cheers after Gerlinger said, "I now pronounce you wife and wife."

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Local & Regional News
9:02 am
Mon May 12, 2014

Gay Rights Group Seeks Couples' Full Recognition

Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign, speaks to reporters Monday morning outside the Pulaski County Courthouse in Little Rock.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

The head of a gay rights group is seeking full federal recognition of same-sex couples married in Arkansas.

Gay couples began getting married in the state Saturday and more were lined up to wed Monday. Human Rights Campaign president Chad Griffin said the group asked the Department of Justice to recognize the unions. A similar move was extended to Utah couples who married before a gay-marriage ruling was put on hold.

Arkansas' attorney general has filed a notice that he would appeal a judge's ruling that paved the way for this weekend's same-sex marriages.

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Local & Regional News
9:01 am
Mon May 12, 2014

Texas Couple 1st In Line for Marriage License In Little Rock

Shelly Butler and Susan Barr pose for a photo after getting their marriage license.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

A couple from Texas who's been together nearly 30 years is the first in line to obtain a same-sex marriage license in Pulaski County.

Fifty-one-year-old Shelly Butler and 48-year-old Susan Barr arrived at the courthouse at about 6:30 a.m. Monday. Both are Arkansas natives and had planned to marry this fall in New Mexico.

Another couple had waited on the courthouse steps since midnight, but Butler and Barr were allowed in first because Butler is in a wheelchair.

The two first met in 1985 at Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia.

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