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5:46 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

Tech and Innovation Focused Start-Ups Get Another Boost in Central Arkansas

Governor Mike Beebe at the launch of AVC.
Credit Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

Business leaders and start-up hopefuls were joined by elected officials Tuesday for the launch of the Arkansas Venture Center in Little Rock. Governor Mike Beebe pledged a $500,000 matching grant to the center, governed by the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce.

Proponents of the development argue it will foster a climate that accelerates the growth of innovative, tech start-ups. Governor Beebe said Arkansans have succeeded in starting international companies that dominate their industries but more needs to be done to encourage new, start-ups with limited resources.

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Local & Regional News
4:34 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

Same-Sex Spouse Insurance On Hold In University of Arkansas System

Employees of the University of Arkansas system received notice last week that those who are married to spouses of the same-sex may now add their spouses to their insurance coverage. However, the Arkansas Supreme Court's stay of Judge Chris Piazza's same-sex marriage ruling has changed that.

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Local & Regional News
3:45 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

Turnout Light In Arkansas Primary, No Problems Reported

Pulaski County polling site West Side Baptist Church in Little Rock on Tuesday.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

Polls are open until 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in Arkansas’s primary election. Turnout has been reported to be light, as expected, at locations around the state.

At West Side Baptist Church in Little Rock, a steady trickle of voters made their way in and out of the polling site. But Larry Brannon noted he didn’t have a lot to choose from.

“I voted in the Democratic primary and so the choices are very lean, but I don’t want to miss voting, so I came. Most of (the races) were unopposed, but principally I wanted to vote for Mr. Ross and take a good look at the ballot.”

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Local & Regional News
2:50 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

GOP Candidate For Governor Forgets ID, Delayed In Voting

File photo of Asa Hutchinson in May 2013 while speaking in Little Rock.
Credit Michael Hibblen/ KUAR News

A Republican candidate for Arkansas governor who supports the new voter ID law was left waiting after he forgot his identification.

Spokesman Christian Olson told The Associated Press that Asa Hutchinson forgot his ID when he attempted to vote at the polls in Bentonville on Tuesday. Olson says a staffer was able to retrieve the ID and bring it to Hutchinson so he could vote.

Tuesday marks the first statewide test of the new law requiring voters to show photo identification before casting a ballot.

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Local & Regional News
2:45 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

Tornado Disaster Recovery Center In Pulaski County Closing

Emergency management officials say a disaster recovery center in Pulaski County that was set up to help survivors of the April 27 storms, tornadoes and floods is set to be closed.

The center on Kanis Road in Little Rock is scheduled to close at 7 p.m. Saturday. Officials say visitors seeking assistance at the center has significantly decreased.

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Local & Regional News
12:17 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

Texarkana Rejects Plan For March With Weapons On Display

The Board of Directors in Texarkana has rejected a request to allow a "Celebration Walk" in which participants openly wearing weapons would march on a sidewalk on the Arkansas side of the city.

The Texarkana Gazette reports that the board voted against the proposal Monday night after state and city prosecutors and the city attorney opposed the event.

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Local & Regional News
8:56 am
Tue May 20, 2014

US Officials To Tour Agriculture Sites In Eastern Arkansas

Federal officials plan to tour several projects in eastern Arkansas that are reducing water and nutrient pollution in the Mississippi Delta.

Officials with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Agriculture will join state and local leaders on a series of tours Tuesday. The officials will visit farms in Stuttgart and also stop by the 5 Oaks Duck Lodge and Hollowell Reservoir at Bayou Meto.

At each stop, farmers and experts will discuss strategies to reduce the amount of nitrogen and phosphorus that reach waterways and the Mississippi Delta.

Local & Regional News
4:58 pm
Mon May 19, 2014

Turnout Expected To Be Light For Arkansas Primary Election

A sign outside a Little Rock polling location in a local March election.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

Arkansas election officials are predicting 20 percent of the state's 1.6 million registered voters will cast a ballot in Tuesday's primary election. 

In Pulaski County, Director of Elections Bryan Poe expects it to be a little under that.

"In our office, we are estimating between 15 and 18 percent.  That translates to somewhere between 30,000 and 40,000 registered voters, just about in line with previous primary elections, if not a little bit lighter," Poe said.

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Local & Regional News
3:42 pm
Mon May 19, 2014

Allegations of Election Irregularities in Jefferson County

State Election Commissioner and Jefferson County Election Commissioner Stuart Soffer
Credit Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

At the end of early voting, with polls set to open for Election Day, calls for election monitors and investigations into the Jefferson County Clerk’s office made their way to the State Board of Election Commissioners Monday. State Election Commissioner Stuart Soffer, in his capacity as a county election commissioner, said he’s asking for prosecutors and the State Police to investigate a number of alleged violations.

Soffer said Jefferson County Clerk Patricia Royal-Johnson has repeatedly ignored election laws including absentee ballot registering procedures.

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Local & Regional News
3:36 pm
Mon May 19, 2014

Noted University Of Arkansas Wine Researcher Dies

Justin Roy Morris, a prominent University of Arkansas grape and wine researcher, has died. He was 77.

The University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture announced that Morris died Monday. Spokesman Dave Edmark said Morris had been ill for some time.

Morris was a professor in the Food Science Department and director of the Institute of Food Science and Engineering at the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture. He retired in 2009. That was the same year he was inducted into the Arkansas Agriculture Hall of Fame.

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