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5:37 am
Tue October 22, 2013

Supplier Meeting Set For NE Arkansas Steel Mill

Steel rods in bundles at a warehouse.

A meeting is set for companies interested in acting as suppliers to a $1.1 billion steel mill planned for northeast Arkansas.

The gathering is to run from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday at Arkansas Northeastern College in Blytheville.

The Jonesboro Sun reports that the Big River Steel project will need everything from construction help to running a cafeteria inside the plant.

Organizers project that the plant will create about 2,000 construction jobs and more than 500 permanent jobs once the plant is open.

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Local & Regional News
4:10 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Beebe On Next Steps for School Employee Insurance

Gov. Mike Beebe (D)
Credit Nathan Vandiver / KUAR

Governor Mike Beebe on Monday signed bills passed over the weekend, in a special session, which partially reduce a rise in public school employee insurance premiums. The session was called to address both short and long-term fixes but some of the reforms have yet to be crafted. A task force will study the issue further in the coming months.

Ongoing funding to mitigate premium increases will partially come from school facility and teacher development funds. But Beebe said that’s just one part of a more permanent fix.

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Local & Regional News
3:55 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Arkansas Hearing on Marlboro Lights Set to Begin After a Decade of Delay

Credit sq.wikipedia.org

A lawsuit filed a decade ago against the tobacco company Phillip Morris USA is set to have its second hearing Tuesday in Pulaski County Circuit Court. KUAR’s Jacob Kauffman has details. 

The hearing, delayed for years over jurisdictional questions, is set to determine whether or not allegations against the tobacco company can be considered a class-action lawsuit. Plaintiffs are seeking to represent every Arkansan who smoked Marlboro Lights over a 38-year period.

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Local & Regional News
3:41 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Former North Little Rock Mayor Expected To Announce Candidacy For Congress

Patrick Henry Hays

Former North Little Rock Mayor Patrick Henry Hays, a Democrat, will hold a news conference Tuesday at 12:30 p.m. at the Hays Senior Center in North Little Rock.

He has been in talks with the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee about running to represent Arkansas's 2nd Congressional District. 

Congressman Tim Griffin, who currently occupies that seat, made a surprise announcement Monday that he will not seek a third term in the U.S. House of Representatives. The Republican says he wants to spend more time with his family.

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Local & Regional News
3:23 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Motion to Lift Stay in Arkansas Oil Spill Suit Gets Approval

A judge has granted federal prosecutors' request to end a delay in a lawsuit over the ExxonMobil oil spill in central Arkansas. U.S. District Judge James Moody on Monday granted prosecutors' request to lift a stay in the case.

Moody granted their request to delay proceedings earlier this month because of the partial government shutdown.

Prosecutors said in previous court filings that most attorneys with the U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency were unable to work on the case, even on a voluntary basis, because of the lapse in federal funding.

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Local & Regional News
2:57 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Arkansas State Fair Draws 445,000 Over 10 days

The Arkansas State Fair says 445,314 people went through the gates during the 10-day run of the event.

Fair director Ralph Shoptaw said Monday that the fair, which wrapped up on Sunday, drew 45,996 people on the last day at the Little Rock grounds.

That left the fair about 2,000 patrons shy of last year's attendance of 447,680. Shoptaw said the 445,314 total was still better than six of the previous 10 Arkansas State Fairs.

The fair features livestock competitions, carnival rides and food prepared in an array of styles.

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Local & Regional News
8:26 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Congressman Tim Griffin Won't Run For Third Term

Rep. Tim Griffin and his family

Congressman Tim Griffin made a surprise announcement Monday that he will not seek a third term in the U.S. House of Representatives.

The Republican from Arkansas’ 2nd district says he wants to spend more time with his family.

“It’s something that my wife and I have been talking about, praying about, for the last five, six, seven months and decided to finish my second term of course, but to not seek a third term,” Griffin said in an interview with KUAR.

He wants to spend more time with wife and children, Griffin said.

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Local & Regional News
6:17 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Oklahoma Teen Finds 3.85-Carat Gem At Arkansas Park

God's Jewel Diamond
Credit Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism

A 14-year-old girl from Oklahoma City has unearthed a 3.85-carat diamond at Arkansas' Crater of Diamonds State Park.

Tana Clymer discovered the canary gem Saturday at the park, which is the only diamond-producing site in the United States open to the public. 

Tana says she'd been digging in the dirt for about two hours when she discovered the gem on the surface of the search field.

The yellow diamond is teardrop-shaped and about the size of a jellybean. Tana named the diamond "God's Jewel."

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Local & Regional News
5:48 pm
Sat October 19, 2013

Arkansas Teen Treated For Eastern Equine Encephalitis

A 13-year-old Arkansas boy is being treated for what is believed to be a rare case of Eastern equine encephalitis.

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Local & Regional News
4:25 pm
Sat October 19, 2013

Arkansas Lawmakers Send Teacher Insurance Fix To Governor

Gov. Mike Beebe

 Arkansas lawmakers have given final approval to a package of bills aimed at reducing health insurance rate increases for thousands of teachers next year and laying groundwork to overhaul that insurance program.

The House and Senate approved the bills shortly after midnight, wrapping up a marathon special session that began Thursday afternoon to address the premium increases. The measures now head to Governor Mike Beebe, who plans to sign them into law as soon as Monday.

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