Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville hasn't been open even two years but the northwest Arkansas hot spot is about to welcome its 1 millionth visitor.
When it opened on Nov. 11, 2011, museum organizers expected between 150,000 and 300,000 visitors per year. The first year brought in 650,000 patrons, lured in part by free admission to the museum's regular collection.
"I've participated in lots of job announcements as Governor. The ones that seem to generate the most buzz and excitement are those that welcome a new business to Arkansas. I certainly understand that feeling. When a new company announces that it will invest in our State, it's a sign of approval and confidence from another part of the country or the world. These are indications of the continued growth of Arkansas's positive business reputation that we like to see.
A joint investigation conducted by the Department of Justice and local police force arrested four Arkansans charged with robbing eight local restaurants and one store.
Two of the men have previous criminal records, and over $8,000 was stolen during the crimes. US Attorney Christopher Thyer says solving cases can be more effective when state and local entities work together.
"All four defendants are currently in custody. During these robberies suspects were aggresive...lives were put in danger" said Thyer.
Gov. Mike Beebe has named Nathaniel Smith as director and state health officer for the Arkansas Department of Health.
Beebe on Friday announced that he was naming Smith permanently to the position. Smith has been serving as interim director since February, when Paul Halverson left the post to take a job in Indiana. Halverson had served as director since 2005.
Beebe said in a news release that Smith had proven himself to be a steady and knowledgeable leader since taking over the post on an interim basis.
A consultant has been hired by Central Arkansas Water to assess possible vulnerabilities in the Maumelle Watershed caused by ExxonMobil’s Pegasus pipeline.
Tectonic Engineering and Surveying Consultants was awarded a 160 thousand dollar contract to evaluate the consequences of the physical damage to the pipeline, which crosses through the watershed. The third party consultants are necessary to ensure the safety and integrity of the water supply. Central Arkansas Water Protection Manager John Tynan says the assessment will provide information still needed regarding the pipeline.
Arkansas voters could potentially see multiple attempts to legalize medical marijuana on the ballot next year. Two groups are vying to put similar proposed initiated acts before voters in 2014.
This week, Attorney General Dustin McDaniel certified the popular name and ballot title of a proposal from Arkansans for Responsible Medicine. That organization plans to start gathering signatures in an attempt to qualify for a spot on next year's ballot.