A group of 15 linemen from electric cooperatives across Arkansas have returned home after spending nearly a month in Guatemala where they helped bring electricity to remote villages in the Central American country.
The group arrived in Guatemala on March 26 - then traveled about nine hours to the remote villages of Las Flores and La Hacienta to bring electricity to the area.
Arkansas officials say nearly 70 percent of those eligible have signed up for health coverage under the state's compromise Medicaid expansion program.
The Department of Human Services said Monday that 155,567 people have applied and been determined eligible for the state's "private option" program, which uses federal Medicaid funds to purchase private health insurance for the poor.
DHS estimates that 225,000 Arkansans qualify for the program that was approved last year as an alternative to the Medicaid expansion envisioned under the federal health care law.
Highway officials say the first section of the long-awaited Bella Vista Bypass will open to traffic in northern Arkansas this week.
The three-mile section of the bypass is opening Tuesday west of Hiwasse on Arkansas 72. The segment is a part of the 18.9-mile Bella Vista Bypass project, aimed at relieving congestion on U.S. 71 through Bella Vista and north into Missouri.
State officials and beneficiaries marked 40 years of statewide government investment through the Community Development Block Grant on Monday. The federal program uses funds to improve conditions and opportunities for people with low and moderate incomes.
The state also has discretion over some funds and has spent over $700 million on economic development, museums, and social services like shelters. Raymond Chung works with an edamame company that built a processing facility in the northwest Arkansas town of Mulberry. He praised the state’s capacity to spur development.
For those who may have missed Earth Day celebrations over the weekend, numerous activities and events are scheduled across Arkansas this week. Tuesday is Earth Day. The Day was first celebrated in 1970 to promote environmental awareness.
“For the State Parks everyday is Earth Day...There are programs going on in all the Parks about it that are about being out and taking care of the earth and all that,” he says.
The Republican Party of Arkansas is asking a state judge to uphold a rule change that gives absentee voters more time to show proof of ID after casting ballots.
The state GOP filed a motion asking that the change approved by the Arkansas State Board of Election Commissioners be upheld.
The court papers come in a lawsuit filed by the Pulaski County Election Commission, which argues that the state board overstepped its authority when it approved the change. Both sides have until Wednesday to file responses in the case.
The three candidates seeking the Republican nomination for a central Arkansas congressional seat are running on vows to cut taxes and regulations in Washington, but split sharply on who would be the strongest candidate in this fall's election.
State Rep. Ann Clemmer, banking executive French Hill and retired Army Col. Conrad Reynolds are running for the GOP nomination in the May 20 primary for the 2nd Congressional District. Whoever wins the nomination will face former North Little Rock Mayor Pat Hays, the only Democrat running, and Libertarian nominee Debbie Standiford.