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Local & Regional News
2:10 pm
Mon October 28, 2013

Arkansas Lt. Gov. Sued Over Personal Cell Phone Number

Lt. Gov. Mark Darr

A lawyer and blogger is suing Arkansas Lt. Gov. Mark Darr for withholding his personal cell phone number from an open records request.

Matt Campbell on Monday filed a complaint in Pulaski County Circuit Court that accused the Republican lieutenant governor of violating the state's Freedom of Information Act by redacting the number from records released by his office. Campbell runs the Democratic-leaning Blue Hog Report website.

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Local & Regional News
1:07 pm
Mon October 28, 2013

Forecasters Predict 'Torrential Rain' For Arkansas

The National Weather Service says severe storms are possible this week in Arkansas along with periods of "torrential rain."

Forecasters say significant rainfall is likely Wednesday and Thursday as a cold front moves through the state.

The weather service doesn't expect an outbreak of severe weather in Arkansas, but forecasters say 1 to 3 inches of rain are likely.

The weather service says the rain is expected to move east by the afternoon or early evening of Halloween. Forecasters predict sunny skies with highs in the low 70s on Friday.

Local & Regional News
12:15 pm
Mon October 28, 2013

10 Year Prison Sentence For Teacher Who Repeatedly Contacted Victim

Kelly O'Rourke mug shot.
Credit Pualski County Sheriff's Office

Former Mount St. Mary Academy teacher and volleyball coach Kelly O'Rourke, who pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a student, was sentenced Monday to 10 years in prison for repeatedly contacting the victim.

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports Judge Barry Sims said he was coming down hard on the teacher for willfully disregarding the court’s no-contact order after pleading guilty in the case.

Last month O’Rourke pleaded guilty to violating the terms of her original sentence and read a statement in court apologizing for her actions.

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Local & Regional News
8:26 am
Mon October 28, 2013

Arkansas Program Set For Managing Emergency Responders

 The Arkansas Department of Emergency Management is to host more than 150 participants for a program on managing emergency responders who come in from out-of-state during a disaster.

The Thursday event in Conway will focus on testing the agency's ability to assign, track and monitor out-of-state emergency responders.

Members of local, state and federal agencies are to act in roles of help arriving from other states during the exercise.

The ADEM will practice signing in, briefing and deploying the workers acting as though they are from outside Arkansas.

Local & Regional News
7:55 am
Mon October 28, 2013

I-530, Highway 10 To Be Shut Down For Work

The Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department says lanes of Interstate 530 in Pine Bluff and Highway 10 in Little Rock will be closed this week.

On Highway 10 - also known as Cantrell Road - bridge painting on the Marsh Arch Bridge between Chester Street and Dillard's corporate headquarters will require closing the outside lane of westbound Cantrell near the bridge from Monday through Thursday between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. each day - weather permitting.

Traffic will be controlled using cones and warning signs.

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Local & Regional News
10:11 pm
Sun October 27, 2013

Arkansas Criminal Justice Project Continues Prison Research

Adjoa A. Aiyetoro directs the Racial Disparities in the Arkansas Criminal Justice System project.
Credit Malcolm Glover / KUAR

Efforts are underway to examine the criminal justice system in Arkansas and eventually come up with recommendations to improve state prisons.

UALR Bowen Law School professor Adjoa Aiyetoro is overseeing the project. She’s been working with elected officials and community leaders for nearly a year on research concerning racial disparities in sentencing and treatment at Arkansas courts and prisons.

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Local & Regional News
4:46 pm
Sun October 27, 2013

Craighead County Juvenile Drug Court To Continue

Craighead County's juvenile drug court that a judge said earlier this year would end remains open and officials are now looking to hire new case coordinators.

Circuit Judge Lee Fergus oversees the court and told county officials in September that he was ending it. Fergus told The Jonesboro Sun that he's been unable to hold court because of a fractured vertebra in his neck.

He now says Circuit Judge Cindy Thyer has stepped in to oversee the court in his absence.

Local & Regional News
1:26 pm
Sun October 27, 2013

Congressional Action May Affect Navigable Rivers In Arkansas

A barge maneuvers through the Murray Lock and Dam on the Arkansas River.
Credit flickr.com

A bipartisan piece of legislation now moving through Congress addresses the nation’s navigable waterways and could have a significant effect on Arkansas. Last week the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2013, a bill similar to one passed by the Senate in March.

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Local & Regional News
3:44 pm
Fri October 25, 2013

Higher Education Board Approves $960 Million Funding Request

The Arkansas Higher Education Coordinating Board has approved a request for $960.7 million in funding for college and university operations for the 2014-15 fiscal year.

The request approved Friday during a board meeting at North Arkansas College in Harrison is for $133 million more than current funding.

The request will be presented to the Arkansas Legislature during the upcoming fiscal legislative session that begins in February.

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Local & Regional News
1:45 pm
Fri October 25, 2013

Prescription Drug Take Back Planned For This Weekend

Arkansas's Drug Czar, the state Attorney General and others are partnering with law enforcement agencies around the state for a Prescription Drug Take Back Event Saturday, taking place at 150 locations. The event is an effort to curb prescription drug abuse in the state, says Fran Flener, State Drug Director.

Flener says in 2008, Arkansas was ranked number one in the nation in prescription sedative abuse among teenagers, according to Office of National Drug Control Policy. That ranking prodded her office to earnestly analyze the problem of prescription drug abuse in the state.

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