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Local & Regional News
1:52 pm
Fri May 24, 2013

Gun Control Group Hits Senator Pryor With TV Ad

A group called “Mayors Against Illegal Guns” is out with a new TV ad today which steps up their criticism of Sen. Mark Pryor (D) for his vote against the failed Manchin-Toomey gun background check bill.

The latest ad features Angela Bradford-Barnes, who was the chief financial officer of the Democratic Party of Arkansas from 2007 to 2012 – a period when then-DPA chairman Bill Gwatney was killed in a random act of gun violence.

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Local & Regional News
7:58 am
Fri May 24, 2013

Judge Denies Bid To Delay Alamo Property Hearing

Tony Alamo

A federal magistrate has denied a bid by a follower of convicted evangelist Tony Alamo to delay the sale of six Fort Smith properties to settle a court ruling.

The Texarkana Gazette reports that U.S. Magistrate Judge Barry Bryant refused to delay a May 30 hearing to determine which properties might be sold.

Bryant ruled last month the properties could be sold to partially satisfy a $30 million judgment Alamo owes two men raised in Alamo's group. In 2009, Alamo was convicted of taking sexually abusing five underage girls and is serving 175 years in prison.

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Local & Regional News
7:05 am
Fri May 24, 2013

Griffin Wants Congress To Focus On Facts In IRS Controversy

Rep. Tim Griffin, R-Ark., questions Steven Miller, former acting IRS commissioner, and J. Russell George, Treasury Department inspector general for tax administration, during a hearing on Capitol Hill.
Credit CHARLES DHARAPAK / AP

As members of Congress continue their investigation into Internal Revenue Service practices that delayed the tax-exempt status for many conservative groups from 2010 to 2012, Arkansas Congressman Tim Griffin says now is not the time to score political points.

“Get the facts and then draw your conclusions. That’s the way an investigation works,” said Griffin. “As a result of partisan fervor, some people have a tendency to get ahead of the facts. My view is get the facts and let the facts tell the story.”

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Local & Regional News
6:23 am
Fri May 24, 2013

May 31 Deadline To Assess Arkansas Personal Property

The Arkansas lands commissioner is reminding residents that they have until May 31 to assess their personal property. 

Lands Commissioner John Thurston says people who don't have their property assessed by the deadline are subject to penalties.

The taxes are important to counties, public schools and numerous agencies, including public safety forces.

Thurston says communities can miss out on funding if property isn't assessed on time.

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Local & Regional News
6:06 am
Fri May 24, 2013

Arkansas To Submit 'Private Option' Waiver In August

Arkansas Medicaid officials say the state will submit its request to use federal money to purchase private insurance for thousands of low-income residents by August.

Department of Human Services Director John Selig told lawmakers Thursday that the state would draft its waiver next month for the "private option" that lawmakers approved as an alternative to Medicaid expansion. 

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Local & Regional News
5:57 am
Fri May 24, 2013

Many Arkansas College Students To See Hike In Tuition

Students on the University of Arkansas at Little Rock Bowen Law School campus.
Credit ualr.edu / UALR

Many Arkansas college students will see a hike in tuition next year. Officials said Thursday that the University of Arkansas System Board of Trustees approved a 3.5 percent increase in tuition and fees at the Fayetteville campus beginning with the fall 2013 semester.

University officials say the hike will raise average undergraduate in-state tuition and fees to $7,818 for two full semesters. That's an increase of $246 per student.

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Teen Birth Rate
7:14 pm
Thu May 23, 2013

Arkansas's Teen Birth Rate High, But Dropping With Rest Of US

A report from the CDC and the National Center for Health Statistics says teen birthrates are dropping in the US in all but two states.

Arkansas is among the states where the rate is dropping, but it has one of the highest rates.

Arkansas had a 16 percent decline in overall teen births between 2007 and 2011.

Brady Hamilton, a statistician with the National Center for Health Statistics, says the study can help shape public policy regarding teen pregnancy.

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Oklahoma Tornado Recovery
5:52 pm
Thu May 23, 2013

UALR Staffer To Take Vanload Of Supplies To Tornado Victims

As the citizens of Moore, Oklahoma work to clean up the damage and rebuild following the tornado that destroyed part of the town this week, help is pouring in from surrounding areas.

One person on the University of Arkansas at Little Rock campus is helping.

Leanna Payton, who works in student housing is gathering odds and ends like toiletries, diapers and cell phone chargers to take to Moore. She plans to fill a van with the items.

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Local & Regional News
4:54 pm
Thu May 23, 2013

Historic Hotel In Downtown Little Rock Upgrading

A vintage postcard of the Albert Pike Hotel in Little Rock.

The historic Albert Pike Hotel in downtown Little Rock is about to get a bath.

Owners of the building said Wednesday that a $6 million renovation is planned for the structure that was built in 1929.

Included is a cleaning of the exterior of the building, which will give it a brighter appearance.

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports that BSR Trust LLC, which owns the hotel, will sustain the building's appearance because of its historic status.

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Local & Regional News
4:12 pm
Thu May 23, 2013

Arkansas To Submit 'Private Option' Waiver In August

Arkansas Medicaid officials say the state will submit its request to use federal money to purchase private insurance for thousands of low-income residents by August.

Department of Human Services Director John Selig told lawmakers Thursday that the state would draft its waiver next month for the "private option" that lawmakers approved as an alternative to Medicaid expansion.

Selig said the state planned to submit the waiver to the federal government in August and hoped to get approval by October.

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