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Affordable Care Act
9:52 am
Tue April 16, 2013

Arkansas House Passes Medicaid Expansion Private Option Funding Bill

Representative Alexander entering the house Tuesday morning.

By a vote of 77 to 23, the Arkansas House passed a bill that would allow funding to a plan to take federal money intended for Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act and use it for private insurance for the state's adults earning up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level.

The funding bill must still me approved by the Senate. It requires a 3/4 majority in both chambers to pass. A bill laying out the plan has passed both the House and Senate with smaller majorities than required for the appropriation bill required to implement the plan.

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Boston Marathon
6:46 am
Tue April 16, 2013

Boston Race Draws 37 Arkansans

Boston Marathon

More than three-dozen Arkansans were registered to run in the Boston Marathon, where two explosions were set off near the finish line following the race. 

According to the race's website, 37 runners in Monday's race had listed Arkansas as their home state. Their ages were listed between 21 and 71 years of age. It wasn't immediately known whether any of the Arkansas people were among the scores injured in the attack.

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Local & Regional News
6:02 am
Tue April 16, 2013

Restitution Claim Dropped In Arkansas Vote Fraud Case

Former State Rep. Hudson Hallum
Credit Danny Johnston / AP Photo

A claim for restitution has been abandoned in the case of a former Arkansas legislator convicted of conspiracy to commit election fraud.

Kim Felker sought restitution after losing the Democratic Party runoff to former Rep. Hudson Hallum. Her claim was dropped Monday when a federal prosecutor said the government would not seek restitution from Hallum and others.

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Local & Regional News
8:32 pm
Mon April 15, 2013

Tom Cotton Raises $526K In First Quarter Of Year

Republican U.S. Rep. Tom Cotton of Arkansas has raised more than $526,000 during the first three months of the year.

Cotton's campaign announced Monday that he has more than $560,000 cash on hand and no debt for a re-election bid next year.

Cotton, an Army veteran and former management consultant, was elected last year to represent south Arkansas' 4th District.

Cotton has been frequently mentioned as a potential challenger to Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor, who is seeking a third term.

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Local & Regional News
8:27 pm
Mon April 15, 2013

Spokesman: Mike Ross Entering 2014 Race For Governor

A spokesman says former U.S. Rep. Mike Ross is seeking the Democratic nomination for Arkansas governor, joining a race that he had earlier ruled out.

Campaign spokesman Brad Howard told The Associated Press on Monday that Ross will formally launch his bid Wednesday in his hometown of Prescott, followed by a tour around the state.

Ross, who represented south Arkansas' 4th District, said last year that he wouldn't pursue the Democratic gubernatorial nomination.

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Affordable Care Act
8:00 pm
Mon April 15, 2013

After Delay And Defeat, 'Private Option' Funding Bill To Get Another Vote In Arkansas House

Gov. Mike Beebe told reporters just after the private option vote failed that lawmakers might as well go home if they don't allow the plan to be implemented.
Credit Nathan Vandiver / KUAR

A vote on the budget bill that would let the state implement a plan to use federal Medicaid money to buy private insurance for low income Arkansans is expected again Tuesday morning after failing in the House by six votes Monday afternoon.

The bill was rejected 69 to 28 because, as a funding bill, it needed 75 votes to pass.

Speaker Davy Carter allowed a motion to adjourn immediately following the no vote. He says the House will vote again.

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Mayflower Oil Spill
7:22 pm
Mon April 15, 2013

Ruptured Section of Oil Pipeline Removed From Mayflower

Workers on Sunday, April 7, working to clear the area around the pipeline so soil around it could be dug up.
Credit Michael Hibblen/ KUAR

Workers on Monday removed a 52-foot section of a buried pipeline that ruptured last month in Mayflower, spilling more than 200,000 gallons of raw crude oil.

It’s being sent to an independent lab for analysis, said ExxonMobil spokeswoman Kim Jordan. “We want to learn the cause of the breach.”

Jordan was at the site, describing the process in a telephone interview with KUAR News as workers were cutting the pipe at safe distances from each end of the 22-foot gash.

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Spring Fund Drive
4:55 pm
Mon April 15, 2013

Don't Monkey Around: Make An Early Pledge For Fund Drive

Don't monkey around! Make an early pledge to keep public radio alive and well! (We know this is an ape and not a monkey, but he's just so cute!)

Our spring on-air fund drive will be Monday, April 22, until Friday, April 26.

We hope you will make an early pledge to help us meet our goal of $140,000.

Forty percent of our annual operating budget comes from listeners like you!

Phone Volunteers Still Needed

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Arkansas's Pollen Count
3:41 pm
Mon April 15, 2013

Expert Says Pollen Count High, Necessary In Central Arkansas

Pollen from a tree.

National weather experts are reporting a high pollen count for central Arkansas most of this week. Much of the pollen caked on cars, buildings, and streets has become a nuisance for area residents, especially those who have severe allergies. 

Jon Zawislak is a specialist with the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture. He says pollen is a key component to the “circle of life.” 

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Local & Regional News
3:38 pm
Mon April 15, 2013

Crews Removing Part Of Ruptured Oil Pipeline

Crews are working to cut and remove the damaged part of a pipeline that ruptured last month and spilled thousands of barrels of oil in central Arkansas.

Officials say the damaged part of ExxonMobil Pipeline Co.'s Pegasus pipeline will removed on Monday.

Part of the pipeline ruptured on March 29 and spilled an estimated 5,000 barrels of oil at Mayflower, about 25 miles northwest of Little Rock.

ExxonMobil and local officials say a 52-foot section of the pipeline will be cut and placed on a truck so it can be taken to a laboratory for testing.  

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