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Local & Regional News
6:50 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

Arkansas Education Board Takes Over Lee County Schools

The Arkansas Education Board has agreed to take over the Lee County School District, which has been cited for having academic and financial problems.

The board voted on Thursday to remove the district's school board after a report by a three-person committee that studied academic performance issues at the district.

Lee County school officials have come under criticism for low student achievement levels, failure to dismiss underperforming faculty and class scheduling management that jeopardizes student graduation.

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Local & Regional News
5:23 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

Coast Guard Ends Search For Two Men in Mississippi River

The Coast Guard has called off its search for two men who fell into the Mississippi River after a barge overturned and sank earlier this week in northeast Arkansas.

Capt. William Drelling says authorities have suspended their search for the two men - Ron Nieves and Nicolas Perez - who have been unaccounted for since Tuesday afternoon. Both men fell into the water while the barge was being unloaded near Blytheville, which is about 60 miles north of Memphis, Tenn.

The Coast Guard says the barge lifted to its right and sank, but why it did so wasn't known.

Local & Regional News
4:57 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

Play Ball: Arkansas Travelers Baseball Returns

General Manager Paul Allen of the Arkansas Travelers
Credit Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

After a week on the road, the Arkansas Travelers have their 106th season home opener Thursday, April 10th. It is the team’s eighth year at Dickey-Stephens Park in North Little Rock after leaving the now-demolished, historic Ray Winder Field where had they had played since 1932.

The Travelers averaged over 5,200 fants the first three years at the new park but that has dropped to just over 4,500 last season. General Manager Paul Allen said although attendance has dipped slightly as the appeal of the new ballpark fades, the stadium is still proving its worth.

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Local & Regional News
3:41 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

Judge Orders Mental Evaluation For Murder Suspect Who Wants To Represent Self

Credit Pulaski County Sheriff's Office

A Pulaski County judge has ordered a mental evaluation for a man who wants to represent himself on a murder charge.

Darrell Dennis is charged in the May 2013 kidnapping, robbery and shooting death of 18-year-old Forrest Abrams in Little Rock.

Dennis was free at the time despite multiple felony charges and parole violations and was arrested less than 30 hours after being released from the Pulaski County jail.

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Local & Regional News
10:20 am
Thu April 10, 2014

Court Ruling In Flash Floods That Killed 20 At SW Arkansas Campground

Entrance to the Albert Pike Campground.

The Arkansas Supreme Court is siding with relatives of the 20 people killed in flash floods at the Albert Pike campground in 2010, agreeing with their definition of malicious conduct under a state law.

A federal judge had halted 11 separate suits against the federal government over the flooding as she asked the high court to interpret the state law.

The U.S. government had argued that a state law bars lawsuits against landowners who don't charge a fee for recreational use.

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Local & Regional News
8:10 am
Thu April 10, 2014

Late-Payment Suspension Rule Rejected By Arkansas Judge

A Pulaski County judge says a court rule that suspends Arkansas lawyers who don't pay their annual dues on time is unconstitutional.

Circuit Judge Wendell Griffen ruled Wednesday in a case involving Angela Byrd, who is seeking a judgeship in the 20th Judicial District.

A resident challenged Byrd's eligibility for the ballot, citing a state law that requires judges to be licensed attorneys for six years before taking office. Byrd's license was suspended for a day after she paid her dues 36 hours late.

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Local & Regional News
6:13 am
Thu April 10, 2014

Study: Percentage Of Uninsured Kids In Arkansas Declines

A new study shows that the percentage of children without health insurance in Arkansas declined from 2008 to 2012.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation report shows that the percentage of kids who were uninsured in the state dropped from 8.8 percent in 2008 to 5.9 percent in 2012 - the most recent year that data was available.

Researchers say that nationwide, the percentage of uninsured children declined from 9.7 percent to around 7.5 percent during the same time period.

Local & Regional News
2:46 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

More Presidential Papers To Be Released Through Clinton Library In LR

The National Archives plans to release more documents from former President Bill Clinton's administration on April 18, officials say.

The White House papers are being closely monitored by media organizations and historians as former secretary of state and U.S. senator Hillary Rodham Clinton considers a second presidential campaign.

The documents have covered the Clinton administration's ill-fated health care overhaul plan, Republicans' victories during the 1994 midterm elections and steps Mrs. Clinton's aides took to enhance her public image.

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Local & Regional News
2:28 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

Action on Contested Voter ID Rules for Arkansas Absentee Voters

Pulaski County Courthouse
Credit commons.wikimedia.org

Temporary emergency rules regarding absentee ballots submitted without a photo ID have been made permanent provisions. A 2013 state voter ID law allowed for in-person voters without ID to cast provisional ballots and gave them a period of time to show ID. But no similar allowance was given to absentee voters.

In February the Arkansas Board of Election Commissioners created a rule giving absentee voters the same recourse as in-person voters. Wednesday that was made permanent, which board Director Justin Clay viewed as procedural.

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Local & Regional News
1:21 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

Ethics Complaint Against Rep. Tom Cotton Dismissed

File photo of Rep. Tom Cotton speaking in Little Rock in May 2013.
Credit Michael Hibblen/ KUAR

An ethics panel has dismissed a complaint that accused Republican Senate hopeful Tom Cotton of soliciting contributions illegally during a radio interview at his congressional office in the U.S. Capitol.

Cotton's campaign Wednesday released a copy of a March 13 letter from the House Ethics Committee dismissing the state Democratic Party's complaint.   Democrats complained last October about an interview Cotton gave to a radio talk show host.

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