Chris Hickey

Reporter / Anchor

Chris Hickey was born and raised in Houston, Texas, spending his teenage years in Camden, Ohio. He graduated from Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas, majoring in English. He got his start in public radio working as a board operator at WMUB in Oxford, Ohio during his summer and winter breaks from school. Since graduating, he has made Little Rock home. He joined KUAR in September 2011 as a production intern and has since enjoyed producing, anchoring and reporting for the station.

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Local & Regional News
6:42 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Arkansas Corrections Officials Tell Lawmakers New Prison Needed

Arkansas Department of Correction Director Ray Hobbs, Department of Community Corrections Director Sheila Sharp and Board of Corrections Chairman Benny Magness appear before a joint legislative committee Thursday
Credit Chris Hickey / KUAR News

After introducing new parole enforcement guidelines meant to cut back on repeat violators, Arkansas experienced the highest one-year increase in the inmate population in its history, at 17.7 percent. State prison officials now are considering new strategies for reform reentry programs and house an influx of inmates.

Speaking before a joint Judiciary committee Thursday, State Department of Correction director Ray Hobbs said the influx of parole violators into the system over the last year is only part of the problem.

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Local & Regional News
6:36 am
Thu July 17, 2014

Central Arkansas Officials Tout New Fuel For Bus Fleet

CATA Bus

Fuel efficiency, cost effectiveness, cleaner air are all benefits a handful of local officials are praising with the dawning of the Central Arkansas Transit Authority's new, soon to be introduced natural gas fleet.

CATA is being recognized for its efforts to convert its fleet of buses to use Compressed Natural Gas, or CNG, as a fuel. The conversion comes as city leaders increasingly talk up the benefits of bolstering public transportation in the area. The authority will be receiving 15 new CNG buses, starting next summer, says executive president Jarrod Varner.

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Local & Regional News
2:41 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Arkansas AG Candidates Debate Federal Overreach, Sentencing

Claims of an overreaching federal government through laws like the Affordable Care Act brought the candidates for Arkansas Attorney General to differ over what legal stances the state should adopt in response to Washington.

Republican Leslie Rutledge, Democrat Nate Steel and Libertarian candidate Aaron Cash squared off in a debate on Friday, moderated by the Arkansas Press Association.

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Statewide Races
2:15 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Lt. Governor Candidates Debate Policy Influence, Role's Effectiveness

The lead candidates for Arkansas Lieutenant Governor are emphasizing job creation and economic development in their hoped-for roles as policy advocates in the legislature. Their third party challenger, meanwhile, says the office grossly overestimates its own worth and use of taxpayer dollars.

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Local & Regional News
12:22 pm
Fri June 20, 2014

Arkansas May Unemployment Rate Drops

The rate of unemployment in Arkansas dropped from 6.6 percent to 6.4 percent during the month of May. It has also dropped more than a full percentage point since the same period last year, when it stood at 7.5 percent in May 2013.

While sectors like educational and health services displayed a lot of growth in May, areas like construction and manufacturing did not. UALR economist and state economic forecaster Michael Pakko says the new numbers do not reflect “unambiguously positive news.”

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Local & Regional News
3:38 pm
Fri June 13, 2014

Children Of Fathers In Prison Face Isolation, Shame, Say Advocates

Inmates from a community correctional facility in Osceola sing spirituals in the State Capitol Rotunda on Friday

As Father’s Day nears, advocates for families of prisoners are bringing attention to the barriers that persist between incarcerated parents and their children.

Inmates from the North East Community Correction Center in Osceola made the long trip down to the State Capitol rotunda to deliver spiritual hymns as advocates detailed the ongoing struggles of children whose dads are imprisoned. Some from the choir of nonviolent offenders, like Christopher Brewer, were also moved to speak.

“I think all the time about what my kids think. Where is their father?” he said.

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Local & Regional News
12:39 pm
Fri June 6, 2014

Downtown Revitalization On Minds Of Hot Springs Ralliers

Downtown Hot Springs
Credit Ken Lund / flickr.com

On the one hundredth day since Hot Springs’ historic Majestic Hotel went up in a fiery blaze, citizens of the Spa City plan to hold a rally supporting the preservation of other downtown buildings and new revitalization efforts. It's set for Saturday afternoon.

The rally comes shortly after the Hot Springs Downtown Game Plan Task Force presented recommendations to the city on Wednesday asking for new preservation and economic development policies.

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River Navigation
1:47 pm
Fri May 23, 2014

Arkansas Waterways To Get Boost From Federal Water Legislation

A map of ports in Arkansas
Credit waterways.arkansas.gov

Now that Congress has overwhelmingly passed a water resources bill, which awaits President Obama’s signature, officials who oversee Arkansas’s navigable waterways say infrastructure along the state’s rivers will likely benefit. All members of the state’s congressional delegation supported the legislation.

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Local & Regional News
6:14 am
Mon May 19, 2014

Segregation Today: How Past Housing Policies Affected Little Rock's Racial Landscape

Downtown Little Rock c. 1958.
Credit Library of Congress Prints and Photographs

This month marks the 60th anniversary of the Brown vs. Board of Education Supreme Court decision, initiating efforts to integrate schools around the country and especially in the American South where black and white children received largely unequal opportunities for education.

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Local & Regional News
8:42 am
Tue April 29, 2014

Arkansas Prison Phone Call Rates Too Steep, Say Advocates

File photo of prison inmates inside Cummins Prison in southeast Arkansas.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR

The Arkansas Department of Corrections will soon decide on the future of inmate telephone services at its meeting on Tuesday. The Department’s current contract with Global Tel Link is expiring this year and advocates say the high rates charged for phone calls are unfair for inmates and their families.

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