Chris Hickey

Reporter / Anchor

Chris Hickey was born and raised in Houston, Texas, spending his teenage years in Camden, Ohio. He majored in English at Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas and 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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Arkansas General Assembly
6:35 pm
Tue February 11, 2014

Fiscal Legislative Session: Day Two Happenings

The House floor after State Representatives convened Tuesday afternoon.
Credit Chris Hickey / KUAR News

The Arkansas Legislature convened for the second day of a month-long fiscal session Tuesday to consider state budgetary matters and other issues. Behind the scenes, lawmakers continue to plan possible changes to the state’s private option expansion of Medicaid in an effort to make reauthorizing funds for the program more palatable to many of the Legislature's conservative members. While House and Senate leaders were confident the program for low-income Arkansans can be reauthorized, House majority Leader Bruce Westerman told reporters that he didn't see that happening.

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Politics & Healthcare
6:36 pm
Mon February 10, 2014

On First Day Of Fiscal Session, Where Do Arkansas Legislators Stand On Private Option?

Arkansas state Senators convened Monday for the beginning of the 3rd Legislative Fiscal Session held since 2008.
Credit Chris Hickey / KUAR

Before lawmakers  milled about in the two legislative chambers,  state police color guards posted their flags and roll was called Monday, preparations for the month-long fiscal session had long been underway with months of hearings and reviews of budget proposals. The session will deal with those budget proposals for various state entities as put forward by Governor Mike Beebe. Members of the House and Senate must reach three-fourths majorities to approve them, amending certain sections along the way.

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Local & Regional News
4:00 pm
Mon February 3, 2014

Arkansas Business, Farm & Faith Leaders Call For Immigration Reform

Leaders from Arkansas’s business, agriculture and faith communities are responding to U.S. House Speaker John Boehner’s proposal for an incremental approach to immigration reform with renewed calls to pass some meaningful legislation. Representatives from the Arkansas Chamber of Commerce and the Arkansas Farm Bureau spoke in a conference call with reporters

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Local & Regional News
10:01 am
Mon February 3, 2014

Another Round Of Wintry Weather Likely for Arkansas

Freezing rain is possible Tuesday.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR

An additional round of wintry precipitation is forecast for Arkansas after much of the state saw ice and the northern part of the state saw snow on Sunday. Chuck Rickard of the National Weather Service says a combination of freezing rain, sleet and snow is a possibility for many areas of the state on Tuesday.

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Jobs
12:52 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Arkansas Unemplyment Rate Ticks Down Slightly In December

The end of 2013 saw a drop in the unemployment rate in Arkansas. The state Department of Workforce Services released numbers showing the unemployment rate dropped one tenth of a percentage point in December, to 7.4 percent. Over the same period, the national rate dropped to 6.7 percent from 7.0 percent. The total civilian labor force rose by 2,600, according to the report.

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Local & Regional News
2:43 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

DHS: If Private Option Defunded, New Budget Needed

Arkansas State Capitol

The director of the Arkansas Department of Human Services says he doesn't have an alternative budget if lawmakers block funding for the state's "private option" version of Medicaid expansion in the February fiscal session.

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Local & Regional News
7:55 am
Thu January 16, 2014

Plenty Of Young Arkansans Choose Private Option, says DHS

Some enrollees for Arkansas's 'Private Option' version of Medicaid Expansion found they were eligible after applying for coverage through the federally-run website, healthcare.gov.

The Arkansas Department of Human Services says a significant number of younger adults are enrolling in the state’s private option. It allows people earning up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level ($15,850 for an individual) to receive subsidized private health coverage using federal money devoted to Medicaid. Andy Allison, state Medicaid director, says its no surprise younger people are qualifying for the private option, since they tend to earn less.

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Local & Regional News
4:48 pm
Mon January 13, 2014

Final Approval Given To School Desegregation Settlement

Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel
Credit Chris Hickey / KUAR News

A federal judge has approved a settlement phasing out payments from the state to three Pulaski County school districts in the state's long-running desegregation lawsuit. Federal Judge D. Price Marshall said the settlement to the “exceedingly complex” case was “fair, adequate and reasonable” and noted how few objections there were in the case.

After the ruling, Attorney General Dustin McDaniel called the settlement “historic.”

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Film in Arkansas
2:40 pm
Mon January 13, 2014

Ron Robinson Theater To Open in Downtown Little Rock With Series of Free Film Events

Seats going in at the Ron Robinson Theater for the grand opening.

The Central Arkansas Library System and the Little Rock Film Festival are opening the Ron Robinson Theater this week in downtown Little Rock with nine days of movie screenings, all free of charge and open to the public

It will be a chance for the public to see the new 315-seat theater with state-of-the-art digital projection, which is part of the newly-built $6 million Arcade Building.

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Public Health
4:48 pm
Fri January 10, 2014

Lung Cancer On The Decline In Arkansas

Credit Centers For Disease Control and Prevention

Studies by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released Thursday show the rate of lung cancer is in decline around the nation. The same is true in Arkansas. After a steady increase for a number of years, the state has seen a sharp decline in lung cancer from around 84 cases per 100,000 people in 2007 to 70 cases per 100,000, according to Dr. Gary Wheeler of the Arkansas Department of Health. Though he says the state struggled for many years to prevent a rise in lung cancer.

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