The Arkansas Capitol building will once again be open on weekends following an inquiry from the governor’s office to the secretary of state. The announcement from Secretary of State Mark Martin’s office on Wednesday is a reversal of a policy announced in December.
In a news release the office made no mention of the security concerns originally cited for limited hours but a talk with the governor’s office was mentioned.
“Following consultations with members of the Office of Governor Asa Hutchinson as well as taking into consideration various comments from both public officials and members of the public at large, the Arkansas State Capitol Building will revert to weekend and holiday operations as they were prior to recently completed renovation projects.”
Governor Hutchinson said he didn’t talk personally with his fellow Republican constitutional officer but his office expressed his concerns about weekend closures.
“They were very gracious about it in response and receptive to our concern that it did limit access to the people of Arkansas. Many students, others that are here on weekends like to access the Capitol. It was quite frankly, we just raised the question and they responded that way and we’re very pleased and surprised by it,” said Hutchinson to reporters Wednesday afternoon.
The secretary of state’s office lists regular business hours for the Capitol as 7:00 am until 5:00 pm Monday through Friday, and 10:00am until 3:00pm on Saturday, Sunday, and state holidays.