Arkansas Politics

Local & Regional News
5:26 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Senator Pryor Delivers Farewell Speech, Warns Of Hyper-Partisanship

Pryor speaking for the last time on the Senate Floor Mnday.
Credit Arkansas Times/C-SPAN 2

Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor is warning about the dangers of "hyper-partisanship" and urging Washington lawmakers to find ways to work together as he prepares to leave office after 12 years.

The outgoing two-term senator from Arkansas on Monday delivered his farewell speech on the Senate floor. Pryor, the only Democratic member of Arkansas' congressional delegation, was defeated by Republican U.S. Rep. Tom Cotton in his re-election bid last month.

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Local & Regional News
3:34 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Chamber Head Expects Challenges Over New Ethics Amendment

Panelists in Monday's discussion on the state's new ethics law.
Credit Jacob Kauffman / KUAR News

The head of the state's largest business lobbying group says he expects court challenges aimed at clarifying questions surrounding a new constitutional amendment that imposes new ethics restrictions on lawmakers and loosens term limits.

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Local & Regional News
6:00 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Congressman-elect French Hill: Committee Spot, Immigration, & Racial Justice

U.S. Rep.-elect French Hill (R-2nd Dist.)
Credit Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

Kauffman: I’m joined by central Arkansas’s Congressman-elect French Hill. Thanks for coming down.

Hill: My pleasure, good to be with you.

Committee Assignment

Kauffman: It’s not quite final yet, but you’ll be taking your seat next month and you’ve already received a committee assignment – and it’s an important one. You’ll be dealing with housing, banks…names like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

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Local & Regional News
2:17 pm
Fri December 5, 2014

Election: Fayetteville's LGBT Anti-Discrimination Measure An Arkansas Rarity

State Rep. Greg Leding (D-Fayetteville)

Voters in Fayetteville next week will decide the fate of an anti-discrimination ordinance designed in large part to protect the city’s LGBT population. Fayetteville’s city council approved the measure – the first of its kind in Arkansas - in August and a petition process for its repeal began immediately after. Signature gathering was successful and the ordinance is up for a repeal vote December 9.

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Local & Regional News
5:38 pm
Thu December 4, 2014

Incoming Governor Hutchinson Asks Candace Franks To Stay As Banking Chief

Governor-elect Asa Hutchinson is keeping Candace Franks as commissioner of the Arkansas State Bank Department.

The incoming Republican governor announced Thursday that he was keeping Franks, who has been the commissioner since 2007 when Democratic Gov. Mike Beebe appointed her. Franks has been with the department for 35 years.

Franks said in a statement released by Hutchinson's office that she had agreed to stay in the position.  Hutchinson praised Franks' work at the department as "exemplary."

Local & Regional News
11:33 am
Thu December 4, 2014

Arkansas House Speaker-Elect Gillam Aiming For 85 Day Session

File photo of Arkansas House Speaker-elect Jeremy Gillam, speaking to reporters in March 2014.
Credit Jacob Kauffman / KUAR News

In January, the 90th General Assembly will convene with large Republican majorities in the Arkansas House and Senate as well as a full slate of GOP constitutional officeholders, including Gov.-elect Asa Hutchinson.

Rep. Jeremy Gillam (R-Judsonia) is the Speaker-elect and will preside over the House of Representatives. The House Speaker is the most powerful leadership position in the chamber and has the authority to appoint chairmen and vice-chairmen to various House committees.

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Local & Regional News
9:50 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

President Pro Tem Dismang Weighs In On Salary Commission Appointments

State Senate President Pro Tempore Jonathan Disman (R-Beebe)

Elected state officials are one step closer to a change in salary after the Governor, House Speaker, Senate President Pro Tem, and Chief Justice appointed seven commissioners to a salary study commission Wednesday. Arkansas voters approved the body in November as part of the lobbying and term limits amendment, Issue 3.

President Pro Tem Jonathan Dismang (R-Beebe) says he is purposefully unaware how his appointees feel about existing salaries for legislators, constitutional officers, and judges.

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Local & Regional News
3:16 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

Governor-Elect Hutchinson Asks Farmers To Support $100 Million Tax Cut

Asa Hutchinson speaking to supporters in October in Little Rock.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

Governor-elect Asa Hutchinson is asking Arkansas' largest farming advocacy group to support his proposal to cut income taxes for the middle class by $100 million.

The incoming Republican governor asked members of the Arkansas Farm Bureau to support the proposal as the group met Wednesday at its annual convention in Hot Springs.

Hutchinson was elected last month after running primarily on the tax-cut vow. He told the farming group he supports existing tax exemptions for agriculture but said the state needs to look at broader changes to its tax code.

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Local & Regional News
12:40 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

Hutchinson Selects Bill Bryant As New Arkansas State Police Director

Governor-elect Asa Hutchinson named has Bill Bryant, formerly of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, as the new director of the Arkansas State Police. Bryant is a resident of Little Rock.

Stan Witt, the current director of the state police, announced yesterday that he would not be retained in the post.

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Local & Regional News
6:05 pm
Tue December 2, 2014

Incoming Governor Hutchinson To Replace Head Of Arkansas State Police

Col. Stan Witt

Governor-elect Asa Hutchinson has told the head of Arkansas State Police that the agency will have a new director after Hutchinson takes office next year.

Col. Stan Witt told employees Tuesday that Hutchinson had told him that he won't be staying on as director of State Police when the new governor is sworn into office in January.

A spokesman for Hutchinson confirmed that Hutchinson didn't plan to keep Witt as ASP director. Hutchinson has not announced who he'll name as Witt's replacement.

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