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TODAY'S NEWS:  

 

ALL-AMERICAN COWGIRLS CHICKS TO PERFORM AT PINE TREE FESTIVAL      7/27/15

 

The Dierks Pine Tree Festival has always celebrated the impact of the pine tree on the economy of the City of Dierks and every year, the Dierks Chamber of Commerce plans a family friendly event for area residents and this year is no exception.

 

This year's festival will feature games and rides, crafts and food along with concerts and the ultimate bull riding event.

 

And, this year, the Dierks Chamber of Commerce has invited the All-American Cowgirl Chicks from Weatherford, Texas and founder Trish Lynn informed KDQN the All-American Cowgirl Chicks are an equestrian drill team.

 

Lynn will also be performing a free concert, Friday night.

 

Tickets for the Ultimate Bull-riding event on Saturday night are $10 and they may be purchased from any member of the Dierks Chamber of Commerce.

 

 

 

CONSUMER ALERT - NO BIG PAYOUTS IN INTERNATIONAL LOTTERY     7/27/15

 

International scammers are once again turning to Arkansas to make some extra money by telling Arkansans they have won money in an international lottery. According to the Arkansas Attorney General's office, Arkansans are being contacted through direct mail, email, over the phone. Con artists are requesting a small fee in order to process a cash prize.

 

Usually the recipient is informed that they have won a lottery or an expensive prize, such as a car or trip. All the consumer has to do is submit either a small payment or provide some personal financial information to claim the prize. These payments are often called processing fees or customs charges.

 

Attorney General Leslie Rutledge said a consumer should never pay to receive a free prize. She said you should never send money if someone asks you to pay a fee through a wire-transfer or a pre-paid credit card.

 

Rutledge stated it is also illegal to play an international lottery through the mail or over the phone.

 

Rutledge also said people who accept these offers become targets of other scammers after their information is shared or sold to someone else.

 

To report an international lottery scam, contact the Attorney General's office by calling 1-800-482-8982 or visit the website, ArkansasAG.gov.

 

 

 

DE QUEEN REGISTRATION         7/27/15

 

De Queen School Media Relations Director, Tammy Whatley, announced registration for the 2015-2016 school year will begin on Monday, August 3rd.

 

De Queen Primary Principal Terri Hill announced registration for primary students will be held on Thursday, August 6th from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 3 to 6 p.m.

 

Elementary Principal Terri Phillips said elementary students will also register on Thursday, August 6th from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 3 to 6 p.m.

 

Middle School Principal Brenda Leeper said registration for the Middle School will be held on Tuesday, August 4th.

 

Counselors from the De Queen Junior and Senior highs said registration will start on Monday, August 3rd.

 

The Ashdown School District will hold an Open House for ninth grade students on Tuesday, July 28th at 6:30 p.m.

 

Ashdown High School will register new students to the district August 3rd and 4th from 8 a.m. until noon and from 1 to 3 p.m.

 

The Ashdown Junior High School will register new students August 3rd to August 6th from 8 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. in the school office. Returning students who pre-registered during the spring do not have to re-register.

 

All elementary schools in the Ashdown District will register new and returning students on August 3rd through the 6th from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the schools' offices.

 

All ALE students will register at their home campuses and there will be a district-wide open house and meet the teacher day on Thursday, August 13th from 2 to 7 p.m.

 

Cossatot River High School will hold orientation for 7th graders on August 3rd from 10 a.m. to noon; eighth and ninth grade students on August 4th from 10 a.m. to noon and tenth and eleventh grade students on August 4th from noon to 2 p.m.; and twelfth graders on August 4th from 2 to 4 p.m. 

 

 

 

FEMA ASSISTANCE BASED ON INDIVIDUAL LOSS, NEEDS      7/27/15

 

Arkansas residents who suffered damage in the severe spring storms should know that any disaster aid they may receive will be based on their unique circumstances and needs.

 

FEMA coordinator for Arkansas, Nancy Casper said, FEMA wants everyone to receive the maximum assistance for which they are eligible and the amount and type of assistance an individual receives could be completely different from what their neighbor receives, even though the damage may appear to be similar.

 

Residents in Howard, Little River, Miller and Sevier counties that were affected by the storms, tornados and flooding between May 7th and June 15th may be eligible for disaster assistance and they are being encouraged to register with FEMA by the August 15th deadline.

 

Registering with FEMA is the first step in the process and the type of assistance that a person is eligible for can only be determined after they register.

 

Individuals and business owners may register online at www.disasterassistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621-3362.

 

The toll free number will operate from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week until further notice.

 

Applicant’s needs are evaluated on a case-by-case basis to determine the types of assistance that’s available to that individual. Not everyone who registers will qualify, but to be considered for assistance you must register.

 

Assistance could include: charitable contributions from voluntary agencies; grants to help pay for temporary housing needs, essential home repairs and other disaster-related expenses; and low-interest loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration to cover residential or business losses not fully covered by insurance.

 

For more information visit, www.fema.gov.

 

 

 

FEMA EXPERTS OFFER IDEAS TO LESSEN IMPACT OF DISASTER DAMAGE          7/27/15

 

Teams of specialists from FEMA will be offering tips and techniques to lessen the impact of future disaster-related property damage at building supply stores in Arkansas beginning July 27th.

 

A team will be at the Davis Lumber Company on Highway 71 in Texarkana, Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon until Thursday, August 6th.

 

FEMA specialists offer how-to information on both retrofitting buildings to make them more resistant to wind damage and ways to elevate utilities against flood damage. They also will provide tips to clean and help prevent mold and mildew.

 

Many of the tips and techniques are specifically geared for the do-it-yourselfer and for building contractors.

 

FEMA also offers a number of free online resources for home and property owners. To get started, go to www.fema.gov/safer-stronger-protected-homes-communities.

 

 

 

SINGLE PARENT SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE        7/27/15

 

Single parents living in Arkansas and pursuing a college degree can now apply for a scholarship through the Single Parent Scholarship Foundation.

 

Single parent scholarships are given to low-income, single parents seeking a higher education to acquire job skills. Eligibility criteria and application requirements vary by county.

 

Deadlines for counties in Arkansas are: Sevier County, August 5th; Miller County, August 11th; Polk County, September 1st; and Little River County, September 15th.

 

To apply, go to aspsf.org and click on your county of residence for specific eligibility requirements.

 

 

 

SUMMER ENERGY SAVING TIPS          7/27/15

 

The hot summer weather is here and temperatures will be nearing 100 degrees soon. And, those temps and high humidity will make you eager to stay cool, but you want to save money at the same time.

 

According to SWEPCO, you can following these simple tips to help reduce your electric bill this summer.

 

You should install a clean air conditioning filter on a regular basis in the summer, because a dirty filter can cause your equipment to work harder and use up to five percent more energy.

 

Set you thermostat at 78 degrees. Each degree lower will add about eight percent to your cooling cost.

 

Use a portable and ceiling fans whenever possible. They only cost a dollar or two to operate per month.

 

Perform heavy housework chores in the cooler times of the day and this includes washing dishes, baking and laundry work. These create heat and moisture and that puts a strain on your air conditioner.

 

Keep direct sunlight out as much as possible, close the curtains, shades and blinds during the day.

 

Replace weather-stripping around doors and windows to prevent air leaks.

 

Make sure the attic is properly ventilated to prevent excess heat build-up.

 

Have your air conditioner inspected each year.

 

You shouldn’t put furniture or draperies near the air vents inside your home and remember shrubs and trees around your home, act as a barrier against the sun and can help reduce the amount of energy that’s required to cool your home.

 

 

 

DE QUEEN MAN DIES IN VEHICLE CRASH NEAR HOT SPRINGS     7/27/15

 

Arkansas State Police say a De Queen man was killed and several people were injured when the sport utility vehicle they were riding in crashed on Highway 70 near Hot Springs.

 

A report on the crash says Bernebe Figueroa died in the crash Saturday just east of Hot Springs.

 

The report says Figueroa was a passenger in a westbound SUV that went off the highway and struck a tree, then overturned several times. The report says the weather was clear and the road was dry at the time.

 

 

78TH ANNUAL SEVIER COUNTY FAIR AND RODEO         7/24/15

 

Sevier County Fair Board member Linda Frachiseur announced registration for the livestock show for the 78th annual Sevier County Fair is Saturday, August 1st from 9 a.m. until noon.

 

Frachiseur said the livestock show has been growing and by pre-registering, the board will be able to ensure they have enough space for the animals.

 

Frachiseur said the week for this year's fair is August 22nd through August 29th and the fair board is hoping for cooler temperatures and more exhibits.

 

Frachiseur also announced the fair board would be holding a 4D barrel race on Monday, July 27th. The books will open at 6 and the races will start at 8.

 

For more information, call Sandra Nunn at 870-642-7352.

 

 

 

COSSATOT RIVER STATE PARK     7/24/15

 

Cossatot River State Park will be hosting breakfast on the sandbar this Saturday morning from 9 to 10:30 a.m.

 

A park interpreter will hold a Dutch oven cooking demonstration and everyone will enjoy some biscuits and gravy, so bring a bowl, a spoon and a hearty appetite.

 

From 2 to 3 p.m. guests can join a park interpreter as they snorkel a section of the Cossatot River and observe the underwater life while enjoying the clean, cool water on a warm Saturday afternoon.

 

All of the snorkeling equipment will be provided by the park, but guest will need to wear clothing that appropriate for swimming.

 

Sunday morning, the park will host an indoor and outdoor scavenger hunt from 10 to 11 a.m.

 

Participates can pick up a scavenger hunt brochure at the visitor center and then set out to see who will find the items on the list.

 

From 2 to 3 p.m., guests will feed the park critters.

 

For more information about the programs at the Cossatot River State Park, call 870-385-2201.

 

 

 

FEDERAL DISASTER ASSISTANCE IS FOR ARKANSAS RENTERS, TOO       7/24/15

 

Renters in the Arkansas counties whose homes and property were damaged by the severe springs storms may be eligible for federal disaster assistance.

 

Renters who were displaced from their homes by the storms may be eligible for FEMA grants to help them pay rent for temporary housing. These rental grants are for a 30-day period, and they are subject to review until the renters' previous homes are again livable or they find another home.

 

The U.S. Small Business Administration offers affordable disaster loans to help Arkansas renters repair or replace disaster-damaged personal property, including automobiles. Loan rates are as low as 1.688 percent; terms can be as long as 30 years and survivors may be eligible for up to $40,000, depending on their losses.

 

Both renters and homeowners may also be eligible for Other Needs Assistance, which helps survivors with uninsured or underinsured necessary expenses and serious needs caused by the disaster.

 

Eligibility for Other Needs Assistance grants is determined by completing and returning the Small Business Administration application.

 

Other Needs Assistance may be used for disaster related medical and dental expenses, as well as assistive devices such as wheelchairs, canes, prescriptions and other related equipment; repair or replacement of necessary personal property that was lost or damaged in the disaster, such as room furnishings or appliances, as well as tools and equipment that required by the self-employed.; primary vehicles, approved second vehicles and modified vehicles that were damaged by the disaster and disaster-related funeral and burial expenses.

 

Residents in Howard, Little River, Miller and Sevier counties are encouraged to register for assistance with FEMA by the August 25th deadline by visiting the website: www.disasterassistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621-3362.

 

After registering with FEMA for assistance, survivors should either visit a Disaster Recovery Center to apply for their Small Business Administration loan, or request a loan application when they receive a recorded, automatic telephone call from the SBA.

 

 

 

HOPE WATERMELON FESTIVAL         7/24/15

 

The 39th annual Hope Watermelon Festival is set for August 6th through 8th in Hope’s Fair Park. The festival opens at noon Thursday, August 6th.

 

Jim “Bear” Barentine will perform through the afternoon on the BancorpSouth stage. Events on Thursday include the Kiwanis Chicken Dinner that evening, the dog show on the BancorpSouth stage at 6:30 p.m. followed by the blues sounds of Larry Stuart as well as the preliminaries of the Watermelon Idol Talent Contest at 6 on the McDonald’s stage in the coliseum.

 

Music begins outside the coliseum on the Hope Auto stage at 6 with Rudy Preston and friends, including Carl Jackson. At 7, the Night Hawk band will perform and after 8, the “Godfather of Sax” Ace Cannon will return to the festival for a free show.

 

Friday, August 7th, the festival will open at 9 a.m. The Lions Club fish and chicken dinner is set for the Fair Park Community Center from 4:30 to 7 p.m. inside the coliseum, Beta Sigma Phi will present the Little Miss and Little Mr. Watermelon Pageant.

 

The Washington Vintage Dancers will perform near the Hope Auto Stage at 7. Friday night will also feature the “Liverpool Legends.” The Liverpool Legends are a Beatles tribute band. Tickets are $5 and are available at all advance concert ticket locations and will be available at the box office Friday evening. The gates will open at 7 p.m. at the CMC Steel Products Stage.

 

Saturday, August 8th will feature the 5K race and the Melon Mile for kids, an antique car show, a kid’s fishing derby on Lake Huckabee in Fair Park from 9 a.m. until 11 a.m., the “Politically Correct” watermelon eating contest at 11:30 a.m. on the BancorpSouth Stage, the regular watermelon eating contest at noon and the seed-spitting contest at 1.

 

At 2 p.m. there will be an arm-wrestling competition. You can also play Yerger Museum Bingo, money in the haystack, and enjoy the antique engine show.

 

And, the big finale will be a concert by Sammy Kershaw. The gates will open at 6 p.m., the finalists from the Watermelon Idol contest will perform at 6, Buddy Jewell will perform at 7:30, the winner of the Idol contest will perform at 8:25 and Kershaw will perform at 8:30.

 

Advance general admission tickets are $12 and will be $20 the day of the show. Tickets for kids aged 4 to 10 will be $6. Reserved seats are $40. A combo general admission ticket for the Sammy Kershaw concert and the Liverpool Legends is just $15.

 

Tickets are available online at uacchfoundation.org.

 

The festival will feature over 200 booths of arts and crafts as well as a dozen concession stands selling everything from BBQ to corn dogs to blooming onions and alligator on a stick.

 

There is a $5 parking fee which benefits the chamber of commerce, the Boy Scouts, and the Hope Rotary Club.

 

For more information visit hopemelonfest.com, you can call 870-777-3640 or like Hope Arkansas Melonfest on Facebook.

 

 

 

HOURS AT DISASTER RECOVERY CENTER IN HOWARD COUNTY TO CHANGE         7/24/15

 

The disaster recovery center in Howard County will be closed weekends starting Saturday, July 25th.

 

The center will remain open on weekdays from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. The toll-free Helpline, 1-800-621-3362, is still available seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

 

The center provides help to those whose homes or businesses were affected by the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds and flooding during the period of May 7th to June 15th.

 

Representatives from the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management, FEMA, the U.S. Small Business Administration and other agencies are at the centers to explain disaster assistance programs and help survivors apply for aid.

 

The Howard County disaster recovery center is located in the Carter Day Training Center at 200 Lake Nichols Drive in Nashville.

 

 

 

SKILLZ AND DRILLZ CAMP         7/24/15

 

The De Queen Leopard basketball coaches will be hosting a skills and drills camp next week at Leopard Arena from 9 a.m. to noon Monday through Thursday.

 

High School basketball coach Beau Brickell mentioned Thursday morning that the high school team has played 10 games this summer and he is already seeing some improvement. He said although the team lost several senior leaders from last year's team, but even though this year's team will be young, they still have some experience.

 

While Coach Brickell was in the studio, he stated he and

Coach Richard Bell were hoping teach kids the finer points of the game of basketball during next week's camp.

 

Brickell said the camp was for any boy from the surrounding area, not just De Queen students.

 

To register or for more information, call Coach Brickell at 501-538-7360 or Coach Bell at 870-582-1788.

 

 

SINGLE PARENT SCHOLARSHIP APPLICATIONS AVAILABLE     07/23/15

 

The 2015 fall Single Parent Scholarship Cycles are now open in the following counties:

 

Little River County: Deadline: September 15th

Sevier County: Deadline: August 5th

Miller and Bowie Counties: Deadline: August 11th

Nevada County: Deadline: September 15th

Clark and Pike Counties: Deadline: September 16th

Ouachita, Calhoun, Dallas and Columbia Counties: Priority Deadline: September 20th/ Final Deadline: November 20th

Montgomery County: Deadline: August 10th

Polk County: Priority Deadline: September 1st

Scott County: Deadline: August 10th

Union County: Deadline: September 1st

 

To apply go to www.aspsf.org, click on apply now, click on your county of residence on the state map.

***The following counties deadlines have already passed: Howard, Hempstead and Lafayette.

 

 

43RD ANNUAL PINE TREE FESTIVAL         7/23/15

 

The 43rd Annual Pine Tree Festival is scheduled for Friday, July 31st and Saturday, August 1st, but the Dierks Chamber of Commerce will get things started with a kick-off party this Friday from 5 to 7 p.m.

 

Tickets to the Saturday night Ultimate Bull Riding will be discounted two dollars to just $8 a ticket, Friday night. They will also be selling t-shirts and serving free hot dogs.

 

Chamber President Damon Mounts stated there will be carnival rides, a magic show and a concert Friday night of Pine Tree Festival.

 

On Saturday, the Dierks cheerleaders will host a 5K at 7 a.m. and the parade will begin at 10. Mounts and chamber member Stacy Janes said groups can still enter a float in the parade.

 

Janes said Friday's events are free and Saturday night will feature the All-American Cowgirl Chicks and a pyro show by Heath Riggins’ of Fayetteville, along with the bull riding and Mexican bull fighting. He said the Saturday night festivities will begin at 8 p.m.

 

Janes also invited area cowboys to sign up when the books open on Monday, July 27th.

 

Tickets for the Saturday night bull riding event are $10 after this week’s kick-off party. For more information, like the Dierks Chamber on Facebook at Pine Tree Festival, Dierks, Ark city park.

 

 

 

CODE RED SYSTEM APPROVED FOR HOWARD COUNTY        7/23/15

 

Howard County Judge Kevin Smith announced this week that the county is proceeding with the activation of a Code Red system.

 

Smith said the county's portion of the cost will be paid with funds from a state grant and since the county will be using the 911 addresses to build the data base, the remaining cost will be taken from the county's 911 account.

 

All of the county incorporated towns will also pay a portion of the cost.

 

Code Red is a telephone system that will provide phone notification to county residents should a weather warning is issued. It will also allow for other notifications, such as changes to garbage schedules or road and street closures.

 

 

 

DIERKS CITY COUNCIL HIRES ALDERMAN FOR PARK POSITION     7/23/15

 

Dierks Mayor Terry Mounts reported the city was in need of some part-time help at the city park, last week during the monthly meeting of the Dierks City Council.

 

Mounts reported city employees were busy and were having a hard time keeping up with the daily maintenance needs in the park. He also stated Alderman James Sebren had expressed an interest in the job.

 

According to Mounts, the council voted to hire Sebren and he will work 25 hours a week for $9.25 an for six months.

 

Mounts also said county 309's were helping prepare the park for the upcoming Pine Tree Festival.

 

Mounts also reported the city had sold its 2009 Dodge Durango to the Mineral Springs School District. He said the superintendent, Curtis Turner, told him they wanted the car for the districts resource officer.

 

Aldermen then voted to make a $17,500 payment toward the police department’s new pickup truck.

 

 

 

I’M NOT DRIVING, I’M WAITING ON A DRIVER          7/23/15

 

About 3 a.m. on Sunday, July 19th, Patrolman First Class Bucky Sawyer noticed a pickup parked in a handicap parking space at the E-Z Mart on East Collin Raye Drive that didn’t have a handicap tag.

 

Sawyer approached the vehicle and spoke to a Hispanic male that was sitting in the driver’s seat. The driver was identified as 30-year-old Jose Rios.

 

Sawyer reported there was a strong odor of alcohol coming from the truck and asked Rios if he had been drinking. Rios allegedly said that he had had a couple.

 

Rios told Officer Sawyer that he didn’t drive the truck to the store but was just sitting in the driver’s seat.

 

Sawyer informed Rios that he didn’t have to be driving because he was physically in control of the vehicle since he was in the driver’s seat. Rios then allegedly admitted that he had driven to the store, but had called someone to come and get him. Rios also stated that he had opened a beer in the truck to drink while he was waiting on them.

 

Rios was administered a series of field sobriety test and was taken into custody on suspicion of driving while intoxicated.

 

Rios was cited for not having a driver’s license, parking in a handicap parking space and DWI.

 

 

 

WHAT’S IN A NAME         7/23/15

 

About 7:30 p.m. Sunday night, Patrolman Justin Gentry made a traffic stop after clocking a vehicle going 55 miles per hour in a 45 miles per hour speed zone.

 

Officer Gentry asked the driver and passenger for ID. The passenger a 19-year-old white male told Gentry, he didn’t have a driver’s license, no information came back on the name that he gave Gentry.

 

Gentry issued the driver, Tonya Miller a warning for speeding and she then gave Gentry consent to search her vehicle.

 

While searching the car, Gentry found a plastic bag inside a cigarette pack that contained suspected marijuana. The male passenger allegedly stated the package was his and that there was a pipe in the glove box.

 

While Gentry was handcuffing the suspect, he informed Gentry his name was Brandon Cornett. When Gentry asked Cornett why he provided him with a false name, Cornett said he thought he had a warrant for his arrest.

 

Cornett was charged with felony possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of a controlled substance – marijuana, obstruction of government operations and was processed on his misdemeanor warrant for failure to pay.

 
Mediterranean Cooking Classes Held   07/22/15

Sevier County Extension Agent-Family and Consumer Sciences (CEA-FCS), Janet Cantrell, and Eva Langley, CEA-FCS of Pike County recently conducted two Mediterranean Cooking classes at the Extension office in the Adams-Agriculture Building on the UA Cossatot campus.

 

The hands-on classes featured recipes from Italy, Spain, France, Morocco, Greece, Lebanon and Egypt. Ninety-nine percent of the ingredients for the 20 recipes were bought in De Queen. Attendees finished the evening with a family style meal which is a common practice in the Mediterranean.

 


Pam Dooley of Lockesburg is learning some basics of Mediterranean cooking at the recent Mediterranean Cooking class held in De Queen

Mediterranean Cooking class participants displaying the dishes they made.  From left to right:  Eva Langley, CEA-FCS; Rosemary Moore; Jane Stallsworth; Lawana Friend; Pam Dooley; Rachel Dooley, Dana Stringfellow, CES-Admin. Spec.; and Janet Cantrell, CEA-FCS.


Janet Cantrell, County Extension Agent-Family & Consumer Sciences

 

TYSON FOODS SUPPORTS FAIR ASSOCIATION    07/22/15

Tyson Foods presented a $2000 check to Sevier County Fair Board Members on July 21st.  The funds will be used for the purchase of wood shavings for show animal pens during this year's annual livestock show.  Tyson is pleased to contribute to organizations and activities that promote agriculture with our area youth.

Pictured L to R:  Tyson Foods, Grannis/Broken Bow Live Production Mgr. Richard Pearce, and Fair Board Members: Archie Johnson, Donna Rivas, and Linda Frachiseur.

 

 

 

ARKANSAS SALES TAX HOLIDAY, AUGUST 1ST AND 2ND          7/22/15

 

The Arkansas sales tax holiday for 2015 will begin on Saturday, August 1st at 12:01 a.m. and will continue through Sunday, August 2nd at 11:59 p.m.

 

During the sales tax holiday, state and local sales tax will not be collected on clothing and footwear items if the sales price is less than $100 per item; clothing accessories and equipment if the sales price is less than $50 per item; school supplies; school art supplies and school instructional materials.

 

Clothing is any article of apparel that’s suitable for general use. Clothing accessories or equipment are any item that’s worn on a person or in conjunction with clothing.

 

School supplies are items commonly used by a student in a course of study, such as, binders, book bags, calculators, crayons, erasers, folders, glue, highlighters, legal pads, lunch boxes, markers, paper, pencils, pens, rulers, scissors and writing tablets.

 

School art supplies include clay and glazes, paints, paintbrushes, sketch and drawing pads and watercolors.

 

School Instructional material includes reference books, maps, globes, textbooks and workbooks.

 

A complete list of tax free items is on the website, www.dfa.arkansas.gov.

 

 

 

DE QUEEN TEEN DIES FROM INJURIES      7/22/15

 

A De Queen teenager passed away recently from injuries that she received from an accident on Wednesday, July 15th that occurred on Highway 24 in Sevier County.

 

18-year-old Ana Macias died at Christus St. Michael Health System in Texarkana, Texas.

 

According to the accident report, Macias was driving a 1998 Mercedes east on Highway 24 and crossed the centerline into the left-hand lane of traffic and went through a bridge guardrail. The vehicle then overturned in the river.

 

 

 

REPRESENTATIVE VAUGHT BRINGS DOMESTIC VIOLENCE TO THE FOREFRONT       7/22/15

 

According to a recent report, domestic violence hotlines receive an average of six calls an hour. According to that same report, 10 people were killed in incidents involving domestic violence in 2014. 

 

Courtney White of the Southwest Arkansas Crisis and Resource Center informed KDQN that they receive about six calls a week.

 

The report also stated domestic violence is a pattern of assaultive and coercive behaviors including physical, sexual and psychological attacks, as well as economic coercion that abusers use against their victims.

 

Representative De Ann Vaught reported the 90th General Assembly passed four pieces of legislature that should reduce the number of domestic violence and to protect victims. She said these laws will take effect today, July 22nd.

 

White stated Act 876 will require law enforcement agencies that are investigating a domestic violence case to investigate it in a manner that will permit the prosecuting attorney to prosecute the case even if the victim is unavailable to testify.

 

Act 952 requires a unit on dating violence be taught in grades 7-12 as part of the health curriculum. White reported the Crisis Center has been offering this information for some time.

 

Vaught said Laura’s Card requires law enforcement agencies to give a victim’s family a printed document that explains a victim’s rights, information for assistance and the officer’s contact information. White said they have complied this information for local law enforcement agencies.

 

Laura’s Law allows the first officer to interview the victim to assess the potential danger. White said many victims do not realize they are being abused until that fill out the assessment sheet.

 

If you or someone you know is being abused call 911, but for more information you can call the statewide hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE or you can call the Southwest Arkansas Crisis and Resource Center 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 870-584-3441.

 

 

 

IT’S JUST ONE PILL        7/22/15

 

Saturday morning about 2 a.m., Patrolman First Class Bucky Sawyer of the De Queen Police Department pulled over a vehicle that was speeding on Highway 329.

 

When Sawyer asked the driver, 26-year-old Willie Savage of Nashville for his driver's license, Savage informed Sawyer that he didn't have one.

 

Savage was asked to exit the vehicle. Sawyer reported he noticed Savage looking back at the car and the two passengers were asked to exit the vehicle.

 

The occupants were informed that they could have someone come and drive the car home, since none of them had a valid driver's license.

 

While searching the vehicle, Patrolman Justin Gentry discovered two different types of alcohol bottles that were open and empty. The two passengers stated they had been drinking earlier, but Savage said he hadn't.

 

When the officers checked a drinking glass that was in a cup holder, they found a white, round pill, underneath the cup. The pill was identified as Tramadol.

 

Savage stated he had a prescription for the pill and Officer Sawyer informed him, that if he could have someone text him a picture of the prescription bottle, then he wouldn't be charged with possession of a controlled substance.

 

After calling his wife, Savage said she couldn't find the bottle and then began telling the officers that the charges were bogus.

 

Savage was transported to the Sevier County jail where he was citied for driving without a license, no proof of insurance and possession of controlled substance. 

 

 

 

 



 


 
This Week's News:

 

 

 

UNDOCUMENTED IMMIGRANTS MAY QUALIFY FOR SOME DISASTER AID     7/21/15

 

Parents and guardians of children who are citizens, non-citizen nationals or qualified aliens who are living in the federally-declared area in Arkansas, may apply for assistance on behalf of their child, according to FEMA.

 

Individuals and business owners who sustained losses can apply for assistance by registering online at www.disasterassistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621-3362.

 

Once registered, FEMA disaster recovery specialists will answer questions about applications or collect information that FEMA needs to process the application. Recovery specialists can supply contacts for other programs.

 

Programs that are operated by volunteer organizations, such as the American Red Cross, that may also be able to help.

 

An applicant's information is confidential and FEMA only shares that information with the state and the designated agencies that provide disaster assistance.

 

Residents in Howard, Little River, Miller and Sevier counties may be eligible for disaster assistance and are encouraged to register for assistance with FEMA by August 25th.

 

 

Horatio Residents Complete Extension Get Fit Classes  07/21/15


Brenda Kramer, Betty Candelaria, and Jerry Ann Broadwell successfully completed a 12 week Extension Get Fit session led by Janet Cantrell, County Extension Agent-Family and Consumer Sciences.

 

Participants worked on balance, strength and endurance over the 12 week period. All three ladies were able to double the number of repetitions, or amount of time endured, or increase their flexibility in 4 out of 6 items tested before and after the program. This research based program is designed to increase strength and improve balance and flexibility. In addition to physical benefits, exercise also improves mood and attitude. It decreases depression and helps you to sleep more soundly. If you have a group that is interested in a fitness program, call the Sevier County Extension Office at 870-584-3013.


The Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service offers its programs to all eligible persons regardless of race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital or veteran status, genetic information, or any other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.
 

Above photo From left to right:  Brenda Kramer, Betty Candelaria, and Jerry Ann Broadwell.

Submitted by:  Janet Cantrell, CEA-FCS

 

 

IMMIGRANT ACTIVISTS CONFRONT PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES IN HOT SPRINGS      7/21/15

 

Local members of Arkansas United Community Coalition joined other immigrant activists from across the state on Friday, July 17th outside the Hot Springs Convention Center to show their support for immigration reform and to protest remarks made by presidential candidate, Donald Trump.

 

Omar Gallardo of De Queen joined the protest at a Republican fundraising dinner in Hot Springs to protest Trump's appearance as the keynote speaker for the Republican Party of Arkansas.

 

Activists were protesting remarks made by Trump on June 16th when he described Mexican immigrants as "rapists" and "criminals."

 

Activists were also present at Verizon Arena in North Little Rock, where presidential candidate Hillary Clinton was speaking to the Democratic Party of Arkansas.

 

According to Arkansas United, activists were in North Little Rock in support of Clinton who has expressed her support for immigration reform.

 

 

LITTLE RIVER COUNTY LEADERSHIP CLASS FORMING NOW      7/21/15

 

Little River County Chamber of Commerce director Fonda Hawthorne informed KDQN Monday morning that she is still taking applications for the 2015-2016 Little River Leadership class until the end of July.

 

Hawthorne also explained what the leadership class is designed to promote an awareness of Little River County and to foster and develop leadership skills.

 

Hawthorne said individuals must be willing to commit the time to fulfill the attendance requirements and have a desire to serve in local organizations, boards and other community offices.

 

Hawthorne said the Little River County Class and the Sevier County Leadership Class will be making a trip to McNab to tour the John W. Turk Power Plant together, but the Little River Class will also take several trips to visit county museums, businesses and government offices.

 

For more information or an application, stop by the Little River County Chamber of Commerce office, the Ashdown and Foreman city halls or call 870-898-2758.

 

 

 

MEN'S EVENT THIS FRIDAY IN FOREMAN      7/21/15

 

Little River County Judge and Southern Sportsmen Foundation member Mike Cranford informed KDQN Monday morning that area men are invited to a men's event at the First Baptist Church in Foreman this Friday night at 7 p.m.

 

Cranford explained men from the area meet every quarter, but once a year they host a big event with a special guest speaker. Cranford said this year's speaker is Mike "the Wildman" Wilson.

 

Wilson started his career with the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission in 1978 as a hunting safety training officer and was named the chief of the Information and Education Division in 1987. He has been named the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission employee of the Year, twice and received the Ducks Unlimited Jerry Jones Sportsman of the Year award in 2011.

 

Cranford said the program is based on Psalm 133, which encourages us to dwell together in unity.

 

For more information, contact Cranford at 903-826-3318 or the First Baptist Church of Foreman at 870-279-1001.

 

 

 

MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT CLAIMS LIFE OF FOREMAN RESIDENT     7/21/15

 

A Foreman man died Thursday from injuries he received from a motorcycle accident on Highway 41 north of Foreman.

 

Dean Nicholas was pronounced dead at 3:12 Thursday afternoon at Christus St. Michael Health System in Texarkana, Texas, according to the crash report from the Arkansas State Police.

 

The accident occurred about 11:50 a.m.

 

According to the report, Nicholas was traveling northbound on a 2000 model Honda motorcycle when he lost control and the motorcycle left the roadway.

 

 

 

THREE MEN DIE IN ACCIDENT NEAR CENTER POINT        7/21/15

 

According to the Arkansas State Police, three men died in a one vehicle accident near the Highway 355 and 278 intersection, south of Center Point in Howard County.

 

The three men were identified as 23-year-old Jose Puente and 20-year-old Jesus Puente, both of Ozan, and 26-year-old Blake Harding of Nashville.

 

Arkansas State Trooper Mason  Glasgow reported the three men were traveling west on Highway 278 in a 1997 Mustang, when the driver, Jose Puente, failed to negotiate a curve.

 

The vehicle struck an embankment and became airborne, hitting several trees with the top of the car. The vehicle then came to rest on its left side in the ditch.

 

According to the report, the accident occurred about 8 p.m. Saturday night, but it wasn't discovered until early Sunday morning.

 

 

17 AREA HUNTERS AMONG 72 WITH ALLIGATOR HUNTING PERMITS     7/20/15

 

Earlier this year, Arkansas hunters applied for and won a coveted alligator hunting permit for this fall.

 

This September, hunters will be able to take alligators that are at least four feet long. Alligators must captured by using a harpoon, snare or noose before they can be killed and the permit allows the holder to harvest one gator.

 

Area winners were Michelle Dudley, Jesse Hinton and Tawna Lansdell all of Ashdown; Jacky Simmons of Lockesburg; Anthony Dinger of De Queen and Jade Hughes and Britany Perry of Nashville.

 

These gator hunters will be allowed to have helpers accompanying them during the weekend hunts.

 

 

 

ASSOCIATION FOR A GREATER YARBOROUGH MEETING       7/20/15

 

The Association for a Greater Yarborough will hold its quarterly meeting on Monday, July 27th at 6 p.m. at the Yarborough Community Center.

 

Board members will be discussing both old and new business items as well as, the Wounded Warrior Hunt that is scheduled for October 21st through October 25th.

 

Board member Frank Cooper mentioned it is important all of the members of the Yarborough community contribute to the success of the hunt and other community projects.

 

For more information, contact Cooper at 870-898-4793.

 

 

 

CRATER OF DIAMONDS HIRES NEW PARK INTERPRETER        7/17/15

 

Park Interpreter Waymon Cox of the Crater of Diamonds State Park introduced Betty Coors has the park’s newest interpreter.

 

Coors is a native of North Little Rock and worked as a dental assistant for 15 years in North Little Rock, Fairfield Bay and Russellville. In 2009, she graduated with honors from Arkansas Tech University and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Recreation and Park Administration with an emphasis in Interpretation and a minor in Anthropology.

 

Coors began her career with the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism in 2006 at Lake Chicot State Park in Lake Village. While attending Arkansas Tech, she completed a college internship at DeGray Lake Resort State Park, in Bismarck. And, for the past five years, she has served as the traveling seasonal interpreter for the Arkansas State Parks Program Services.

 

Coors started working at the Crater of Diamonds in June.

 

 

 

DE QUEEN REGISTRATION         7/20/15

 

De Queen School Media Relations Director, Tammy Whatley, announced this week that registration for the 2015-2016 school year is right around the corner with registration starting at the high school on August 3rd.

 

Registration for the De Queen Primary and the De Queen Elementary will be held on Thursday, August 6th from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 3 to 6 p.m.

 

Middle School Principal Brenda Leeper said registration for the Middle School will be held on Tuesday, August 4th.

 

Counselors from the Junior and Senior highs said registration will start on Monday, August 3rd.

 

De Queen High School pictures for sophomores and juniors will be taken on August 4th and 6th. A copy of the pictures schedule is available at the De Queen High School or you can visit our website at KDQN.net. Senior pictures will be taken on August 3rd.  

 

 

 

DIERKS SCHOOL DISTRICT DEVELOPS INCLEMENT WEATHER BUS ROUTES         7/20/15

 

Dierks Superintendent Holly Cothern informed the Dierks Board of Education that the district was in good financial shape and board members approved a couple of policies that were recommended by the State Board of Education and approved the purchase of a school vehicle from Gentry Chevrolet in De Queen.

 

High School Principal Jody Cowart and Elementary Principal Karla Byrne presented their recommendations to the board concerning the student handbooks.

 

Cothern announced that the district's EAST lab students designed bus routes that will be used during periods of inclement weather and she said if these routes had been implemented last year, the district would have held classes two or three of the days that had to be canceled due to secondary road conditions.

 

Thursday night during a special called meeting, the board accepted a bid in the amount of $17,226 from Mainstream Heating and Cooling to replace and repair several heating and cooling units.

 

 

 

SEVIER COUNTY 8 AND UNDER ALL-STARS GOING TO WORLD SERIES     7/20/15

 

The Sevier County 8 and Under All-Stars recently won the 2015 coach pitch Arkansas State tournament and will represent the state in the 2015 Dixie Youth AA World Series in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

 

The team will participate in the opening ceremony on Sunday, August 2nd and pool play will begin on Monday, August 3rd.

 

Sevier County will play North Myrtle Beach at noon, Alabama at 4:30 and Tennessee at 7:30 on the 3rd and Virginia at noon and Louisiana at 3 on Tuesday, August 4th.

 

Coaches Jaryd Lyon and Codi Pickett announced the team would be holding a few fundraisers to help raise funds for their trip.

 

This Saturday, the All-stars will be holding a bake sale at the De Queen Wal-Mart along with a fishing tournament on the De Queen Lake.

 

The cost to enter the fishing tournament is $60 with a 50 percent payback. The big bass is $15 per boat and its 100 percent payback.

 

For more information, contact Lyon at 870-582-5719 or Pickett at 870-582-1635.

 

  

 

SEVIER COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT      7/20/15

 

During the July 9th session of the Sevier County Circuit Court, 11 defendants changed their pleas to guilty under the terms of plea agreements with the prosecuting attorney’s office.

 

Kevin Bell Lewis pled guilty to theft of property and residential burglary and was sentenced to 12 years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections with 2-suspended.

 

Jason Formby pled guilty to possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of a firearm by a certain person and was sentenced to 4-year in the ADC with 2-suspended.

 

Marvin Gibson pled guilty to battery in the 3rd degree after the state amended the original charge of battery in the 2nd degree. Gibson was sentenced to time served and a $500 fine.

 

Wesley Hirshi pled guilty to theft of property and received 3-years probation.

 

Steven Ray Hogen pled guilty to possession of drug paraphernalia and received 3-years probation.

 

Christopher McDougal pled guilty to theft of property and was sentenced to 7-years in the ADC with 4-years suspended.

 

Andrew Mills pled guilty to theft of property and residential burglary. He was sentenced to 15 years in the ADC with 5-years suspended and Millls will be required to pay $13,200 in restitution.

 

Terrence Neal pled guilty to two counts of deliver of a controlled substance and was sentenced to 14 years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections.

 

Gala Richardson pled guilty to possession of drug paraphernalia and sentenced to 3-years probation. She then had a trial date set for August 23rd for criminal trespass and possession of drug paraphernalia.

 

Dusty Lou Stewart pled guilty to possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of a firearm by a certain person and was sentenced to 6-years in ADC.

 

And Derrick Whitmore pled guilty to possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of meth. He was sentenced to 5-years in the ADC.

 

All defendants were credited with time served.

 

 

12 ARKANSAS AIRPORTS GET $3 MILLION IN FEDERAL MONEY FOR UPGRADES      7/17/16

 

Twelve Arkansas airports have been awarded more than $3 million from the Department of Transportation to support facility upgrades and expansions.

 

The federal funding was announced last week by U.S. Senators John Boozman and Tom Cotton and Congressmen Rick Crawford and Bruce Westerman.

 

According to Sevier County Judge Greg Ray, the J. Lynn Helms/Sevier County Airport will receive approximately $950,000 to build a parallel taxiway. According to the press release the Hope Municipal Airport will also receive funding for some facility upgrades.

 

Judge Ray also announced Pine Ridge Road will open Friday.

 

 

 

ALUMNI SOFTBALL TOURNAMENT SCHEDULED FOR AUGUST 1ST       7/17/15

 

De Queen/Sevier County Chamber of Commerce President, Susan Alspaw, announced this week the De Queen Lady Leopard softball team alumni will be hosting a tournament on Saturday, August 1st at the De Queen Sportsplex.

 

Alspaw said they are needing volunteer umpires and groups or organizations that want to set up some concession booths. She said all of the proceeds will be donated to the Sevier County Relay for Life.

 

Alspaw said they are anticipating an eight team tournament but if you are interested in playing, you can still sign up.

 

For more information, contact Alspaw at 870-584-8763.

 

 

 

DOMESTIC LEADS TO DRUG ARREST        7/17/15

 

Early Wednesday morning, officers with the De Queen Police Department were dispatched to an apartment on Fourth Street for a disturbance that had turned physical and the dispatcher had lost contact with the reporting party.

 

Patrolman First Class Levi Browning and Patrolman David Higgins arrived about 2:34 a.m. and encountered a white male with blood coming from his elbow.

 

The man was identified as 37-year-old Allen Stockdale of De Queen. After speaking with the officers, Stockdale was detained in Patrolman Browning’s vehicle.

 

After Browning asked Stockdale if he had anything on his person that he shouldn’t have, he said he only had a remote in his front pocket and officers went to speak with the reporting party, Marlow Baker.

 

Baker reported she and Stockdale got into an argument because she thought he was acting high. She said she called 911 on her cell phone and after speaking to the dispatcher for a few minutes, Stockdale grabbed her phone and broke it.

 

As the officers were leaving, Baker stated she wanted the remote back.

 

Officer Browning and Higgins returned to the patrol car and asked Stockdale for the remote and he informed them that he took it out of his pocket.

 

After searching the backseat of Browning’s vehicle, the officers found the remote along with a bag of suspected marijuana.

 

Stockdale then became agitated and started cursing the officers. When they arrived at the Sevier County jail, Browning and Higgins placed Stockdale in the drunk tank and he was charged with interference with emergency communication in the 1st degree and possession of a controlled substance, marijuana.

 

A couple of hours later, officers were dispatched to the county jail to assist the jailers because Stockdale had become disorderly and non-compliant while they were processing him. 

 

 

 

MINERAL SPRINGS SCHOOL DISTRICT PURCHASES POLICE CAR FOR RESOURCE OFFICER        7/17/15

 

The Mineral Springs School District plans to continue using a resource officer and during the July meeting of the Mineral Springs School Board voted to purchase a used police car from the city of Dierks.

 

Superintendent Curtis Turner said Officer Brandon Smith was a member of the Mineral Springs Police Department provides an extra level of security on the school campus and during extracurricular and athletic events.

 

Turner informed the board that the resource officer had worked well for the district.

 

Board members also approved the milk bid from Hiland Dairy and a bread bid from Flowers Baking Company.

 

Federal Coordinator Wendy Reed informed the board that the district could only carry over 15 percent of its federal funds to the next school year, so the board voted to purchase Chromebooks with the extra funding for grades two through eight. The Chromebooks will be used this fall.

 

Turner reported the district spent $7,600 on asphalt work around the campus and a bid for new band instruments was also approved.

 

 

 

SEVIER COUNTY FARMERS MARKET WILL BE OPEN THIS SATURDAY       7/17/15

 

Angela Smith of the Sevier County Farmers Market announced Wednesday morning that the market is open every Wednesday and Saturday from 7:30 to 11 a.m. and you can find everything you need for any meal.

 

Smith said they offer all kinds of fresh vegetables along with jams, jellies and an assortment of baked goods and she mentioned some of the items that she expects will be for sell this Saturday.

 

For more information, contact Smith at 870-642-2718.

 

 

Yarborough Landing & Jack’s Isle boat launch set to re-open        7/16/15

Millwood Lake floodwater’s receding 

 

Little River County Judge Mike Cranford announced today that after being closed for 49 days the boat launch areas at Yarborough Landing & Jack’s Isle are scheduled to reopen on Friday, July 17, 2015.  Patterson Shoals area will continue to be closed until further notice. 

 

Cranford stated that he had visited the areas affected regularly since the date of closure & the levels are back to a point deemed usable for area fisherman.  “Although we are opening the ramps on Friday, we are cautioning everyone who accesses the lake to use extreme care,’’ said Cranford. 

 

Corps of Engineers personnel has advised that the lake is still in an unusual state due to the displacement of river buoys & the tremendous number of grass mats & alligator weed that are floating everywhere.  Floating debris & unseen objects just under the surface of the water could also pose a problem for area boaters.

 

Cranford also stated that “he greatly appreciated the patience & understanding of the area boaters during these extremely troublesome times.”

 

For more information you can contact the Little River County Judges office at (870) 898-7202 

 

  

 

HORATIO SCHOOL DISTRICT RECEIVES $660,000 GRANT      7/16/15

 

Horatio Superintendent Lee Smith announced Monday night during the regular meeting of the Horatio Board of Education that the district had been notified that they had received a 21st Century grant, totaling $660,000.

 

Smith said board members also approved some policy changes and raised the price of school breakfast to $1 and lunches to $2.

 

Smith said the new student handbook will also be available electronically.

 

Board members also accepted the resignation of Joshua Fleming who was a teacher and coach.

 

  

FOREMAN SCHOOL DISTRICT HIRES NEW COACHES       7/16/15

 

The Foreman Board of Education hired a new head football and head baseball coach recently and Superintendent George Kennedy stated the male athletes were excited about the new additions.

 

Neil Evans will not only serve as the head football coach, but he will also lead the Gator track program.

 

Mark Hill will teach History and serve as an assistant football coach, as well as coaching the baseball team.

 

Kennedy also announced the district voted to purchase a new scoreboard for the football field and the board is also considering additional upgrades to the baseball and softball facilities.

 

Kennedy said the board also approved the purchase of some new academic software from Edmentum in the about of $31,922.

 

Kennedy said the board may meet during a special later this month to hire some personal and handle any unfinished business before the start of school in August.

 

  

DISORDERLY CONDUCT LEADS TO PAROLEES ARREST       7/16/15

 

Tuesday afternoon, Patrolman J.J. Lopez of the De Queen Police Department noticed a driver not wearing his seat belt on Highway 70. He then conducted a traffic stop in Jack Wray's Body Shop parking lot.

 

The driver was identified as 27-year-old Jason Short and the passenger was Bendigo Greenwood.

 

Lopez wrote Short a citation for not wearing his seat belt and asked him to step out of the vehicle. Short was asked if there was anything illegal in the vehicle and Short responded that he didn't have time for this that he was needing to get to work.

 

Officer Lopez then advised Short that he didn't need his consent to search the vehicle because he was on parole. At that point, Short got upset and began cursing at Lopez and Sergeant Chad Bradshaw.

 

Sergeant Bradshaw then proceeded to detain Short; he tensed up and would not comply with the officer’s instructions. Short began yelling and according to the arrest report, continued to resist.

 

A search of the vehicle did not uncover anything illegal and Greenwood was allowed to drive Short's truck away.

 

Short was processed into the Sevier County jail on the charge of disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.

 

  

MOM ARRESTED FOR ASSAULTING DAUGHTER       7/16/15

 

Saturday, July 11th, Sevier County Sheriff's Deputy Greg Davignon was dispatched to a residence on Crosstrails Road in reference to a domestic altercation between a mother and her daughter.

 

As Davignon was driving to the scene, he noticed a female juvenile walking down the road. He reported she appeared to have a swollen face and he stopped and asked her what had happened to her.

 

Davignon reported the juvenile told him, her mom had punched her in the face several times, chocked her and attempted to burn her with a cigarette.

 

The juvenile also stated she bit her mom, so she would let her go.

 

When Deputy Davignon interviewed the mother, 37-year-old Patricia Williams of De Queen, she allegedly admitted to drinking and to fighting with her daughter.

 

 Williams was taken into custody and charged with aggravated assault on a family or household member and domestic battery in the 3rd degree.

 

The juvenile was taken to the emergency room at the De Queen Medical Center and then released into the custody of the Department of Human Services.

  

 

FARM BUREAU LEADERS TO #BEVOCAL IN HOT SPRINGS      7/16/15

 

The Arkansas Farm Bureau's 67th annual Officers and Leaders Conference is set for July 20-21 at the Hot Springs Convention Center. The conference theme is #BeVocal, and it will feature speakers such as Arkansas Secretary of Agriculture Wes Ward and Greg Peterson of the Peterson Farm Brothers, a YouTube sensation and advocate for farming.

 

Secretary Ward will speak Monday afternoon, July 20th, along with Arkansas Farm Bureau President Randy Veach. Peterson will discuss "Advocating Agriculture through Social Media" at 10 a.m. on Tuesday.

 

Workshops at the conference will cover topics such as commodity trends, the state water-plan, genetically enhanced crops and state and federal legislative issues.

 

About 500 Farm Bureau leaders are expected to attend the mid-summer conference.

 

Veach said Farm Bureau will continue to encourage their volunteer leaders to advocate for farming and for farm issues.

 

At the conference, the organization will also recognize its Young Farmer and Rancher Achievement Award finalists as well as recipients of the Romeo E. Short Farm Bureau Foundation and the Marvin Vines Memorial scholarships.

 

  

FEMA, STATE GRANTS WILL NOT AFFECT SOCIAL SECURITY OR BENEFITS       7/16/15

 

Arkansas residents who are rebuilding after the severe storms of late spring will not lose Social Security benefits, pay additional taxes, or give up income-based benefit programs if they accept federal or state disaster aid.

 

According to recovery officials from FEMA and the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management, in most cases, the Social Security Administration does not count federal or state disaster aid as income.

 

For more information or to apply for assistance, individuals and business owners in Howard, Little River, Miller and Sevier counties, may register online at disasterassistance.gov or call 1-800-621-3362.

 

  

REGISTERING WITH STATE, VOLUNTEER AGENCIES NOT THE SAME AS FEMA      7/16/15

 

Many Arkansas residents who suffered damage during the severe storms in late spring may have registered for assistance with state or volunteer agencies. However, this is not the same as registering with FEMA for disaster aid.

 

While FEMA, the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management and volunteer agencies often work together, their missions, programs and funding are not the same. Residents should register with FEMA for access to federal disaster assistance.

 

FEMA is funded by congress and administers disaster programs determined by federal officials and requested by the state. Disaster declarations by the State of Arkansas provide some assistance based on state criteria, but that aid is "turned off" when a federal declaration is made to avoid duplicating benefits.

 

Volunteer agencies that provide individuals and families with immediate necessities and emergency services raise their funds publicly and determine their own programs.

 

The disaster declaration on June 26th, put in place several sources of federal funding. It is available to residents in nine Arkansas counties that were affected by the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding during the period of May 7th to June 15th. Those counties include: Crawford, Garland, Howard, Jefferson, Little River, Miller, Perry, Sebastian and Sevier.

 

Individuals and business owners who sustained losses in those counties can apply for federal assistance by registering online at www.disasterassistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621-3362 or by web-enabled mobile device at m.fema.gov.

 

  

WEEKEND HOURS TO CHANGE AT DISASTER RECOVERY CENTER IN HOWARD COUNTY       7/16/15

 

Weekend hours at the disaster recovery center in Howard County will change beginning this Saturday. The center provides help to those whose homes or businesses were affected by the severe storms between May 7th and June 15th.

 

Effective immediately, the center will be open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays and the center will be closed on Sundays.

 

Representatives from the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management, FEMA, the U.S. Small Business Administration and other agencies are at the center to explain disaster assistance programs and help survivors apply for aid.

 

Anyone who sustained damage in Howard, Little River, Miller or Sevier counties can visit the disaster recovery center.

 

  

WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO SEXUAL ASSAULT OF MINOR        7/16/15

 

A 35-year-old Wilton woman plead guilty to the charge of sexual assault of a 13-year-old boy after she gave him Xanax, marijuana and alcohol, this week in the Little River County Circuit Court.

 

Deby Hill changed her plea to guilty as part of a plea agreement before 9th District Circuit Court Judge Charles Yeargan. Hill was originally charged with rape.

 

Hill was sentenced to 20-years in the Arkansas Department of Correction with 3-years suspended and she will have to register as a sex offender.

 

According to court documents, Hill was arrested on July 6th, 2014 after the mother of the victim reported that Hill had sexually assaulted her son.

 

The boy said he and Hill had had sex on two separate occasions in March of 2014 and that she provided him with alcohol and Xanax.

 

 

18 WHEELER RIDES THE RAIL    07/15/15

 

An accident involving this 18 wheeler occurred Monday, July 13th on Hwy 71 south near the Ben Lomond cutoff.

The semi ran up on the railing which then became embedded in the truck.

 

 

 

DE QUEEN NATIVE TO ATTEND CLASS AT PEPPERDINE UNIVERSITY    07/15/15

 

A De Queen-born man has been selected to be a panelist at the prestigious National Institute of Public Finance at Pepperdine University in California

Jim Harris, chief of staff for Arkansas State Treasurer Dennis Milligan, is scheduled to go to the NIPF's school at Pepperdine to obtain a Certificate in Executive Public Treasury Management (CPTM) during classes set for July 26-29.

He is the grandson of the late Lewis and Leona Caplinger of De Queen. He was born in De Queen General Hospital in 1953 while his mother, Rita Harris, was staying with her parents. His father was fighting the Battle of Pork Chop Hill in the Korean War when he was born.

The CPTM is the only certificate program designed exclusively for public treasury professionals. Participants will learn the core technical skill sets required of public treasuries nationwide.

"It is an honor to be selected to speak to my peers across the nation during a panel discussion on the challenges of coming into an office following the last elected official leaving the office in disgrace and in a mess," Harris said.

Those attending will gain specialized expertise by studying the three distinct tracks offered: Investments and Pensions, Executive Public Treasury Management, and Public Finance and Debt Management.

The Institute's new partnership with Pepperdine University represents a collaborative effort between the Foundation and the University's Schools of Business and Public Policy. This is the first time these courses will be taught to treasury employees.

Harris has been active in the National Association of State Treasurers since becoming Milligan's chief of staff on Jan. 14, 2015.

The NAST Foundation is dedicated to enhancing government officials' understanding of public financial management, and providing educational materials and opportunities to all individuals and/or parties interested in understanding public and personal financial management.

The Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization, founded by NAST for the purpose of providing education and support that enable member states to pursue and administer sound financial policies and programs benefiting the nation's citizens.

Membership is composed of all state treasurers or state finance officials with comparable responsibilities from the United States, its commonwealths, territories, and the District of Columbia.

The NIPF website says: "The Institute and Certificate in Public Treasury Management program bring together the nation’s most respected public finance industry experts, including both public and private-sector professionals and accomplished academic leaders to help members enhance their skill set and operate at the highest levels.
 

 

 A FORMER MINERAL SPRINGS MINISTER ACCUSED OF SEXUAL ASSAULT IN POPE COUNTY       7/15/15

 

The former youth minister of the Mineral Springs Church of Christ has been arrested for the second time this year and is being accused of sexually assaulting a college student in Russellville.

 

Jonathan Neeley, of Nashville, turned himself in on Friday, July 10th after discovering that there was a warrant for his arrest in Pope County.

 

According to court documents, between July 1st, 2012 and June 30th, 2013, Neeley sexually assaulted an intern who was working directly for him at a student center near the Arkansas Tech University campus.

 

The victim reported Neeley started by asking her questions about her past experiences and telling her how beautiful she was.

 

She said the relationship became physical and it happened nearly every time they were together. She said at one point, she told Neeley that she was concerned about committing adultery and he allegedly told her that "God wants this."

 

She said he told her that they hadn't been caught because their activities were something that God wanted.

 

Neeley faces four charges of third-degree sexual assault, in which a member of the clergy uses their authority over a victim in a position of trust to engage in "sexual deviate activity."

 

Neeley was arrested in February on suspicion of first-degree sexual assault in Howard County after several women filed reports saying he sexually abused them while he was their youth minister.

 

 

 

DE QUEEN SCHOOL BOARD APPROVES DISTRICT WIDE DYSLEXIA PROGRAM       7/15/15

 

Monday night during the monthly meeting of the De Queen Board of Education, board members approved the material for the district's dyslexia intervention program.

 

Board President Randy Hedge informed the board that he felt this was a positive change and it will be one of the better investments in the district. Hedge said the district selected the Barton program material.

 

Board members voted to accept the recommendations of the Middle, Junior and Senior high administrators concerning the district's unexcused absence policy and Superintendent Bruce Hill announced the district would be partnering with the Primary PTO to expand the playground after students raised about $2,500 during their pennies for the playground fundraiser.

 

Board members accepted the bread bid from Flowers Baking Company, but tabled a decision on the milk bids. They also accepted a bid in the amount of $66,275 from Tri-Lakes Services, Inc. to renovate the backstops for the baseball and softball fields. 

 

 

 

HORATIO RESIDENT KILLED IN FARMING ACCIDENT      7/15/15

 

Saturday afternoon, a Horatio resident was killed in a farming accident on Fischer Road.

 

Sevier County Sheriff's Investigator Robert Gentry reported that John Nix informed him that he and the deceased, 49-year-old Anthony Culp, were loading a tractor and a hay baler onto a 24-foot trailer and the left tire of the baler ran off the side of the loading ramp.

 

Nix said Culp was working to put a floor jack and some wooden blocks under the baler to raise it up, so they could slide the ramp under it.

 

Nix said the baler then rolled backwards and ran over Culp.

 

Culp was pronounced dead by the Sevier County Coroner, Rusty Williams at 1:43 p.m.

 

 

 

SEVIER COUNTY QUORUM COURT MEMBERS GIVEN UPDATE CONCERNING COUNTY REAPPRAISAL RATES      7/15/15

 

Sevier County Assessor Judy Smith, along with DeWayne Mack and Lindsy Nutt, gave the members of the Sevier County Quorum Court a report concerning the county's reappraisal process.

 

Smith stated letters will be mailed to county residents explaining the change in their property tax rates.

 

Mack informed the Quorum Court that home values went up 2 percent, business values went up 7 percent, but agri values went down 12 percent.

 

JPs also heard from Omar Gallardo and Victor Rojas Jr., from the Arkansas United Community Coalition, which is a non-profit organization that helps immigrants in Southwest Arkansas.

 

Gallardo said for more information, you may contact him at 870-279-5177 or email him at sworganizer@arkansascoalition.org.

 

JPs also approved an ordinance to amend the 2015 budget and County Judge Greg Ray introduced the Joyce Short who is working with the Sevier County Senior Adult Center.

 

 

ARNEC IMPROVES EDUCATION DELIVERY      7/14/15

 

The Arkansas Rural Nursing Education Consortium has announced an alternative course delivery in addition to the current face-to-face education being offered for the fall semester.

 

The Arkansas Rural Nursing Education Consortium is a group of eight community colleges that collaborated to provide students an opportunity for an Associate Degree in Registered Nursing. Students who are already accepted will benefit from the new learning delivery offered in the fall.

 

Many of the courses are taught using an interactive video delivery for lectures; however, this fall will feature face-to-face instruction and a live streaming option for a hybrid component for some classes. Students will be allowed to choose the delivery method they prefer on specific days. The hybrid incorporates students remotely accessing live lectures online.

 

The deadline for applications is August 31st. Classes start in January for new students and they will include course work as well as on-site clinical work in nursing homes, hospitals, and clinics. In January, face-to-face delivery will be an option for one class per week.

 

Student applications for the program can be submitted online and obtained from the consortium's website: www.arnec.org. The applications are due by August 31st for the class beginning in January 2016. The website also has details and a complete description of the application process, requirements and program contacts.

 

 

 

FEMA EXPERTS OFFER IDEAS TO LESSEN IMPACT OF DISASTER DAMAGE       7/14/15

 

Teams of specialists from the Federal Emergency Management Agency will be offering tips and techniques to lessen the impact of disaster-related property damage at building supply stores in four Arkansas locations beginning today.

 

In Sevier County, FEMA specialists will be at the Bailey Discount Building Supply at 880 East Collin Raye Drive in De Queen from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Thursday and on Fridays and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to noon until Friday, July 24th.

 

FEMA specialists offer "how-to" information on both retrofitting buildings to making them more resistant to wind damage and ways to elevate utilities against flood damage. They also provide tips to clean and help prevent mold and mildew.

 

Many of the tips and techniques are specifically geared for the do-it-yourselfer and for building contractors.

 

FEMA offers a number of free online resources for home and property owners. To get started, go to www.fema.gov/safer-stronger-protected-homes-communities.

 

 

 

FEMA EXPERTS SPEAK IN HOWARD COUNTY DURING PUBLIC MEETING     7/14/15

 

A disaster recovery center is now open in Howard County to help those whose homes or businesses were affected by severe storms during the period of May 7th to June 15th.

 

Representatives from the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Small Business Administration and other agencies will be at the Carter Day Center to explain disaster assistance programs and help survivors apply for aid.

 

The center will be open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday and on Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. until further notice. Friday, Earl Armstrong with FEMA spoke with KMTB's Jonathan Canaday about how local citizens can apply for assistance.

 

Susheel Kumar is the public information officer for the Small Business Administration and he explained to Canaday how businesses can apply for federal disaster loans in addition to renters, homeowners and private nonprofit organizations.

 

Those seeking disaster assistance should register with FEMA before going to disaster recovery center. Individuals and families who suffered losses as a result of the late spring storms may register online at www.disasterassistance.gov or call 1-800-621-3362. The toll-free number will operate from 6 a.m. until 9 p.m. seven days a week until further notice.

 

 

 

FEMA VISITS LITTLE RIVER COUNTY FOR REGISTRATION DRIVE     7/14/15

 

FEMA staff members will be temporarily stationed at the Sevier County Courthouse and the Little River County Courthouse Annex today to meet with survivors of the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds and flooding survivors of May 7 through June 15th.

 

Staff members will be at the Sevier County Courthouse from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. and at the Little River County Courthouse Annex from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 14th. Representatives will answer questions and help with the registration process for disaster assistance.

 

Those with questions can also contact the FEMA Helpline at 1-800-621-3362 or from a web-enabled phone at m.fema.gov. Residents may also register online at www.disasterassistance.gov.

 

 

 

JUDGE TEDDER REMINDS AREA RESIDENTS OF THE IMPORTANCE OF APPEARING IN COURT        7/14/15

 

Sevier County District Court Judge Stephen Tedder took the time Monday morning to remind area residents that the District Court of Sevier County is in session today and it's important for residents with citations to appear.

 

Tedder said 90 percent of citations are for traffic violations and those citations are not punishable by jail time, but if you don't appear, a warrant for your arrest will be issued.

 

Tedder stated if you received a citation for a traffic violation, you can visit the District Court Clerks and arrange to take care of the fine before your court date.

 

Tedder also reminded residents that citations never go away and will be dealt with, one way or another.

 

If you have any questions about a citation that you have received, you may contact the District Court Office by calling 870-584-7311.

 

 

 

REPRESENTATIVE VAUGHT ENCOURAGES RESIDENTS TO SERVE AS FOSTER CARE PARENTS       7/14/15

 

Last week, Governor Asa Hutchinson asked faith based groups to help meet fill some critical needs in the state when it comes to the foster care of children and helping inmates adjust to life outside of prison.

 

Church and faith based leaders are being asked to attend a summit in Little Rock on August 25th and 26th to find out how they can help. But, District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught stated, even if you don't attend the summit, your organization has the opportunity to help especially when it comes to foster children.

 

According to the Department of Human Services, there are more than 4,400 children currently in foster care with only 2,500 approved beds.

 

Through foster care, families have the chance to make the world a better place, one child at a time. The job of a foster care parent has been described as the most challenging step someone will ever take in their life, but it may also be the most rewarding opportunity.

 

Children enter foster care through no fault of their own. Some have experienced abuse or neglect in their homes and need a safe and stable home until they can be safely reunited with their families or adopted.

 

Foster parents are needed in every part of the state.  

 

According to a spokesperson from the Department of Human Services, the key qualification to being a foster parent is to be able to meet the physical, emotional and developmental needs of a child.

 

Applicants may be single, married, divorced, or widowed for at least one year. They must be between the ages of 21 and 65 and pass safety, health and background checks. The approval process may take up to six months after an applicant files the application.

 

If you think your home is right to foster a child, visit the website, www.fosterarkansas.org.

 

 

Report on the June 2015 Chalice Cupboard Food Ministry   07/13/15

         

The Chalice Cupboard assisted 42 families in Sevier County, including 80 adults and 54 children, totaling 134 people.  Distributions of food in June totaled 1,021 pounds from donated food and food purchased--thanks to gifts of money.

         

One supporting church during the month was St. Barbara Catholic Church, donating 56 pounds.  Individuals donated 197 pounds—including a memorial gift of 154 pounds. The organization of Sevier County 4-H donated 49 pounds.  Anonymous gifts received totaled 16 pounds.  All food items received totaled 318 pounds.  Selected food items purchased for the pantry during May totaled 644 pounds. Total food added last month--962 pounds.

         

The bank balance on June 1, 2015, was $3,178.55.  Deposits for the month were $851.00.  $654.37 was spent to replenish special food items for the pantry.  The balance on June 30, 2015, was $3,379.18.  

         

Persons living in Sevier County are given needed food at the Chalice Cupboard located at 315 North Fifth Street in De Queen, on Tuesday and Wednesday--from 2:00 till 3:15 p.m.  Food is distributed to those assisted only once each three-month period of the year: January-February-March/ April-May-June/ July-August-September/ and October-November-December.

         

Those giving food may select their choice of non-perishable food items for donation.  We often suggest food items to help others in need, such as canned fruit, spaghetti and peanut butter.  Money or checks given to the Chalice Cupboard are IRS tax deductible gifts, and your gift may be mailed to the address above—or you may give your support directly to the "Chalice Cupboard" food ministry through the Bear State Bank, 504 Collin Raye Drive, De Queen, telephone 642-2911.

         

Note:  Deposits during June included a donation of $700.00 from the De Queen-Sevier County Chamber of Commerce Leadership Class.

 

FIRST ASSEMBLY OF GOD CHURCH TO HOST STATE CHOIR      7/13/15

 

This Tuesday, July 14th, area residents will have the opportunity to hear the 2015 All-State Assemblies of God Youth Choir in the sanctuary of the First Assembly of God Church in De Queen at 7 p.m.

 

Youth Pastor Jonathan Reynolds stated the choir is comprised of students from all over Arkansas.

 

Reynolds the choir is led by Megan McClure of Van Buren. He said choir members auditioned during the spring and will tour the state during the month of July.

 

For more information, contact the First Assembly of God Church of De Queen at 870-584-3435.

 

 

 

STATE FORGES UNIQUE JUVENILE JUSTICE PARTNERSHIP      7/13/15

 

Youth at the Arkansas Juvenile Assessment and Treatment Center in Bryant will now have the opportunity to receive college-level instruction and credit through an agreement with Shorter College and the Arkansas Department of Human Services, Division of Youth Services.

 

According to Victor Rojas Jr., this is the first time youth in the juvenile justice system in Arkansas have been given access to on-site, college-level instruction that is led by a credentialed professor.

 

Shorter College is a private, two-year, historically black liberal arts college in North Little Rock. It will offer youth academic programming toward an Associates of Arts Degree in Basic Studies. Once students transition out of the Treatment Center, they will be able to complete their degree program at Shorter College or transfer their credits to other colleges across the state through the Arkansas Credit Transfer Program. 

 

Rojas said he applauded the partnership between the Department of Human Services and Shorter College. It said he feels it will help change the lives of youth in the juvenile justice system to pursue a higher education.

 

Rojas explained that in the 21st century economy, education is a vital part to ensuring ones financial security. He said quality education is and will always be, an essential component in preventing delinquency.

 

  

 

ARKANSAS EDUCATION BOARD APPROVES CHANGE IN TEST SUPPLIER      7/13/15

 

The Arkansas Board of Education approved a new standardized test provider to replace the controversial Common Core assessment provider, Assessment Readiness for College and Careers, less than a month after rejecting the same move.

 

The education board voted, 4-2, with two abstentions, Thursday morning to authorize officials to sign a contract with the ACT and ACT Aspire. However, this board includes three new members that were appointed by Governor Asa Hutchinson after two members' terms expired and a third member resigned after taking a position with the Walton Foundation.

 

All three of Hutchinson's new appointments voted for the switch.

 

Arkansas Education Commissioner Johnny Key provided the board with the benefits of the ACT switch and suggested that it would provide a better methodology and help prepare students from a young age to take the ACT college readiness exam.

 

 

 

CONSUMER ALERT: MILITARY CONSUMER PROTECTION DAY       7/13/15

 

Military service members, veterans and their families are often subject to unfair, deceptive or abusive financial practices. The Consumer Protection Bureau began collecting data specific to military personnel and their families in 2011 and reports approximately 29,500 complaints were submitted through 2014.

 

The bureau reported 39 percent of those complaints were on debt collection, with the majority of those regarding continued attempts to collect debt this is not owed.

 

Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge issued a consumer alert to help recognize Military Consumer Protection Day on July 15th and to make military service members, veterans and their families aware of the top consumer complaints so they will know how to get help with these issues.

 

Rutledge reported there were 11,600 complaints filed concerning debt collection; 7,100 complaints were filed regarding mortgage payment and loans; there were 2,700 complaints about credit reporting and 2,400 complaints concerning bank accounts and services.

 

Arkansas military service members, veterans and their families should file complaints with the Attorney General’s office at ArkansasAG.gov or call 1-800-482-8982. Within five business days, a postcard should be received in the mail acknowledging the receipt of the complaint, and a copy of the complaint will be sent to the business. Business should then respond within 10 business days.

 

Military Consumer Protection Day is an initiative to empower active duty and retired service members, veterans and their families and help defend them against fraud and help them make better-informed decisions.

 

 

 

DISASTER UNEMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE AVAILABLE       7/13/15

 

Individuals who have become unemployed as a direct result of the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds and flooding that began in Crawford, Garland, Howard, Jefferson, Little River, Miller, Perry, Sebastian and Sevier counties on May 7th through June 15th may be eligible for Disaster Unemployment Assistance, according to Daryl Bassett, the director of Arkansas’ Department of Workforce Services.

 

At the request of Governor Asa Hutchinson, a federal disaster declaration was issued, designating those nine counties as federal disaster areas.

 

Among the different types of assistance available to individuals and households by the federal disaster declaration is Disaster Unemployment Assistance. Individuals who have temporarily lost jobs because of the disaster and do not qualify for regular unemployment insurance benefits, such as self-employed individuals, may be eligible for DUA, which provides unemployment benefits up to 32 weeks.

 

The first possible week of compensation for DUA purposes is the week ending May 16th, and the last possible week of compensation is the week ending December 26th.

 

DUA claims may be filed at the following area Department of Workforce Services offices: if you live in Howard County go to the Hope local office at 205 Smith Road, Suite A, or you may call them at 870-777-3421; if you live in Miller, Little River or Sevier counties go to the Texarkana local office at 1702 Hampton Road, or you may call them at 870-216-4011.

 

Claims for these nine counties must be filed between now and July 30th at a DWS office between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

 

DWS offices will also provide re-employment assistance where appropriate. Claims filed after the deadline will be considered untimely and benefits will be denied, unless the individual can provide a good cause for filing after the deadline.

 

To be eligible for benefits, individuals must have worked or have been scheduled to work in the disaster area, but because of the disaster, they no longer have a job, a place to work in the area or could not get to their place of work because of disaster damage. They may also qualify if they have been prevented from working because of an injury or illness that resulted from the disaster. Benefits may also be available to self-employed individuals who have lost all or part of their livelihood as a result of the disaster.

 

Each claim is considered individually, therefore, individuals who believe they may be eligible should bring their government issued photo ID, Social Security card, the name and address of their last place of employment and documents verifying income, such as income tax statements, recent pay stubs, W-2 forms or some other proof of net income for 2014.

 

Bassett said DWS officials understand that because of property losses some claimants may not have the necessary 2014 income information. Although this will result in some delays, DWS staff will make every effort to work with DUA claimants to confirm their income information and expedite the claims-taking procedure. 

 

 

 

GROUPS SEEKING DISPLAYS ON ARKANSAS CAPITOL GROUNDS   7/13/15 

 

Arkansas' decision to put a display of the Ten Commandments on the Capitol grounds may lead to other monuments, including a statue of a monkey-faced deity, a banner promoting a vegan lifestyle and a Satanic statue of a goat-headed figure.

 

Groups advocating for separation of church and state are considering the monuments after the Oklahoma Supreme Court ordered the Ten Commandments that's on display outside the Capitol building in Oklahoma City be taken down because the state constitution bars the government from doing anything to benefit a religion.

 

Arkansas lawmakers passed a law during this year's legislative session that emulated the Oklahoma law that authorized their Ten Commandments display.

 

Representatives of the Satanic Temple, Hindus and animal rights groups say these symbols should be displayed alongside the Ten Commandments because they represent their deeply held beliefs.

 

 

 

WORKSHOP TO PROMOTE ADVANTAGES OF FARM-TO-SCHOOL PROGRAM OCT. 15           7/13/15

 

Arkansas Children's Hospital Research Institute has a workshop planned to educate schools, farmers and communities on the advantages of participating in a Farm-to-School program.

 

The Regional Farm-to-School workshop is being hosted by the institute's Childhood Obesity Prevention Research program in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

 

The workshop will be October 15th at the Southwest Research and Extension facility in Hope to help educate school personnel, farmers and community partners. The workshop will be limited to 50 people and 10 travel scholarships are available.

 

Workshop participates will learn how to menu, market and prepare local foods in schools and they will get some hands-on culinary skills training for school cafeteria staff; learn business and production planning for farmers and find out about food safety for farmers and schools.

 

For more information or to register call 501-364-3360.

 

 

 

UA COSSATOT TO UNVEIL NEW WEBSITE        7/10/15

 

Members of the UA Cossatot Board of Visitors were informed that the college had accomplished all of objectives, except for one, in their current 5-year strategic plan, Project 2016. UA Cossatot Chancellor Dr. Steve Cole said a committee has already started working on Project 2020.

 

Dr. Cole stated he felt the college's long range planning projects reveal the college’s passion for education and workforce development.

 

Cole said starting this fall UA Cossatot will focused on programs that will move students into the workplace or offer them more university transferable degrees.

 

Dr. Cole also announced UA Cossatot will also be unveiling a new website and a mobile app later this summer, so students may enroll online.

 

 

 

GAME AND FISH FOUNDATION SELECTS HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES     7/10/15

 

The Arkansas Game and Fish Foundation has chosen a Howard County resident as one of its 2015 Arkansas Outdoor Hall of Fame inductees.

 

This year's inductees include Steve Bowman of Little Rock. Bowman is an outdoor writer and editor; the late Joel Campora of Waldron. Campora was an Arkansas Game and Fish Commission wildlife officer who died in the line of duty while trying to rescue two women from floodwaters in 2013; George Dunklin Jr. of Stuttgart who is a past Arkansas Game and Fish Commissioner and current chairman of international Ducks Unlimited; And, Jerry Fisk of Nashville who is a master bladesmith and artist.

 

The Legacy Award will go to Jim Gaston, who played a key role in establishing trout fishing and promoting tourism in Arkansas.

 

The Arkansas Outdoor Hall of Fame Banquet will be Friday, August 21st at the Statehouse Convention Center in downtown Little Rock. Tickets are $100 and a reception and silent auction will begin at 6 p.m. followed by dinner at 7.

 

To purchase tickets or for more information, contact the Game and Fish Foundation office at 501-223-6468.

 

 

 

NASHVILLE RURAL WATER APPROVES PROJECT REVENUE BOND      7/10/15

 

The Nashville Rural Water Association held a public meeting this week to address any concerns association members may of had concerning the boards plans to start an expansion project.

 

There were no comments from the public and the board approved a resolution to authorize a revenue bond in the amount of $2.51 million dollars for the construction and financing of the project.

 

Board President Mark Dowdy said it was just a legal formality and that everything was ready to begin.

 

Water manager Ryan Stuckey said the loan will close on July 15th and a notice to proceed will be filed two days later. He said the project should provide plenty of water to all parts of the system and will include some major upgrades.

 

Stuckey explained that there will be about 22 miles of piping, most of it will be large diameter pipe that will reinforce two pressure zones and he said these improvements were needed because of the increase in water demand.

 

The project will include running a line that will tie both pressure zones together, which will allow water to be moved between the two zones without an alternate power source, in the event of an emergency.

 

Stuckey said the improvements should last for the next 30 to 40 years. Stuckey said the association will use its existing easements to run pipe along Mount Pleasant Drive to Highway 26 and east to the Pike County line.

 

But, if you have ay questions, contact the Nashville Rural Water Association at 870-845-5442.

 

 

 

AG URGES CONGRESS TO PRESERVE STATE AUTHORITY TO ENFORCE DATA BREACH AND SECURITY LAWS       7/10/15

 

Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge co-sponsored a bipartisan, multi-state letter to the U.S. Congress in an effort to ensure that any future federal data breach notification or data security law provides consumers with the best protection.

 

The letter was signed by 47 attorneys general and emphasized the importance of maintaining States' authority to enforce data breach and data security laws, as well as their ability to enact laws to address future data security risks.

 

Citing recent efforts in Congress to pass a national law on data breach notification and data security, Rutledge and other attorneys general cautioned Congress against federal preemption of State data breach and security laws and argued that any federal law must not diminish the important role States already have to protect consumers from data breaches and identity theft.

 

According to the letter, since 2005, nearly 5,000 data breaches have compromised more than 815 million records containing sensitive information about consumers and that States have been at the forefront in helping consumers deal with the repercussions of data breaches and in providing important assistance to consumers who have been impacted.

 

Forty-seven states now have laws requiring data collectors to notify consumers when their personal information has been compromised, and a number of states have also passed laws requiring companies to adopt reasonable data security practices.

 

 

 

STORM SURVIVORS CAN REGISTER FOR ASSISTANCE ONLINE 24/7      7/10/15

 

Residents in nine Arkansas counties included in the federal disaster declaration can register for assistance anytime online.

 

Those affected by severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding between May 7th and June 15th in Crawford, Garland, Howard, Jefferson, Little River, Miller, Perry, Sebastian and Sevier counties may be eligible for assistance.

 

Individuals and business owners can register online, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or with any web-enabled mobile device, tablet or smartphone at m.fema.gov, just follow the link to "Apply online for FEMA Assistance."

 

FEMA's toll-free telephone number is 1-800-621-3362 and it is open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. seven days a week until further notice and multilingual operators are available.

 

 

DE QUEEN CITY COUNCIL VOTED TO PURCHASE NEW WATER PUMP       7/9/15

 

Water Superintendent Jeff Brown informed the De Queen City Council, Tuesday night that his department needed to replace the pump, motor and base at the high-lift station on Stilwell Avenue.

 

Brown reminded the council that last month, they approved having the bearings and packing replaced in the old motor, but after the service men inspected the motor, they determined it would only cost a little more to replace, the motor, pump and base instead of rebuilding them.

 

Brown reported it would cost about $20,000 to rebuild the pump and motor, but it would only cost an extra $812 to purchase a new pump and motor.

 

Brown said the old motor was installed at the lift station in 1963.

 

Aldermen voted to purchase a new motor, pump and base.

 

Aldermen approved an ordinance to waive any competitive bidding on the purchase of a used dump truck in the amount of $40,950 and a resolution to sell the 1991 Ford F-800 truck that the city received in a vehicle swap with the county.

 

Aldermen heard a report concerning the city's agreement with Vyve Broadband. McKelvy stated there were about 300 Vyve subscribers in De Queen and that Greg Fender of Local Government Services said Vyve owed the city a little over a $1,000 in franchise revenue.

 

Aldermen also approved a resolution accepting the 2013 audit of the city's general and street fund accounts.

 

 

 

HUGE BLAZE IN POTTER, ARKANSAS DESTROYS BUSINESS      7/9/15

 

According to a report from our sister station in Mena, firefighters from three departments and Polk County Sheriff's deputies responded to a fire call at approximately 8:20 p.m. Tuesday evening.

 

Carl's Furniture in Potter, next to the old Sale Barn, was fully engulfed when members of the Potter, Mena and Hatfield fire departments arrived on the scene.

 

Sheriff's deputies were on the scene to handle traffic while firefighters had the northbound lane blocked due to the proximity of the building to Highway 71.

 

 

 

DISASTER RECOVERY CENTERS OPEN IN HOWARD AND JEFFERSON COUNTIES      7/9/15

 

Disaster recovery centers opened in Howard and Jefferson counties at noon today, to help those whose homes or businesses were affected by the severe storms in May and June.

 

Representatives from the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Small Business Administration and other agencies will be at the centers to explain disaster assistance programs and help survivors apply for aid.

 

The center in Howard County will be in the Carter Day Training Center in Nashville. The center is located at 200 Lake Nichols Drive.

 

The center will be open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday and on Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. until further notice.

 

Those seeking disaster assistance should register with FEMA before going to a disaster recovery center. Individuals and families who suffered losses as a result of the late spring storms may register online at www.disasterassistance.gov or call FEMA at 1-800-621-3362. The toll-free number will operate from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. seven days a week until further notice and multilingual operators are available.

 

Anyone who sustained damage in Crawford, Garland, Howard, Jefferson, Little River, Miller, Perry, Sebastian and Sevier counties designated for federal disaster assistance can visit any disaster recovery center.

 

Federal disaster assistance for individuals and families can include money for rental assistance, essential home repairs, personal property loss, and other serious disaster-related needs not covered by insurance.

 

Low-interest disaster loans from the Small Business Administration area available to help with residential and business losses not covered by insurance. The Small Business Administration is the federal government's primary source of money for the rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property. The Small Business Administration helps businesses of all sizes, private non-profit organizations, homeowners and renters to fund repairs or rebuilding efforts and cover the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged personal property.

 

For more information on Small Business Administration programs, applicants may contact the administration's disaster assistance customer service center by calling 1-800-659-2955.

 

 

 

SEVIER COUNTY SCHOOL ELECTION HAS ONE CONTESTED RACE     7/9/15

 

According to Sevier County Clerk Debbie Akin, there will be one contested school board race in Sevier County.

 

Barry Reed will challenge incumbent Randy Hedge for the Zone 5 position on the De Queen Board of Education.

 

The Sevier County Election Commission certified the candidates and held a ballot draw Wednesday afternoon in the County Clerk's office.

 

Jeff Irvan will run unopposed for the Zone 3 position on the Horatio Board of Education and according to Akin there will be no change to the school millage amount.

 

The school election will be held on Tuesday, September 15th and early voting will start on September 8th and continue until 4:30 p.m. on Monday, September 14th.

 

 

 

SOUTH CRAWFORD STREET BRIDGE CONSTRUCTION TO BEGIN SOON      7/9/15

 

Aldermen of the Mineral Springs City Council approved a bid from J & J Construction for the replacement of the bridge on Crawford Street.

 

During Monday's city council meeting, aldermen approved the bid of $19,500 for a new concrete bridge and Mayor Bobby Tullis said he hopes construction on the new bridge will begin soon

 

Tullis reported the area had experienced more flooding due the recent rainfall. He said city crews had to fix a water line break on the Fourth of July that was caused by flooding.

 

Tullis also reported that he had made an application with the USDA for funding to purchase a fire truck. Aldermen discussed the possibility of purchasing a one-ton truck and outfitting it with the needed equipment, about $65,000, rather than purchasing a used fire truck for $107,000.

 

 

 

PROSPECTORS' GEMBOREE WINNERS ANNOUNCED      7/9/15

 

On June 20th, more than a thousand people visited the Crater of Diamond State Park and celebrated diamond miners in Arkansas during the park's 5th Annual Prospectors' Gemboree.

 

During the day, kids and adults participated in games that were hosted by the park's interpretive staff.

 

A young man from De Queen took third place in the 6 to 9 age category in the Diamond Toss game.

 

This Saturday, July 11th, the Crater of Diamond State Park will host this year's Summer Luau Pool Party at Diamond Springs from 6:30 to 9 p.m.

 

The water park will be decked out with decorations, refreshments, games and more. The Joe Ledbetter Band will provide musical entertainment and guest must purchase a separate water park admission after 6:30 to attend the event.

 

Admission to the Summer Luau Pool Party is $6 for swimmers over 42 inches tall, $4 for swimmers under 42 inches tall and $2 for non-swimming chaperones. Children under two years of age are free.

 

For more information, contact the park at 870-285-3113 or visit their website at craterofdiamondsstatepark.com.

 

 

 

STORM SHELTER REBATE PROGRAM CLOSED      7/9/15

 

The Arkansas Department of Emergency Management will not be accepting any new storm shelter rebate applications for the state fiscal year of 2016, which runs from July 1st, 2015 to June 30th, 2016.

 

Applications that were received during the last state fiscal year were enough to deplete all of the funds for this fiscal year.

 

The Arkansas Department of Emergency Management will begin processing rebates for the current backlog of all approved applications on file starting in July. It is expected that this program will wind down and not continue in future years.

 

More information regarding the storm shelter rebate program will be made available as it develops.

 

 

 

WINNERS OF THE FIREWORKS IN THE PARK, CAR AND TRUCK SHOW      7/9/15

 

Organizers of the 2015 Car and Truck Show at the Lockesburg Fireworks in the Park event announced the winners Tuesday afternoon.

 

The winner of the car class A division was Torrey Barber with a 1936 Dodge Business Coupe.

 

The winner of the car class C division, 1950-1059, was Torrey Barber with a 1955 Chevy Bel Air and second place went to Roy Rogers with his 1956 Pontiac Star Chief.

 

The winner of the car class D division, 1960-1969, was Ernie Kennemore with his 1966 Chevy Chevelle.

 

The winner of the car class E division, 1970-1979, was Archie Dorsey with his 1970 Buick GSX and second place went to Ernie Kennemore with his 1970 Chevy Nova.

 

The winner of the car class F division, 1980-1999, was Eddie Polk with his 1995 Cadillac Deville and he won second place with his 1989 Ford LTD Crown Victoria.

 

The winner of the car class G division was David Litchford with his 2012 Ford Mustang.

 

The winner of the truck class B division, 1940-1949, was James Martin with his 1949 Chevy Pick-up.

 

The winner of the truck class C division, 1950-1959, was Keith Midgett  with his 1951 Ford Truck and second place went to Toni Davis with his 1954 Chevy Pick-up.

 

The winner of the truck class D division, 1960-1969, was Richard Meredith with a 1967 Chevy Pick-up.

 

The winner of the truck class G division, 2000-new, was Adam Steward with his 2005 Chevy Silverado.

 

The winner of the Rat Rod Division, Class A, 1939 and older, was Jimmy and Rita Fitzgerald with their 1921 Ford T.

 

The People's Choice winner was Ernie Kennemore"s 1970 Chevy Nova and second place went to Torey Barber.

 

The Best of Show winner was Archie Dorsey's 1970 Buick GSX and second place went to Torrey Barber.

 

 

AREA SENATORS RECEIVE DISTINGUISHED LEGISLATOR AWARD FROM MUNICIPAL LEAGUE      7/8/15

 

The Arkansas Municipal League presented Senator Larry Teague of District 10 and Senator Jimmy Hickey of District 11 with the organization's Distinguished Legislator Award during the opening night banquet of the League's 81st Convention on June 24th.

 

The awards were given in recognition of Teague's and Hickey's strong support of cities and towns during the 90th General Assembly.

 

Each legislative session, legislators distinguish themselves by assisting cities and towns with key legislative issues affecting municipalities. This group of legislators, through their actions at the Capitol during this past session, were instrumental in contributing to the overall quality of life for the citizens in Arkansas' municipalities and The Arkansas Municipal League and its members cities wanted to show their appreciation to Senator Teague and Senator Hickey for their efforts in doing so.

 

 

 

AREA VEHICLE BREAK-IN UNDER INVESTIGATION    7/8/15

 

On May 12th, officers with the De Queen Police Department were dispatched to the De Queen Sportsplex in reference to six-vehicles reportedly being broken into and a two vehicle accident that involved the alleged suspect of the break-ins.

 

The driver of one of the vehicles involved in the accident was the suspect in the break-ins at the Sportsplex. However, the subject left the scene of the accident on foot before, officers arrived.

 

The subject has been identified as 31-year-old Kendaris Burris of Ashdown and is wanted on nine felony charges and three misdemeanor charges.

 

If anyone has any information concerning the whereabouts of Burris, you are being asked to contact Lieutenant Sonny Kimmel of the De Queen Police Department at 870-642-2213.

 

 

 

DE QUEEN POLICE DEPARTMENT INVESTIGATING CYBER CRIME      7/8/15

 

On June 8th, officials with the First State Bank in De Queen reported 20-customers had been the victims of cyber crime over the weekend of June 6th and 7th, to the De Queen Police Department.

 

Investigators with the De Queen Police Department contacted the Arkansas State Police and the Fusion Center which is an information sharing center that shares information between the local and federal levels.

 

According to the De Queen Police Department, hackers in some shape, form or fashion were able to duplicate cards of customers of First State Bank. The cards were then used at Wal-Mart stores in Hope, Arkadelphia and Bryant to purchase gift cards.

 

President of First State Bank, Gary Golden, reported apparently a service provider of the bank was hacked and the hackers stole information about First State Bank customers. However, the banks system was not breached and the banks IT department conducts cyber test on a consistent basis.

 

Golden reported banks in McCurtain County, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Tennessee have also suffered the safe type of breach, by apparently the same group of hackers.

 

Golden stated the bank instituted the Tag Rule and lowered the amount that customers may use on purchases, but the hackers used the cards as credit cards and the retail stores did not ask for proof of ID before approving the purchases.

 

Golden stated First State Bank is also transitioning to EMV cards which contain a small chip instead of a magnetic strip and will provide for more secure transactions.

 

Golden also assured the public that all affected customers were reimbursed for the unauthorized transactions.

 

According to the De Queen Police Department the incident is still under investigation.

 

 

 

JOHN MADDOX ANNOUNCES FOR STATE REPRESENTATIVE       7/8/15

 

On Monday, John Maddox announced his candidacy for State Representative for District 20. The seat is currently held by Representative Nate Bell, who has stated he will not seek re-election.

 

Maddox stated that this decision comes after many months of prayerful consideration and conversations with family and friends, he decided that during this important time in the history of the state and country, it would be his honor to earn the voter trust and serve District 20 in the legislature.

 

Maddox is a lifelong resident of Polk County and a 1987 graduate of Mena High School. He is also the grandson of former State Representative Ode Maddox and is a local attorney in the Maddox and Maddox law firm where he is a partner with his father, David.

 

In addition to his career, Maddox has served on various boards and civic organization in the community. He currently sits on the board of directors of the Union Bank of Mena, Polk County Development Center and Rich Mountain Community College. In addition, he has been active in the Polk County Chamber of Commerce, the Lions Club and currently serves as Chairman of the Polk County Republican Committee.

 

According to Maddox, voters can count on him to a strong, conservative voice on both social and fiscal issues. When asked what he would like to accomplish in the legislature, he said he wanted to make government more efficient and accountable and wanted to look at how the state could continue reforming the tax code in order to help spur economic growth.

 

Maddox said as a small business owner invested in his community, he is interested in promoting the long-term economic success of District 20.

 

 

 

SOUTHERN SPORTSMEN FOUNDATION ANNOUNCE 2015 HUNTING SCHEDULE      7/8/15

 

Little River County Judge and Southern Sportsmen Foundation member, Mike Cranford announced the foundation's 2015 deer hunting schedule.

 

Cranford said the youth hunt is scheduled for November 6th through the 8th and will be held near Mineral Springs in Howard County. Youth hunters will be able to arrive by 3 p.m. on November 5th for a pre-hunt orientation and must be accompanied by at least one parent or legal guardian.

 

The adult hunt will be held near Foreman, November 13th through 20th. Adult hunters must arrive by 11 a.m. on November 18th and are welcome to bring a non-hunting companion. Six hunters and two alternates will be drawn for this hunt.

 

Cranford stated the lodging, meals and license for both hunts will be provided by the foundation and if anyone would like to support the foundation, they can contact him by email at mike.cranford@sharingtheoutdoors.com.

 

All hunt applications must be received by September 1st and hunters who are chosen will be notified by September 30th. Applications may be found on the foundation's website at www.sharingtheoutdoors.com.

 

 

 

 

LEVEL THREE SEX OFFENDERS IN DE QUEEN  07/07/15

Ralph Barrera (Level 3 sex offender)

244 Hwy. 71 North #1

De Queen, Arkansas 71832

THIS OFFENDER IS NOT WANTED BY LAW ENFORCEMENT AT THIS TIME.

This notification is not intended to increase fear. It is our belief that an informed public will be safer. Information is available through many resources, including the state website maintained by the Arkansas Crime Information Center. More information is available from resources listed on the back of this flyer. Citizen abuse of this information to threaten, intimidate or harass offenders will not be tolerated. Such abuse could potentially end law enforcement’s ability to share this information with the public. If notification ends, the offender will win since they derive power through secrecy.

Four community notification levels apply. The higher the level assigned, the broader the notification to the community. Level 1(low) warrants minimal notice to the community (usually other law enforcement and/or members of the offender’s household only). Level 2(moderate) warrants limited notice to specific groups. Level 3 (high) warrants notification of all community members likely to encounter the offender. Level 4 is reserved for offenders who have a habitual or serious pattern of offending and are deemed sexual violent predators.

The De Queen Police Department and Sevier County Sheriff’s Office are releasing information pursuant to section 13 Act 989 of 1997, known as the Sex and Child Offender Registration and Community Notification Guidelines. This act authorizes law enforcement to inform the public of a sex offenders presence when the release of such information will enhance public safety and protection. Individuals appearing on these notifications have been convicted of an offense requiring registration with the Arkansas Crime Information Center.

 

Robert Garza (Level 3 sex offender)

181 Old Hwy. 71 North Lot 26

De Queen, Arkansas 71832

THIS OFFENDER IS NOT WANTED BY LAW ENFORCEMENT AT THIS TIME.

This notification is not intended to increase fear. It is our belief that an informed public will be safer. Information is available through many resources, including the state website maintained by the Arkansas Crime Information Center. More information is available from resources listed on the back of this flyer. Citizen abuse of this information to threaten, intimidate or harass offenders will not be tolerated. Such abuse could potentially end law enforcement’s ability to share this information with the public. If notification ends, the offender will win since they derive power through secrecy.

Four community notification levels apply. The higher the level assigned, the broader the notification to the community. Level 1(low) warrants minimal notice to the community (usually other law enforcement and/or members of the offender’s household only). Level 2(moderate) warrants limited notice to specific groups. Level 3 (high) warrants notification of all community members likely to encounter the offender. Level 4 is reserved for offenders who have a habitual or serious pattern of offending and are deemed sexual violent predators.

The De Queen Police Department and Sevier County Sheriff’s Office are releasing information pursuant to section 13 Act 989 of 1997, known as the Sex and Child Offender Registration and Community Notification Guidelines. This act authorizes law enforcement to inform the public of a sex offenders presence when the release of such information will enhance public safety and protection. Individuals appearing on these notifications have been convicted of an offense requiring registration with the Arkansas Crime Information Center.

 

43RD ANNUAL PINE TREE FESTIVAL      7/7/15

 

Pine Tree committee member Stacy Janes announced last Friday that the 43rd Annual Pine Tree Festival will be held on Friday, July 31st and Saturday, August 1st in the Dierks City Park.

 

Janes said activities will begin Friday night at 6 p.m. and this year they will be having a magic show for the kids, a talent contest and some local talent performing.

 

Saturday night will feature the 3rd Annual Ultimate Challenge Bull Riding and no holds barred free style bull fighting at 8 p.m. Janes also stated Saturday night will feature some pyro and the All-American Cowgirl Chicks from RFD-TV.

 

This year's festival parade down Main Street will be held at 10 a.m. and after the parade over 40 food and craft vendors will open along with several activities for the kids, like free bounce houses, kiddies' train and pony rides.

 

This year's Pine Tree Festival will also feature a chainsaw competition, axe throw, a log loading competition and an archery contest.

 

Admission to the Friday night activities is free and tickets to Saturday's bull riding event is $10 for adults , $5 for kids 7 to 12 and free for kids 6 and under.

 

For more information about the 43rd Annual Pine Tree Festival, like them on Facebook or call the Dierks Chamber of Commerce at 870-584-9431.

 

 

 

ARREST MADE FOR FELONY POSSESSION      7/7/15

 

Saturday night, Patrolman First Class Levi Browning of the De Queen Police Department reported he noticed a van that didn't have a license plate, so he made a traffic stop in the De Queen Health and Wellness parking lot on Highway 70 West.

 

After checking the vehicles registration, Patrolman Browning issued the driver, 32-year-old Raven Tollett a citation for failure to register her vehicle.

 

Tollett also gave Browning and Sergeant Chad Bradshaw permission to search her vehicle. Officer Bradshaw reported he noticed the passenger 32-year-old Damian Burton reach under his shirt when Bradshaw asked Burton to exit the vehicle.

 

After instructing Burton to hand them what he was trying to conceal, Burton gave the officers two clear bags of suspected methamphetamine.

 

While Tollett was being questioned at the De Queen Police Station, she allegedly informed the officers that one of the bags of meth belonged to her and the other one belonged to Burton.

 

Both, Tollett and Burton, were charged with possession of methamphetamine or cocaine with the purpose to deliver and possession of drug paraphernalia.

 

 

 

DE QUEEN CITY COUNCIL TO MEET TUESDAY AT 5:30     7/7/15

 

Aldermen of the De Queen City Council will meet this Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. in the City Council room of the De Queen City Hall.

 

Aldermen will consider passing a resolution to accept the 2013 audit of the city's general funds. Mayor Billy Ray McKelvy explained that the council reviewed the audit in April, but the resolution to accept the audit was never placed on the agenda for their approval.

 

McKelvy also reported that the Arkansas Department of Health had conducted a Sanitary Survey of the De Queen Water Works Department.

 

According to a letter from the Department of Health, the City of De Queen received only one significant deficiency because the health department could not verify with documentation if the water storage tanks had been internally inspected within the past five years.

 

The department of health also recommended that the city have the filter media evaluated and replaced if necessary, along with several other recommendations.

 

According to the letter, the city of De Queen has 45 days to file a response with the department of health.

 

McKelvy also reported that the cable audit revealed that Vyve owes the city $1,028 in underpaid franchise fees.

 

The auditor, Greg Fender of Local Government Services, recommended the city hold a public meeting to discuss Vyve Broadbands performance within the city and to determine the future cable-related needs of the community.

 

Aldermen will consider holding a public meeting on August 4th to discuss the city's cable needs.

 

 

 

DOMTAR DONATES $50,000 TO LITTLE RIVER COUNTY FOR FLOOD RECOVERY EFFORTS      7/7/15

 

Domtar presented a check in the amount of $50,000 to Little River County Judge Mike Cranford to help with the flood recovery efforts and Domtar employees have volunteered to work with cleanup after the flood waters recede.

 

Little River County has been experiencing flooding due to heavy rains since May and according to Cranford, the Red River flooded over 100,000 acres in Little River County.

 

Domtar President and CEO John Williams wrote a letter to Judge Cranford that says, quote, on behalf of Domtar's nearly 10,000 employees, please know our thoughts are with you and your citizens as you deal with the tragic flooding situation in Little River County.

 

Our hope is that you can apply these dollars, at your discretion to offset the expenses of the search and rescue efforts, cleanup and repair initiatives to county roads and the extraordinary costs incurred by the sheriff's office protecting residents and property in the flooded areas.

 

According to the county judge's office, when the floodwaters recede and local authorities deem the situation safe, Ashdown mill team members will coordinate with Cranford to help with the removal of debris and sandbags.

 

 

 

ELECTION COMMISSION TO CERTIFY CANDIDATES      7/7/15

 

According to Sevier County Clerk Debbie Akin, the Sevier County Election Commission will meet on Wednesday, July 8th to certify the candidates for the upcoming school election for the Zone 5 position for the De Queen Board of Education and the Zone 3 position on Horatio Board of Education.

 

The election commission will also hold a ballot draw if necessary.

 

Currently Randy Hedge holds the Zone 5 position on the De Queen School Board and Jeff Irvan holds the Zone 3 position on the Horatio School Board.

 

The meeting will be held at 1 p.m. in the county clerk's office in the Sevier County Courthouse.

 

The meeting is open to the public.

 

 

 

HEAVY RAINS THIS WEEKEND CAUSES MORE FLOODING     7/7/15

 

Heavy rains Friday night and Saturday morning produced flash flooding in Southwest Arkansas causing problems on several roads.

 

The National Weather Service estimated that Hempstead and Nevada counties were the hardest hit in the area and that area received between six to 10 inches of rain.

 

A portion of Highway 371 east of Blevins was washed out due to flooding and numerous roads were closed in Hempstead County. According to Hempstead County Judge Haskell Morse, 17 county roads are closed.

 

Saturday morning, members of the Saratoga Volunteer Fire Department and the Hempstead County Sheriff's Office responded to a car that was trapped by the flood waters on Hempstead County Road 13 near McNab.

 

According to Deputy Luke Sorenson, he observed a vehicle on the edge of the road in approximately 10-inches of flowing water.

 

The driver, 18-year-old Tami Van Horn was able to hand her 3-year-old child to the deputy through the window. She then climbed out the window with some assistance.

 

The car was pulled out of the water by the Saratoga Fire Department.

 

Highway 355 at Fulton had to be closed for a while until flood waters receded and according to Little River County Judge Mike Cranford, some roadways in the Ashdown area were closed due to flash flooding on Saturday.

 

 

 

TREASURER MILLIGAN ANNOUNCES JUNE RETURNS ON SHORT TERM INVESTMENTS     7/7/15

 

Treasurer of State Dennis Milligan announced his office was able to earn the taxpayers of Arkansas $629,618.77 in interest on the short-term investments for the month of June, which brings the total for the first five months to over $2.1 million.

 

During the month of June the Treasury did experience a slight decrease in the monetary return due to a decrease in the funds available for investment and a shifting of the focus to the longer-term portion of the state's portfolio.

 

Milligan's office reported the additional revenue earned is placed in the Securities Reserve Account which assists in funding issues the people of Arkansas care about like: highway funding, four land highway construction, Game and Fish, the Secretary of State Help American Vote Act and other accounts.

 

 

 

UNWANTED GUEST      7/7/15

 

Early Sunday morning, Patrolman First Class Wayne Baker of the De Queen Police Department was dispatched to the Timber Ridge apartments to answer a complaint concerning an intoxicated person wandering from apartment to apartment.

 

When Baker arrived, he discovered a man sitting in a chair next to apartment H3.

 

Baker said the man, 51-year-old Rodger Brizendine, had a bruised and beaten right cheek, as well as, blood on his shirt and hand.

 

Brizendine was taken into to custody and cited for public intoxication and taken to the Sevier County jail.

 

 

UA COSSATOT HOSTS LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT SEMINAR       7/6/15

 

UA Cossatot will host a Leadership Development Seminar for Managers, Supervisors and Human Resource Managers on Tuesday, July 14th from 10 a.m. until noon.

 

The seminar will be lead by Leadership Coach Greg Gilbert of Washington, Arkansas. Gilbert will be presenting a 2-hour program about developing leadership skills.

 

Gilbert informed KDQN that anyone in leadership will benefit from the class and you can learn more about the program by visiting Gilbert’s website at GregLGilbert.com.

 

The cost of the seminar is $75 and includes a copy of Gilbert’s book, “The Power of Better,” and seating is limited. Interested parties should register at GregLGilbert.com/local.

 

 

 

FOREMAN SCHOOL DISTRICT HIRES FORMER RATTLER AS HEAD FOOTBALL COACH       7/6/15

 

During a recent meeting of the Foreman Board of Education, Neil Evans was hired to be the next head football coach of the Foreman Gators.

 

Evans graduated from Murfreesboro High School in 2005, where he was named the Outstanding Offensive Lineman in 2003 and 2004 and earned an honorable mention for all-conference in 2004.

 

Evans then attended Harding University and played football for the Bisons until he became a student assistant coach in 2009.

 

Evans was hired to coach linebackers in 2010 at Mobile Christian School in Mobile, Alabama. Later, he was named the head football coach and served in that position until 2013. Over those three seasons, Evans’ teams compiled a 23-13 record.

 

The Mobile Christian Leopards made the playoffs all three of Evans years, and made the quarterfinals in 2012 and 2013.

 

In 2014, Evans became the secondary coach and special teams coordinator at Central Arkansas Christian in Little Rock.

 

 

 

WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT TO BENEFIT FROM RESEA PROGRAM      7/6/15

 

District 4 Representative DeAnn Vaught reported that during the last legislative session, legislators passed several bills to help Arkansas workers develop the skills they need in this rapidly changing business environment.

 

Vaught announced this week that the state will be able to provide even more services to put Arkansans to work, since the Arkansas Department of Workforce Services received a grant from the U.S. Department of Labor.

 

The Department of Workforce Services was awarded $537,758. These funds will be used to fund Arkansas’ Reemployment Services Eligibility Assessment program, which is expected to benefit more than 8,000 Arkansans who are looking for work.

 

Currently, participants are required to complete a job search workshop to maintain their benefits. The workshop lasts between four and six hours and is held once a month at the state’s workforce centers.

 

Participates receive labor market information, job search assistance, resume preparation and interview skills training.

 

The Reemployment Services Eligibility Assessment program will also provide one on one appointments and help veterans who are returning home to find work. These services will be provided at Workforce Centers in Helena, Hope, Benton, Searcy, Forrest City and Little Rock.

 

According to Vaught, the goal of the program is to keep claimants from exhausting their benefits before moving on to employment, but also to reduce the number of weeks claimed, as well as, reduce the total benefits paid, which will result in a savings for the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund.

 

According to the Department of Workforce Services, Arkansas’ current unemployment rate is 5.7 percent, which is slightly higher than the national rate.

 

 

 

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