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Tammie Harder was sentenced to 6-years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections with 4-suspended after pleading guilty to delivery of a controlled substance-Xanax, last week in the Sevier County Circuit Court.


Glen Stinnett pled nolle posse to a misdemeanor charge of fleeing and will serve 1-year in jail.


Stinnett had been charged with felony fleeing and endangering the welfare of a minor in the first degree after fleeing from deputies with the Sevier County Sheriff's Office on a motorcycle. The charge of endangering a minor was dropped.


Circuit Court Judge Charles Yeargan said the trial of Emilio Gutierrez will proceed to trial on August 13th after no pre-trial issues were discussed last week.


Gutierrez is been charged with possession of drug paraphernalia, maintaining a drug premises, simultaneous possession of drugs and firearms and trafficking a controlled substance-meth.


A trial date of September 10th was set for Levi Durham who has been charged with three counts of being an accomplice to theft of property and three counts of being an accomplice to commercial burglary in connection with the break-in at the First Baptist Church in De Queen.


Benjamin Butler and Dustin Taylor also had trial dates of September 10th set by Judge Yeargan.


Butler has been charged with possession of schedule III controlled substance and Taylor is being charged with delivery of a controlled substance-meth and as a habitual offender.


A trial date of September 14th was set for Cody Nava on the charges of possession of drug paraphernalia and maintaining a drug premises.






When a friend is in need, most folks around here step to offer a helping hand and that's exactly what the members of the Newhope Volunteer Fire Department is doing this Saturday at 5 p.m. for Randy Golden.


Randy Golden was recently diagnosed with cancer.


DeAnn Simmons stated there will be live music, performed by the Whiskey Hill Band, a live auction with Nick Fowler, door prizes and folks can buy a chance for a 270 rifle.


For more information about the fundraiser, call 870-557-4968.






Wednesday afternoon at the conclusion of the Darrin Tate trial, Tate's lawyer had one other issue to resolve in front of Sevier County Circuit Court Judge Charles Yeargan.


Lawrence Orta was found guilty of contempt of court and fined $500 by Judge Yeargan for being late to court.


Judge Yeargan informed Orta that he was being fined for not showing respect to the court by showing up late for a jury trial.


Judge Yeargan stated that he may have shown Orta some leniency if it had not been a jury trial. But the jury pool was ready for jury selection and the prosecutors were present and ready to proceed, but they had to wait on Orta arrival.


Judge Yeargan explained that he was very close to ruling for a mistrial due to Orta tardiness.






The 38th annual Hope Watermelon Festival will open at noon on Thursday, August 7th and run through Saturday, August 9th in Fair Park in Hope.


This year's event will feature more than 200 booths of arts and crafts, as well as a dozen concession stands selling everything from barbecue to corn dogs to blooming onions and alligator on a stick.


Thursday's events will include the Kiwanis Chicken Dinner, a dog show and the preliminary rounds of the Watermelon Idol Talent Contest.


Friday festivities will begin at 9 a.m. and will be highlighted by the Lions Club fish and chicken dinner in the Fair Park Community Center from 4:30 to 7 p.m. and the gospel group Harmony from Wickes will perform on the First Bank stage Friday night.


The Little Miss and Little Mr. Watermelon Pageant, which is sponsored by the Beta Sigma Phi, will be held inside the coliseum.


Saturday will feature a 5K Race and the Melon Mile for kids; an antique car show, a children's fishing derby on Lake Huckabee, the politically correct watermelon eating contest at 11:30 and the regular watermelon eating contest at noon and seed-spiting contest at 1.


The final event, this year, is the David Nail concert.


Advance general admission tickets are $12 for adults and $6 for children 4-10. Adult general admission tickets will be $20 the day of the show.






The Two Rivers Gala will offer a Southern Charm-themed dinner to raise money for Two Rivers Museum in Ashdown.


The gala will be Saturday, August 9th at the Texarkana Country Club. The doors will open at 5:30 p.m. and the dinner will start at 6.


Tickets are $50 each and are available at the two Rivers Museum on Main Street in Ashdown at the Castle Antiques near the intersection of Highway 32 and U.S. Highway 71.


The emcee will be Mark McKay who is the general manager of the Shreveport, NBC affiliate.


McKay is a 1978 graduate of Ashdown High School.


The Two Rivers Museum contains a variety of displays, including a horse-drawn hearse, a portable wooden embalming table and World War I and II uniforms.


The military display titled Freedom’s Heroes won first place during the 2006 Arkansas Museum Association State Convention in the museums and budgets under $100,000.


The Two Rivers Gala is the main fundraising event for the Little River County Historical Society and the historical society owes about $17,000 to pay off the museum buildings.


According to a member of the historical society, they borrowed about $48,000 to purchase the building and they thanked the community for helping them pay the debt.


The museum has also received funds from the Texarkana Area Community Foundation.


Renowned harpist and recording artist Merry Miller will perform at the gala. According to her website, she has played professionally since she was 14 years old and recently released her 16th album, entitled “Psalms on the Harp.”






Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel has rejected the wording of a proposal to legalize medical marijuana by a group that is trying to put the measure before voters in 2016.


McDaniel’s office rejected the wording of the proposal by Arkansans for Compassionate Care, which had tried unsuccessfully to get medical marijuana legalization on this year’s ballot. The group had been unable to gather the 62,507 signatures from registered voters needed by the July 7th deadline to submit petitions to qualify for the November ballot.


The group is now trying to put the legalization measure eon the 2016 ballot. McDaniel cited some confusion in the text of the latest measure in rejecting its wording.


The proposal would allow patients with qualifying conditions to buy marijuana from nonprofit dispensaries.





Wednesday afternoon, a jury of eight women and four men found Darrin Tate guilty of theft by receiving and sentenced him to 15-years in the Arkansas Department of Corrections along with a $10,000 fine.


Prosecuting Attorney Bryan Chesshir presented five witnesses that testified that Tate had possession, control and disposed of stolen property when he sold a 1976 Massey-Ferguson tractor to Dan Fryburg in October of 2013.


Chesshir also presented evidence that Tate modified an 18-foot trailer that was stolen from a residence belonging to Cindy Bercerra.


Tate's defense attorney Lawrence Orta did not call any witnesses on Tate's behalf and Tate did not testify. Although, Orta attempted to convince the jury that Tate was being set up by his ex-wife, Melissa Tate.


After finding Tate guilty, Chesshir presented Tate's past felony convictions to the jury and asked them to sentence him to the maximum amount of time under the state's large habitual offender statute.


Tate was convicted in McCurtain County, Oklahoma in 1998 for unlawful delivery of a controlled substance and arson in the 3rd degree. He was convicted in 2006 of arson in the 3rd degree in McCurtain County and for possession of a firearm by a certain person in Sevier County in May of 2013. 


Tate was out of jail on a Arkansas Department of Corrections bond for the 2013 conviction when he committed this crime and he is awaiting sentencing in Sevier County for a conviction for possessing a defaced firearm.


Before the jury pronounced its sentencing, Circuit Court Judge Charles Yeargan informed the jury that Tate would serve about one-sixth of his sentence and then he would be eligible for parole.






U.S. District Judge Susan Hickey has ordered a joint response to be filed by lawyers representing the 11 plaintiffs that have filed lawsuits against the U.S. government over the 2010 flood that killed 20 campers at the Albert Pike campground.


The purpose of Hickey’s order is to eliminate the possibility of potential witnesses being interviewed several different times.


Family members of the 20 campers that lost their lives in the historic flood of the Little Missouri River in the Ouachita National Forest on June 11, 2010.


All of the lawsuits allege the U.S. government knew of the hazardous conditions that existed in the campgrounds along the river and neglected to properly warn the public or take measures to reduce the risk.


A report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture noted several factors contributed to the tragedy. The report stated the Forest Service failed to follow many of its own regulations.


All of lawsuits claim a district ranger was in a hurry to spend $600,000 on renovations at the campgrounds in an area that had a long and documented history of flooding.


However, the government claims it is protected from liability by the Arkansas Recreational Use Statute, but the plaintiffs have argued that the statute provides an exception that should permit the lawsuits to go forward.  


Hickey’s order to consolidate the cases for discovery and a response to the government’s motion to dismiss suspends the deadline for the plaintiffs to file their joint answer.






The Arkansas Scholarship Lottery is warning Arkansans about scammers who are making false representations about individuals winning a lottery prize.


The Arkansas Scholarship Lottery has received several reports of persons purporting to represent the Arkansas Scholarship Lottery calling Arkansas residents and informing them that they have won lottery prizes.


The caller will often know the victim’s home address, and will often instruct him or her to go to a local store to purchase a pre-paid card called a Green Dot MoneyPak to use to pre-pay taxes that’s owed on the prize. Scammers are also providing a toll-free number that, when called, mimics the Arkansas Scholarship Lottery phone message.


To protect yourself and remember: the Arkansas Scholarship Lottery never requires the payment of any money in order to claim a prize and the Arkansas Scholarship Lottery doesn’t typically call people to tell them that they’ve won, unless it’s for a contest that people intentionally entered.


And, you should never provide any personal or financial information to someone over the phone unless you initiate the call or are certain that the caller is legitimate, especially Social Security numbers, bank account numbers, and credit card numbers.


If you receive a call from someone claiming to be from the Arkansas Scholarship Lottery, Powerball or Mega Millions, be on your guard. You can always call the Arkansas Scholarship Lottery Security Hotline at 1-888-606-6292 for more information or to check the legitimacy of such claims.


The Arkansas Scholarship Lottery has notified the Consumer Protection Division of the Arkansas Attorney General’s Office of this scam.






The Chalice Cupboard assisted 35 families in Sevier County, including 69 adults and 41 children. The cupboard distributed 858 pounds of donated and purchased food items.


The cupboard’s June bank balance was $364.89 and they received $694.50 in donations. Volunteers spent $704.11 during the month to purchase about 1,044 pounds of food.


The St. Barbara Catholic Church and the First Presbyterian Church donated 133 pounds of food.


Volunteers suggest donating jelly and cereal this month.


Any residents in Sevier County needing food may come for aid on Tuesday and Wednesday’s from 2 to 3:30 p.m. at the Chalice Cupboard on North Sixth Street in De Queen.






State agriculture officials say an insect that is native to Asia and kills ash trees have been confirmed in three Arkansas counties.


The insect arrived in the U.S. around 2002 and has killed about 50 million ash trees since then and officials say the insect has now been confirmed in 24 U.S. states and two Canadian provinces.


The female emerald ash borers lay eggs on the bark of ash trees and when the eggs hatch, the larvae bore into the bark, eventually killing the trees.


Officials say the best way to avoid the spread of the insect is to not move firewood from place to place and the Crater of Diamonds State Park is requesting that all campers who plan to have a campfire to roast marshmallows, or to just enjoy watching a fire to leave their wood at home.


The Arkansas State Plant board and the Arkansas Department of Agriculture say the emerald ash borer has been found in Hot Springs, Clark and Nevada counties and all three of those counties border Pike County, which is the home of the Crater of Diamonds State Park.


Now, although the borer infested tree can be treated with insecticide that is introduced through its roots, the best way to ensure that it doesn’t spread is to follow a very simple motto of “Buy it where you burn it, and burn it where you buy it.”


That phrase means that the camping public needs to leave their firewood at home and only use or buy firewood at the location where they camping.


At the Diamond State Park campgrounds, campers can purchase a bundle of wood for $4.95 or, they can harvest dead wood that is lying on the ground from the park, but don’t cut down a tree.






Friendship Baptist Church of De Queen will be hosting the Mobile Museum of Earth History Sunday through Wednesday.


Frachiseur explained that Dr. Thomas Sharp has dedicated his life to understanding and explaining key problems that's facing the modern Christian society, including how dinosaurs fit into God's creation.


If you are interested in the Biblical view of evolution and other missing links involving science, make plans to join the members of the Friendship Baptist Church by visiting the Mobile Museum of Earth History.


For more information call the church at 870-584-2890.




Sevier thunderstorms blew through southwest Arkansas late Wednesday afternoon downing trees that blocked roads and tore down power lines throughout southern Polk, Sevier, and Howard counties. 


Patrons of both Southwest Arkansas Electric REA and AEP SWEPCO were without power for several hours overnight, as many as 2400 are still without power this morning.

Sevier County Courthouse Lawn

De Queen City Street-6th & Vandervoort

De Queen City Street-6th & Vandervoort

Hwy 41 Cleanup


An Act to Increase the Arkansas Minimum Wage Short Valid Signatures    07/24/14
Arkansas Secretary of State Mark Martin announced Wednesday that an Act to Increase the Arkansas Minimum Wage did not meet the required 62,507 valid signatures after the verification process.  They now have until August 18 to gather 15,107 more valid signatures to make the November 2014 General Election ballot. 
In order to be considered valid, there must be sufficient signatures from 15 of the 75 counties across Arkansas along with an affidavit filed with us stating the number of Petition Parts and the total number of signatures.
Here is a list of what causes an entire page of petition signatures to be invalidated:
 1. Photocopy, not an original; 
 2. Not signed by a Canvasser; 
 3. A petition part signed by more than 1 Canvasser; 
 4. Not signed by a Canvasser under oath; 
 5. Canvasser’s verification dated earlier than the date the petition was signed by a Petitioner; 
 6. Not notarized; 
 7. Lacking a notary seal; 
 8. A petition part is lacking a notary signature or is notarized by more than1 
 9. A forged notary or Canvasser signature; 
10. A notary notarizing his or her own signature; 
11. A notary using the Great Seal of Arkansas; 
12. Failure to attach a legible copy of the entire text of the measure to each 
      Petition sheet containing signatures; 
13. Failure to attach the popular name and ballot title to each petition sheet   containing signatures; 
14. If litigated, a challenger may claim that the Canvasser failed to sign the affidavit in the presence of the notary; 
15. If litigated, a challenger may claim that the affidavit of the Canvasser is false. 
If the petition submitted for signature verification does not contain the required number of valid signatures of registered voters, the Secretary of State will notify the Sponsor, they will then have 30 days to do any or all of the following: 
A) Solicit and obtain additional signatures;
B) Submit proof that all or some of the rejected signatures are good and should be counted;
C) Make the petition more definite or certain. 
The Secretary of State will verify signatures up to 10% above the required number. 




This Week's News:





Earlier this month, a company by the name of HomeServe sent letters to the residents of De Queen offering an emergency home repair service plan for resident’s water and sewer lines.


The letter states that homeowners are responsible for the water and sewer lines from their homes until it connects with the city's water and waste water system.


De Queen Mayor Billy Ray McKelvy explained that these letters are sent out periodically and residents are responsible for the repair of their water and sewer lines, just as the letter states.


McKelvy also pointed out that there is no relationship between HomeServe and the City of De Queen and citizens are not obligated to purchase the coverage that is being offered by HomeServe.


HomeSever's letter states that this type of repair is not normally covered by a homeowner’s insurance policy, but each policy is different and McKelvy recommended homeowners check with their insurance companies before they consider purchasing a HomeServe service plan.


HomeServe is a Connecticut company and interested residents may research them on the internet at






This Saturday, the First United Methodist Church of Lockesburg will be holding a Back-to-School Give-away from 8 a.m. until noon.


Church members will be giving away 50 backpacks along with school supplies. Minister Terry Chapman reported that most of the school supplies will be for students attending kindergarten through sixth grade.


There will also be good used clothes, toys and household items.


Chapman said she expected the backpacks would go quickly and it is first come, first served. She also asked that everyone bring a bag, but they will have some Wal-Mart bags on hand if you need one.


The First United Methodist Church is located on the corner of Walnut Street and Valley Drive in Lockesburg. It's one block east from the Post Office.


If you have any questions, call the church office at 870-289-287.






Earlier this month, the De Queen Board of Education voted to hire Bo Brickell as the new high school boys head basketball coach.


Superintendent Bruce Hill informed the board that Brickell was looking to build a program and felt he was willing and capable of building a quality program here at De Queen.


Brickell was an assistant high school coach and ninth grade boys coach at Camden Fairview for the past four years and he talked about being from Lake Hamilton.


Brickell was also played college basketball at Arkansas Tech before transferring to UALR to play baseball.


Brickell explained that he was looking forward to the upcoming season, but he wants to start changing the teams and the towns mentality now.


Brickell said he was excited to be here because he was impressed with the program while he was still at Camden.


Brickell said he informed some of the players yesterday that life is hard, but this team will be successful and he plans to be around when that success happens.






A former De Queen resident has been named in a lawsuit in a Texarkana federal court for pirating the broadcast of a 2012 Ultimate Fighting Championship fight.


Former owner of the De Queen Country Club and Lodge, Carmenchita Pearson, has been accused of illegally intercepting and broadcasting the fights on July 21st, 2012 by Joe Hand Promotions of Pennsylvania.


The complaint alleges that Pearson is liable for the actions of employees of the De Queen Country Club and Lodge who allegedly played the matches illegally.


Joe Hand Promotions is asking for an award of more than $100,000 in statutory damages, attorney fees, investigative expenses and court costs.






Members of the Horatio Board of Education reviewed test scores from the Horatio High School and Elementary during their July meeting.


Superintendent Lee Smith stated test scores were pretty good, but the elementary school needs to improve in math, but there will be a new reporting system next year, as Arkansas changes to PRAC testing.



Board members approved changes to the high school and elementary school student handbooks following the recommendation of teachers, principals and administrators.


Board members also approved changing the contracts of the high school counselor, Ginger Young, and elementary counselor Kaitlyn Truster. They also hired John Simmons as a full-time maintenance worker.


Before adjourning, the board accepted the bid from Moyer Equipment on a zero turn mower.






Prosecutors expect the case against Darrin Tate of De Queen to move toward a trial Wednesday morning in the Sevier County Circuit Court.


Sevier County Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Manya Woods informed KDQN that Tate is facing his fifth felony conviction and if he is found guilty his sentence will be enhanced by the state's large habitual offender charge.


Tate is being charged with theft by receiving. Tate is accused of allegedly stealing a 1976 Massey-Ferguson tractor along with a 20-foot trailer in January of 2014.


Allegedly Tate sold the tractor to a Sevier County resident, who when interviewed by investigators from the Sevier County Sheriff's office informed them that Tate sold him the tractor.


Tate also allegedly modified the trailer so no one would be able to identify it.


According to court records, Tate was out of jail at the time of this incident on a Arkansas Department of Corrections bond because his previous conviction in May of 2012 is under appeal.


Tate has been convicted of four felonies, three in Oklahoma and one in Arkansas.





State educators promoting increased high speed Internet service for Arkansas schools made a stop in Texarkana and one of the speakers was a recent De Queen High School graduate, Victor Rojas Jr.


According to a spokesperson for FASTERArkansas, they believe that by increasing access to high-speed Internet for state schools, they can reduce Internet cost for schools, taxpayers and help strengthen the state’s economy, by creating high-paying, new tech jobs of tomorrow.


Currently, Arkansas ranks near the bottom in high-speed Internet access and digital learning and without access to affordable high-speed Internet, it means many students do not receive a 21st century education.


According to Arkadelphia High School Principal David Maxwell, educators were scared of technology in the 1990’s, but students are not afraid of technology and with high-speed Internet service, the district can expose students to world-class educators through video conferencing.


Rojas informed those in attendance that the Arkansas constitution promises each student with an adequate education. He also reported that 60 percent of Arkansas schools lack high-speed Wi-Fi networks, which will allow for an effective use of technology in their classrooms.


Rojas reported that Arkansas is the only state where it is unlawful for a public research and education network to serve K through 12, as a result of a state law. He stated it’s time to change the law.


Chancellor of Southern Arkansas University Tech, Corbit Lamkin says of the 42 states that have an Internet infrastructure that is connected to Internet2, Arkansas is the only state that prohibits schools from using it.


By changing the law, it would provide a 21st century education for students; create a more educated workforce and bring more jobs to the state; and save school districts money that could be used for other investments.






The Little River County jail opened just over a year ago after receiving a $1.3 million dollar renovation and now it’s leaking.


Last week, Little River County Sheriff Gary Gregory informed the members of the Little River County Quorum Court that the roof of the jail leaks every time it rains.


Gregory reported that water is pooling inside the metal roof and is running down the side of the walls into some of the cells. He stated the pooling water was discovered after the fire alarm went off a few weeks ago.


The water was discovered by employees of the alarm company that was sent to repair the alarm system. They informed the sheriff that the insulation is soaked about the air ducts.


Gregory stated that he has been attempting to contact the roof subcontractors about fixing the leaks. The roof has a 20-year warranty, according to the paperwork.


Gregory said the pooling water resulted in a prisoner being injured after slipping in the water. He has since been transferred to the Arkansas Department of Corrections, but will require surgery to repair damage to his knee.


Jail Administer Chad Atkins reported the leaks weren’t detected until it rained about five to six inches in a 24 hour period.






Area musicians will share the stage Saturday, July 26th with the first winner of the USA Networks reality Country Music Competition show “Nashville Star” during the 2nd Annual Crystal Music Festival at the Board Camp Campground and Crystal Mine, in Board Camp, near Mena.


Buddy Jewell of Lepanto, Arkansas will headline this year’s event at 7 p.m., and he’ll be joined by Harmony of Wickes and Polk 74.


Jewell’s first album debuted at number 1 and his first two singles, “Help Pour Out the Rain” and “Sweet Southern Comfort” each climbed to the number three position on the singles chart.


Harmony is a Christian band from Wickes that will open for Jewell at 6 p.m. and Smith said Harmony was honored to be opening for Jewell.


Event organizers Orville and Cheryl Murphy said they plan to continue the tradition that they started last year by presenting a Fallen and Standing Heroes tribute that will be preceded by the Color Guard at 5.


There will also be crystal digging from noon to 5 p.m.


Festival tickets will be sold at the gate for $10 each age 12 and up. Kids under 12 are free.


Area volunteer fire departments will be serving as parking attendants and a parking donation would be appreciated.


Everyone should bring their lawn chairs and small coolers are welcome, but concessions will be available. For more information or to purchase tickets visit






Sevier County Clerk Debbie Hughes announced that the filing period for the November general election will open Friday, July 25th and close at noon on Friday, August 15th.


This filing period is for all independent candidates seeking a municipal office in cities that have a mayor-council form of government.


Petitions may be picked up from the County Clerk's office and may submitted beginning this Friday. Candidates will also file an affidavit of eligibility and a political practices pledge.


The County Clerk's office will determine whether or not the petition contains a sufficient number of qualified voters signatures within 10-days


If you have any questions about the filing for a ballot position during the 2014 Municipal election, contact the Sevier County Clerk's office at 642-3896.







Friday afternoon about 3 p.m. members of the De Queen Police Department was dispatched to Pruett's Food in reference to a one vehicle accident involving several pedestrians.


When officers arrived, they discovered one pedestrian standing on the sidewalk and two others laying on the sidewalk with injuries to their legs. 


According to the incident report, 84-year-old Yvonne Mulina of De Queen was attempting to park in front of the store and ran up onto the sidewalk striking three store employees.


Diana House suffered multiple compound fractures to her legs and was transported to Wadley Hospital in Texarkana where she had surgery Friday night.


House had just been promoted to the Dairy Foods Manager on Monday, July 14th.


Debra Circles also suffered a leg injury. She was treated at the De Queen Regional Medical Center and was released. She is expected to have more test run this week after the majority of the swelling decreases.


Mark Lewis was struck by the vehicle and knocked down, but according to House was able to get up and help stop the vehicle.


Lewis was also taken to the De Queen Regional Medical Center where he was treated and released.


Pruett's Food Manager Quinton Wilds explained that Circles and Lewis were taking the change out of the coke machines and refilling them. House stated she was taking a break and visiting with the other employees when the accident happened.






Attorney General Dustin McDaniel announced that he has reached a settlement with the New Jersey-based National Police Defense Foundation to resolve allegations that the organization misled Arkansas donors into believing their contributions benefited Arkansas emergency responders.


In a consent agreement that was filed in the Pulaski County Circuit Court, the foundation agreed to pay $120,000 in restitution to consumes and to permanently stop all professional fund-raising activities in Arkansas.


McDaniel said the NPDF has been identified as one of the nation's 50 worst charities.


McDaniel sued NPDF and USA Publishing Group Inc. of Conway in 2013. NPDF retained USA Publishing to solicit donations from Arkansas consumers. The suit is still pending against USA Publishing.


NPDF paid $171,193 of the $231,004 raised in the state to USA Publishing for its professional fundraising services. Only $500 went to charity, according to McDaniel's lawsuit.


Telemarketers often misrepresented themselves as first responders, and the operation used bogus names like Arkansas Police Defense Foundation to deceive consumers into thinking the charity was based in Arkansas.






Supporters of a plan to gradually raise Arkansas' minimum wage have been given 30 more days to circulate petitions and collect signatures after falling shy of the signatures needed to put their proposal on the November ballot.


Secretary of State Mark Martin's office on Friday told the Give Arkansas a Raise Now campaign that it had fallen short of the 62,507 signatures from registered voters needed to qualify the proposed initiated act for the November ballot. Martin's office said more than 3,000 of the 64,135 signatures that were submitted by the group had to be tossed out.


The proposal would raise Arkansas' minimum wage from $6.25 an hour to $8.50 an hour by 2017.


The group has until August 18th to submit more petitions.






Arkansas Republicans have voted to oppose a ballot measure that would loosen the state's term limits and tighten state ethics laws.


Delegates at the state GOP's convention approved a resolution opposing the proposed constitutional amendment appearing on the November ballot on Saturday. The resolution cited concerns about a portion of the proposal that would set a 16-year limit on serving in the Legislature. House members are currently restricted to serving three two-year terms, and senators are limited to two four-year terms.


The amendment also includes proposals to prohibit most lobbyists gifts to elected officials and prohibit corporate campaign contributions. The resolution that was passed Saturday, does not include those provisions.


The proposal was one of three measures that lawmakers voted to put on the 2014 general election ballot last year.


Arkansas Republicans are also touting a tax-cutting, anit-regulation message and expressing confidence that they'll complete a takeover of the state's top offices.


The GOP's nominees for statewide and congressional offices told delegates that were gathered for the state's convention that the GOP was well-positioned to continue its gains in what had been once a Democratic stronghold in the otherwise solidly Republican south.


Republicans are hopeful that they can win the governor's office, with GOP nominee Asa Hutchinson facing off against Democrat Mike Ross and U.S. Representative Tom Cotton is attempting to unseat Democratic Senator Mark Pryor.


The Democrats are holding their state convention next month in Little Rock.




The Chalice Cupboard assisted 35 families in Sevier County (110 people) including 60 adults and 41 children.  Distributions weighed 858 pounds of donated and purchased items.


The bank balance on June 1, 2014 was $364.89.  During June an additional $694.50 was received in donated funds, with $704.12 spent during the month to replenish food items in the pantry. 

The bank balance on June 30. 2014, was $355.28.


Donated food items received in June from St. Barbara Catholic Church and the First Presbyterian Church totaled 133 pounds. 911 pounds were purchased to make a total of 1,044 pounds of food shelved in June. 

Suggested food items for donation in July are jelly and cereal. 


Residents in Sevier County needing food may come for aid at the scheduled times of Tuesday and Wednesday from 2 pm to 3:340 pm at the Chalice Cupboard at 115 North Sixth Street in De Queen.  Recipients of food may be assisted once during each three-month period.

Events Aid Vets Considering Sustainable-Ag Career  07/22/14

Veterans and their spouses who are considering farming as a viable career can apply to spend several days in September learning about sustainable, small-scale farming at “Armed to Farm” (ATF) events in Arkansas and Mississippi.

The National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) is organizing the ATF events, which are supported by USDA Rural Development and NCAT’s ATTRA program.

Two ATF events will be held:

  • September 14-19 in Fayetteville, Arkansas

  • September 22-26 in Jackson, Mississippi

ATF will be a dynamic blend of farm tours and hands-on experience with classroom instruction. Participants will learn about business planning, budgeting, recordkeeping, marketing, livestock production, fruit and vegetable production, and more. Participants will leave the training with a strong foundation in the basic principles of operating a sustainable farming enterprise.

The number of participants will be limited. Applications are due August 1, 2014.
Selected participants will be notified no later than August 8, 2014.

The event will be free for participants, and lodging and most meals will be provided. Veterans selected to attend will be responsible for travel costs to and from the event.

Veterans from Arkansas and Mississippi as well as Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan) and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OEF & OIF) veterans and their spouses will receive first priority. National Guardsmen/women and Reservists also are encouraged to apply.

Secondary focus will be on all other veterans. Spouses are encouraged to attend, not only if they are interested, but because running a farm will impact their lives even if they are not directly involved.

Go online at  for complete application details.  For more information, please contact Margo Hale at or (479) 442-9824.




On Monday, July 14th at approximately 7 p.m. Sergeant Gary Cunningham received a complaint from Rebecca Aguilar who stated a man exposed himself to her and a small child while they were walking along Maple Street.


Aguilar said the man was eating a banana has they approached him; he finished the banana and he threw the peel on the ground and at that point he dropped his pants.


Later that evening, Cunningham and Corporal Bobby Bagley interviewed 58-year-old Danny Shattuck at his residence at 1212 North Maple Street.


Shattuck informed the officers that he was in his house naked and she may have seen him, but he became more nervous has he spoke with the officers.


On Tuesday, July 17th, Lieutenant Sonny Kimmel picked up Shattuck and transported him to the De Queen Police Department where he was interviewed concerning the incident that occurred.


Shattuck allegedly admitted to Lieutenant Kimmel that he had stood at his front door wearing nothing but a t-shirt and tried to get a woman's attention as she walked by.


Shattuck was cited for indecent exposure.






Members of the Dierks Board of Education approved the 2014-2015 students handbooks during their regular July meeting with a couple of additions to the cell phone policy section.


Board members voted to keep the majority of the old cell phone policy, which allows students to use their cell phones between classes and in designated areas.


They also added a consequence for a third violation of the cell phone policy. If a student is caught using their cell phone in a prohibited area or at a prohibited time for the third time, they will lose their phone for 30-days.


Board members increased the paid lunch price to $1.75. The increase is based on an Arkansas Department of Education Child Nutrition tool that determines the minimum price that may be charged for paid lunches.


They also accepted the milk bid from Hiland Dairy, the bread bid from Flowers Baking Company and the student insurance bid from Health Special Risk, Inc.


Sonja Markham was hired as a high school special education teacher.


Superintendent Holly Cothern informed the board that Buster Dellinger of Lockesburg offered the parking lot of the Lighthouse Church as a central location for a bus stop.




IT'S NOT JUST A LOT OF BULL        7/21/14

At the 42nd Annual Pine Tree Festival in Dierks    


Some exciting changes are taking place during the 42nd Annual Pine Tree Festival in Dierks this year.


Dierks Chamber of Commerce member Stacey Janes stated that after last year's successful Ultimate Challenge Bull Riding and Free Style Bull Fighting event, the chamber has added more money and moved the event to Saturday night.


Janes said there will be more than bull riding and bull fighting Saturday night. It will also feature some of the best mutton busters in Southwest Arkansas, along with two young sheep fighters and a clown look-a-like contest.


Make plans to attend the 42nd Annual Pine Tree Festival in Dierks, August 1st and 2nd. For more information contact the Dierks Chamber of Commerce at 584-7811 or 845-7774.






U.S. Postal Service District Manager Richard Wynn hosted a public meeting at the Lockesburg Community room Thursday night to discuss the Postal Services plans for the Lockesburg Post Office.


Wynn presented the results of a recent survey that was sent to the Lockesburg Post Office customers.


Wynn reported that only 276 of 1,200 surveys were sent back, however, 91 percent of those who responded voted for the realignment of post office hours.


Wynn informed the residents that were in attendance that the Postal Service had decided to open the Lockesburg Post Office from 8:15 to 11 a.m. and from 1:15 to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 8 to 10 a.m. on Saturdays, which will result in a six hour work day for the Postal Clerk.


Some residents asked if they post office hours could be adjusted so it would close at 4:30, so residents that work out of town would have an opportunity to use the post office.


Wynn explained that if you send mail between 4 and 5 p.m., you should use the blue mailbox that is outside for same day service because it is picked up about 5.


According to Wynn, the delivery route service will not be affected by this change and the hour realignment should take place within the next 60 days.






Most of us spend our Friday nights during the fall cheering for the Leopards, Lions and Panthers, not con artists or profiteers. Yet, out-of-state scammers may seek out money that's intended to support our hometown teams in order to line their pockets.


The Attorney General's office receives reports about solicitors asking business owners to purchase ads on sports schedules or calendars, but some of these solicitors are not affiliated with the school or organization they supposedly represent.


Therefore, Attorney General Dustin McDaniel issued a consumer alert to make sure business owners know about the state law pertaining to school calendars and schedule advertisements and to encourage advertisers to ask questions before they buy any ad space.


Business owners tend to assume that someone who is promoting advertising for a school athletic schedule is actually working for the school, but that's not always the case.


In some instances, con artists may make sales pitches for products that do not exist. Other times, legitimate for-profit companies actually produce a schedule or other product, but the item may not be endorsed by the school and the school does not receive any portion of the proceeds.


The state's school calendar disclosure law protects businesses against those kinds of solicitations.


The law applies to anyone who solicits advertisements for posters or other printed material depicting a school name, mascot or emblem in conjunction with an athletic program. Solicitors must disclose to potential ad buyers whether a school will receive any of the money that results from the purchase of an ad.


Any solicitor who does not give money to the school must state both orally and in writing that the school will not receive any funds from the sale.


Those who violate the calendar disclosure law are subject to penalties under the Arkansas Deceptive Trade Practices Act.


McDaniel encourages business owners to read the fine print of any contract and to contact the school directly if necessary. If solicitors make false claims about working with a school, the business owner should contact the Attorney General's Office by calling 1-800-482-8982.




Democratic governor candidate Mike Ross is reporting raising more than  $296,000 last month. He is also spending more than twice as much as he brought is as he edged out rival Asa Hutchinson in fundraising.


Ross reported spending $653.365 and ended the month with more than $1.2 million dollars in cash on hand. Hutchinson spent $162,278 and had more than $1 million dollars in the bank.


The fundraising report covers the first full month since the two rivals won their parties' respective nominations in the May primary.


The two ex-congressmen are running to succeed Democratic Governor Mike Beebe, who is term limited.





Fire Chief Dennis Pruitt informed the residents of De Queen that the cities Code Enforcement office worked out of the fire department and they’re asking citizens to help keep De Queen clean by mowing their grass and picking up their garage sale signs.


Pruitt also said the city has an ordinance that limits the number of garage sales that can be held by an address each month.


If you have any questions about the city codes concerning the upkeep of your property, you may contact the De Queen Fire Department at 584-7224.




SPLASH DASH 5K        7/18/14


First Assembly Church of De Queen will be hosting their 1st Annual Splash Dash 5K Saturday, August 2nd at 8 a.m. to raise funds for missions and Youth Pastor Jonathon Reynolds said its called the Splash Dash because organizers have asked the neighborhood that the course will take to turn on their sprinklers and get the runners wet.


Reynolds said that even if you don't want to run in the 5K, you should stop by the church to watch runners slide down the 100 foot slip and slide to the finish line.


According to Reynolds the purpose of the Splash Dash is the raise funds for missions. Reynolds said the youth group is attempting to raise $12,000 this year.


Reynolds explained that if you would like to run there are several ways to register, including stopping by the church or go online to


So, help reach the world while having a little fun running in the 1st Annual Splash Dash on Saturday, August 2nd at the First Assembly Church in De Queen.






Earlier this week, the state Board of Education announced that the Horatio School District had ordered that the Horatio School District be monitored for two years for violating accreditation standards.


KDQN contacted new Horatio Superintendent Lee Smith to discover the reason the district was being monitored.


Superintendent Smith explained that it was a simple paperwork issue from last May because the district had a teacher that was teaching in an area that they were not certified in.


Smith stated the same thing had happened the year before, but it was a different teacher.


Smith stated that even with this issue on his plate his transition into the district has been going pretty smooth.


Smith also stated that the district would be making some changes to improve student test scores in math, after the district was placed on the Needs Improvement list this spring.






Several activities have been scheduled for the Cossatot River State Park if the weather cooperates this weekend, including several opportunities to get in the river and go snorkeling.


A sneaky snorkeling event is scheduled for Friday, Saturday and Monday from 2 to 3 p.m. On Saturday and Sunday, you can extend your snorkeling adventure by snorkeling a section of the Cossatot River with a park interpreter from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m.


There's going to be an opportunity to hike the Harris Creek Trail on Friday and Saturday from 7 to 9:30 along Goats Bluff so guest can experience a beautiful sunset. Sunday, there will be a nature hike along the river. Hikers can expect several picture opportunities along the way.


Sunday afternoon, the park will offer guest a chance to feed the critters from 2 to 3 and then from 3:30 to 4:30 discover the shapes in the shade, as a park interpreter explains how animals use shade and cover to survive.


Then Monday evening, you can enjoy some homemade apple cobbler that been prepared in a Dutch oven from 8 to 9 p.m.


For a complete of activities at the Cossatot River State Park, visit our website


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