NIGHT OUT EVENT IN SEVIER COUNTY
County Investigator and Sheriff-elect Robert Gentry announced
area law enforcement agencies will be hosting a National Night
Out event in conjunction with local volunteer fire departments,
churches and business on Tuesday, August 2nd from 6 to 9 p.m. at
the De Queen Sportsplex.
said this is the 37th year for the National Night Out program.
He said it is an annual community-building campaign that
promotes police-community partnerships that help create safer
communities in which to live.
said this is the first year the event will be held in De Queen.
He said they started working on the event last week and already
have partnerships with the De Queen Police Department, Smiles of
Arkansas Dental and Pilgrim's Pride.
said it's going to be a lot of fun, while allowing area
residents to mingle with local law enforcement officers.
you or your business or organization would like to participate
in the event, contact the Sevier County Sheriff's Office at
642-2125 or the De Queen Police Department at 642-2213.
EMPLOYMENT AND WAGES IN ARKANSAS REPORT
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics released a report last week
showing the number of county residents that are employed and
what the average weekly wage is for all 75 Arkansas counties.
counties are considered small, due to the fact they have an
employment level of less than 75,000 people.
County has 4,839 people employed; while Little River has 3,521;
Howard has 7,004; and Polk County has 5,927.
72 of Arkansas' smaller counties reported weekly wages below the
national average of $1,082 a week during the fourth quarter of
2015. Among the smaller counties, the highest weekly wages were
in Calhoun County at $1,028 and Little River County at $978,
while the lowest weekly wage was in Newton County where the
average weekly wage is $492.
County's average weekly wage is $610; Howard County's is $615;
and the average weekly wage in Polk County is $604.
Arkansas counties reported an average weekly wage under $600, 30
reported wages from $600 to $699, 23 had wages from $700 to $799
and 10 averaged $800 or more per week.
RECOGNIZED BY FARM BUREAU FOR HER 22 YEARS OF SERVICE 6/21/16
Walker of Sevier County was recognized for her 22 years of
service to Farm Bureau members as a member service
representative for the Sevier County Farm Bureau.
Farm Bureau Vice President Rich Hillman and Executive Vice
President Warren Carter presented Walker and 79 other
secretaries an award of appreciation for their service during
the 2016 Arkansas Farm Bureau Member Service Representative
80 secretaries receiving awards represented 2,031 years of total
service to the counties, ranging from five years of service to
CALLED A SPLASH AND GO IN NASCAR
Thursday, a clerk at the Murphy’s fuel station in front of
Wal-Mart informed Corporal Bobby Bagley of the De Queen Police
Department that a black vehicle had pumped over $23 dollars
worth of gas and then left in a hurry, without paying for the
clerk provided Bagley with the license plate number and dispatch
informed him that the vehicle belonged to 21-year-old Christy
Walston-Pruitt of Hatfield.
informing the Polk County Sheriff's Office of the incident,
Bagley was informed that a Grannis Police Officer had stopped
Pruitt. She was then ordered to meet Bagley at the De Queen
Bagley was interviewing Pruitt, the Polk County Sheriff's Office
informed him that Pruitt had fueled up and left without paying
for the gas on several occasions. A dispatcher also reported,
they had received three other complaints about Pruitt stealing
gas in Sevier County.
was then charged with theft of motor fuel and processed at the
Sevier County jail. She was also advised that she was hereby
trespassed from Murphy's in De Queen.
ALERT: TIMESHARE RESALE TROUBLES
Arkansans may have previously decided to invest in a timeshare.
They had been sold on a guaranteed vacation location, upscale
lodging accommodations and the ability to exchange shares for
other properties. But, now they may be strapped by expensive
annual maintenance fees, difficulty exchanging weeks and
locations and finding that the property value they assumed would
remain steady or even increase has remained the same or
timeshare is a type of property in which an owner buys the right
to use it for a designated period of time. Timeshares are most
often condominium units at a popular destination and usually
have a number of owners.
timeshares gained popularity in the 70’s and 80’s, the
market was overdeveloped, resulting in a flood of properties
that now have depressed values, which has made resale difficult.
Attorney General Leslie Rutledge issued a consumer alert to
encourage Arkansans considering selling their share of a
timeshare to do research to find a reputable seller.
said Arkansans should beware of timeshare resellers who contact
you unsolicited with a promise to resell our timeshare. She said
if they say they have willing buyers, it is probably a lie.
Rutledge said you should never pay a substantial advance fee for
resale assistance, and you should get an independent appraisal
from a licensed appraiser before agreeing on any resale
there are a number of operations that exist that will try to
take advantage of owners who are desperate to sell by offering
assistance with selling your timeshare or by offering relief
from the burden of the continuing costs of ownership. Rutledge
said they often collect hundreds or thousands of dollars in
so-called deed transfer or marketing fees but never complete the
more information about traveling and other consumer related
issues, visit the Attorney General’s website at ArkansasAG.gov
or call 1-800-482-8982.
SAY ASTHMA APPS FOR CHILDREN CAN SAVE LIVES 6/21/16
team of doctors has developed the first mobile app that's
designed to help children and teens with asthma that is
supported by a peer-reviewed pilot study. That scientific backup
is especially important because doctors say not all medical apps
deliver what they promise.
David Stukus at the National Children's Hospital says every 20
seconds someone in this country, and it's usually a child, is
rushed to an emergency room because of asthma.
AsthmaCare app sends reminders to take medications and allows
patients to create and store an emergency plan. It has a symptom
diary, and provides links to area pollen stations, to make users
aware of allergen levels in the air. The app is free for
downloading from the National Children's Hospital website, for
iPad, iPhone and Android devises.
says there are a lot of asthma apps, but he warns parents to
make sure they're actually giving legitimate advice.
University of Arkansas report says about 13 percent of adults in
the state have asthma, compared to a national rate of just over
eight-percent. The report also states about 25 percent of
Arkansas children also suffer from this chronic lung condition.
SWEPCO PLANS POWER OUTAGE FOR DIERKS AREA
officials notified Dierks Mayor Terry Mounts that they plan to
conduct a scheduled power outage for Dierks area customers on
Tuesday at 10 p.m.
SWEPCO will be updating some equipment in the Dierks substation.
He said the outage should last about three-hours.
information, contact the Dierks City Hall at 870-286-2671.
announced the precautionary boil water notice has been lifted by
the Arkansas Department of Health.
LOCAL AUTHOR SIGNS BOOK DEAL 6/20/16
James Babb has written four books. He said the first two of a
three-book series were published, independently, but, he
recently signed a book deal and hopes "The Devil's Den" will be
released in the spring of 2017.
Babb said he
signed a book deal with Plum Street Publishers. He explained
Plum Street creates books that celebrate literature, history and
culture for young reluctant readers.
Babb said he
didn't work with a publishing company on the first two books
because an editor suggested too many changes to his second book,
"The Devil's Backbone." So, Babb decided to publish "The Devil's
Backbone" and "The Devil's Trap" through Word Press.
Babb said he
had been interested in writing since he was in college, but he
didn't have time to start writing until 2008.
two books, "the Devil's Backbone" and "the Devil's Trap," are
currently being used by some Arkansas School Districts as a part
of their literary curriculum.
LEGISLATURE LOOKING AT SEXUAL ASSAULT ON ARKANSAS
the Center for Disease Control, nearly one in five women and one
in 71 men has reported experiencing a sexual assault at some
time in their lives. And, over a third of the victims reported
being assaulted either on a college campus or during their
college age years.
the CDC, the goal of sexual violence prevention is simple, to
stop it from happening in the first place. But, the solutions
are as complex as the problem.
attempting to understand the campus climate issues, such as
students' knowledge about reporting policies and resources for
Legislative Council Subcommittee for Higher Education has asked
to hear from the state's top higher education officials about
the current climate on Arkansas college campuses and about what
is being done at the local level.
The director of
the Arkansas Department of Education, Dr. Brett Powell, referred
the committee to a recent survey that was conducted by the
association Everfi. The survey was taken by students from over
100 colleges and universities, including students from Arkansas.
Of the survey
respondents, 46 percent who indicated they had been victims of
sexual assault or sexual misconduct did not report it, because
they thought they would be blamed for what happened.
On a question
measuring knowledge of campus resources, 64 percent reported
that they know where to go to get help regarding sexual assault
at school, but only 35 percent said they understood their
of Arkansas testified they are expanding their training for
freshman who are enrolling this fall.
Last year, the
Arkansas Legislature passed Act 952, which requires a unit on
dating violence to be taught in grades 7 through 12 as part of the
health curriculum. The unit will focus on healthy relationships
and teach students the warning signs of dating violence and
For a list of
online resources to prevent sexual violence, visit the website
for the National Sexual Violence Resource Center at
DE QUEEN LION'S CLUB YOUTH FISHING DERBY IS THIS
De Queen Lions
Club member Billy Ray McKelvy announced the club will be hosting
a youth fishing derby this Saturday at the De Queen Lake
spillway from 9 to 11 a.m. as a community service project.
the first 100 kids to register will get a free t-shirt and they
must be accompanied by an adult.
the Arkansas Game and Fish is also tagging 20 fish and if a
young person catches a tagged fish, they will receive a prize.
He said if you need more information, you can call him or the De
Queen City Hall.
for the youth fishing derby is Saturday morning at 8:30 a.m.
AGFC MODIFIES PROPOSALS FOR CWD MANAGEMENT
Game and Fish Commission heard modified proposals to help slow
the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease during its June meeting.
concerning Chronic Wasting Disease were presented during the
Commission's May meeting, but since that time Arkansas Game and
Fish Staff has gathered public comments through 11 public
meetings, and a statewide call-in show on AETN.
modified proposals will be voted on during Friday's special
meeting of the Commission:
will consider establishing a Chronic Wasting Disease management
zone consisting of Boone, Carroll, Johnson, Logan, Madison,
Marion, Newton, Pope, Searcy and Yell counties.
will also prohibit the feeding of wildlife within the Chronic
Wasting Disease management zone, except for baiting between
October 1st and December 31st for hunting.
will also consider issuing extra deer tags to landowners within
the Chronic Wasting Disease management zone, to help decrease
All deer and
elk killed within the Chronic Wasting Disease management zone
must remain within the zone, except for deboned meat, cleaned
skull plates, hides, teeth and taxidermy products.
will also consider a proposal to prohibit scents and lures
containing natural deer urine and prohibit rehabilitation of
harvested statewide must be submitted for Chronic Wasting
And they plan
to create a non-commercial hunting enclosure permit for all
high-fence deer facilities where the commission will require
Chronic Wasting Disease samples from all deer that die in these
facilities; require annual inspections; require the facilities
to maintain accurate harvest records; and the commission will
not issue any new permits after July 1st, 2017.
is expected to take an official vote on these regulations during
a special called meeting this Friday. The Commission will
continue to accept public comments on these proposed regulations
via online survey at www.agfc.com.
THE TALLEYS IN CONCERT IN NASHVILLE
The Talleys are
one of Christian music's most beloved and respected families and
their commitment to excellence and creativity in music have been
their trademark since their career began.
began in 1984, but following a three-year hiatus, the Talleys
began performing with the current line up of Roger, Debra and
Lauren in 1996.
have enjoyed 11 number one songs, and have received numerous
Singing News Fan Awards and Dove Award nominations. They
frequently appear on the Gaither Homecoming video series and
concert tour, as well as In Touch with Dr. Charles Stanley and
John Hagee Ministries. They have appeared on RFD-TV's "The Music
City Show," and have toured overseas to Norway, Northern
Ireland, Italy and South Africa. The Talleys consistently
perform hundreds of concerts in churches of all sizes.
The Talleys are
a self-described normal family, but whether they grace a concert
hall, a church platform or enjoy a ball game on TV at home, they
are dedicated to God and family.
will be performing on Friday, June 24th at 7 p.m. at Ridgeway
Baptist Church in Nashville. The church is located at the corner
of Peachtree and Hearn streets or the Prescott Highway.
free, but a love offering will be taken. If you need more
information, call the church at 870-845-1386.
LET FREEDOM RING, JULY 2ND IN DE QUEEN
Chris Hale of
the De Queen Park's and Recreation Department announced the 15th
annual Let Freedom Ring program is scheduled for Saturday, July
2nd at the UA Cossatot Amphitheater starting at 6 p.m.
Hale said this
year the park's department's allowing 12 local vendors to set up
and sell one item each, but they need to contact the park office
at 642-4140 to reserve a spot.
Hale said the
Midnight Hurricanes will provide the entertainment, but they're
bringing back the local talent show this year. He said if you
are interested in performing a couple of songs, you should
contact him at the park office.
Hale said this
year, Shane Haarmeyer of 102.1 the Good Path will MC the event
and sing the National Anthem at the start of the fireworks
The City of
Lockesburg will hold their Fourth of July celebration on Monday,
July 4th in the Lockesburg City Park and the Texarkana Park's
Department will hold Sparks in the Park at the Four State
Fairgrounds on Saturday, June 25th starting at 6 p.m.
AGFC TO CONSIDER NEW HUNTING REGULATIONS JUNE 24TH
hunters continue to discuss proposed regulations for the
upcoming season and are concerned about some of the changes that
are being proposed by the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission.
and Fish Biologist Eley Talley said the commission recently held
a public meeting to address some of those concerns. He said most
of the changes address the issue of Chronic Wasting Disease that
is affecting the state’s deer herd in northwest Arkansas, but
Talley said one proposal would affect southwest Arkansas, as
Talley said one
of the proposals is to prohibit the feeding of wildlife
statewide, however, hunters would still be able to use bait from
October through December 31st.
there are still a lot of questions about how Chronic Wasting
Disease is spreading and whether or not the commission will
limit the harvesting of deer.
A survey of the
proposed regulations can be found on the game and fish website
at agfc.com. The regulations will be voted on at a special
called commission meeting on June 24th.
FORMER VOICE CONTESTANT HEADLINING KIAMICHI
OWA-CHITO FESTIVAL OF FOREST THIS SATURDAY 6/17/16
Kiamichi Owa-Chito Festival of Forest is currently underway with
activities all day today and Saturday at the Beavers Bend State
Park in McCurtain County.
events will begin with the 5K run at 8 a.m. But, Saturday night,
former Voice contestant and Bixby, Oklahoma native, Corey Kent
White, will take the stage at 8:30 p.m.
White said he
has family in the Broken Bow area and spent a lot of time in
McCurtain County. He said Saturday night’s is going to be a high
winners, the winner of the Battle of the Bands competition,
Twisted Whiskey and White will perform Saturday night starting
at 6:20 on the Beavers Bend Amphitheater stage.
information, visit the festival's Facebook page at Kiamichi
HISTORIC WASHINGTON TO HOLD FAMILY FUN DAY AND MUSIC IN THE PARK
THIS SATURDAY 6/14/16
Historic Washington State Park will hold a family fun day and
music in the park event on Saturday.
Guests can spend the day having fun from the 19th century.
Children’s games, surrey rides, town ball, which is an early
form of baseball, and interactive demonstrations, will celebrate
the first official weekend of summer. These demonstrations are
all free, plus tours of the many historical homes and buildings
of Washington and surrey rides are available at regular price.
Then, enjoy an evening on the lawn of the 1874 Courthouse at
Historic Washington listening to live music from the past to the
present. Bring your lawn chair because, this year’s annual
summer concert series is entitled, “Music in the Park” with the
theme “Sounds of Quartets.”
A free concert will be held on the third Saturday of June, July
and August beginning at 7:30 p.m. and is open to the public. The
first performance of the series will be this Saturday, featuring
the Texarkana String Quartet.
If it rains, activities will be moved inside the 1874
Fun day events are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. with music in the park
from 7:30 to 9 p.m.
For more information, call the park at 870-983-2684.
OGDEN CROSSING TO GET LIGHTED WARNINGS
cross stands near the Pine Street crossing in Ogden where two
people were killed in a vehicle/train collision in January. A
reminder of why Arkansas Highway and Transportation officials
and Kansas City Southern Railway officials met this week to
discuss ways to make the crossing safer.
diagnostic meeting, KCS crossing coordinator, Steve Weston
announced the crossing qualifies for lighted crossing arms and
estimate the project will cost about $350,000 and KCS will use
federal transportation funds to pay for the project.
year old Bobby Burris and 10-year-old Braiden Miller were killed
January 21st when the vehicle they were riding in was
struck by a northbound train at about 5 p.m.
the incident report, the road was wet from rain and the train
was traveling at 53 miles per hour.
HORATIO SCHOOL DISTRICT IMPLEMENTS 1 TO 1
TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM 6/16/16
during the regular meeting of the Horatio Board of Education,
board members voted to use National School Lunch funds to enter
into a lease with Apple for iPad Pros and accessories for every
student in the seventh through twelfth grades. Superintendent
Lee Smith said the district is trying to level the playing field
among students when it comes to their access to technology.
there are a lot of district's in the state using 1 to 1
programs, but he hopes Horatio will benefit from the other
School was also awarded the High Achieving High School for the
Region Award in the overall, Math and English, Language Arts
categories, the Beating the Odds High School in the overall,
Math and ELA categories and the Beating the Odds for the Region
in Math and ELA from the Office of Education Policy from the
University of Arkansas. Smith said everyone, including the
students deserve the credit for those achievements.
Smith said he
is excited about the district's new hires and expects they will
help continue the district's recent success.
the board also approved a new purchasing card system.
He said the
district is also helping the Horatio baseball team raise funds
for their state championship rings.
ASHDOWN COMMUNITY LIBRARIES TO HOST A SUMMER
READING PROGRAM 6/16/16
Community Library’s announced they will be holding a summer
reading program, starting the first Tuesday in July. This year’s
summer reading program theme is “On Your Mark, Get Set, Read.”
between the ages of 3 through the 6th grade will
register at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, June 28th.
be offered every Tuesday during the month of July and
participates will receive a chart to record the titles of the
books that read, as well as how much time they spent reading.
Children 3 to 6
years old will meet at the Ashdown Community Library from 10:30
until 11:30 a.m. every Tuesday in July. First through 6th
graders will meet at the library from 1 to 2:30 p.m.
MINERAL SPRINGS SCHOOL DISTRICT TO ASK VOTERS
RESTRUCTURE BONDS 6/16/16
Springs School Board of Education discussed financing options
for their proposed school construction project this week during
their monthly meeting.
then authorized Superintendent Curtis Turner to restructure the
district’s existing bond debt with a principal amount of $19
million dollars, which will mature over a period of 32 years for
the construction of a new school and for the refunding of the
district’s outstanding bonds.
revenue produced by the millage would be used by the district
for other school purposes.
the board that the voters of the Mineral Springs School District
would need to approve the restructuring of the district’s bond
debt in September, but he also pointed out there would be no
increase in the district’s millage.
Springs School District’s millage is currently 34 mills and
would not increase if approved by the district patrons.
bonded debt payment would be around $1.3 million dollars a year.
William Dixon and Ray Hawkins then inquired about how much the
district as spent on legal fees. Turner reported the district
has paid their attorney John Walker $142,947, but he felt that
would be the bulk of the expense.
Springs School District filed a lawsuit against the Arkansas
Department of Education, Arkansas Department of Education
Commissioner Johnny Key, the Arkansas State Board of Education
and Hempstead County alleging tax revenue from the SWEPCO Turk
Plant that has been diverted from the district for the past two
IT’S NOT FAIR TIME YET; SO WHAT ARE YOU DOING OUT
June 15th, Patrolman First Class Levi Browning of the
De Queen Police Department noticed some tail lights at the south
entrance of the Sevier County fair grounds.
investigated the situation, he didn't find anybody in the truck,
but he found an empty pistol case sitting on the driver’s seat.
announced his presence, he noticed two men walking toward him
with a flashlight. After asking them to show him their hands,
they informed him that there was another man with them.
asked where the gun was, they said there wasn't a gun, just the
Gentry then arrived to assist Browning and when Browning went
into the building that the three had come out of, he noticed the
smell of burnt marijuana. About that time, 21-year-old Jacob
Morgan of Lockesburg informed Browning that there was a pistol
and told him where he could find it.
allegedly admitted the gun belonged to him and he and the other
two suspects, 21-year-old William May of De Queen and
21-year-old Jackson Vallee of De Queen, had allegedly been
All three men
were transported to the Sevier County jail and processed for
criminal trespass and possession of a controlled substance.
DAISY STATE PARK TO HOLD BOATER EDUCATION
Park will hold a boater education course this Friday from 9 a.m.
to 4 p.m.
will learn about Arkansas’ safe boating laws and practices in
the six-hour class. The class is required for anyone born on or
after January 1st, 1986 and of legal age to operate a
boat on Arkansas waterways. This includes operators of sailboats
and personal watercraft, like jet skis.
teaches the fundamentals of safe boating that are necessary to
reduce the loss of life, personal injury and property damage,
while increasing the boating enjoyment for outdoor enthusiasts.
will cover boat classifications, registration, lifesaving
equipment, navigation aids, rules of the water, maintenance,
courtesy and more.
participates pass the test, they will receive a boater education
the Daisy State Park will also be hosting its’ annual Lake
park will host its 27th annual children’s fishing
derby from 8 to 11 a.m. The event is free and there’s going to
be a lot of prizes, including a prize for the biggest fish, the
smallest fish and first fish caught.
must be 15 and younger and they must bring their own bait and
From 9 to 11
a.m. guests can take the kayaking challenge and then enjoy a
warm treat that was prepared in a cast iron Dutch oven from 2 to
3 p.m. The cost for the cast iron cookware demonstration is $2
and guests must pre-register by 1 p.m. on Saturday.
park will be offering a scenic lake cruise from 10 a.m. until
noon. The cost for the lake cruise is $10 for adults and $5 for
kids 6 to 12.
information, call the Daisy State Park at 870-398-4487.
MONEY ON ITS WAY TO HELP FIGHT HUNGER AND OBESITY
IN ARKANSAS 6/16/16
million dollars is grants are heading to organizations that help
feed the hungry with the goal of getting low-income residents to
eat healthier. The Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance has been
awarded $94 thousand dollars for a pilot program to let SNAP
recipients double their benefits at farmers markets.
is with the USDA and he says a family could spend $20 dollars on
fresh food and get $40 dollars worth. He says it's a way to
combat the hunger and obesity problem in Arkansas.
One in four
Arkansas children deals with hunger issues, with 29 percent
living below the poverty level. According to the Arkansas Hunger
Relief Alliance, families spend on average an additional $300 a
month on food during the summer.
the idea is to get residents, especially children, to always
have healthy food choices available. He says that's not
happening now because healthy food tends to cost more.
obesity rate in 2014 was nearly 36 percent. Concannon says if
families can afford to buy fresh food that number would come
TYSON FAMILY FUN DAY
Grannis Plant hosted a Family Fun Day for Team Members from the
Plant, Complex Office and Truck Shop on Saturday, June 4, 2014
at the Grannis City Park. They enjoyed several inflatables for
the kids, which was a big hit; nachos, soft pretzels and hot
dogs. Several members of management also sat in the dunking
booth and gave Team Members the opportunity to dunk them ---
what a great time!! They were also served a meal of grilled
chicken, potato salad, baked beans and a roll. And even though
there were a couple of rain showers, everyone had a good time.
The Management of the Grannis Plant want to send out a big Thank
You to all our Team Members for the hard work and dedication
they exhibit every day. We truly appreciate all that you do.
They would also like to thank the Umpire FFA and CRHS
Cheerleaders for coming out and working the games and helping to
cook and serve lunch so that all our Team Members could enjoy
the day. They did an excellent job and worked tirelessly to
ensure we enjoyed the day. (More
STILWELL AVE WILL BE CLOSED ON FRIDAY
Queen Police Chief Scott Simmons announced Tuesday afternoon
that Stilwell Avenue will be closed from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. on
Friday, June 17th.
reported Kansas City Southern Railway will be working on the
railroad crossing on Stilwell and motorists will need to take an
CORPS CLOSES JEFFERSON RIDGE CAMPGROUND ENTRANCE
DURING CULVERT REPLACEMENT 6/15/16
The Army Corps
of Engineers, Millwood Tri-Lakes Project Office will close the
entrance road into Jefferson Ridge Campground at 7 a.m. on
Thursday, June 16th to replace a culvert on the main entrance
The road will
be closed to traffic until the culvert is replaced. It is
expected that the project will be completed by 4 p.m. on Friday,
the Army Corps of Engineers, Millwood Tri-Lakes Project Office
regret any inconvenience this may cause and are asking the
public to cooperate during the closure.
information, contact the Dierks Project Office at 870-286-2346.
COSSATOT RIVER STATE PARK ACTIVITIES
State Park Interpreter Victoria Carson stated she'll be leading
an electronic treasure hunt this Saturday from 10 to 11 a.m. as
she introduces park guest to one of the fastest growing outdoor
hobbies in Arkansas, Geocaching.
she'll explain how to use a GPS unit and then participates will
attempt to find a cache that's located in the park.
families are invited to celebrate Father's Day by learning how
to snorkel from 10 to 11 a.m. Carson said snorkel equipment will
be provided by the park, but guest should wear appropriate
clothing for swimming.
Carson said the
park will host a 4-day Ecology Camp for children 5-8 years old
from Tuesday, June 21st to Friday, June 24th and a 4-day,
3-night SWAT camp for children 9 to 13 years of age from Monday,
June 27th to Thursday, June 30th.
stated you can still sign up for a guided kayak tour for
Saturday, June 25th by calling the park. She said they will
start in the Visitor Center classroom at 9 a.m. and then get off
the river around 4 p.m.
The cost $30.94
but that includes a shuttle service to the river, a kayak,
paddles, lifejacket and an interpretive guide service.
information, call the Cossatot River State Park at 870-385-2201.
DIERKS KAYAK FESTIVAL IS JUNE 17-19
Chamber of Commerce will be hosting the Dierks Kayak Festival in
cooperation with the Arkansas Kayak group and the U.S. Army
Corps of Engineers, this Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the
Horseshoe Bend Day-Use area below the Dierks Lake and the Corps
of Engineers has agreed to provide an adequate release of water
so the chamber can host the event.
The event will
include instructions and safety classes for beginners, a fishing
tournament plus races with world class participants. The course
will be set up to allow spectators to see the entire course.
On Friday, June
17th, there will be clinics on general river safety, swiftwater
rescue and an introduction to kayaking and canoeing.
include races that will start at 11 a.m. and a Hometown Throw
Down competition at 2 p.m. There will be raft and shredder rides
for the public at 5 p.m. The raft and shredder rides are free to
American Canoe Association members, but will cost non-members
will perform at 7:30 during a fundraiser for Heros on the Water,
to benefit the Wounded Warriors project.
kayak bass tournament will start at safe light and go until 1
p.m. on the Dierks Lake.
information, contact the Dierks Chamber of Commerce at
IMPROVING THE DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES
Representative DeAnn Vaught reported the director of the state’s
largest agency presented a plan designed to ensure that the 1.2
million Arkansans who are being served by the Department of
Human Services are getting the best care in the most efficient
way. Vaught said the plan was presented to the Arkansas Health
Reform Legislative Task Force, last week.
the Department of Human Services, the department pays for 64
percent of the babies born in Arkansas and care for 69 percent
of the state’s nursing home patients through a blend of federal
and state Medicaid funds.
also protects children and the elderly who have been abused;
finds adoptive homes for foster children; funds home-delivered
meals to the elderly; regulates nursing homes and childcare
facilities; serves youth in the juvenile justice system;
oversees services for the blind; runs residential facilities for
people with developmental disabilities; manages the Arkansas
State Hospital and the Arkansas Health Center; and supports
nonprofit, community and faith-based organizations that depend
on volunteers to continue programs that are vital to our
taskforce meeting, DHS Director Cindy Gillespie reported the
agency is implementing a new organizational structure that’s
aimed at creating more accountability for each functional role.
She stated the reorganization will initially cost an additional
$266,536, but it will eventually allow the agency to turn back
$597,583 to the state by operating more efficiently.
reported the agency is reviewing $174 million dollars worth of
contracts and she said she is committed to identifying $25
million dollars in savings within the next fiscal year.
the agency is on track to implement some recent changes that
were approved by the Legislature.
the DHS, there are more than 283,000 Arkansans receiving
coverage through the Private Option and another 634,000
residents are receiving benefits through traditional Medicaid.
FEDERAL COURT BACKS FCC'S TREATMENT OF INTERNET
AS UTILITY 6/15/16
A federal court
has upheld the FCC's decision to treat the Internet like a
utility, which is a victory for consumers who are advocating for
net neutrality. The two-to-one ruling was handed down this week
from the U.S. Court of Appeals for Washington, D.C.
Marty Newell is
a member of the Rural Broadband Policy Group and he says the
court ruling is "part of the march" to treating broadband the
same way we treat telephone service.
The cable and
telecom industries and their allies have argued that the FCC's
rule is overreaching and would stifle investment and customer
choice. But Newell and other advocates says web users need more
protections from providers.
Newell says the
ruling is especially important in rural areas of the country
that are underserved by broadband. He said take Kentucky for
example, about one out of every four households does not have
access to broadband services.
Broadband Policy Group says of the 19 million Americans who
don't have broadband, more than 14 million live in rural parts
of the country. Noting a lot of money is at stake, Newell says
he knows the legal challenges will continue something that the
industry giants have promised.
MINERAL SPRINGS CITY COUNCIL APPROVES PURCHASE OF
ADDITIONAL SEWER PUMP 6/15/16
submitted by KMTB
Springs City Council approved the purchase of an additional
sewer pump to help prevent manholes from overflowing during
their regular meeting Monday night.
Superintendent Jonathan Holden reported the addition of a third
pump would increase the treatment volume of the plant to about
900 gallons per minute. He said a lot of water runs through the
sewer system and bottlenecks before it reaches the sanitation
pond following heavy rainfall. Holden said a larger pipe would
also help with the issue, but he suggested they replace the pipe
at a later date.
Tullis said the sewer system was installed in the 1960’s and was
not designed to handle the city’s current population. He said
the system needs some overall upgrades.
they plan to perform another smoke test this summer. Holden
said they will never be able to find all of the cracks and
issues, but they will make repairs and update the line when they
find a problem.
voted to use funds from the sanitation truck account to pay for
the new pump.
SEVIER COUNTY QUORUM COURT APPROVES CONTRACT OF
OBLIGATION WITH ADEQ 6/14/16
afternoon during the regular meeting of the Sevier County Quorum
Court, Justices of the Peace were provided a list of items that
have been removed from the county's inventory list, including
several computers from the Sevier County Library system.
JPs approved a
request to transfer some funds within the county sheriff's
budget. They also approved a request for an additional $75 in
the Veterans Services' budget for postage. County Judge Greg Ray
explained the amount was inadvertently left out of the 2016
The court then
re-appointed Velma Owens and Mildred Walker to the Sevier County
Equalization Board and Teresa Brewer to the Sevier County
Housing Authority Board.
mentioned the Housing Authority Board is vital because the
county has housing in De Queen, Lockesburg and Horatio.
JPs also passed
a resolution to enter into a Contract of Obligation with the
Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality concerning the
county's class 4-landfill. They also approved an additional
$2,071.20 to cover the cost of that contract.
Ray said the
county now has $159,455.80 set aside for the closure and
post-closure of the county landfill and transfer station.
HORATIO AND CENTRAL VOLUNTEER FIRE DEPARTMENTS TO
HOLD A COOK-OFF THIS SATURDAY AT FROG LEVEL 6/14/16
Rich Dorsey of
the Horatio Volunteer Fire Department and Brettny Lynch of the
Central Volunteer Fire Department announced their departments
will be holding a pulled pork and chicken dinner this Saturday
at the Central Community Building in Frog Level starting at 5
Lynch said the
two departments will split the proceeds 50/50.
explained the two departments work well together and thought
this would be a cool way to help one another raise some needed
funds. He also announced
the Bill Powers Band will be performing at 5.
and Lynch stated their departments are also looking for a few
information, contact members of the Central or Horatio Volunteer
SEVIER COUNTY HUMANE SOCIETY HOLDING JULY 2ND
of the Sevier County Humane Society, Juanelle Gage announced
this week that the society is selling tickets for a Holland
Freedom grill as a fundraiser. She said tickets are $5 each or 5
Martha Fines is
the treasurer for the Humane Society and she said they will be
selling tickets at Wal-Mart from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. on
Saturday, July 2nd. She said they will draw the winning ticket
at 4 p.m. Fines also mentioned that the next county spay and
neuter clinic is going to be in September.
Fines said a
humane society membership is $10 for an individual or $15 for a
family and society members help with the clinic as well as help
get animals adopted by loving families.
information or to purchase a ticket, call 870-584-9096.
OF DIAMONDS STATE PARK CELEBRATING DIAMOND MINERS THIS WEEKEND
This Saturday, June 18th, the Crater of Diamond State Park will
celebrate diamond miners with games, prizes and diamonds during
the 6th annual Prospector’s Gemboree.
There will be lots of games and activities for all ages
including a digging contest, bean bag toss, relay race and there
will treasure hunt prizes hidden throughout the diamond search
Park guests can pick up a schedule at the visitor center
throughout the day.
The park will also host the 10th annual Famous Crater Diamonds
Exhibit between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. in the Diamond Discovery
Center. Park guests will hear the stories behind the diamond
finds; during this rare display of diamonds that were found in
Arkansas. Guests will also meet Crater diamond finders and
collectors including: Susie Clark who found the 3.69 carat white
Hallelujah Diamond. Kenny and Melissa Oliver, who are regular
visitors to the park, have found several diamonds including the
2.44 carat white Silver Moon Diamond. And, Terry Staggs is also
a regular visitor to the Crater of Diamonds State Park and he
found the 2.95 carat brown Patriot Diamond.
All games and activities are free with the purchase of a mine
admission. Admission is $8 for anyone 13 and older; $5 for
anyone 6 to 12 and children five and under are free.
For more information, contact the Crater of Diamonds State Park
CONSUMER ALERT: GET EDUCATED WITH THE GI
The GI Bill has
grown and changed since it was signed into law by President
Franklin Roosevelt in 1944, but the goal of the bill remains the
same, help service members learn a skill or attend college.
In 2008, the GI
Bill was updated and is now called the Post-9/11 GI Bill. This
update provided more resources to cover educational expenses, a
monthly housing allowance, up to $1,000 a year for books and
supplies and a one-time relocation allowance for veterans who
served on active duty for 90-days or more since September 10th,
2001. The bill also provides tuition assistance and a book
stipend to current active duty service members.
Attorney General Leslie Rutledge issued a consumer alert to
educate veterans and military families about the various
benefits available under the GI Bill.
the GI Bill will help veterans earn an undergraduate and
graduate degree; obtain vocational and technical training;
apprenticeships; receive reimbursement for licensing and
certifications; reimbursement for national testing; as well as,
training for entrepreneurship, flight and correspondence; and
work-study programs, tuition assistance and tutoring assistance.
payments are provided in tiered amounts based on the amount of
active duty service. In order to eligible for the Post-9/11 GI
Bill, service members must have served at least 30-days of
continuous active duty and be discharged because of a service
connected disability or served an aggregate of 90-days of active
duty and received an honorable discharge. Service members who
meet this criteria have 15 years to use the assistance.
also transferable to family members, including a spouse or
information, contact the Attorney General's Office at
1-800-482-8982 or visit the website ArkansasAG.gov.
BOIL WATER ORDER ISSUED FOR DIERKS WATER WORKS
boil water notice has been issued for residents of the City of
Dierks, due to the loss of water pressure that was caused by a
water main break.
Terry Mounts reported city crews were called out about 10:30
p.m. Sunday night and started trying to repair the leak. He said
they hope to have water service restored by this afternoon.
customers are advised that when water service is restored the
water may be unsafe for human consumption and water used for
drinking, cooking, making of ice, brushing teeth, or washing
dishes should be boiled for one minute prior to use.
precautionary boil water notice will remain in effect until an
adequate disinfectant level is established throughout the
distribution system and water tests reveal the water is safe to
If you have any
questions, contact the Dierks City Hall at 870-286-2671.
HONOR RIDE SCHEDULED FOR FATHERS DAY BY THE
BEACON HILL MOTORCYCLE MINISTRY 6/13/16
Motorcycle Ministry President Newman Hance announced this
morning that they will be hosting a honor ride this Sunday, June
19th in memory of Houston Hayes. He said all of the proceeds
will benefit the Milwee Cemetery fund in honor of Mr. Hayes.
Hance said the
ride will start at the Cossatot Reefs pavilion at 2 p.m. and
travel north to Wickes, then over to Umpire and down to Dierks
then back to the Cossatot Reefs through De Queen.
said they will start serving a potluck meal at 11 a.m.
mentioned the motorcycle ministry members will be holding a
multi-family garage sale at the armory, July 7th and 8th.
Hance said they
will use the funds to help people in the community without
having to host a fundraiser. He said they also hope to purchase
a van or bus for a children's ministry.
Hance said the
motorcycle ministry is also planning to hold a bike show this
information about the Beacon Hill Motorcycle Ministry or the
honor ride this Sunday, call 682-970-0378.
ASHDOWN SHOOTING SPORTS GUN THEFT TRIAL SET
A trial date of
June 20th has been set for 41-year-old Terry Simmons of Little
River County. Simmons has been charged with two counts of theft
of property for allegedly selling or trading shotguns that
belonged to the Ashdown School District's shooting sports team.
court records, the investigation started in January of 2015,
when Debbie Greathouse asked for an inventory of the district's
10 shotguns that were being stored in a gun safe at the Little
River County Sheriff's office.
the original report, Simmons brought three shotguns to the
office from his vehicle, but only one of the guns was a Benelli
brand like the ones that the district had purchased from Gander
Mountain in Texarkana, Texas with a grant that was supplied by
the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission.
Police investigators allege Simmons went to Davis and Jones Pawn
in Ashdown and sold or traded three guns on January 3rd in 2014
and sold or traded a rifle and a Benelli shotgun at Davis and
Jones Pawn on March 27th.
Simmons could be sentenced to 12 years in prison and fined up to
ARKANSAS PARENTS STEPPING UP TO THE PLATE
A group that's
worked for more than two decades to get parents more involved in
their children's education says a lot of work needs to be done
across the country, to beef up communication. Project Appleseed
is made up of mostly volunteers who are trying to get parents,
grandparents and guardians involved in the classroom.
president, Kevin Walker, says there's a huge communication gap
between schools and parents in some states, but progress is
being made in Arkansas.
Appleseed asks parents and guardians to sign a pledge to
volunteer in their child's school and to read to them for a
minimum number of hours per week.
many parents never have any communication with their child's
teacher outside of the parent-teacher conference, and some don't
attend those either. Walker said he backs a plan where all
schools send texts and emails to parents.
also is pushing for legislation to provide better internet
access for families. He says some will argue that affordable
broadband just allows people to surf the web or watch videos.
the federal government to expand the Lifeline program, which was
set up in the 80's to make telephone service affordable. It also
would give those below the federal poverty level a subsidy to
pay for an internet connection.
BRINKLEY FAMILY OF GRANNIS NAMED DISTRICT FARM
FAMILY OF THE YEAR 6/13/16
district winner in the 69th annual Arkansas Farm Family of the
Year Program have been selected, representing the diversity of
Arkansas agriculture, which is the state's largest industry.
winners will now be judged to determine a state winner which
will be announced December 8th during the Farm Family of the
Year luncheon in North Little Rock.
Chris and Nesha
Smith of Sercy in the East Central District. Fred and Dorothy
Sue Denison of Batesville in the North Central District. The
Stacy Family Farms of Wynne in the Northeast District. The Peach
Pickin' Paradise of Clarksville in the Northwest District. Jim
and Dina Hubbard of Marvell in the Southeast District.
April Allen of Lewisville in the Southwest District. The Allens
raise poultry, cattle, timber, wheat and hay on 660 acres. They
also own a lawn care business and a construction business.
Joe and Jill
Brinkley of Grannis in the Western District. The Brinkleys raise
broilers, cattle and hay on 645 acres. Additionally, they have a
land-clearing and poultry litter service.
Joel and Amanda
Whisenhunt of Nashville in the West Central District. They
Whisenhunts raise poultry, cattle and hay on 368 acres. They
also raise and train purebred Border Collies for working cattle.
Bureau President, Randy Veach, says the Farm Family of the Year
program is a great way to shine a spotlight on the great farm
families of Arkansas.
The Farm Family
of the Year program begins each year with the selection of the
top farm families in each county and culminates with the
selection of the state Farm Family of the Year who will then
represent the state of Arkansas at the Swisher Sweets/Sunbelt
Expo Southeastern Farmer of the Year. All winners are judged on
their farm production, efficiency, management, family life and
Mollie Dykes is
the coordinator of the Arkansas Farm Family of the Year program
and she stated these are the backbone of the state and they are
recognized not only for their farms, but also on the impact they
make in their communities.