Boozman on ebola, ISIS, and more

Oct 10, 2014

U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) talks about election issues, ebola fears, the fight against ISIS, and more in this month's visit with KASU. Click on the "Listen" link to hear the whole interview.

Jonesboro City Council approves rezoning for Greensborough Village

Oct 10, 2014

The real work on a rezoning request that was approved by Jonesboro council members Thursday night begins anew Friday, an official working with the project said.

Gary Harpole of Halsey Thrasher Harpole spoke in favor of the Greensborough Village Project, which was approved by a 6-3 vote during the council meeting at Municipal Center.

The Arkansas Science Fair continues this week, with the final activities on Saturday.  As part of Saturday’s events, plays about science will be performed in the auditorium of the Carl R. Reng Student Union on the A-State campus in Jonesboro.  Associate Professor of Theatre Tim Bohn says several short plays will be performed from ten to four on Saturday.  He tells how the idea of science plays started.

In the event that an emergency is called into Jonesboro’s 911 dispatch center, questions related to Ebola will be asked.  Jeff Presley is E911 Director with the City of Jonesboro and explains why this will take place.

A traffic study suggests that improvements will be needed for proposed development at Hilltop, but those improvements should not stop the development of Greensborough Village.  That is the result of a study that was conducted by Peters and Associates Engineers of Little Rock.  They did the study for Halsey Thrasher Harpole, who is the commercial real estate company working on the Hilltop project.  According to the Sun newspaper, intersection and traffic signal improvements would be needed to regulate traffic in and around Greensborough Village, but the study says traffic would cont

Ross and Hutchinson share Day One plans in debate

Oct 8, 2014

On day one as governor, Mike Ross would have state agencies review regulations that are more than three years old to see if they are still needed or if they were ever needed. Asa Hutchinson would contact half a dozen companies to see if they would consider coming to Arkansas.

Those answers were revealed during a lively televised debate broadcast by KATV and 40/29 before a rowdy crowd on the UALR campus Tuesday. Audience members cheered many responses between the two campaigns.

This Friday night at the Fowler Center on the A-State campus, four former American Idol finalists will perform a concert in tribute to the music of Motown.  KASU’s Marty Scarbrough spoke to one of those finalists, Melinda Doolittle, who described the show that will be presented in Jonesboro.

Chelsea Hays / The Herald

Former Arkansas Governor and United States President Bill Clinton returned to Jonesboro yesterday, as he headlined the Arkansas First tour.  Speaking at Arkansas State University, Clinton spoke about why it is important for young people to vote in this election.

Chelsea Hays / The Herald

Former President Bill Clinton is hosting a series of rallies around Arkansas for Democratic candidates.  Speaking at Arkansas State University yesterday, Clinton spoke of the importance of young people getting out to vote.  Clinton joined Gubernatorial candidate Mike Ross, Senator Mark Pryor, Congressional candidate Jackie McPherson, and Governor Mike Beebe in the rally.  Click on the Listen button to hear the entire speech from President Clinton. 

A change in Arkansas law is what has led to a drastic increase in the number of alcohol arrests and violations at Arkansas State University.  Last week, the University’s Police Department released Crime Statistics, which showed arrests for liquor law violations spiked from no arrests in 2011 to 24 arrests in 2013.  Those students who were referred to the Student Conduct Office for liquor violations were also up, from 25 in 2011 to 101 referrals last year.  Administrative Lieutenant for the Arkansas State University Police Department Jarrod Long says the number do not mean there is more alc

Ruling stops collections of hospital sales tax for now

Oct 1, 2014

A sales tax that was supposed to be collected for Crittenden Regional Hospital won’t be collected at least until voters can make their decision later this year, a circuit judge ruled Friday.

The Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration sent out a notice Tuesday, notifying the public about the decision by Circuit Judge Victor Hill.

Hill ruled late Friday in favor of a temporary restraining order, stopping the county from collecting the one-cent sales tax.

More jobs coming to Jonesboro.  Grand opening ceremonies took place at the site of the new TeleTech call center in Jonesboro. TeleTech’s call center will be used to provide support for the health insurance industry.  Those working at the center will help patients as they deal with claims and how to choose the right plans.  Located where StarTech used to be at on Caraway Road in Jonesboro, TeleTech officials excited those in attendance by announcing they would be hiring more than the 100 people initially brought on to the company.  Senior Vice President of TeleTech Todd Baxter.

Ground and weather conditions helping soybean farmers

Sep 30, 2014

The work of Mother Nature and technology have provided a one-two punch in seeing soybeans grow throughout southeast Arkansas and the rest of the state, according to record-breaking farmers and an official with the Arkansas Soybean Promotion Board.

Dr. Lanny Ashlock, who works with project management for the promotion board, said the crop has benefited especially in southeast Arkansas.

Tosh, Baker see District 52 Seat as Critical to House Control

Sep 30, 2014

The race two years ago in House District 52 was a battle to the finish, with just a handful of votes deciding the winner.

Both parties are also expecting a battle for the seat this year.

Democrat Radius Baker and Republican Dwight Tosh, both of Jonesboro, are seeking the State House District 52 seat. The district, which stretches from the Cord Charlotte area of Independence County to Tyronza in Poinsett County, includes parts of Craighead, Independence, Jackson and Poinsett counties.

The inaugural Arkansas Science Festival is underway.  Modeled after science festivals that take place in other states, this year’s first festival was put together by educators at Arkansas State University, with assistance through the Science Festival Alliance.  Dr. Amy Pearce is professor of psychology at Arkansas State University and is director of the Arkansas Science Festival.  She tells how this got started.

Former President Bill Clinton will come back to Arkansas next week to hold a series of rallies for Democrats.  The Arkansas Democratic Party has announced on their website that Clinton will be at Arkansas State University on Monday, October sixth at the Student Center Lawn around 3:00 pm.  The rally at A-State will be one of four that will happen next week, with the other event next Monday being held in Conway.  On October 7th, he will be in Fayetteville and Rogers.  The public is invited to attend, but tickets are required.  More information here

A-State to host Gubernatorial Debate October 20

Sep 29, 2014

A consortium of local groups will host a televised debate between the leading gubernatorial candidates on Monday, Oct. 20, at 7 p.m. in Arkansas State University’s Carl R. Reng Student Union.

The Northeast Arkansas Political Animals Club is the lead sponsor of the debate featuring Asa Hutchinson and Mike Ross.  The Jonesboro Regional Chamber of Commerce, KAIT Region 8, ASU-TV and A-State are also assisting to host the Democratic and Republican candidates. 

Arkansas State University has seen a sharp increase in the number of alcohol violations reported on campus.  According to campus crime statistics released by the Arkansas State University Police Department, the number of violations concerning liquor laws has jumped dramatically over the last three years.  From 2011 to 2013, the number of arrests for violations of liquor laws went from zero arrests in 2011 to 24 in 2013.  The number of referrals made for violations of liquor laws went from 25 in 2011 to 101 last year.  Arkansas State University has a strict policy against the use and sale of

New polls show Republicans are in the lead in key Arkansas races

Sep 24, 2014

New poll numbers come from a survey of likely voters by Public Policy Polling conducted last Thursday through Sunday. It finds Republican Tom Cotton ahead in the U.S. Senate race, 43% to 38% over Democratic incumbent Mark Pryor. Libertarian Nathan LaFrance and Green party nominee Mark Swaney garnered 3% each and 13% were undecided.

In the Governor’s race, Republican Asa Hutchinson led 44% to 38% over Democrat Mike Ross. The third party candidates pulled in 5% collectively and 13% were undecided. The poll’s margin of error is plus or minus 2.6%.

Speakers say the state and next Governor need workforce plan

Sep 24, 2014

Arkansas has jobs. Arkansas has people who need jobs. Arkansas has too many people who need jobs who can’t do the job.

Those problems were the subject of a daylong Jobs Now workforce summit sponsored by the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce at the Statehouse Convention Center. According to the chamber, 49% of skilled-trade workers in Arkansas are age 45 and older.

Among the highlights of the event were two panel discussions focused on workforce opinions that included education, government and business leaders.

The old Jonesboro Fire Station at Caraway Road and Matthews Avenue is coming down.  Jonesboro Mayor Harold Perrin tells the Sun Newspaper the old building was originally to be converted into the new transfer station for the Jonesboro Economical Transportation System (JETS); however, architects recommended the old building be torn down and a new building be constructed at the same location.  JETS Director Steve Ewart says the location is perfect because it is centrally located in Jonesboro.  The parking lot of the facility is being used to meet and transfer passengers.  A $1.1 million federa

“Big River Steel is here!” 

Applause erupted after that announcement from Mississippi County Judge Randy Carney . Hundreds of dignitaries, including state and local officials, joined investors, contractors, vendors, and supporters during a groundbreaking of the Big River Steel plant in Osceola.  Mayor Dickie Kennemore told the crowd that the process started back in 2012, when he took CEO John Correnti to the current site of Big River Steel.  Kennemore says it has been a long process, but he is happy the groundbreaking took place.

Groundbreaking initial report on Big River Steel

Sep 22, 2014

Officials say a new $1.3 billion steel mill will be an economic boon for northeastern Arkansas. 

A groundbreaking ceremony was held Monday morning near Osceola for the Big River Steel mill, which is expected to bring about 2,000 temporary construction jobs and 500 full-time jobs once it is up and running.

Construction is expected to take about two years. Gov. Mike Beebe called it the largest single business investment in Arkansas.

ASU Board hears campus updates on enrollment trends, job training programs

Sep 22, 2014

The Arkansas State University System Board of Trustees today heard updates on campus enrollment trends and projects related to job training growth at its two-year colleges.

Dr. Charles L. Welch, president of the system, said long-term strategic planning work is under way on all campuses and he expects to report on those plans soon.

Welch also said the new ASU System office in Little Rock should be completed by Dec. 1. The sixth floor of the 501 Building across from the State Capitol is being renovated for office and conference space.

Governor Beebe, A-State announce plans for Gubernatorial archives, access sites

Sep 22, 2014
Arkansas State University

Gov. Mike Beebe, a 1968 graduate of Arkansas State University and past chairman of its Board of Trustees, today announced he would donate his eight years of gubernatorial papers, video, photographs and memorabilia to the university.