Johnathan Reaves

News Director/Morning Edition host

Ways to Connect

A Texas-based communications company is opening in Paragould.  The Arkansas Economic Development Commission made the announcement today. GW Communications will operate an office at 1707 Linwood Drive and will employ 28 people.  The new jobs will include computer operator positions and CAD Drafting.  According to the news release, GW Communications provides broadband services to telecommunications, cable, and other industries.

Jonesboro Ward 6 Aldermen candidates to debate

Apr 28, 2016

All five candidates for the Ward 6, position 1, vacancy on the Jonesboro City Council will participate Thursday in a public forum sponsored by the City of Jonesboro. The 2-hour event will start at 6:30 p.m. in the Council Chambers at the Municipal Center.

The candidates, who will be on a May 10 special election ballot, are:

• James W. Bowman of 4410 Mockernut Lane, a riverboat captain;

• Phillip Cook of 5216 Richardson Drive, a retired co-owner of a tool and die company;

Johnathan Reaves, KASU News

Racial disparities in the Arkansas criminal justice system were discussed last night during a community meeting at Arkansas State University.  Some eye-opening results from a research study were discussed during the meeting. 

The University of Arkansas at Little Rock’s William H. Bowen School of Law conducted the study in 2013.  A research team collected data from the institutional and mental health records of 836 prisoners who were convicted of robbery and homicides in the state.  Professor Adjoa Aiyetoro of the UALR Bowen School of Law gave the initial findings of the study:

Jonesboro’s property maintenance code is up for a vote next month.  Early voting is scheduled to start May third and election day is May 10th. 

Officials are concerned the ballot language may be confusing to voters.  Jonesboro City Attorney Carol Duncan says citizens need to know they are voting on the repeal of the code.

Johnathan Reaves, KASU News

33 Jonesboro residents are graduating from the Jonesboro Citizens Police Academy.  The event takes place at St. Bernard’s Auditorium tonight.  Sgt. Cassie Brandon teaches the class and says this is the third academy that has been held.  Over 60 residents have gone through the course, and a summer and fall academy is being planned.  Brandon tells KASU news why she thinks there has been such a demand for this course:

She says citizens get a better understanding of law enforcement and the Jonesboro Police Department also sees a lot of benefits from the academy:

City of Jonesboro

The city of Jonesboro is applying for a TIGER transportation grant that would place a connector and a bridge at Patrick Street.  The total project cost would be $15.6 million…80% of the grant money would come from the TIGER grant and the remaining 20% would come from the city of Jonesboro. 

Under the plan, the Patrick Street connector and bridge would replace Bridge Street’s aging bridge.  Bridge Street would become an overpass for pedestrians and bicycles.  The Fisher Street crossing would close after the Patrick Street bridge would open.  

A proposed crosswalk on East Johnson Avenue in Jonesboro has been nixed due to safety concerns. 

Jonesboro Mayor Harold Perrin told members of the Jonesboro Metropolitan Organization’s Policy Committee that he received the news from the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department. 

Jonesboro JETS

The Jonesboro Economical Transit System is trying to prepare for an increase in the number of para-transit riders.   

These riders use JETS buses to get to their health care appointments.  The numbers of people using public transportation for health care needs makes up a large chunk of public transit riders nationwide. 

JETS Director Steve Ewart fully expects those numbers to catch up to Jonesboro in the very near future.  The numbers of riders of JETS continues to increase and Ewart says he expects a spike in riders to go to health care appointments to rise. 

Brandon Tabor, KASU News

The first phase of Arkansas State University’s campus in Queretaro, Mexico should be complete next spring.  The new campus will be built outside of Queretaro City, and it being built in four phases, with a total cost of at around $75 million. 

The new campus is actually a mixed-use design with the new campus as the anchor.  The total master plan community consists of over 2,000 acres…370 acres consist of the campus, with the rest a mix of residential and commercial properties. 

Johnathan Reaves, KASU News

A candidate forum at the Jonesboro Kiwanis club featured four candidates for the Jonesboro City Council’s alderman race in Ward 6 Position 1.  Phillip Cook, Dr. Richard Wang, Bobby Long, and Joseph Woodbury participated in the forum.  James Bowman is a riverboat captain and was not able to attend.   

The forum focused mainly on the controversial property maintenance code in Jonesboro.  The code is up for repeal during a May tenth vote.  Dr. Richard Wang says he supports the code:

      

 

The following is a release from Arkansas State University's Athletics Department:

Arkansas State University Director of Athletics Terry Mohajir has issued the following statement regarding an NCAA infraction that occurred within the men’s basketball program last season while John Brady was the head coach.

Craighead County is continuing to make strides in collecting delinquent taxes that are owed to the county.  During a meeting of the Craighead County Quorum Court’s Finance and Administration Committee, Administrative Assistant Tony Thomas provided numbers about the recent collections over the past month.  Over one million dollars in taxes have been collected, which includes almost $500,000 in both delinquent personal property and business taxes.  Craighead County Tax Collector Marsha Phillips says that since 2008, the county has been owed at least 611-thousand dollars in delinquent busines

KASU news

The Food Bank of Northeast Arkansas has received a 39-thousand dollar grant from C&S Wholesale Grocers.  Development Director of the Food Bank of Northeast Arkansas Vicki Pillow says the funds will be used in the Backpack Program:

       

Arkansas State Police and Paragould Police Department.

UPDATED:

The Paragould Police Department has innactivated a Silver Alert for James Leo Yearry. 

Age and/or DOB: 10/22/1939
Missing Date: 4/8/2016
Missing Time: 07:15 am
Missing from City: Paragould
Missing from County: Greene

Johnathan Reaves, KASU News

Arkansas State University has presented seven students with the Distinguished Service Award during an event at the Cooper Alumni Center in Jonesboro.  Erin Wadley  became the recipient of the R.E. Lee Wilson Award, the university’s highest honor, last night during a reception on the campus.

"I wouldn't be where I am at today without Arkansas State University," Wadley said after winning. 

Johnathan Reaves, KASU News

Jonesboro Police Chief Rick Elliot announces a partnership with the Game and Fish Commission to build a new shooting range for police and the public.

Environmental and other studies are needed. If it moves forward, the $5 million facility would be located on a 300 acre site off of Moore Road.  Elliot tells what the new facility would have:

Elliot tells what the economic impact to the region would be by having this facility:

Governor Asa Hutchinson has just released his latest appointments on various commissions.  6 people from the KASU listening area have been appointed.  Check out the latest list from the Governor's office here:

– Governor Asa Hutchinson today announced the following appointments:

Kelly Bryant, Pine Bluff, to the Arkansas Minority Health Commission. Appointment expires January 31, 2018. Replaces Willie McGhee.

Black River Technical College

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Sonia Nazario is making a visit to northeast Arkansas Thursday.  They are open to the public.  The presentations will be at Black River Technical College in the Randolph County Development Center.  KASU's News Director Johnathan Reaves spoke with Dr. Jan Ziegler about this appearance.  Listen to the interview below.

Jonesboro’s revenues outweighed expenses in final numbers that were presented to the Jonesboro City Council. 

Jonesboro’s Chief Financial Officer Suzanne Allen says total revenues for 2015 were just over $47 million dollars, while expenditures were $46.3 million. That is a difference of almost 765-thousand dollars. 

Paul Holmes, Jonesboro Police Department

Jonesboro’s first responders are now the recipients of advanced first aid kits, which all include tourniquets.  After an 8-hour course at the Arkansas Fire Academy in Jonesboro, 42 kits were distributed. 

Dr. Spencer Guinn has advocated for tourniquets to be in the hands of all first responders in the state, as well as citizens.  He tells why this would be important:

A lack of foresight in the overall transportation planning process and the focus on short term transportation projects without considering long term needs were the main concerns that came out of two public forums last week. 

Members of the Jonesboro Metropolitan Technical Advisory Committee heard those concerns about the Metropolitan Planning Organization’s Transportation Improvement Plan that would run through 2020. 

Arkansas State University is holding the annual Middle Eastern Studies night.  The event takes place tomorrow night at six.  A buffet featuring Middle Eastern cuisine will be offered and two students will present their research from trips that were taken overseas.  Dr. Bill Roe is with A-State’s College of Business. 

Dr. Bill Roe.  The event will be held at A-State’s Fowler Center.

Brandon Tabor, KASU news

The following are releases from the Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department about roadwork in the region.

The Arkansas State Highway Commission has approved a bid for improvements to a roadway in Craighead County, according to Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department (AHTD) officials.

The purpose of this project is to resurface 1 mile of State Highway 49 between Old Bridger Road and Paragould Drive, in Jonesboro.

Atlas Asphalt, INC. of Batesville was awarded the contract at 278,778.68. 

Johnathan Reaves, KASU News

Arkansas State University has created a way for entrepreneurs to be able to advance their ideas for innovation across the region.  The East Arkansas Regional Innovation System is a collaborative effort to give entrepreneurs the state and federal resources for success.  The

Johnathan Reaves, KASU News

Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families is making an appeal for the need for more money for pre-K programs in the state.  Director Rich Huddleston appeared at the Jonesboro Pre-K Center and said that more money is needed by the state to keep pre-K programs going at current levels:

Huddleston says funding for pre-K has been flat for at least eight years.  Not only will they ask for the 43-million dollars, but they will also ask for additional bumps in funding yearly to provide pre-K to more children, and to recruit and retain pre-K teachers in the state. 

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