Johnathan Reaves

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Arkansas students had higher scores on the ACT college entrance exam, but those numbers are still not as high as the national average.  The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports the composite score that Arkansas students averaged was 20.4.  That score is 0.2 percent higher from last year’s mark.  Officials say the national average composite score was 21.  The ACT tests students in four subjects: English, math, reading, and science.  The highest score on the ACT is a 36.  The number of students who took the test in Arkansas was about 26,800; an increase of almost 950 students.

Justices from the Lawrence County Quorum Court unanimously voted to approve an application to lure a state maximum security prison.  Last week’s 5-4 decision to shoot down the proposal drew the ire of many constituents, who wanted the economic benefits associated with bringing in the $100 million jail.  Those benefits were expressed during last night’s special meeting in Walnut Ridge.  The Sun Newspaper reports those who spoke in favor of the jail included Former Arkansas Department of Correction Chief Deputy Director G.

(Courtesy of AARP Arkansas.)

AARP Arkansas today released a poll showing that 50+ likely voters overwhelmingly support shifting additional federal long-term care funding from nursing homes to home-based care, and where candidates stand on helping people live independently will play an important role in voting decisions.  

After a relatively cool summer, more August-like temperatures are taking hold across the region.  For at least the next week, heat advisories are expected to be in effect with no chances of rain.  John Moore III is a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Memphis. 

The Jonesboro City Council heard the first reading of a plan to rezone 201 acres of land at Hilltop for residential and commercial use.  On August 12th, The Jonesboro Metropolitan Area Planning Commission voted unanimously to approve a request to rezone the land from R-1 single family to C-3 general commercial district.

Michael Hibblen

(Photo and story courtesy of Michael Hibblen, KUAR Public Radio.)

The Chairman of the Republican National Committee is in Arkansas, promising the state will be ground zero in the battle to seize control of the U.S. Senate this fall.

Speaking to volunteers at Tom Cotton’s campaign office Tuesday, Reince Priebus said incumbent Senator Mark Pryor lied when he said people would benefit from the president’s healthcare plan.

(Courtesy of Talk Business & Politics.)

Plains and Eastern Clean Line LLC has obtained regulatory approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to sell transmission service to customers at negotiated rates and to negotiate bilateral agreements for 100% of the line’s capacity.

The project, often referred to as Clean Line, is an electric transmission line project that will deliver up to 3,500 megawatts (MW) of wind power from the Oklahoma Panhandle region to communities in Arkansas, Tennessee and other states in the Mid-South and Southeast.

Several national Republican figures will be visiting the state over the next week.  Today, former presidential nominee Mitt Romney makes an appearance in Jonesboro to headline a fundraiser for Republican gubernatorial nominee Asa Hutchinson.  That event takes place at Arkansas State University’s Fowler Center at 2:30.  Hutchinson faces Democratic nominee and fellow ex-congressman Mike Ross.  House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy will campaign with 2nd Congressional District candidate French Hill in Little Rock today, and will also appear with 4th Congressional District candidate Bruce Wester

(Courtesy of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.)

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Memphis District, will host a public scoping meeting to discuss the Cache River Basin on Aug. 27. The meeting is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. in the M & P room of the Larry Williams Student Community Building at Arkansas State University Campus. The address is 7648 Victory Blvd, Newport, Ark.  

The Jonesboro Regional Chamber of Commerce has announced the creation of committee that serves Latino businesses and the Latino population in Jonesboro.  Latino Business Committee chairman Alex Lorenzana tells more.

“This committee was created to help and support the Latino businesses in our area,” said Lorenzana.  “Every year, we lost from three to five Latino businesses just because they didn’t have all of the tools that were necessary to stay in business.  We want to be able to reach to these people and give them the tools for their success.”

Officials from the Arkansas Scholarship Lottery are urging you to be aware of a lottery scam that is taking place.  The following is a release from the Arkansas Scholarship Lottery:

The Arkansas Scholarship Lottery is once again warning Arkansans about telephone scammers making false representations about individuals winning a lottery prize. This week the Arkansas Scholarship Lottery has received reports of a person purporting to represent the Arkansas Scholarship Lottery calling Arkansas residents and informing them that they have won lottery prizes.

The Lawrence County Quorum Court is taking a second look at hosting a proposed state prison.    This after last week’s meeting where the Quorum Court voted 5-4 against applying for the $100 million dollar facility that could bring with it at least 500 jobs.

Federal investigators have released the names of those killed and injured in Sunday morning’s deadly train crash in Hoxie.  The Sun Newspaper reports engineer Chance Gober of White Hall and conductor Roderick Hayes of McKinney, Texas was killed after their southbound train collided head-on with a northbound train.  Those injured on the northbound train were engineer Michael Zompakos of Maumelle and conductor Aaron Jeffrey.  Officials report Zompakos and Jeffrey have serious injuries, but those injuries are not said to be life-threatening.  Officials have also released more informat

(Courtesy of Talk Business & Politics.)

Arkansas’ unemployment rate continued to move in a downward trajectory, but so did the state’s civilian labor force.

The state’s jobless rate in July fell one-tenth of a point to 6.2% from the previous month, which was revised upwards from 6.2% to 6.3%. July’s unemployment rate was a full point-and-a-half below one year ago when unemployment stood at 7.7%.

The U.S. jobless rate was also 6.2% up one-tenth of a percent from the previous month.

(Courtesy of Talk Business & Politics.)

Arkansas’ senior senator said Monday that three bills he is working on in the U.S. Senate will be good for American business and jobs.

Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Little Rock, toured the Nucor Steel plant in Hickman Monday afternoon, touting the Keeping Jobs in America Act and the Building Jobs in America Act.

He also supports expanding the Buy American Act, a law that has been supported by the steel industry in the past several years.

According to Pryor, The Keeping Jobs in America Act would:

The investigation continues into the deadly train crash yesterday that killed two people and injured two.  The accident happened around three yesterday morning in Hoxie when a northbound train and a southbound train collided on the same track.  Those killed and injured were crew members on the trains.  Names have not been released, and the National Transportation Safety Board is expected to be in Hoxie for at least a week to investigate what caused the crash.  Local counties responded with resources to help those in Lawrence County deal with the event.  Craighead County Office of Emergency

Hundreds of supporters and fans joined the family of Arkansas music legend Johnny Cash in the dedication of the Johnny Cash Boyhood Home in Dyess.  Saturday’s event was the culmination of five years of work, when the project started in 2009. At that time, the Arkansas Legislature directed Arkansas State University to explore the feasibility of developing Dyess as a heritage tourism destination in an effort to revitalize the town.  In 2011, Arkansas State University acquired the boyhood home of Johnny Cash, and the ASU Heritage Studies program, under the direction of Dr.

(Courtesy of Talk Business & Politics.)

From high-profile political scandals to double-digit workload increases, the Arkansas Ethics Commission says it needs more funding to keep up with its caseloads and expectations.

Graham Sloan, director of the Arkansas Ethics Commission, says the agency needs more staff and a larger meeting space to accommodate the additional work it has been seeing and is projected to encounter in this and future years.

Federal and state investigators will spend this week on the scene of a deadly train accident in Hoxie that killed two crew members and injured two others.  Yesterday morning’s crash happened around three a.m.

The Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department (AHTD) will hold a Design Public Hearing in Searcy to discuss plans to construct a 2 lane connector between Highways 36 and 16 in northern Searcy.

The construction work will create a new 2 lane connector that will extend north from Highway 36, just west of Honey Hill Road, cross Collins Road and then curve east to Highway 16.

(Courtesy of the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department.)

Improvements to Interstate 40 will require a traffic shift in Monroe County, according to Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department (AHTD) officials. Crews are reconstructing 3.8 miles of Interstate 40, west of Brinkley. The work will reduce westbound traffic to one lane between Bayou DeView and the Cache River (mile marker 205-210). Eastbound will continue to have two lanes.

(Courtesy of Arkansas State University Department of Athletics.)

The Arkansas State Football Fan Appreciation Day will be held in conjunction with the License to Howl promotion and student move-in day Saturday, Aug. 16.

(Courtesy of the Arkansas Department of Education.)

Getting ready to go back to school is always an exciting time for Arkansas students and their families. While academic achievement is always a top priority, it is just as important to be mindful of student safety in and around school buses.

On the grand opening of her father’s boyhood home, Tara Cash Schwoebel announced the publication of a book about Johnny Cash’s reflections of growing up in Dyess.  The book is titled “Recollections by J.R. Cash: Childhood Memories of Johnny Cash” and was written in her dad’s handwriting.  Schwoebel tells how the idea for the book came about.

(Courtesy of Roby Brock, Talk Business & Politics.)

Delta Plastics and a consortium of agricultural interests in Arkansas launched a new water conservation software initiative that leaders say could reduce water usage by 20% by the year 2020.