Johnathan Reaves

News Director/Morning Edition host

Ways to Connect

Four people went before the Jonesboro City Council last night, pleading with the council to include language that guarantees discrimination protection for gender identity and sexual orientation.  They stated that it was necessary to put those words in writing into the city’s employment handbook.  Dr. Joseph Rukus is the faculty advisor for the Gay-Straight Alliance at Arkansas State University.

A coalition of students at Arkansas State University will ask a committee of the Jonesboro City Council to consider a proposed anti-discrimination resolution that would guarantee employees would be protected from discrimination against sexual orientation and gender identity.  During last month’s city council meeting, Jonesboro Mayor Harold Perrin stated such a resolution for city employees was not necessary, because he said the city already complies with state and federal regulations concerning discrimination.

Renovation work is expected to start this summer on the location of the new Osteopathic Medical School at Arkansas State University.  According to releases from Arkansas State University and the New York Institute of Technology, Wilson Hall will be transformed into the new school, which will include teaching labs, high-tech classrooms, simulation labs and more.  Officials with Arkansas State University held a luncheon in Jonesboro yesterday where they welcomed officials with the New York Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic Medicine, which will lease the site.  40 to 50 faculty me

DeValls Bluff, Arkansas is a small town in Prairie County that is located on the White River.  During the Civil War, this small town played a pivotal role in how the War was fought in Arkansas.  This weekend, the 5th Annual Fort Lincoln Freedom Fest will take place to show the significance of the region in the Civil War.  KASU's Johnathan Reaves interviewed Curtis Arnold with the Arnold Family Foundation about this annual event.  Listen to the interview above.  

Jonesboro residents are paying much less for electricity in Arkansas.  The Sun newspaper reports that a recent survey conducted by Entergy Arkansas found that customers without a water heater averaged about 889 dollars in charges last year, compared to Entergy customers who averaged over eleven hundred dollars a year.  Customers in Conway paid the second-lowest amount.  Mississippi County Electric Cooperative ranked fifth in the survey.  Entergy Arkansas ranked eighth.  Clay County Electric customers paid the most at over 15 hundred dollars a year.  Paragould Light, Water and Cable were not

A body discovered in the Mississippi River Monday has been identified.  The Sun Newspaper reports an unnamed resident of Phillips County was positively identified by local and state officials yesterday.  The body was found near Helena-West Helena Monday, but it was not whom many expected it to be.  Many people were expecting to hear the body was that of 36 year old Aaron Lane of Blytheville.  Lane fell off of a boat near Osceola earlier this month and several agencies have been searching for him since the incident happened.  Lane worked as a watchman on a boat and was climbing a ladder betw

The City of Jonesboro could be debt free after tonight’s city council meeting.  A proposal to make an early final payment on a 10 and a half million dollar loan is to be considered by alderman.  The Sun newspaper reports Jonesboro took out the loan in 2011 to help pay for construction of a new city hall, a fire station and public works facility.  Instead of building a new facility, city officials decided to renovate an old bank building, which is now the new Municipal Center on Church Street.

Arkansas is one of ten states that that have multiple courthouse seats in some counties.  The average per county is two courthouse seats, typically one of the northern district and one for the southern district.  Mississippi County is looking at the possibility of merging those county seats.  The Sun newspaper states one of the main reasons for this possibility is the mounting utility and maintenance costs for both aging courthouses in Blytheville and Osceola.  County officials have been exploring the possibility of building a new courthouse, but there has been some backlash to that proposa

Students in Arkansas are not the only ones that receive report cards.  Schools across the state are also receiving letter grades for their students’ performance on statewide math and literacy tests.

Tributes have been pouring in to KASU as many have taken the time to remember Greg Chance.  Members of KASU Radio's staff compiled some of those remembrances for this tribute that aired on KASU.

KASU is saddened to learn from family members of Greg Chance, that he died last night from a heart attack.  He was behind the wheel of his car when he was found.   Greg has worked for KASU since 1982.  He started working as a farm director and then moved to the news director role, which he held for many years.  The staff and management of KASU extend our sympathy to his wife, Cindy, and his many friends and colleagues in the community.  Out of respect for Greg, KASU is suspending the spring membership drive.

A Jonesboro man has been arrested for allegedly breaking into Arkansas State University’s College of Media and Communication in December.  The Sun Newspaper reports 42 year old Kevin Sullivan reportedly turned himself into police over the weekend and admitted to the crime.  Officials stated Sullivan reportedly entered the building through an unlocked second story window and went through several offices.  About one thousand dollars of property was stolen during the burglary, and police say Sullivan provided them with a list of items taken which matched the property reported stolen.  Sullivan

Governor Asa Hutchinson could decide as early as Wednesday whether a regional correctional facility will come to Lawrence County.  County Judge Dale Freeman tells the Sun newspaper at least 30 counties have applied with the state for a jail, but Lawrence County was one of the first to have an application into the state.  County officials have been looking at other options for jails since the current jail has been close to closure several times.  Arkansas Jail Standards say the current jail in Walnut Ridge is too small and didn’t meet necessary safety standards.  If a jail is constructed, it

After learning that alcohol sales would be very limited at Arkansas State University, the ASU Board of Trustees approved a lease agreement with the NEA Sports Club.  ASU System President Dr.

Dee Dee Hudson/Mary Jackson-Pitts

Jonesboro High School's Choral and Drama Department's present a performance of Pajama Game at Jonesboro High School April 16-18.  There is also a push to bring pajamas to the performance for children who are in the care of the Department of Human Services.  Dr. Mary Jackson-Pitts speaks with KASU's Johnathan Reaves about this initiative and the upcoming performances. 

When the Arkansas State University Board of Trustees meets in a conference call this morning, they are expected to consider allowing alcohol sales during certain events.  According to an alcohol policy that has been sent to KASU, alcohol would be allowed in specific and limited areas of Centennial Bank Stadium and Tomlinson Stadium, designated concerts or special events at the Convocation Center.  Alcohol would not be served at sporting events at the Convo.  Alcohol would also be served at special events at the Fowler Center, the Cooper Alumni Center, and the Pavilion.  If approved, the pr

Several films will be shown this week as part of the Delta Symposium and the Delta Flix Film and Media Festival.  One of those is 45rpm.  This film was written and directed by Paragould native Julie Jackson.  She filmed the movie in 2011 primarily in Arkansas.  Her film will be shown Thursday night at 7:30 pm.  KASU's Johnathan Reaves interview Jackson about the film and why movie makers are choosing southern states, such as Arkansas and Louisiana, to shoot their projects.    Click on the Listen link to hear the interview. 

Several films will be shown this week as part of the Delta Symposium and the Delta Flix Film and Media Festival.  One of those is 45rpm.  This film was written and directed by Paragould native Julie Jackson.  She filmed the movie in 2011 primarily in Arkansas.  Her film will be shown Thursday night at 7:30 pm.  KASU's Johnathan Reaves interview Jackson about the film and why movie makers are choosing southern states, such as Arkansas and Louisiana, to shoot their projects.    Click on the Listen link to hear the interview. 

Focus Bank is urging that the new Northeast Arkansas District Fair should be sold to pay for debts that are owed.  The Craighead County Fair Association owns the property and is reportedly almost 10 million dollars in debt.  The Sun newspaper reports that relocation of the property to East Johnson Avenue and construction costs led to the debt problems.  The Fair Association filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.  In a March 25th filing in court, Focus Bank, which financed the move, suggested the property be sold in a liquidation sale.  Focus Bank is owed 6.2 million dollars, and contra

The Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department is working with city officials in Jonesboro to address traffic at Hilltop.  Engineers have released several options for addressing the clogged traffic on Highway 49 between Arkansas State University and NEA Baptist Hospital.  In 2013, the Highway Commission ordered a feasibility study to determine the best options for handling the massive amounts of traffic on that stretch of highway.  According to the Sun, five different options were presented to Mayor Harold Perrin, with three of those options being called the most feasible.  Some o

Representative Rick Crawford says he is working on legislation that will make the future I-555 a reality.  According to the Sun, the bill Crawford is crafting would exempt some vehicles from weight-limit restrictions that are imposed once a highway is designated as an interstate.  The one thing that is preventing Highway 63 to being the new I-555 is a three mile stretch of the highway that spans across the St.

Flooding on the Black River has slowed the final stages of construction on the Highway 63 bridge at Black Rock.  Officials with the Arkansas Highway Transportation Department tell the Sun plans were for the bridge to open to the public in late April, but it may be at least May before the span is open for use.    Torrential rains caused the river to rise 10 feet above flood stage, which caused water to shut down nearby roads.  Construction equipment has been mired in mud and water, but there is no word of equipment issues.  Crews are hopeful to get back to work today and finish working on th

Arkansas State University

This year's Delta Symposium at Arkansas State University is going to the movies!  In conjunction with this year's Delta Flix Film and Media Festival, the 21st annual event will be held April 8-11 at Arkansas State University's Carl R. Reng Student Union.  As always, the Saturday of the Symposium will conclude with a concert at CWL Park in Jonesboro.  KASU's Johnathan Reaves talked with co-coordinator of this year's Delta Symposium, Dr. Gregory Hansen.  Click here for a complete list of events at this year's Delta Symposium.

Arkansas State University

The first annual Delta Flix Film and Media Festival takes place in conjunction with this year's Delta Symposium at Arkansas State University.  In this interview, KASU's Johnathan Reaves talks with Dr. Michael Bowman about how this year's festival got started, what can be expected, and the excitement surrounding how the festival will compliment this year's Symposium, to make it a unique event.  Click on the listen button to hear the interview.

Engineering work for a proposed railroad overpass in Jonesboro could start as early as next month.  Jonesboro Mayor Harold Perrin tells the Sun newspaper Bridgefarmer and Associates of Dallas is leading the environmental and design work for the new overpass at Highland Drive and Nettleton Avenue in Jonesboro.  Bridgefarmer is the same group that is constructing the new US Highway 412 bridge at Black Rock.  The engineering work will cost about one and a half million dollars, with a majority of that money coming from a federal grant.  The initial plan involves building a four lane overpass at