[Nameplate] Fog/Mist ~ 34°F  
High: 49°F ~ Low: 40°F
Sunday, Dec. 21, 2014
Capitol Week in Review
Posted Tuesday, December 16, at 12:31 PM
LITTLE ROCK - The Arkansas trauma system has been a tremendous success, not only when measured by the number of lives it has saved but also by the improved quality of life of survivors. Before the legislature created the trauma system in 2009, it took several hours for medical officials to arrange for trauma patients to be accepted at a higher level facility that had the resources to provide proper care. Now, the average time of acceptance for all trauma patients is seven minutes and 17 seconds...

Read more   Post comment


State Capitol Week in Review
Posted Tuesday, December 9, at 9:32 AM

LITTLE ROCK - Arkansas must move quickly to take advantage of available federal grants worth up to $30 million, according to a non-profit organization that is working with the state Education Department to expand broadband access in public schools. In order to keep schools competitive and to provide Arkansas students with better opportunities in the modern economy, educators, elected officials and business leaders have been working to make the Internet more readily available to every student...

Read more   Post comment


Capitol Week in Review
Posted Tuesday, December 2, at 1:16 PM

LITTLE ROCK - The Arkansas School Recognition and Reward Program has awarded monetary grants to 215 schools that have been deemed "high performing" based on test results and other criteria from last school year. The awards were made to 109 schools that placed in the top 10 percent and 106 schools that were ranked in the top 20 percent. Arkansas has more than 1,100 schools from kindergarten through grade 12...

Read more   Post comment


Firm accepted to process Medicaid claims
Posted Tuesday, November 25, at 10:52 AM

LITTLE ROCK - The Legislative Council's Review Committee signed off on a long-term contract with a computer technology firm to process claims for the state Medicaid system. The value of the contract is an estimated $203 million. It is with HP Enterprise Services LLC, which is part of Hewlett Packard of Palo Alto, Calif...

Read more   Post comment


New boot camp rules
Posted Tuesday, November 18, at 1:59 PM

LITTLE ROCK - Lawmakers and Correction officials signed off on a new set of rules to reduce overcrowding and the number of paroled inmates who get in trouble and return to prison. One new policy changes the eligibility requirements for the boot camp, an intensive and physically demanding program for first time, non-violent offenders. It lasts 105 days...

Read more   Post comment


Capitol Week in Review
Posted Tuesday, November 4, at 11:29 AM

LITTLE ROCK - The state Correction Department received 16 applications from communities wanting to be the location of a proposed new $100 million prison unit. The unit would hire 250 people and the average salary would be $12.50 an hour, and in the future it could expand...

Read more   Post comment


State Capitol Week in Review
Posted Tuesday, October 28, at 1:40 PM

LITTLE ROCK - When Arkansas voters go to the polls, they will receive lengthy ballots that include four proposed constitutional amendments. Three of the proposed amendments were referred by the legislature during last year's regular session. They would change current laws on ethics, ballot issues, term limits and the procedures for implementing rules and regulations...

Read more   Post comment


Education top priority in budget requests
Posted Tuesday, October 14, at 1:02 PM

LITTLE ROCK - Legislators began a lengthy and detailed review of all state agency spending requests, in preparation for the regular session that begins in January. Setting a balanced budget for state government every year is the most time-consuming duty of the legislature. ...

Read more   Post comment


State Capitol Week in Review
Posted Tuesday, September 23, at 11:47 AM

LITTLE ROCK - The Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department opened bids for 46 projects totaling $231.5 million. After a review of the bids, if the Commission accepts all of them as submitted they would comprise the largest single bid opening in Arkansas history. It would surpass the previous high bid opening in November of 2012, when bids for $222.5 million of projects were opened...

Read more   Post comment


Capitol Week in Review
Posted Tuesday, September 16, at 11:56 AM

LITTLE ROCK - Arkansas did more than any other state last year to strengthen laws against human trafficking, according to a national advocacy group called the Polaris Project. The legislature will build on those accomplishments, judging from the response of the Senate Committee on Children and Youth to recommendations presented by the Attorney General's State Task Force for the Prevention of Human Trafficking...

Read more   Post comment


Alcohol, minimum wage issues added to ballot
Posted Wednesday, September 10, at 4:00 PM

LITTLE ROCK - The Secretary of State's office has certified two more ballot issues for voters to decide at the November 4 election - a proposed constitutional amendment to allow sales of alcohol and an initiated act to raise the state minimum wage. The alcohol and minimum wage issues will be on the ballot along with three proposed amendments referred by the legislature...

Read more   Post comment


State Capitol Week in Review
Posted Tuesday, September 2, at 3:26 PM

LITTLE ROCK - The state's unemployment insurance trust fund has recovered significantly and by the end of the year will not owe any money to the federal government, the governor announced. A few years ago the state's trust fund was in debt to the federal government for $360 million because the severe economic recession in 2008 and 2009 that caused so many people to lose work and file for unemployment. ...

Read more   Post comment


State Capitol Week in Review
Posted Tuesday, August 26, at 9:25 AM

LITTLE ROCK - Almost 60 percent of Arkansas public school students take the bus to school, and each morning they spend an average of about 49 minutes on the bus, according to an extensive survey by legislative analysts. On average, they spend another 49 minutes riding home...

Read more   Post comment


Providing schools with broadband access
Posted Tuesday, August 19, at 10:41 AM

LITTLE ROCK - The legislature has begun the complex task of providing school districts in Arkansas with expanded broadband access. Innovations in computers, phones and the Internet are being introduced at an ever faster pace. Schools with outdated equipment risk falling further behind those with newer technology...

Read more   Post comment


New prison facility proposed
Posted Tuesday, August 12, at 1:06 PM

LITTLE ROCK - Arkansas prison officials are proposing to build a new 1,000 bed unit with plenty of secure, isolated cells for repeat offenders and inmates who continuously cause trouble. The projected cost is between $75 million and $100 million. Under the state constitution the legislature has ultimate authority to determine spending by state agencies, and will consider the proposal during the 2015 regular session...

Read more   Post comment


Arkansas tourism growing
Posted Tuesday, August 5, at 3:58 PM

LITTLE ROCK - The Arkansas tourism economy grew by 3.35 percent last year and the number of visitors to the state increased from about 22 million to 23 million, according to the state Parks and Tourism Department. Those visitors spent more than $5.9 billion in Arkansas, proving yet again how important tourism is to the state's economy. The previous year's travel expenditures were $5.7 billion...

Read more   Post comment


State Capitol Week in Review
Posted Tuesday, July 29, at 1:58 PM

LITTLE ROCK - Arkansas will hold its annual sales tax holiday on Saturday, August 2, and Sunday, August 3. The legislature created the sales tax holiday by approving Act 757 of 2011. The intent of the act is to help families with children in school, and is commonly known as the "Back to School" sales tax holiday. However, everyone benefits from the holiday, whether or not they have children of school age...

Read more   Post comment


Capitol Week in Review
Posted Tuesday, July 22, at 10:15 AM

LITTLE ROCK - Under new immunization requirements being considered by the state Board of Health, children who will be 11 or older on Sept. 1 must have a Tdap shot in order to attend a public or a private school. The Tdap shot protects against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis...

Read more   Post comment


State ends fiscal year with surplus money
Posted Tuesday, July 15, at 9:57 AM

LITTLE ROCK - Thanks to very conservative budgeting by the Arkansas legislature, state government ended Fiscal Year 2014 with a surplus of almost $79 million. The state already had almost $96 million in unobligated funds left over from previous surpluses. ...

Read more   Post comment


Capitol Week in Review
Posted Tuesday, July 8, at 9:41 AM

LITTLE ROCK - The legislature wrapped up a three-day special session after approving bills to increase the capacity of state prisons, to hold down anticipated costs for public school health insurance and to impose a moratorium on fast-paced computerized lottery games...

Read more   Post comment


View all blog posts (92)

State Capital Week in Review
By Senator David Burnett
Archives
Blog RSS feed [Feed icon]
Comments RSS feed [Feed icon]
Login
Hot topics
Capitol Week in Review
(0 ~ 12:31 PM, Dec 16)

State Capitol Week in Review
(0 ~ 9:32 AM, Dec 9)

Capitol Week in Review
(0 ~ 1:16 PM, Dec 2)

Firm accepted to process Medicaid claims
(0 ~ 10:52 AM, Nov 25)

New boot camp rules
(0 ~ 1:59 PM, Nov 18)