Monday Arkansas heads

Sen. Blanche Lincoln says that the proposed Senate health care reform bill would provide “meaningful coverage” for more than 400,000 Arkansas residents now without health insurance. Lincoln was among a group of senators who decided after intense negotiations to support the upper chamber version of the bill, which no longer includes a public option.

The Democrat-Gazette reports on differences in pay among the state’s school districts. In the 2008-2009 school year, the average salary difference between the top-paying district and the lowest-paying district was $23,394.

The Arkansas Development Finance Authority board approves $52.5 million in federal stimulus money to finance 18 affordable housing developments scheduled to begin construction next year.

The Legislative Council votes to officially object to a federal judge’s ruling that allowed for “winter solstice” display at the state Capitol.

The state Ethics Commission dismissed a complaint against a public radio newsman at ASU who’d mistakenly sent an e-mail intended for someone else to the campaign of Conrad Reynolds. The e-mail referred to Reynolds as a nimrod.

Stanley Reed, who announced his candidacy less than two weeks ago, is withdrawing from the U.S. Senate race against Blanche Lincoln.  Health reasons are cited by a campaign press release..

The Service Employees International Union is going to help Lt. Gov. Bill Halter pay off about $440,000 in debt remaining from his 2006 race for his current office.

The unemployment rate improved from October to November, from 7.6 to 7.4 percent. A year ago, the rate was 5.5.

Several lawmakers say that a growing deficit in the unemployment trust fund estimated to reach $381 million by the end of 2011 had taken them by surprise.

An out-of-work pharmaceutical saleswoman is the winner of Survivor: Samoa. Natalie White of Van Buren won the $1 million prize Sunday night.

A company that makes wood pellets says it plans to open the previous Georgia Pacific facility in El Dorado and eventually hire 150 workers. NexGen BioMass will sell the wood pellets to markets in Europe, where the pellets are used as fuel.

Federal Coach, A company that manufactures hearses, limousines and buses says it plans to close its plant in Fort Smith next spring eliminating 140 jobs.

The fate of a promised wind-turbine factory with 400 jobs near Fort Smith remaines uncertain after a decision in a patent fight between two conglomerates was delayed until next month.

Some 90 linemen and 30 support personnel from Entergy Arkansas are at work in the Pikeville/Hazard area of Kentucky. The workers will help restore power to nearly 80,000 electric customers.

Arkansas Baptist College is the recipient of a $500,000 gift from an anonymous donor.

An early morning fashion show at downtown Conway’s Old Gin events center was disrupted by gunfire early Sunday morning. Four people were injured.

A North Little Rock man faces numerous felony charges after officers found him bleeding and bound outside one of the homes police say he robbed.

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About patlynch
I am a broadcaster in Arkansas, a former freelance writer and political columnist in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Writing Coach. Speaker. Director of the Christian Foundations for Ministry program, and presently enrolled in the Anglican School of Ministry Master of Ministry program.

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