Monday morning Arkansas recap

CNN is reporting that Governor Mike Beebe is one of thirty American governors who have received letters warning them to resign or be removed, in accordance with the group’s “Restore America Plan.” The Department of Homeland Security and the FBI are investigating, and say that the letters do not contain a threat of violence.

Federal unemployment benefits for Arkansans out of work for more than a year run out today because Congress failed to pass legislation to extend the benefits before the Senate went into Easter recess.

State general revenue in March nudged up a mere $500,000 over collections in the same month a year ago, reaching $455.1 million and exceeding the state’s forecast by $2.8 million.

The Little Rock School Board’s vote last week to authorize a court challenge to the state’s practice of giving unconditional approval to charter schools has prompted an effort to negotiate an out-of-court settlement with the Attorney General’s office.

KTHV  is reporting that the city of Fayetteville is considering mandatory furloughs, a shut-down of the city government on selected days, to remedy budget shortfalls.

Race and age discrimination played a role in the firing of former Police Chief John Howell, according to a lawsuit Howell filed  against Mayor Carl A. Redus Jr. and the Pine Bluff City Council in federal court.

Last year, Wal Mart spent $7.4 million to lobby members of Congress on 84 bills, including legislation on climate change and health care reform, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

An Idabel, Okla. jury has returned a $7.3 million verdict against Tyson Foods Inc., finding the company defrauded a group of 10 McCurtain County chicken growers through a series of deceptive and coercive business practices.

The Surgical Hospital of North Little Rock accuses a former Insurance Department commissioneer of “engaging in conduct that would constitute a felony.” The lawsuit claims that Julie Benafield Bowman failed to disclose that attorneys representing United HealthCare bought meals for her before and after she ruled in United’s favor. Bowman left the Insurance Department at the end of 2008 and in January 2009 started working as United HealthCare’s director of regulatory affairs of Arkansas and Tennessee.

A Little Rock School District official says an 8-year-old special needs student who fell from the back of a school bus has died.

Authorities say a firearm that was used in a 2008 shooting at the University of Central Arkansas that left two students dead had been stolen, but probably not by the accused.

State Police say a husband and wife were killed in Washington County when their motorcycles were struck by a truck that crossed the center line.

Police say the principal of Huntsville High School was arrested on suspicion of drunken driving. Michael Gray faces misdemeanor charges of driving while intoxicated and driving left of center. Police say Gray told officers he’d had one or two beers, but registered 0.12, which is above Arkansas’ legal limit of 0.08.

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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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