Monday, February 25, 2019

Common Folk to Perform Across Southeast Arkansas

 Traveling from Mountain View, Arkansas and LaCrosse, Wisconsin, the sounds of dulcimer, penny whistle, clawhammer banjo, and hauntingly beautiful vocals will descend upon Southeast Arkansas the week of February 18, 2019; the group, Common Folk, which formed through an event at the Ozark Folk Center, will provide multiple performances for children and adults in communities across Southeast Arkansas.  They will perform at Rob Reep Studio from 5:00-6:00 p.m., February 21.

Through the SMARTS program of SEARK Concert Association, school-age children from SEARK’s seven counties will attend performances during their normal school day throughout the week of the tour.  In the evenings, Common Folk will perform at various venues for the general public including the Crossett Public Library (February 19 at 4pm), Paul Michaels in Lake Village (February 20, 4-6pm), Rob Reep’s Art Studio on Main Street in Warren (February 21, 5-6pm), and the Monticello Coffee Company (February 22 at 4:30pm).

Common Folk is comprised of three phenomenal musicians who met and first performed together at the Ozark Folk Center, where they were each teaching and performing.  Judson Steinback (dulcimer, percussion, penny whistle) grew up in Chicago but spent his summers in Mountain Home, Arkansas visiting his grandparents with many fond memories of old-time music on town squares and time spent on the Buffalo River.  Now a resident of Wisconsin, he teaches music and performs across the country.  Dwayne Porcherfield (dulcimer, guitar, clawhammered banjo) is the former National Champion Mountain Dulcimer Player and has retired to Mountain View, Arkansas from Kansas City.  Grace Stormont (guitar, clawhammered banjo, vocals) is a fulltime, professional musician for the Ozark Folk Center in Mountain View, her hometown.  She has a recording history (check her out on youtube), as well as a passion for teaching and performing music.

At their core, the group says they love playing traditional music and are thrilled with the opportunity to share their collaborative efforts in carrying on the traditional music of the Ozarks with influences of Appalacia and the earlier Irish and African music that influenced traditional American folk music.  Sharing cultural Arkansas history through traditional, old-time Ozark music is the heartbeat of their work.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

What's on Our Other Pages

Check out what the kids are doing at school...both Warren and Hermitage.  Go to the Schools Page

Also, mew listings on the Classified Page

Community Action Board Meets

Community Action Board Remains In Turmoil

The Southeast Arkansas Community Action Board met Tuesday, February 19th in the agency headquarters building in Warren.  The meeting was scheduled to begin at 3:30 P.M..  Due to lack of a quorum, the meeting was 15 minutes late in starting and.  There was an intense and lengthy discussion of who was eligible to sit on the board.

The board continued debating the matter of preparation of minutes and whether or not they should be a summary of the meeting or a verbatim transcript of the proceedings.  Currently minutes have not been approved for meetings held September 18, 2018, October 16 and October 30, 2018, November 20, 2018, December 18th and December 28th, 2018.  The board again refused to approved the minutes.  It was reported that transcripts are being prepared. 

The board took up the issue of the 2017-2018 audit as prepared by Searcy & Associates.  Members of the board would not approve the audit until additional questions are answered by the auditor. 

Reports on the various programs were submitted.  An executive session was held.  No action was taken by the board.

In detailed telephone conversation, after the meeting, with board member Darryl Johnson from Crossett, Mr. Johnson continued voicing his concern that the board is not functioning properly.  For several years he has alleged that various members of the board are serving illegally, that improper actions have been undertaken without board approval and that contracts have been entered without board approval.  He also has stated the proper by-laws are not being utilized. He has voiced his concerns to state officials and indicates they have let the problems continue.  Mr. Johnson began his activism as a private citizen and has continued to voice his concerns as a board member.  There are other board members and residents of Southeast Arkansas that share his point of view.  Mr. Johnson has indicated that he believes race has been a factor in selecting some board members.  He has been an advocate for the programs implemented by the agency, but believes some things have not been managed properly. 

It should be noted that state officials, who monitor the agency have gone on record approving the board makeup and ruling on the by-law issue.  They have in the past force the agency to redo minutes and not seat Board members, the state deems improperly selected.  The state declared the January, 2019 board meeting invalid, due to lack of a quorum.  Several county judges attending the meeting as board members were ruled illegal at the time by the state. 

Editor's Note: Board meetings for some time have often been unorganized and unruly.  Numerous allegations have been made against certain board board members, the chairman of the board and state officials, by other board members and residents of the region.  It has resulted in a very dysfunctional board at times and a lot of confusion.   It seems to come down to determining the legal constitution of the board and which set of by-laws are legally in place.  Another matter of contention is actions taken by the Interim Executive Director regarding contracts and other management issues.  At this point the board cannot even get it's monthly minutes prepared and approved.  This must be addressed!

The agency is very important to Southeast Arkansas and the people it serves.  It is hoped that the issues can be resolved and the services properly provided to those in need.  It should be noted that several new board members have joined the board over the past few months and it appears they are working to make the agency function in a legal and beneficial manner.  It is also obvious that many staff members of the agency are trying to run the programs in a way to help those in need.

Library Will be Closed

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Bradley County Extension Council Interpretive Event

Bradley County Extension Homemakers provided a meal Tuesday evening, February 19th for the Bradley County Quorum Court, Extension Council Members and other elected officials.  The dinner was held at the Warren Senior Center located on N. Etheridge Street.  The Homemakers provide the meal annually as a way to express their thanks for the support given by local government and as a way to provide education on the various programs of the Extension service.

Reports were presented by John C. Gavin, County Extension Agent-Staff Chair and Michelle Carter, County Extension Agent-Family and Consumer Sciences.  Reports were also given by the planning committees of the Council.  These include: Agriculture, Economic & Community Development, Family & Consumer Sciences/EHC and 4H/Youth Development.

The Extension Council members are:
Joel Tolefree, Chairman
Luther Dangerfield
William Briant
Irma Baldwin

M. J. Bradley
Kim Forrest
Catrina Roberson
Monty Balletine
Judy Simmons
Wanda Carr
Josh Hays
Vicky Tapia
Judge Klay McKinney

Quorum Court Meets For February Business

The nine members of the Bradley County Quorum Court met Tuesday, February 19th for the monthly Court meeting.  The meeting was held on Tuesday, instead of Monday the 19th, due to Presidents' Day.  Normal monthly reports were presented.

Judge McKinney informed the Justices that the annual county-wide cleanup will be held March 30th and more information will be forthcoming.  He urged everyone to get involved.

The Judge reported on the status of a recycling grant the county has been awarded.  He went on to state that a proposed State Senate bill would redirect future funds for recycling to other purposes of state government.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Governor Hutchinson to Sign Bill To Increase Minimum Teacher Pay

LITTLE ROCK – Governor Asa Hutchinson will sign HB1145 into law this afternoon in the auditorium at the Arkansas Department of Education. The new law will increase Arkansas’s minimum teacher salary by $4,000 over the next four years, making Arkansas’s minimum teacher salary the highest among neighboring states.

WHAT:            Governor Hutchinson to Sign Bill To Increase Minimum Teacher Pay

WHEN:           2 p.m., Monday, February 18, 2019

WHERE:        Arkansas Department of Education
                         4 Capitol Mall
                         Little Rock, Arkansas

Contact: Press Shop ( or 501.682.3642)

Bradley Medical and Health Foundation Expresses Thanks

Monday, February 18, 2019

Arrest Report:February 18, 2019

The following are innocent until proven guilty:

Ashley Emmerson, 1100 S. Martin, Warren, AR, charged with possession IV, age 27, arrested on warrant (2-11-19)

Lancie D. Harris, 1121 Phillips St., Warren, AR, age 28, arrested on bench warrant (2-15-19)

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Looks What's on the Sports Page...

Doug Spencer to be inducted into the State Track Hall of Fame...Read about on the Sports Page.

Lady Hermits advance to Regionals.

Lady Jacks Advance to Regionals

Saturday, February 16, 2019

State Capitol Week in Review From Senator Eddie Cheatham

February 15, 2019

LITTLE ROCK – The governor, legislators and private business groups joined to propose a highway program that would add $300 million a year in revenue for the state Transportation Department.

The plan also would add $110 million a year for cities and counties to maintain local roads.

The bulk of the revenue would come from extending permanently the current half-cent sales tax that is dedicated to highway projects. Arkansas voters approved the half-cent tax by a margin of 58 to 42 percent in a 2012 statewide election. It went into effect in 2013 and is scheduled to expire in 2023.

The governor’s highway proposal would allow voters to decide whether to extend the tax permanently. If voters approve the proposal to extend it, the half-cent tax would produce about $206 million a year. That amount would be divided according to the traditional “70-15-15” split of highway money in Arkansas, meaning that the state gets 70 percent while cities and counties each get 15 percent.

The highway proposal includes another $58 million a year from an increase on gasoline and diesel fuel taxes at the wholesale level. The increase would raise the motor fuel tax on gasoline from 21.5 to 24.5 cents a gallon. On diesel, the increase would be from 22.5 to 28.5 cents a gallon. Those are state motor fuel taxes. Motorists also pay federal motor fuel taxes.

This Week in the House

From Representative Jeff Wardlaw

More than 140 bills have been signed into law during this session.

There are hundreds of bills still to be heard in committee and we expect many more to be filed in the weeks ahead.

As we head into our 6th week of the session, we’d like to update you on the legislature’s progress.

On Thursday, with a vote of 82-14 and 2 members voting present, the House passed SB211. This bill cuts the top tax rate from 6.9 to 6.6 percent on Jan. 1, 2020. It decreases to 5.9 percent in 2021.

The Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration estimates this legislation will impact 579,000 Arkansans.

Currently, Arkansas has the highest top marginal individual income tax rates among surrounding states.

In a vote of 93-0, the House passed SB151 which establishes a fund to assist the UAMS Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute in its ongoing efforts to gain a National Cancer Institute designation.

Having a National Cancer Institute-Designated Cancer Center in Arkansas will improve access to clinical trials, cancer treatment, and screenings in Arkansas.

Cancer is the second-leading cause of death in Arkansas. Over the past twenty-eight years, nationwide cancer related deaths have decreased by 5%, but in Arkansas the rate of cancer-related deaths has increased by nine percent 9%.

Other legislation passing the House this week include:

SB149-This bill would prohibit abortion in the event Roe v. Wade is overturned by Supreme Court or if a constitutional amendment is adopted giving authority to the states to regulate abortion.

SB168-This bill adds 24 hour manned fire stations to the locations where a parent can relinquish an infant. This bill also allows for the use of a Safe Haven Baby Box at Safe Haven locations if it includes a dual alarm system to notify authorities.

HB1014-This bill requires that bleeding control training be taught as part of high school health courses.

HB1302-This bill creates a process by which similar agencies could submit rules and regulations collectively to expedite process.  It would help ensure that agencies needing to respond to new legislation for occupational licensing do so in a timely manner.

SB113 -This legislation would transfer the responsibilities and duties of the Arkansas Health Insurance Marketplace to the Arkansas Insurance Department.

HB1231-This legislation ensures journalism students at public higher education institutions have freedom of expression. This legislation states a student media advisor is not to be disciplined or dismissed for protecting the rights of a student journalist.

The deadline to file proposed constitutional amendments was February 13.  A total of 31 amendments were filed.  The topics addressed vary from term limits to highway funding. The legislature can refer up to 3 amendments to voters on the November 2020 ballot. You can review the proposed amendments on our website .

On our website, we’ve also posted details on the Governor’s proposal for highway funding. We expect to be addressing highways in the days ahead.  We will continue to keep you updated.

Guest House Celebrates Valentines

The local assisted living facility, The Guest House, hosted a 50's themed Valentine party for the residents.  During the evening dining time, 50's music was played and the dining hall was decorated in the 50's theme.  Guests dressed up to attend the party.

WHS "Goes Red"

The entire month of February is Women's Heart Awareness month.  Across the community throughput the month, people "Go Red" to bring awareness to this deadly killer of women.  Warren High School decided to go all out red on Valentine's Day.  Entering the building , the secretaries who greeted people were decked in red.  The principal and her staff were decked in red.  And the students wore red to show their support.
Treylon Burks, Jovankah Rodriguez, and "Bubba" Marcus Miller were three of the seniors decked out in their red.

Writer's note: Beverly Reep

Janis Mathews and Cindy May show their support.
I taught students for 39 years, in three different districts.  I was always amazed and energized by how the students got deeply involved in civic-minded projects.  I've seen them send magazines to soldiers in Iraq during the war, send a huge military truck load of food to the Food Bank, watched them bring nice clothes and even furniture after a family's home burned, send school and personal supplies to families in Vilonia after the tornado, and so much more.  Each time, I was encouraged for our future.  Maybe these responses to civic duties will carry with them through adulthood.  

Walking into the halls of WHS this year was different.  I had a heart attack in June 2017.  I taught only one more year.  When I went into the school, I was met with hugs from seniors wearing red.  One of them said, "This is for you."  They saw me struggle some days.  They helped me through that last year.  I am so appreciative.  In fact, I love those kids.  Because of awareness I learned through the "Go Red" campaigns of the past led by a fellow teacher, Wanda Jordan, I recognized the signs of my heart attack and did not waste time getting to the hospital.

Bradley County Rural Fire Department Issues Report

Bradley County Rural Fire Department responded to a house fire at 142 Bradley 32. Automatic aid was also given by Warren Fire Department. Upon arrival entrance was gained trough a North East exterior door entering a bedroom in that location. That room was fully involved in the fire and the fire had already escaped into the hallway and into the north west bedroom. Knock down of the fire was made fairly quickly and fire fighters cleared the area of burning material and pulled the ceiling as needed to clear burning embers. There was severe burning in the hallway with all wood molding burned and the top of a closet door in the hallway had been consumed by the fire. The north west bedroom door was also partially consumed. There was significant fire damage to all the north end of the home and smoke and water damage was also significant over the entire structure.

Communities Unlimited Visit Warren

The organization "Communities Unlimited" recently had representatives in Warren to continue it's effort in the Warren community to help the city grow economically and to advance  leadership qualities.  Three staff members were on hand at a public meeting conducted, February 14th, in the Multi-purpose Room of the Donald W. Reynolds YMCA of Warren and Bradley County.  Jackson Alexander, a community facilitator, Ashley Capel, a management consultant and Juan Carlos Posadas, associate management consultant made presentations on ways to further develop the city and ways to promote community and economic growth. 

The organization will be holding future meetings and providing additional leadership training.  They will be available to help  provide business planning and direct small business toward financial assistance.

Friday, February 15, 2019

City and County Schedules for President's Day Announced

The Warren Municipal Building will be closed in observance of President's Day Monday, February 18.  The City will not pick up garbage on the 18th.  The City of Warren Emergency Services Center and police and fire personnel  will be open and working.

The offices in the Bradley County Courthouse will also be closed.  Garbage will run but the landfill will be closed on the 18th.

AHF Products Donates To YMCA

AHF Products, manufacturers of hardwood flooring, with a  plant located in Warren, has contributed $5,000.00 to the Donald W. Reynolds YMCA of Warren and Bradley County.  The donation by the company is on behalf of the Witt Plant, that operates in Warren. AHF Products employs approximately 260 workers at the Witt Plant.

Presenting the check from AHF Products were the following:
Doug Bohlinger, Plant Manager
Marty Reep, EHS Manager
Keith Van Dee, HR Manager

Accepting the donation on behalf of the Y were:
David Richey, Ex. Director of the DWR YMCA
Stacie Stone, Business Manager/Fitness Director for the Y
Bart Goodwin, Sports Director for the Y

The contribution will assist with the daily operations of the YMCA in Warren.  The Y runs off of membership fees and donations from individuals and businesses in the Warren community.  Ex. Director David Richey, expressed the thanks of the YMCA Board and participants for the generous donation of AHF Products.

Lions Cub District Governor Encouraged Club to Continue to be Active

Lions Club District Governor Visits Warren

District Governor Gloria Montgomery was guest speaker at the February 13th meeting of the Warren Lions Club.  The meeting was held at Molly's Diner.  The District Governor encouraged the club to continue to be active and to work at recruiting new members.

The Governor gave her testimony as to how she became a Lion.  She lost her eyesight and the Lions World Services for the blind helped her learn to deal with her handicap and she strongly supports the efforts by Lions to help the blind, to aid those in need and to give to their local communities.

She talked about another project the state Lions are supporting to purchase equipment to better test for eye disease in close proximity to South Arkansas.  The Warren Club voted to make a contribution.

Hermitage Jr. High Quiz Bowl Team Advances to Finals

(back row starting left: Coach Ginnie Sellers, Captain Braden Harrod, Rodrigo Matamoros, Alan McGhee, Sutton Nelson)(Middle row starting left: Ericca Corker, Kristin Blankenship, Olivia Pierce)(Front: John Robert Ellis)

Hermitage Junior High Quiz Bowl team recently competed and placed in two separate tournaments. The Southeast Arkansas Educational Co-op Tournament where they competed against local schools in the Co-op area finishing in 2nd place with a 5-1 record. The only loss was to 1st place team Monticello. They also competed in the 1A regional at Emerson High School where they placed 3rd finishing 3-2, and qualified for the Junior High Finals to be played in Morrilton on February 23, 2019. Team members Braden Harrod(Captain) and Alan McGhee made the All-Tournament team.

Alumni Associations Seeking Nominees

We are now accepting nominations for the UAM Distinguished Alumnus/Alumna Award.  This award is presented annually at commencement for outstanding service to one’s profession, community and alma mater and is the highest honor the University bestows.  This year's recipient will be recognized on Friday, May 10, 2019, at the spring commencement activities.  Below are the details on eligibility, selection criteria, and selection process.

Eligibility: All living graduates and former students of the University of Arkansas at Monticello and Arkansas A&M.

Selection Criteria: The award honors those alumni who have made significant contributions to society, and whose accomplishments, affiliations and careers have honored the legacy of excellence at the University.  Nominees will be accomplished in three distinct areas as outlined below.

Professional Achievement:  The recipient will have demonstrated achievements in their vocational field bringing distinction to themselves and formed a record of accomplishment.
Service to Community: The recipient exhibits integrity and a demonstrated commitment to service and bettering the lives of others through volunteer efforts.
Service and Support to UAM:  The recipient's deeds and actions reflect the importance of his or her educational training, pride in alma mater and loyalty to UAM, as demonstrated through their interest in and support of the University.

Selection Process:  A review panel from a student-at-large, UAM Alumni Association Board of Director’s President, and university officials will review the nominations and make recommendations to the University Executive Council who will make the final decision.

Nomination Process:  All nominations must be in written form.  Include the name of the nominee, with any other available details such as graduation year, or years attended UAM, hometown, place of residence currently, employment, etc.   Also please include any other information which you feel demonstrates the worthiness of the nominee for this honor.  Please submit your nomination by email to or by postal mail to UAM Alumni Association, Attn: Lisa Jo Ross, PO Box 3520, Monticello, AR 71656-3520.

Nomination Deadline: All nominations must be received by March 15, 2019, for consideration.

For questions please contact Alumni Affairs at 870-460-1028.
(nominations will not be accepted over the phone)


The Bradley County Cooperative Extension Service will be conducting a Private Applicator Training for agricultural producers on Thursday, February 28th, at 6:00 p.m. at the Bradley County Extension Office, located at 100 E. First Street (behind the Courthouse) in Warren.  Agricultural producers must be certified by training to be eligible for a Restricted Pesticide License in order to purchase and apply restricted-use pesticides.

There is a $20.00 fee for the pesticide applicator training.  You will pay at the door on the night of the training.  The training is approximately three hours long, and producers must attend the entire training to be certified.  If you have any questions, please contact John Gavin at 870-226-8410.  The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative action institution.  If you require a reasonable accommodation to participate or need materials in another format, please contact your Bradley County Extension Office as soon as possible.  Dial 711 for Arkansas Relay.

Youth Attend 4-H Day at Capitol

The Bradley County 4-H Program had ten youth to attend the 4-H Day at the Capitol in Little Rock on February 12th.  There were approximately 800 youth from 74 of the 75 counties.  Pictured are front row:  Rylie Hill, Precious Thomas, Mayli Castleberry;  back row:  Michelle Carter, Weston Gavin, Aidan Weaver, Raven Harris, Michaela Stanley, Avery Weaver, Hunter White, and John Gavin.

Eastern Star Visits Residents of Chapel Woods

Members of the Eastern Star visited with residents of Chapel Woods Nursing Center Tuesday, February 12th to help the residents celebrate Valentines.  The ladies were presented flowers and the men given cards. 

Chapel Woods routinely holds special events for the residents and organizations and churches visit and provide services and programs. 

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Pickens and Ray Discuss Their Plans for Their Faility in Warren

On February 12th, Justin Pickens and Adrian Ray, co-owners of the Arkansas Patient Services medical marijuana dispensary being built in Warren, gave a presentation about their business to the Rotary Club of Warren as part of their efforts to reach out to the community. In the presentation, the two men shared the research done on the benefits of medical marijuana, gave a rundown of what exactly led them to want to own a dispensary and what they plan to do here in Warren, and they answered several questions to try to address any concerns.

Pictured are: Pickens, Ray, Rotarian and Warren Mayor Denisa Pennington, and Rotary President Sam St. John.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Job Openings at New Surgery Clinic

Dr. Roger Mason, Board certified in General Surgery and Board eligible in Vascular Surgery, will be opening a new surgery office in Warren soon. There are two job openings currently. There will be a full-time position for a front office receptionist. Hours are 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday-Friday. The ideal candidate will have a warm and compassionate personality, along with basic computer skills. Duties will include: patient registration, answering the phone, and scheduling appointments and tests. Medical clinic experience is desirable, but not required.
The other position will be for a nurse at the new surgical office. Hours are 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday-Friday. Duties will include: assisting in physical exams, ordering tests, and performing basic medical tests. The ideal candidate will have a warm and compassionate personality and some travel may be required.

If you are interested in either position please schedule an interview with Bradley County Medical Center’s Human Resources by calling 870-226-4346 and be prepared to bring a résumé with references for your interview.


Celebrate Black History Month

Celebrate Black History Month at the Bradley County Genealogical Society meeting at the Bradley County Veterans Museum, 210 North Main in Warren,''Gwen Garrett-Bullard will present a program on the history of Elm Street, "Catfish".

The program will begin at 2:00 p.m., Sunday, February 24, 2019.

Bring a Friend!

Tour the Museum!

Fire Rekindles and Destroys Home

An house fire,  which had been extinguished during the night by the Bradley County, rekindled early Wednesday morning and totally destroyed the home which was located at the corner of South Martin Street and the Riley Subdivision.  At this time, no further information is available.  We will report more when the fire report comes in.

Arrest Report: February 11, 2019

Smitty Davis, 406 So. Martin Apt. 2, Warren, AR, age 52, arrested on City of Warren warrant (2-4-19)

James Hendricks Morman, 12 Sylvan Hills Dr., Warren, AR, age 34, charged with terroristic threatening (2-8-19)

Mark Lopez, 800 Woodlawn, Warren, AR, arrested on warrant fromBradley County (2-10-19)

Truck Burns Up

Warren firemen were called out Monday night, February 4th, around 10:43 P.M. to put out a truck fire on the Timber Logistics property on West Pine Street.  The department responded rapidly and was able to extinguish the blaze.  No other property was damaged and there were no injuries.  The truck was destroyed.  The cause remains under investigation.  There is no evidence at this time of foul play.