Saturday, March 23, 2019

One Fatality Reported in Late Saturday Afternoon Wreck

Late Saturday afternoon, the Bradley County Sheriff's Office and the Arkansas State Police were called out to a one-vehicle accident on Bradley County Rd. 25 (Prospect Rd.).  Upon arrival, they found an adult male and several children injured.  According to officials working the accident, there was one fatality.  According to law enforcement investigators, the vehicle had been traveling North on the gravel road and flipped several times.  The City of Warren's rescue vehicle responded also.  The injured have been transported to local medical facilities.  Official information will be reported at a later time.

State Capitol Week in Review From Senator Eddie Cheatham

LITTLE ROCK – The Senate has already approved several large tax cuts this session, and another one is on its agenda.

Senate Bill 576 will make far-reaching changes in the state corporate income tax code, to the extent that the Department of Finance and Administration will have to update its computers from now until 2024 in order to process them.

The Senate Revenue and Taxation Committee advanced the bill, which will be considered soon by the entire Senate.

By Fiscal Year 2023, when most of the bill’s provisions are fully in effect, they will save Arkansas businesses more than $57 million a year.

SB 576 extends a company’s ability to carry forward net operating losses. The longer carry forward period will gradually extend to 20 years. Now it is five years.

The bill changes how multi-state corporations calculate the Arkansas portion of their taxable income. Now, they use a formula based on sales, property and payroll. SB 576 changes the apportionment formula so that it considers only sales in Arkansas compared to sales everywhere else.

The bill also allows more favorable treatment of income when Arkansas firms sell products to other states, where the receiving state does not levy taxes on them. Half of those sales will be exempt in 2021 and all income from those sales will be exempt in 2022.

Genealogy Society To Meet

The Bradley County Genealogy Society will meet March 24th, Sunday afternoon at 2:00 P.M. in the Bradley County Veterans Museum located on Main Street in Warren.  The public is invited to attend.

The program is scheduled to be about the history of Bradley County's elected officials.  It will cover the time period of 1840, when Bradley County became a county, up to the present.

Friday, March 22, 2019

Cornerstone Board Receives Presentation By Nita McDaniel

Members of the Southeast Cornerstone Coalition met in Dumas March 21st.  The organization consist of members from Ashley, Bradley, Chicot, Desha and Drew Counties.  They work together to promote the economic and community development of the Southeast region of Arkansas. 

Most of the meeting consisted of a presentation by Nita McDaniel concerning plans for the 2020 census.  She told those present that work is underway to encourage the counties of the Southeast part of Arkansas to strive to make sure every person is county.  It is vital that a complete  count is secured.  The census, which is mandated by the United States Constitution, is used to set congressional district boundaries, legislative house and senate districts as well as designating the makeup of city wards, county JP districts and school zones.  Even more important is the fact that the numbers dictate turn back funds to cities and counties and determine a variety of formulas for state and federal grants. 

Everyone who lives within a state, a county, a city and a school district is impacted.  All personal information is confidential.  It is not made public.  People will be asked to respond to the census online or by mail or by phone. For those who decline, efforts will be made to make personal contact.  The effort to gather the census will begin in March of 2020. 

Local Mayors and County Judges will be leading the way in trying to get everyone counted.  This includes all ages as well as those who are not registered voters.  Non-citizens who live in a specific area are also to be counted.  It is the civic duty of everyone to submit their information to the census.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Intermodal Meets, Lacks Quorum

Members of the Southeast Arkansas Intermodal Authority gathered March 20th in the conference room of the Bradley County Economic Development Commission to conduct monthly business.  There was no quorum available so no official business was acted upon.  The board was provided minutes of the February meeting and a financial report.  Those present agreed to authorize the agency's bookkeeper to paid the bill due in the amount of $341.47.

There was some continued discussion of the long standing delay in getting a solution to the matter of crossing the rail line within the intermodal site.  It appears there has been some confusion on the part of the railroad company according to board members that have communicated with railroad.  The company seems to think the crossing is to provide access to another public road.  It does not.  This has been conveyed to the railroad.  No action has yet been approved.  This matter has been pending nearly three years.

Fire Department Plans Substation Repairs & Upgrades

According to Warren's Acting Fire Chief Mike Ashcraft, the department is planning to conduct maintenance, repairs and upgrades to the city's fire sub-station located on N. Ethridge Street.  some of the work will be conducted by the firemen and some may have to be hired out.  The work to be hired out will depend on the available budget as authorized by the Mayor.

The Chief also informed SRC that plans are underway to take part in the county wide clean up day scheduled for March 30th.  Warren firemen will work on cleaning around and painting fire hydrants within the City of Warren.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Music on Main Set for March 30


Rob Reep Studio will once again host Music on Main Saturday, March 30, beginning at 7:00 p.m.  The featured musician will be Eric Carolina.  He is a proud Son of the South and has written and performed his composition, Black Creek Prison Blues in the motion picture Chain Gang.  He was raised in Rockingham, North Carolina and has had the4 honor of representing his home state in the performing arts at the World's Fair in Knoxville, TN.  He has made numerous appearances on the Tennessee Nashville Network (TNN) s well as other television performances.

He is a true entertainer at heart who enjoys interacting with his audience.

Come out and hear the country sounds of Eric Carolina.  The event is free and open to the public.
Rob Reep Studio is located at 225 South Main St., Warren.

Morgan Speaks to Rotary

On March 19th, Past Rotary District Governor and Bradley County native Allen Morgan spoke to the Rotary Club of Warren about the current workings of the Rotary Foundation. The Rotary Foundation is a non-profit organization that provides humanitarian aid around the world such as bringing clean drinking water to places without access to it.

Left:  Allen Morgan and Vol Ford

Tax Scammers Send Fake Letters

LITTLE ROCK – With tax season deadline looming, scammers continue to adapt when seeking ways to instill fear and intimidate Arkansans. The Arkansas Attorney General’s office has received reports of a scam being sent through the mail which appears to be a letter from the so-called “Bureau of Tax Enforcement for Pulaski County”—an entity that does NOT exist—claiming the recipient owes money to another state.

“Scammers are determined to steal your hard-earned money and will go to great lengths to intimidate Arkansans,” said Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge. “The Bureau of Tax Enforcement for Pulaski County is a fake, unlawful organization and these letters often do not provide a return address, only a phone number.”

Attorney General Rutledge released the following tips to use if Arkansans have received a similar letter:

Contact the local tax office to make sure you have no outstanding bills.
Do not verify sensitive information such as social security number and banking information; verifying that information could lead to identity theft.
File a police report with your local law enforcement.
If consumers have questions, then contact the Attorney General’s office.
The scam letter may also request that the recipient purchase gift cards or prepaid debit cards to pay off the “debt.” The scammer will ask for the code on the purchased card, which gives them complete access to money on the card. In most cases, once the prepaid card money is depleted, it cannot be recovered.

For more information and tips to avoid scams and other consumer-related issues, contact the Arkansas Attorney General’s office at (800) 482-8982 or consumer@arkansasag.gov or visit ArkansasAG.gov or facebook.com/AGLeslieRutledge.

Arkansas Rice Accepting Applications for New Scholarship Program

LITTLE ROCK, AR - High school juniors are eligible to apply for a new scholarship opportunity and win up to $7,000 towards higher education. Arkansas Rice's "Rice Reps" is a five month program to help educate students about the rice industry while equipping them to act as advocates in their communities and on social media.

From May through September, Reps actively participate in a program designed to teach them about rice farming and the importance of this crop at home and abroad. They are also asked to attend four different, on-site experiences during the program, to better understand the reach of rice in Arkansas.

The goal of the Rice Reps program is to encourage interest in rice promotion and to publicize the importance of the Arkansas rice industry to the state's economy. The program seeks to educate both male and female rising seniors across the state of Arkansas with the tools and knowledge to advocate for the Arkansas rice industry. This includes the benefits and economic impact rice provides its native Arkansans and millions around the world. Participants will also receive an inside look on the production of rice during the growing season.

During the program, Rice Reps will not only attend premier industry experiences, but also seek other opportunities to learn and expand their knowledge individually. At the conclusion of the program, Rice Reps are able to submit a scholarship application showcasing their advocacy activities. Scholarship winners will be awarded and recognized at a final reception during Rice Month in September.

For more information or to apply online, visit our website here
prior to the April 1 deadline.

 Arkansas is the largest rice-growing state in the nation, producing over 50% of the nation's rice and nearly 9 billion pounds annually. The Arkansas rice industry contributes over $6 billion each year to the state's economy and provides over 25,000 jobs, which are crucial to rural communities.

Local Artist Speakes to GFWC

Sandra Gatling and Rob Reep
Rob Reep, local artist and gallery owner, and owner  of Saline River Chronicle presented the February Program to GFWC Warren Woman's Club. Mr. Reep gave a short biography which included artistic influence by Bob Ross, TV personality, and Ken Vail from Banks who suggested opening an art gallery. Reep took that a step further and introduced "Music on Main", which features free musical talent monthly at his art studio. His studio also contains a gift shop, handmade and local crafts, and he is now offering painting classes. He is planning a show during the June Tomato Festival.

Community Action Board Suspends Two Employees/Gives Up Head Start

Veronica Wallace, acting interim director gives a report.
In a meeting that lasted over three hours, the board of the Southeast Arkansas Community Action Corporation continued to deal with a variety of issues in their attempt to get the agency back on track and functioning in a business -ike manner, while dealing with personnel matters.  The board dealt with a number of issues during the March 19th meeting.  Some were routine, while others were more serious and time sensitive.

Board Secretary Angela Meeks chaired the meeting in the absence of the board chairman.  The board continues to have trouble getting the minutes from a number of past meetings approved and continues to hear complaints from board member Darryl Johnson of Crossett concerning his allegations that some board members in the past have been illegally serving on the board.  Mr. Johnson has been a longtime critic of the board, some staff and the state, both prior to being appointed to the board and since he was named to the board.  While the meeting generally functioned smoother on the 19th, there were moments of intense discussion.  There were staff members of the Department of Human Services and the Governors Office present.  For months, the board has struggled to function orderly and there has been conflict with the former interim director, who recently retired.  Several new board members have come on board and have worked hard at restoring order, facts and a business like atmosphere.

Three new board members were approved during the meeting.  These consist of: Jared May of Desha County, County Judge Richard Tindall of Desha County and Rose Bates of Chicot County.   The board then voted to solicit bids for a financial consultant.  The board also voted officially to relinquish management of the Head Start program.  This matter has been under discussion for a few of weeks, due to a finding by the federal funding agency that there has been a "lack of oversight" of the program by Southeast Community Action.  The board voted to give up the program, which will allow them to reapply in September of this year.  In the meantime the federal agency will award the program to another agency to run.  Who that will be is unknown at this time.

Action on hiring a new executive director was tabled.  According to an existing succession plan, Mrs. Veronica Wallace, current head of the CSBG program, will serve as Acting Interim Director until further action is taken.

2019 Pink Tomato Festival T-Shirt Design & Color Released

The official 2019 Bradley County Pink Tomato Festival logo and t-shirt design was released online via the Tomato Festival facebook page earlier this morning, March 20, featuring a basket of tomatoes, a guitar, and sheet music inside of an outline of the county on a green t-shirt.

Tomato Festival Announces Friday Night Entertainment

Blane Howard

BLANE HOWARD

The Bradley County Pink Tomato Festival is pleased to announce that country music artist and songwriter, Blane Howard, will be appearing on stage, in downtown Warren, AR, on Friday night, June 14th for the 63rd annual Pink Tomato Festival.

Blane is making the grade across the board within the country music industry, at country radio and among its fans.  His original song, “Promise to Love Her”, has generated more than 7 Million views across multiple platforms and more that 16 Million Streams.  This Arkansas native, named the 2018 Male Vocalist of the Year at the Arkansas CMAs, embraces the sound he was raised on by infusing the styles of county music greats like Alan Jackson, Brooks & Dunn and Randy Travis, with his own personal flair.  His relatable lyrics, powerful vocals and entertaining shows are winning fans around the world.

Blane Howard began singing by age 3 and today he is drawn toward the styles of artists like Blake Shelton, Dierks Bentley and Brothers Osborne.  All of these influences have made an impact on Blane’s unique style of country, modern-traditional, mixing the authenticity of the 90s with the contemporary edge of today.

Since graduating from Belmont University in 2010, Howard has had the privilege of opening up shows for many country greats including Blake Shelton, Josh Turner, Joe Nichols and Trace Adkins, across the mid plains and mid-south, including the Arkansas State Fair, State Fair of Texas, the South Carolina Peach Festival and Western Kentucky State Fair.

In early 2018, the legendary John Berry invited Blane to film a segment with him for The Heartland TV Network’s second season of “Songs and Stories with John Berry”.  It aired in June 2018.
When Blane is not on the road, he stays busy writing new songs with other artists and songwriters in Nashville.  You may follow Blane Howard on social media to find all the latest show announcements, career updates and all his music updates.


PARKER MCKAY


Parker McKay will be taking the stage as the opening act for the 63rd annual Bradley County Pink Tomato Festival Entertainment on Friday night, June 14th.

McKay is a rising country artist in the Nashville music scene.  The native singer songwriter has established herself in Nashville as the breath of fresh air that pop-county needs. 

Her eclectic influences ranging from HAIM, John Mayer, Sheryl Crow, Shania Twain and even Eminem are evident in her new take on country this is honest, conversational and has compelling melodies.  Her powerhouse voice and engaging phrasing tie it all together.

Parker has opened for artists like Rascal Flatts, The Band Perry, Sheryl Crow and Martina McBride. As both an artist and songwriter, her name has already made a notable impact on the industry’s community.  Her debut music video premiered exclusively with Rolling Stone and she was recently added to CMT’s Artist Discovery Program.   She brings a unique perspective to the table and shows that it a powerful thing to be a vulnerable, confident and fearless woman in country music.

The time of the Friday night event will be released by the festival committee at a later date.


Pink Tomato Festival Releases Chairmen for 2019


Planning is underway for the annual Pink Tomato Festival to be held June 8-15, 2019.  Vicky Tapia has been named as the 63rd Chairman of the Bradley County Pink Tomato Festival.  Serving with her are: James Wells, 1st Vice Chair and Brooke Hatch, as 2nd Vice Chair.

Chairmen for the events held during the festival are being named and committees are being organized for each event.  There are some new events being added this year along with the many events of past years.

Other chairman named so far are:  Treasurer, Leslie Adams; Contributions, JeNelle Lipton; Vendors, James Wells; Entertainment, Gwen and Jimmy Sledge; Publicity, JeNelle Lipton; Information Booth, Denisa Pennington; All Tomato Luncheon, Judy Simmons; 5K Race, Randy Rawls; Antique Car Show, Michael Gardner; Tour de Tomato Bike Ride, Randy Rawls; Arts & Crafts, Fran Vanderzwalm; Little Miss Miss Pink Tomato, Glenda Cross & JeNelle Lipton; Petite, PreTeen, Teen and Miss Pink Tomato, Britni Robinson; Parade, Len Blaylock; Quilt Show, Joy Kitchens; Salsa Contest, Gerald Burton & Kelly Ashcraft; Talent Show, Marlene Elliot; Tomato Eating Contest, Jim Wheeler; Tomato Packing Contest, John Gavin; TShirts, Denisa Pennington; Treasure Hunt, Colleen Watkins; Turtle Races, Kenna & Michael Sparks; Hispanic activities, Carlos Yepes; Create your Fan, Warren Junior Auxiliary.

The Pink Tomato Festival is a community effort and if you would like to be involved, call the Bradley County Chamber of Commerce or contact one of the chairman listed to volunteer. 

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Library Hosts Open House

Left to Right:  Diane Parnell, Linda Kircheval, Sandy Doss, Stormy Taylor (AKA Cookie Monster), and Ana Alor.
The Warren Library Hosted an Open House Tuesday to share with the public their many new updates.  Stop in and check it out!

Lavanna Kindle Shares Tales of Bearhouse Creek at Warren Library

Laura Wagnon (left) and Beverly Reep (right) were among those who came to see their classmate as she made her stop at the Warren Library.
A crowd gathered Monday at the Warren Library to hear author Lavanna Jones Kindle (daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Harvey Jones) speak about her new book, Tales of Bearhouse Creek and Other Stories.  She told the crowd gathered that the book revolves around the tales of five generations of the Jones family from Drew County. She talked about the process of writing her book and gave her cousin, Charles Strickland, great credit for helping her with the retelling of tales of the family who grew out of a house on Bearhouse Creek south of Monticello.  Lavanna has been researching her genealogy and has found "There is great healing in storytelling."

She shared a few of the stories with the audience, and her cousin added to the adventures.   She pointed out the front cover is the front of the Bearhouse Creek home, and the bavk cover is the back of the old dogtrot home.  The cover was painted by hewr oldest granddaughter Allison Kirksey.  There is no photo of the old home but Lavanna pointed out that it lives on in the memories.  Two aunts, Betsy Jones Gillespie and Martha Jones Varitek assisted with descriptions.

She also shared a picture book by her cousin, Fruits of the Spirit.  The book is based on scriptures and is illustrated by Layla and Allison Kirksey.

Lavanna and her parents moved to Warren while she was in high school.  She is a 1975 graduate.  Today she is an ordained minister, teacher, counselor, lay missionary, wife, mother, and grandmother.  When she retires, she plans to help others share their family tales.

She presented the library with a copy of her book.  She and her cousin are making a tour across Southeast Arkansas.


Lumberjack Sports Hall of Fame News Release

The Warren Lumberjack Sports Hall of Fame Committee has recently met and elected the class of 2019.

Members discussed suggestions that had been submitted for consideration as well as names that have been previously considered.

Elected for the Class of 2019 are the following:
1. The late Johnny Johnson-Selected as an associate based upon his longtime support for and love of the Lumberjacks.

2. Terrence Hampton-Known as T-Rod to his teammates and Lumberjack fans.  A great wide receiver, defensive back  who played for two state championship teams under Coach Bo Hembree.  Mr. Hampton is considered one of the best natural athletes in Warren football history.

3. Ken Thomas-An outstanding basketball player.  He graduated in 1975.

4. Joseph Davis-An outstanding basketball player who graduated in 1974.

5. Janice Reddick-One of Warren’s all time best lady track stars.  Currently coaches Lady Jack track.

The five inductees will be officially put in the hall of Fame at the all sports banquet later this year.


Contact for Further Information:
R. Gregg Reep
870-820-2403,   greggreep@gmail.com

The Anthony, Gathen, Rainey, Tolbert Scholarships are available

The Anthony, Gathen, Rainey and Tolbert Scholarships are now available, created by retired former school district superintendents, Frank Anthony – Pine Bluff, Thomas Gathen – Dollarway, David Rainey- Dumas, and Andrew Tolbert- Warren.  The $1,000 scholarship to be given at each school district was developed to assist students from low-income families in going to college.  To be eligible for the award, the student must be a graduating senior from school district’s Class of 2019, have a minimum grade point average of 2.50, and provide a letter detailing what makes them deserve this honor and their career education choice. 
Applications are available by contacting the high school counselors of each school district.  The deadline to apply is April 15.
Mr. Anthony served as superintendent of the Pine Bluff School District for 12 ½ years. Mr. Gathen was superintendent at Dollarway for 10 years, Dr. Rainey was superintendent at Dumas for 3 years, and Mr. Tolbert served for 13 years as superintendent at Warren.  With their combined contributions of $4,000, it is their hope that a deserving student in each school district will have an opportunity to attend college.

County Judge Urges Support For State Road Tax

During the March 18th Bradley County Quorum Court meeting, Judge Klay McKinney spent a good amount of time taking about the current legislative session in Little Rock.  He voiced some frustration concerning several proposals being considered.  This included reallocation of funds currently being used for grants to cities and counties for recycling and the need for additional 911 funding.  The Judge was concerned about some actions being taken and in other cases the lack of action.

Mike Weatherford addressed the Court and voiced his concern over the chemicals being used to spray county road ditches.  he was concerned about the public's health and the killing of some species of flowers and grasses. 

Judge McKinney told the court that the heavy and sustained rains are causing serious county road issues and making it hard for county crews to keep up with maintenance.  The Judge discussed at length the need for the voters to re-approve the states one half cent sales tax for highways.  Counties and cities get a portion of the money for local roads.  He stated that failure to renew the tax would result in a loss of around $400,000.00 per year and the loss of a number of positions in the county road department.  The tax will be voted on in 2020. 

The Judge reported to the Justices about plans to improve county roads five and 160 using state aid money.   He also talked about looking into moving to automated garbage trucks to reduce the work force. 

Judge McKinney asked that the public be reminded that March 30th is the designated county wide clean up day.  Any individual or group desiring to help should contact the Judge's office as soon as possible.  Call 870-226-3853.

Sanitation Committee Works On Cleanup Enforcement

Members of the Warren City Council Sanitation Committee met Monday, March 18th in the Municipal Courtroom to review city ordinances and procedures for the enforcement of property cleanup throughout the city.  Mayor Pennington was present to discuss the issue with the committee as they prepare recommendations for the full council. 

Currently the city has ordinances that deal with the removal of dilapidated  structures ( residents and commercial), the cutting of grass and the removal of junk vehicles that do not run.  It appeared to be the consensus of the committee and the Mayor, that existing city ordinances are sufficient and the primary need is to set up a workable enforcement procedure.  This may include issuing tickets for violations and votes by the city council to order cleanup and removal. 

In the past, the city has dealt mostly with complaints.  There is discussion of tackling the problem street by street, in addition to complaints lodged by individuals.  The committee also talked about creating a citizens advisory committee to review complaints, prior to action being taken bey the council.  A report will be made to the full council at the April meeting. 

The council members and the Mayor acknowledged that there are serious problems throughout the city that need to be addressed.  The ultimate solution requires city council action and the expenditure of tax dollars to cleanup sites.  The city then files liens on the property to try to collect the cost to the city.  It can be a lengthy process.  The council and Mayor appear committed to taking more aggressive action.

Monday, March 18, 2019

See It Here First At Midnight Wednesday Morning, The Friday Night Entertainment for the 2019 Pink Tomato Festival

The official announcement of what musical entertainment will be available the Friday night of the 2019 Bradley County Pink Tomato Festival will be made here on salineriverchronicle.com Wednesday morning at midnight.

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Walk Across Arkansas

The Bradley County Extension Office will be sponsoring Walk Across Arkansas starting March 25, 2019.

Walk Across Arkansas is an eight-week health program that will spark some friendly competitions in Bradley County. Teams of 2 to 10 will compete to see who can log the most minutes walking, jogging, biking, or other forms of exercise.

Teams are being formed at this time. Church groups, businesses, organizations, families, and friends may wish to form teams of their own. Participants will report their weekly minutes to a team captain. Those who register for the program will receive information about Walk Across Arkansas and a weekly activity log and newsletter.

Teams will keep track of their minutes, which will be posted in the Eagle Democrat and Saline River Chronicle.

Many people are unaware of the positive benefits of exercise. According to the American Heart Association, heart disease is the No. 1 problem in the United States. The risk of heart disease could be significantly reduced by regular exercise.

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the positive effects of physical activity are not limited to lowering the risk of heart disease.  Not only does regular exercise help relieve stress and anxiety, "physically active people outlive inactive people," an NIH report stated.

"Participating in Walk Across Arkansas is not only a great way to get involved with our community, it's a healthy habit."

To participate in Walk Across Arkansas, first get a team together. Choose a team captain and name your team. Fill out a registration form available at the Bradley County Extension Office, 100 East First Street.

For more information or to obtain a packet, come by or call the Extension office at 870-226-8410.  The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative action institution.

Arrest Report: March 18, 2019

Clinton Webb, 826 Pierson, Warren, AR, age 33, charged with theft of property (3-13-19

Travles Johnson, 404 S. Jefferson, Strong, AR, age 36, charged with disorderly conduct (33-15-19)

Steven Clark Baker, 101 N. Main, Hermitage, AR, age 33, charged with criminal trespassing (3-16-19)

UAM Releases Final List of December 2018 Graduates

MONTICELLO, AR — The University of Arkansas at Monticello presented 480 awards to 436 December graduates, according to information released today by the UAM registrar’s office.

                (Editor’s Note: Students who opted to withhold their information from the media have been excluded from this list. Please refer all questions to the Office of the Registrar at 870-460-1035.)

Community Action Ex. Committee Meets

Members of the Executive Committee of the Southeast Arkansas Community Action Agency met Monday morning, March 18th at 8:00 A.M. in the conference room of the agency headquarters in Warren.  They met to discuss several issues and to prepare recommendations for the full board, which will meet Tuesday, March 19th at 3:30 P.M. also in the conference room.  They discussed several issues including plans to seek a new agency Executive Director and a new finance director.  Other matters discussed were issues to comply with workers compensation and a succession plan to operate while a new executive director is being sought.

The committee will recommend to the full board that the three signatories to sign checks and and purchase orders over $500.00 be:  Angela Meeks, A,Senique Daniels and Andrew Tolbert.  They also recommend Mrs. Meeks be named as the retirement trustee.

The full board will take action on Tuesday to execute the succession plan, which calls for the Director of the CSBG program to serve as interim agency director until further action is taken.  Final action on the position of Head Start Director will also be taken.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Kyle Wagnon Hired as Director of Parks and Recreation

Kyle Wagnon has been hired as the new City of Warren Parks and Recreation Director.  His duties will include managing all city parks and recreation facilities.  They include but are not limited to the City Swimming Pool, the Brunson ball park, the Baseball/Softball Complex, the City Park, and  the old Armory Building.

Kyle is a native of Warren where he grew up playing baseball.  He is a member of the Lumberjack Hall of fame as an outstanding pitcher for the 2005 State Championship team. He is married to Haley Reep Wagnon, Chief pharmacist for the Bradley County Medical Center.  They have two sons, Cooper and Ace.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Hermitage School Board Accepts Resignations, Hires

The Hermitage School Board met March 11th for their regular monthly meeting.  Reports were given by Mistie McGhee concerning grades 7-12/SIS, by Dr. Tucker concerning K-12/SIS report and by Dr. Tucker concerning Pre-K/ELL.  The board then approved RFP for consulting service for child nutrition bidding.  Next the board approved out of state travel for FFA.

During the meeting, Dr. Tucker talked to the members about the salary schedule and minimum wage adjustments.  There will be more discussion in the April meeting.

The board then vote to accept the resignation of Nat Davis and the resignation of Charles Thomas.

Votes were then taken to hire Leah McIntyre and Becky Greenwood to work in 21st CCLC for the high school.  Both were approved.  The board also voted to hire Jill McKinley as child nutrition director for the elementary cafeteria.
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This Week in the House: Representative Jeff Wardlaw

This week, the House passed legislation which will change the way our communities respond to emergencies, the way we regulate our businesses, and the way our government is structured.

One of the many bills passed on the House floor in the 9th week of the session was The Arkansas Public Safety Act (HB1564).

This bill transforms the state's 911 network. It will shift the network from the current analog system to an internet protocol-based network. New technology will allow callers to use wireless and IP-based devices to call 911 and transmit text, images, video, and data.

It will consolidate the number of Public Safety Answering Points in the state in an effort to reduce the number of times a caller is transferred.

To fund upgrades, the bill increases the public safety charges on cell phones from 65 cents/month to $1.30/month. It also removes the 65 cent charge per purchase on prepaid cellular plans and adds a 10% charge per purchase.

In 2016, counties and cities subsidized 911 by $25 million. The changes outlined in HB1564 are expected to reduce the burden on counties and cities by $16 million.

Lumberjack Band Takes in Dixie Stampede

Approximately 50 members of the Warren Lumberjack Band has embarked on their annual Spring Break Music Tour in Branson, Missouri.  Friday night, they took in the entertainment at The Dixie Stampede.  The band is under the direction of Mr. Kevin Dunn and the Assistant Band Director is Mr. Bobby Hagler.