Saturday, April 21, 2018

Chamber Banquet, Gail Little Named Citizen of the Year

Left to Right:  Carolina Panther Jarius Wright, 2018 Bradley County Citizen of the Year-Gail Little, Tall Pines and Pink Tomato Award Winner Nate Grubbs, and Miss Pink Tomato Charlee Carter
Members and guests of the Bradley County Chamber of Commerce gathered Friday evening in the activities building of Immanuel Baptist Church for the 2018 Chamber Gala.  The welcome was given by County Judge Klay McKinney and the invocation was spoken by Warren Mayor Bryan Martin.  Tanya Johnson, Chairman of the Chamber Board introduced the members of the current Chamber Board.

Chamber President Joel Tolefree introduced the key not speaker for the evening, former Lumberjack and former Razorback great, Jarius Wright.  Jarius grew up in Warren and is a graduate of Warren High School.  He has spent the past several years playing in the NFL for the Minnesota Vikings and has just signed to play the 2018 season with the Carolina Panthers.  His mother continues to reside in Warren.
Bradley County 4-H members served the guests.

Jarius used his remarks to thank his family, Coach Bo Hembree and the community of Warren for supporting him and encouraging him as he grew up in Warren.  He talked about the fact that sometime tough love was needed and he had to learn to stay focused and make his grads academically.  He stated that while he was "no dummy" that he did not like to work hard in school and had to be pushed at times to do his work.  He mentioned his mother and father, Coach Hembree and one of his teachers, Mrs. Beverly Reep along with the entire community of Warren as among those who cared for him and helped him.  Jarius talked about his time at Arkansas and how agian he had to learn and was pushed hard by his coaches to succeed both on the field and in the class room.
He concluded his comments by discussing the hard work it still takes to play in the NFL. 

Two awards were presented during the Gala.  the Tall PInes & Pink Tomato Award was presented to Nate Grubbs for the hard work and dedication he has provided in working with Warren athletes when they have needed rehabilitation due to injuries.  He was introduced by Coach Hembree.

Named "Citizen of the Year"  for 2017 was Mrs. Gail Little.  She was nominated by the Bradley County Hospital Auxiliary.  She has been a dedicated volunteer for a number of years and has been active in the community in many ways. 

Program sponsors for the evening were Warren Bank and Trust Company, Union Bank, Ouachita Hardwood Flooring and the City of Warren.  Decorations provide by Sisters All Occasion Decorations, Felecia Payne and Beverly Rauls.  the food was catered by Golden Girls of Warren.

"Keep Warren & Bradley County Beautiful" Organizational Meeting

Help to...
"Keep Warren & Bradley County Beautiful"
Organizational Meeting
Monday, April 23rd
Bradley County Courthouse, Courtroom
6:00 p.m.; refreshments served
Please join us as we work to keep Warren & Bradley Co. beautiful

Friday, April 20, 2018

Human Development Center Recognized For Excellence

The Volunteer Council of the Southeast Arkansas Human Development Center meet Wednesday, April 18th at the Center in Warren.   They reviewed the organizations financial statement and talked about the need to recruit additional members.

Superintendent Mark Wargo provided an up date on the Center.  He stated the SE Human Development Center currently employs 236.  He told the council that the Center has been recognized by the state for doing the best job of all the centers in Arkansas for keeping expenses in line and continuing to provide quality services.

Dana Harvey updated the board on planned evacuation exercises in response to any type disaster.
Planning meetings are scheduled and the board is invited to attend.

The council talked about planned fundraising activities and were provided a detailed information sheet on the needs of the "Garden Project."  The member discussed ways to secure donations of equipment and materials to assist the clients who will be helping with the garden activity.  The board will be making further plans at the next meeting and more public information will be forthcoming.

Community Action Conducts Monthly Meeting

A quorum of the members of the Southeast Arkansas Community Action Board meet April 17 in the Agency Headquarters in Warren and conducted monthly business.  They tabled the minutes of the March meeting to allow members more time to review them and approve the minutes of a called meeting of April 6, 2018.  The bylaws committee reported they were waiting on legal information before making a report on some proposed changes.

Rochelle Dailey was elected Secretary of the Board and fund raising plans were discussed and set in motion.  The board then voted to rotate the monthly meetings among the five counties that make up the agency, with every other meeting being held at the headquarters in Warren.  A number of reports reports were given concerning programs and activities.

Mr. Darryl Johnson from Ashley County was present along with a small number of other guest.  Mr.Johnson has contended for some time that some past and present board members have not been legally selected to the board.  He has been critical of the content of past minutes and other decisions of the board over a long period of time.  The State Department of Human Services has been involved and have declared the current board members legal and that minutes have been corrected, and they have provided several hours of board training over the past couple of years.  Mr. Johnson has remained unconvinced and has continued to demand further action.

The Community Action Agency provides important services to the lower income residents of Southeast Arkansas.  They operate the Head Start Program for preschool youth, help with commodities and other assistance programs, including assistance with utility expenses for those who qualify.  Community Action seeks and utilizes federal and state funds to help the elderly and low income, with the goal of trying to get them out of poverty where possible.  The Agency is a non-profit organization.

THE GREAT OUTDOORS YOUTH DAY

The Cooperative Extension Service of Bradley, Calhoun, Dallas, and Cleveland Counties is once again sponsoring The Great Outdoors Youth Day on Saturday, May 5th, at the Bradley County Park.  Registration starts at 9:00 a.m. and events will include Fishing Derby, Learning Stations, and other special activities.  Lunch is sponsored by L’Aigle Creek Conservation District.  All youth ages 5-14 years old are invited.  Youth under age 9 will be required to have a parent present, however, all parents are encouraged to attend.  Bring your own fishing poles and bait for catching catfish.  For more information, contact John Gavin at the Bradley County Extension Office 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.


Job Fair Set For Thursday, April 26

The annual job fair is set for Thursday, April 26th at Immanuel Baptist Church, located on West Pine Street in Warren.  The event will last form 10:00 A.M. to 2:00 P.M.  There will be multiply public and private businesses and organizations on hand who are looking for employees.  They will visit with prospective employees and provide information about job and educational requirements.  Information will be available concerning opportunities for further education and training.

Any one seeking a job or the chance to enhance their job status should plan to attend.

Human Development Center Recognized For Excellence

The Volunteer Council of the Southeast Arkansas Human Development Center meet Wednesday, April 18th at the Center in Warren.   They reviewed the organizations financial statement and talked about the need to recruit additional members.

Superintendent Mark Wargo provided an up date on the Center.  He stated the SE Human Development Center currently employs 236.  He told the council that the Center has been recognized by the state for doing the best job of all the centers in Arkansas for keeping expenses in line and continuing to provide quality services. 

Dana Harvey updated the board on planned evacuation exercises in response to any type disaster.
Planning meetings are scheduled and the board is invited to attend. 

SEACAC Special Called Board Meeting


State Capitol Week in Review From Senator Eddie Cheatham

April 20, 2018

LITTLE ROCK – The state has seen a drop in the number of people enrolled in Arkansas Works, the Arkansas version of an expanded Medicaid program.

During the month of March, enrollment in Arkansas Works fell by 3,637 people, from about 284,000 to about 281,000.

The decline comes even before the state imposes stricter eligibility requirements that call for some Medicaid recipients either to work or to look for a job in order to continue receiving benefits.

Medicaid is administered by the state Human Services Department, which released a monthly report for March detailing expenditures and enrollment.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Bigham Announces Candidacy For Bradley County Treasurer

Stephanie McKinney Bigham would like to announce her candidacy for Bradley County Treasurer.  As a lifelong South Arkansas resident, Stephanie graduated from Woodlawn High School and began her working career locally.  She is currently employed by the Bradley County Circuit Clerk's office where she has served as Chief Deputy Clerk for the past six years.  Stephanie and her husband Jon Bigham are owners and operators of J Big Logging LLC.  Her current and past work experiences include bookeeping, accounting, preparing monthly reports for the State of Arkansas, responsible for payroll, accounts payable, accounts receivable and year end reporting.  She and Jon owned and operated Saline Ouachita Valley Livestock for four years.

Stephanie and her family are active members of Good Hope Methodist Church of Warren.  In her free time, she volunteers for the Backwoods Trap Shooters and enjoys hunting, fishing and 4-wheeler riding with her family.  She is the daughter of the late Melvin McKinney, Janet Burkhardt and the late Peter Burkhardt.  She and Jon have one son, Dalton Bigham, a freshman at Warren High School.

Stephanie states "I will treat the citizens of Bradley County and the office of Bradley County Treasurer in an honorable, courteous and efficient manner.  I would appreciate your vote and support for the office of Bradley County Treasurer in the November election."

Tomato Festival Receives First Contribution of 2018

Sam St. John(right) is pictured donating the first contribution to the Pink Tomato Festival to the Chairman of the 2018 Bradley County Pink Tomato Festival, Joel Tolefree(left).

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Bradley County Block Builders Present Quilt

(L to R) Patsy Plair, Sue Wilson, Verna Ferry, RN, Alicia Outlaw, RN, Judy Simmons, and Wanda Carr

Bradley County Hometown Health Coalition was recently the proud recipient of a quilt made by the Bradley Block Builders quilt club.
The quilt depicted examples of the coalition's goals for Bradley County including dietary selections and exercise.  Information on opportunities to win this quilt may be obtained from the health unit.  Proceeds will benefit the coalition's efforts to educate county citizens regarding  healthy lifestyles.
The Block Builders club, a project club of the Bradley County Cooperative Extension Service, serves local residents through their gifts of quilts and other donations.  The quilters offer opportunities to win one of their quilted creations twice a year when they complete their Pink Tomato  and Christmas quilts.  Opportunities are now available on the tomato quilt which will be awarded to the holder of the lucky ticket during the Pink Tomato Festival.  Tickets may be purchased from any Block Builder member with proceeds going to local charitable organizations and individuals in need.

Intermodal Conducts an Executive Session

After conducting a relatively brief board meeting, the Southeast Arkansas Intermodal Authority Board was called into an executive session.  Normally, under state law, executive sessions are to discuss some type personnel issue.  The authority at this time has no employees and no purpose of the meeting was announced.  No action was taken after the session.

During the regular meeting, the board approved minutes and the current financial report.  The report listed the following as receivables from the two cities and two counties that legally own the intermodal facilities:
*Monticello- has a credit of $10,836.91, This means the authority owes the city a refund
*Warren-$35,812.91
*Drew County-$20,619.87
*Bradley County-$153,862.50

The board voted to take available cash balances and repay Monticello $10,836.91, pay current bills in the amount of $824.01 and pay $90,000.00 on the loan through Commercial Bank.  The authority expects $75,000.00 from the state after July 1, 2018.  Unless altered by the state legislature, the authority will receive $75,000 per year in the future.  That is subject to legislative budgeting yearly.

There was discussion about the need to get industrial capable electricity to the intermodal site.  Gregory s. Smith, CEO/General Manager of C & L, told the board that C & L will work with them and the cost to the intermodal would depend on the size of electrical consummation of any business locating in the park.  The board also talked about the long standing issue of moving the railroad switch and who is responsible for paying the cost.  No one was present from the railroad company or the engineering firm.  Some emails were read that concerned the rail.

Hermitage & Warren Streets to be Paved

According to a news release from the Arkansas Department of Transportation, several streets in Hermitage and three in Warren have been approved for paving work under the "City and State" road program.  The streets have been bid out by the state and the work will be conducted in the coming months.

All or a portion of the following streets are included:
Hermitage
*W. Grand
*S. Ash
*Birch Ave.
*E., S. Oak
*N. Oak
*E. 3rd
*W. 3rd
*W. 4th
*W. School Drive

Warren
*Hankins
*Woodlawn
*N. Watson

In some cases a portion of the street will be resurfaced.  The paving expense will not come from the cities street budgets.  the streets were approved as a result of each city applying for the funding.

Crossett City Attorney James A. Hamilton Seeks Election As Circuit Judge On May 22, 2018

Crossett City Attorney James A. Hamilton has announced that he will seek election as Circuit Judge for the Tenth Judicial District, in the upcoming election, on May 22, 2018.  The Tenth Judicial District covers Ashley, Bradley, Chicot, Desha and Drew Counties in Southeast Arkansas.

James is married to Rose Hamilton, and they have three daughters, Callie Esther, Jami-Lynn and Sherri.  He is Managing Member of the law firm of Hamilton, Hamilton & Leonard, PLLC, in Hamburg, and has lived in Ashley County since 1963.  He is an Eagle Scout.  He attended the Arkansas Boys' State in 1980, and was also in the original Arkansas Governor's School Class of 1980.  He graduated from Hamburg High School in 1981 with high honors.  He graduated from the University of Arkansas with an Industrial Engineering degree in 1985, and a Juris Doctor degree with honors in 1989.  He is a member of the Arkansas Law Review.  James served the Arkansas Bar Association as a member of the House of Delegates from 2001-2007, and he is a Tenured Delegate.  He also served as a director for the Center For Arkansas Legal Services from 1997 until 2007.

James served as Ashley County Deputy Prosecuting Attorney from 1991 to 1997, and Deputy City Attorney for Crossett from June 16, 1993, until December 31, 1998, and is currently completing his nineteenth year as Crossett City Attorney.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

The Great American Clean Up

The Great American Clean Up is coming to Bradley County thanks to Bradley County Judge, Klay McKinney.  Working with Keep Arkansas Beautiful, Judge McKinnet has set Saturday, May 19th for the official local Clean Up Day.  Cities and counties across Arkansas and the nation are participating in the 2018 Great American Spring Clean Up effort.

In connection with the Clean Up, the county landfill will be open on that day and will be free to the public.  This is your chance to get rid of some of the items you no longer want or need.  Load up as much as you want and deliver to the landfill.

Keep Arkansas Beautiful will help to supply garbage bags, gloves and other items needed for the workers.  Clubs, organizations, families and individuals are needed to sign up to take a designated area to clean.  If you would be willing to volunteer, call the Judge’s office at 870-226-3853.

There will be an organizational meeting on Monday the 23rd at 6 p.m. in the courtroom of the Bradley County Courthouse.  Please attend to get more information or to volunteer for your area of the county.

It is time we took pride in our surroundings and help clean up our neighborhoods.  Join the effort.

Bradley County Approves Jail Contract

The Bradley County Quorum Court, meeting in regular session April 16th, approved an agreement with a private company for the county to house county inmates in a new jail/prison to be built either in Warren or Drew County.  This matter has been under discussion for several years and has changed dramatically since the original concept was floated.

Originally the plan was to have a five county regional jail commission.  No one could explain how it would work.  Then there was the idea that where ever the facility was located, the counties of Bradley and Drew would share the property taxes.  That was determined to be unconstitutional.

The contract signed is a three party agreement between the private company that will own and operated the jail/prison and Bradley and Drew Counties.  It calls for Drew County to have 45 beds and Bradley County to have 12 beds.  These beds are guaranteed.  The cost for the beds will be $30.00 per day per bed.  The cost to Bradley County will be $131,000.00 per year.  The contract is for 20-years but each quorum court must appropriate the fees on an annual basis.  That means should Bradley County or Drew County's quorum courts decide any year not to appropriate the fees to pay for the beds, the county is removed from the contract and will not be considered in default.  This in effect makes the contracts one year at a time in accordance to state law.  Neither county depends upon the other if they decide to get out of the agreement.

Monday, April 16, 2018

Law Enforcement Auxiliary Classes Underway

Classes are being taught to certify Auxiliary Law Enforcement Officers at the Old National Guard Building in Warren.  Currently four employees of the Warren Police Department, five individuals for county government and one person from Star City are undergoing the training.  According to Tim Nichols, CID for the Warren Police Department, those going through the training will be certified to conduct enhanced law enforcement functions upon successful completion to the course.  CID Nichols and other certified instructors are teaching the course.

The training will allow those who pass the course the ability to conduct law enforcement jobs and assist certified officers and work in jail facilities.  The City of Warren owns and operates a 24-hour holding jail.  One of those being trained is a female, which will allow Warren to hold female prisoners as needed.

Training is required for all law enforcement personnel and for any one working in a jail or holding facility.

State Police Make Arrest After High Speed Chase

In March, the Warren Police Department put out an "all points bulletin" relating to a car that was stolen in the Warren area.  Arkansas State Police spotted the car on U.S. Highway 63 near Calmer, in Cleveland County, and attempted to stop the vehicle.  the car was pursued for a number of miles on into Jefferson County at speeds of around 120 mph.  The vehicle went through Woodlawn at a high rate of speed and in a very reckless fashion.  As the car entered Jefferson county, law enforcement cars intercepted it from the North and the vehicle tried to make a u-turn at a high rate of speed to go back South.  At that time the state police car giving chase rammed the vehicle bringing it to a halt.  The police car had ramming bumpers to protect the officer. The driver was apprehended and arrested.  There were no injuries.

Arrested was Bradley Bunch of Redfield, Arkansas.  He was charged with felon fleeing, possession of methamphetamine, possession of marijuana and reckless driving.  He was placed in jail on $5000.00 bond. 

Health Fair

Bradley County Health Fair
Date: Saturday, April 21st, 2018
Time: 9am - 12pm
Location: Warren YMCA
Health screenings for high blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes with education & referral services for high risk individuals
 
Also:
- Numerous Games and Activities for Children
- Door Prizes
- Face Painting
Smokey the Bear
- Life Size Healthopoly Game
Cash Vault Money Machine
- Rita Guice Memorial Cake Walk
ACH Fire Safety House
- Smoking Cessation Information
- Emergency Services Information
- Hospice Information
- Health Education
- Insurance Information
- Nutrition Information
- Concession Stand & Hot Dogs
-Multiple Vendors
and many more activities to enjoy!!!
- Fun, Fellowship and Something for all!!!!
 
Color Run/Walk 5K (Start Time 7:30
(Contact Warren YMCA for Details on this)
 
  • Come Join in the Fun!!!
  • Something for everyone at any age!!!
 

 

Engage in the Arts with Bradley County Arts for Children Art Session

The Warren Middle School Parent Involvement team and Bradley County Arts for Children Committee (B.C.A.C.) provided Warren's Middle School three enrichment art sessions on the afternoon of Thursday, April 12, 2018, on "Pablo Picasso: One of the World's Greatest Artists." Dr. Sue S. Martin led students through an illustrated right-brain learning situation.  Next Dr. Martin led students through a visual, Picasso art presentation of his different "periods of art" using pictures, books and the internet.  Famous artists' and local artists' works were presented and refelected on as to what styles they closely resembled of Picasso's different periods of painting.  Picasso's art was observed by the students through pictures, books, art comparisons and computer searches of world-wide Picasso's art museums.  Students then participated in producing self-portraits using one or more of his styles of painting and mediums; then students shared their work with other students in the class.  Throughout Dr. Martin's art enrichment sessions, students were reminded of Pablo Picasso's famous quotation: "Every child is an artist.  It is a challenge to remain an artist when you grow up."  On closing, students learned that now coloring in coloring books is said to relieve stress in people.  Dr. Martin presented to each student coloring pages of two Picasso famous paintings for students to take home; she stated that now adults and children buy and use printed coloring books for a fun and stress-free inside activity.

WPD Arrest Report For April 10-15, 2018

The following are innocent until proven guilty.

Joster Hardin / 2400 Northeast Cir., North Little Rock, Arkansas / DOB 7-1-88 / Domestic Battery 3rd on 4-10-18

Nick Adair / 105 S. 5th St., McGehee, Arkansas / DOB 11-17-74 / Arkansas Prob, Warrant on 4-13-18

Alexis C. Jacobs / 1018 Brown St., Warren, Arkansas / DOB 4-3-89 / Terroristic Threatening 1st Degree on 4-14-18

Kenneth L. Carter / 117 Bradley 280 Rd., Warren, Arkansas / DOB 2-26-75 / Poss of firearm by certain person and poss of drug para on 4-15-18

Teacher Candidates Admitted To Teacher Education Program

Students pictured in this photograph are education majors at the University of Arkansas at Monticello who were recently admitted to the school's teacher education program at a pinning ceremony last week. Pictured from left are (first row) Lindsey Todd of Monticello, Madison Michels of Star City, Corin Reed of White Hall, Sarah Brockwell of Crossett, Harlee Brown of Rison, April Osburn of Monticello, Christina Conley of Monticello, Emily Johnston of Hermitage, (second row) Allison Harrison of Crossett, Courtney Tomboli of Benton, Mary Ferracci of Vicksburg, Miss., Karrah Paschall of Monticello, Ashley Pierce of Hamburg, Jana Jenkins of Crossett, Paxton Harmon of Lonoke, Alexandra Austin of Crossett, (top row) Darian Johnson of Crossett, Abigail Leonards of Crowley, La., Madison Collins of Texarkana, Tex., Jenna Presley of Beebe, Melanie Long of Jacksonville, Tristan McMahan of Warren, C.J. Brewer of Monticello and Lacee Roberson of DeWitt.



This Week in the House: Rep. Jeff Wardlaw

Arkansas House members have been meeting in the current chamber at the State Capitol since 1911.  The desks and chairs were moved from the Old State House the night before the first session here began.

While modifications have been made over the last 100 years, the desks that architects had designed in 1914 specifically for our chamber were never actually built.

In the last twenty years, House leadership has made a continuous effort to honor the historical integrity of this chamber.  This should be a place that honors not only our forefathers, but our descendants.

Saturday, April 14, 2018

New Zion A.M.E.Zion Church Razed for Public Safety


Mt. Zion A.M.E. Zion Church stood tall in the city for years but was demolished Saturday for public safety.
 New Zion A.M.E. Zion Church on North Myrtle Street in Warren was razed by a contractor Saturday morning, April 14.  Mayor Martin and the City of Warren had been working to get the building torn down and cleaned up for several weeks.  The City Council has for more than a year expressed concern for the building which was rich in heritage to Warren's African American Community.  A number of civil rights activists had visited the congregation and spoken in the church.   It was on the historic register.
Joyce Smith and Debra Green were on hand to try and recover
history left in the building.

The City of Warren had been trying to work with the owner of the property.  In recent months, the structure's roof caved in, and outer walls were bulging making it unsafe for nearby traffic areas and general safety of the public.  The City Council took final action to authorized the cleanup Tuesday evening in their April 2018 meeting. The owner of the property will be billed for the cleanup.  If they do not pay, a lien will be placed on it for the amount of the cleanup.

Before razing the structure, the city removed the cornerstone and a time capsule found behind it for preservation of history.

Two former members of the church were on hand observing the demolition and trying to collect any books or history that could be found and salvaged.  Mrs. Joyce Smith told salineriverchronicle.com that the church was built in the early 1900's.  She and Mrs. Debra Green, both former members said they were saddened to see the church come down but understood the need to remove it for safety purposes.
The above photograph was found by Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Green.  If you can identify this couple, email salineriverchronicle@gmail.com and we will pass the information on to the ladies.

The Tina Raney Home Suffers Damage Due to Storm

The Doyle Ozment sustained damage from a fallen tree during the storm.
Friday night's storm system that moved through the state inflicted damage to trees and some power lines in rural areas of the county.  The Tina Raney residence had trees fall.  She has told salineriverchronical.com that the tree did not damage the house as had been earlier reported.  The vehicle was in the yard of Clois Smith.

He also stated that Bradley County Road 7 North is closed between US Highway 278 and the Old Camden Road due to water damage.

According to Warren Mayor Bryan Martin, there was no damage within the Warren city limits.  salineriverchronicle.com spoke with Warren Police Chief Shaun Hildreth at 2:43 a.m. Saturday morning, and he also reported no damage or issues within the city limits to his knowledge.  The chief remained on duty at the Emergency Services Center throughout the storm,
A tree damaged vehicles at the Doyle Ozment home also.

Friday, April 13, 2018

Hermitage Afterschool Students Plant Vegetable Garden

The Hermitage Elementary Afterschool Students have been busy planting vegetable plants in their raised bed gardens along with flower seeds in their hot house. They have plans to plant a butterfly garden next week. Mr. John Gavin is assisting the students with their planting. Pictured with Mr. Gavin are Kindergarten students with their afterschool teacher, Mrs. Alicia Avery and also first grade students.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

UAM to Host Campus Out of the Darkness Suicide Walk

Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in this country. It touches millions of lives — people of all ages, ethnicities, and backgrounds — but the research is clear: suicide is preventable, and the more people who stand up for suicide prevention and mental health, the more lives we can save.


If you’ve lost someone to suicide, or you or someone you know suffers from a mental health condition like depression or anxiety, please join us for the University of Arkansas at Monticello Out of the Darkness Campus Walk to fight suicide on Saturday, April 14th

Funds raised support the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and its bold goal to reduce the annual suicide rate in the United States 20 percent by 2025 through research, education, advocacy, and support. These walks are truly uplifting experiences, and they grow every year. Hope to see you there.

 Register at www.afsp.org/uamont or email Keri Book book@uamont.edu

Hermitage School Board Approves Teacher Salary Schedule

In a meeting that covered a lot of territory, the Hermitage School Board made a number of decisions, including the approval of a new salary schedule for District teachers.  The board unanimously adopted a salary schedule recommended by Superintendent Dr. Tracy S. Tucker.  The schedule will increase the District's budget by $130,000.00 per year.  According to Dr. Tucker, $103,000.00 of the $130,000.00 is mandated by state law.  That means the salaries must be increased to comply with state requirements.  The remaining $30,000.00 was suggested by Dr. Tucker.  Upon being questioned by Board President Russell Richard if the board can afford the increase without creating financial problems, Dr. Tucker stated it is affordable.  Mr. Richards stated that in some past years ( not under Dr. Tucker's tenure ) the board has taken recommended action and serious problems followed.  The superintendent assured the board this increase can be handled.

In other business reports were given by Rosalynda Ellis, Chase Ellis and Dr. Tucker.  Some personnel policies were adopted and a contract with K-12 Culinary connection was approved.  The contract will hire the private firm (K-12 Culinary Connection ) to act as a consultant to help the district plan menus and buy food at a less expensive price.  The district will pay $3450.00 per month for the services.  Dr. Tucker stated a number of school districts in the area are using the company and it is hoped that the savings on food purchases will more than pay for the contract fee.

Chamber Board Plans Gala-Guest Speaker Jarius Wright

After approving the minutes of the last meeting and the financial statement, the Bradley County Chamber of Commerce Board spent most of the meeting planning the Chamber Gala which is scheduled for Friday, April 20th at 6:00 P.M. in the Immanuel Baptist Church Activity Center.  Tickets will be $15.00 and may be purchased at the Chamber Office.  The guest speaker will be Jarius Wright, now of the Carolina Panthers of the National Football League.  Wright is a former Lumberjack and Razorback great.

The Chamber President, Joel Tolefree, gave a Director's report.  He announced the April 26th job fair set for Immanuel and the Veterans fund raiser scheduled for May 4th. 

One member brought up the matter of a "Bag O" tournament planned during the Pink Tomato Festival to benefit the Chamber.  There was some discussion about what to charge and the prizes to be paid.