Thursday, February 25, 2016

Hill Introduces Bill to Preserve Financing Options for Commercial Real Estate

WASHINGTON Today, Congressman French Hill (AR-02) introduced H.R. 4620, the Preserving Access to CRE Capital Act of 2016. H.R. 4620 modifies Dodd-Frank’s risk retention requirements for prudently underwritten, low-risk commercial real estate loans; the current Dodd-Frank rules are set to take effect in December 2016.


As one of the largest sources of credit for commercial and multifamily real estate in the United States, the commercial mortgage backed securities (CMBS) market is an important element of the over $3 trillion commercial real estate debt market, especially in smaller markets. CMBS provides financing to retail, office, apartments, industrial, health care, and many other types of commercial real estate. If the rule is not modified before going into effect, borrowers across the country could experience significant reductions in access to credit, unwarranted increases in borrowing costs, and reduced liquidity, which could impair economic development and job creation in areas that need it most.

Following introduction of the bill, Congressman Hill stated:
“Washington and its one-size-fits-all regulators have put forth rule after rule without taking into account input from affected industries or the effects those rules can have on development and job growth, especially in smaller commercial markets. This minor, but important, modification to the credit risk retention rules will help ensure continued liquidity and affordable financing options for commercial real estate borrowers in Arkansas and throughout the country.”
Read the full text of the bill.

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Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Keep Gitmo Open

by Sen. John Boozman:  The detention center at the Naval Station at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba (Gitmo) is a state-of-the-art facility that is well-equipped to handle the world’s most dangerous terrorists.

I visited the Gitmo detention facility in 2011. 
The detainees held there are some of the most vile terrorists who are committed to killing Americans. Transferring these men to U.S. soil cannot and should not be an option. I am concerned that President Obama is more worried about fulfilling a campaign promise to close Gitmo than he is about the security of the American people. The reality is that transferring detainees to American soil threatens our national security and poses a risk to our citizens. This is not what the American people want. That’s why Congress has rejected the President’s proposal. The 2015 National Defense Authorization Act prohibits Gitmo detainees from being moved to U.S. soil. The President needs to respect the law he signed.

As a longtime advocate for ensuring the military prison at Guantanamo Bay remains open I’ve:
  • Voted to prevent President Obama from closing the detention facility in the 2015 National Defense Authorization Act.
  • Blocked funding for the transfer, release or to assist in the transfer or release of detainees from the detention center.
  • Cosponsored the Detaining Terrorists to Protect America Act of 2015, legislation that restricts transfers of detainees.
  • Cosponsored the Guantanamo Bay Detention Facility Act of 2011, legislation that requires that each high-value enemy combatant who is captured or otherwise taken into long-term custody by the United States be detained at Gitmo. 

At a time when we are fighting global terrorism, holding these dangerous terrorists within our country’s borders is not the solution our citizens want. I believe that we must keep Gitmo open and I will continue to fight the President’s efforts to close it.

Tags: Arkansas, U.S. Senator, John Boozman, PResident Obama, Keep Gitmo open,  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Repeal Property Code 105-2 and Special Election, Jonesboro, Arkansas

by Debbie Pelley:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 23, 2016

CONTACT: Attorney Travis Story 479-443-3700 or 479-841-1881

Re: Repeal Property Code 105-2 and Special Election

Yesterday, the group, “Repeal Property Code 105–2,” submitted it's petition to the county so that a special election may be held to vote on the repeal of the Jonesboro Property Maintenance Code. We believe this special election will be held in conjunction with another special election already called by the Jonesboro City Council on May 10, 2016.

The extraordinary act of the residents of Jonesboro to sign the repeal petition to put this property maintenance code on the ballot is a testament to the people of the city of Jonesboro and the more than 60 canvassers who helped collect more than 5000 signatures, of which the Jonesboro City Clerk deemed more than 3600 valid.

This extraordinary act by the people of Jonesboro speaks loudly to the people's willingness to stand up to the City Council when they approve a measure that is not supported by the people. The group asks all voters of the city of Jonesboro to come out to the special election, and vote for repeal of the Jonesboro Property Maintenance Code.


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Rep. Hill Statement on President’s GTMO Announcement

WASHINGTON – Today, after President Obama announced his repetitive and ill-conceived plan to close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Congressman French Hill (AR-02) released the following statement:

“The president is risking our national security in order to fulfill a tired, eight-year old campaign promise. This isn’t the type of leadership you would expect from someone whose entire tenure as commander in chief has been spent at war with Islamic extremists. Last year, I had the opportunity to visit the state-of-the-art facilities at GTMO, and I saw first-hand a safe and secure facility for housing and adjudicating dangerous agents of terror. GTMO is an essential part of our Global War on Terror, and through the annual National Defense Authorization Act—which the president signed into law—Congress has already made it illegal to close GTMO and we will not tolerate the president’s plan to move these dangerous individuals to U.S. soil.”Related

Hill Statement on Visit to Guantanamo Bay

Tags: Arkansas, 2nd Congressional District, Rep. Grench Hill, statement, Obama. GITMO announcement To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Boozman Statement on Obama’s Plan to Close Gitmo

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) today issued the following statement after President Barack Obama submitted a vague and dangerous plan to Congress to close the detention center at the U.S. Naval Station at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba (Gitmo).
“The detention center at Guantanamo Bay is a state-of-the-art facility that is well-equipped to handle the world’s most dangerous terrorists. Closing Gitmo and transferring detainees to American soil creates needless national security risks and poses a threat to American citizens. This is not what the American people want. That’s why Congress has rejected the President’s proposal time and time again. At a time when we are fighting global terrorism, holding these dangerous terrorists domestically is not the message our citizens want to hear. I believe that we must keep Gitmo open and I will continue to fight the President’s efforts to close this facility and transfer terrorists to U.S. soil.”Boozman has been a longtime advocate for ensuring the military prison at Gitmo remains open. In 2011 he visited the detention facilities. He supported the 2015 National Defense Authorization Act that prohibits Gitmo detainees from being moved to U.S. soil. President Obama signed this into law.

Tags: Senator, John Boozman,  President obama, plan, close GITMO To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Governor Asa Hutchinson Announces Appointments

LITTLE ROCK – Governor Asa Hutchinson today announced the following appointments:
Lance Lindow, Benton, to the Arkansas State Board of Nursing.  Appointment expires October 1, 2017.  Replaces Patricia Staggs.

Damon Reed, Conway, to the Arkansas Local Police and Fire Retirement System Board of Trustees.  Appointment expires January 1, 2020.  Replaces Terrell Henson.

Keith Rutledge, Batesville, to the Arkansas Sentencing Commission.  Appointment expires June 15, 2020.  Replaces Chris Palmer.

Jerry Cash, Harrison, to the Career Education and Workforce Development Board.  Appointment expires June 30, 2016.  Replaces Dan Serrano.

Sharon Ingram, North Little Rock, to the Martin Luther King Jr. Commission.  Appointment expires September 1, 2019.  Replaces N. Wesley Hunt.

Christopher Kauffman, Searcy, to the Arkansas Livestock and Poultry Commission.  Appointment expires January 14, 2023.  Replaces Greg Hale.

Garland “Gary” Dowdy, to the Board of Visitors for the Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences, and the Arts.  Appointment expires January 14, 2023.  Replaces Donna Casparian.

Dee Collins, Trumann, to the Breast Cancer Control Advisory Board.  Appointment expires January 14, 2020.  Replaces Debra Walden.

Elise Hampton, Conway, to the Black History Commission.  Appointment expires January 14, 2023.  Replaces Barry Dobson.

Cherisse Jones-Branch, Jonesboro, to the Black History Commission.  Appointment expires January 14, 2023.  Replaces James Lawson. 

Seth Mims, Springdale, to the Arkansas Development Finance Authority Board of Directors.  Appointment expires January 14, 2020.  Replaces Jesse Sharp.

Stephen Rose, Blytheville, to the Arkansas Development Finance Authority Board of Directors.  Appointment expires January 14, 2020.  Replaces Jennifer Ronnel.

Matishia Bland, West Helena, to the Delta Cultural Center Policy Advisory Board.  Appointment expires October 1, 2018.  Replaces Christine Allen.

Chintan Desai, Helena, to the Delta Cultural Center Policy Advisory Board.  Appointment expires October 1, 2018.  Replaces Reginald Jackson.

Myka Sample, Benton, to the Electronic Recording Commission.  Appointment expires September 1, 2017.  Replaces Andrea Billingsley.

Kristi McKinnon, Little Rock, to the Electronic Recording Commission.  Appointment expires September 1, 2017.  Replaces Martha Smith.

Misty Richardson, Harrisburg, to the Electronic Recording Commission.  Appointment expires September 1, 2017.  Replaces Adam Davis.

Mary Pankey, Texarkana, to the Electronic Recording Commission.  Appointment expires September 1, 2017.  Open Position.

Ryan Clayborn, Harrison, to the Arkansas Early Childhood Commission.  Appointment expires June 30, 2018.  Replaces Janice Dancer.

Kathy Pillow-Price, Beebe, to the Arkansas Early Childhood Commission.  Appointment expires June 30, 2018.  Replaces Kelley Smith.

Kimberly Whitman, Jonesboro, to the Arkansas Early Childhood Commission.  Appointment expires June 30, 2018.  Replaces Jill Fussell.

Brenda Zedlitz, Rogers, to the Arkansas Early Childhood Commission.  Appointment expires June 30, 2018.  Replaces Rhonda Ahrent.

Leslie Stokes, Springdale, to the Burial Association Board.  Appointment expires December 31, 2017.  Replaces Sammie James.

Debra Elerson, El Dorado, to the Burial Association Board.  Appointment expires December 31, 2018.  Replaces Charles Dearman.

Aaron Gutting, Harrison, to the Burial Association Board.  Appointment expires December 31, 2017.  Replaces Scott Berna.

Dr. Ronda Henry-Tillman, Little Rock, to the Breast Cancer Control Advisory Board.  Appointment expires January 14, 2020.  Reappointment.

Hope Keiser, Little Rock, to the Breast Cancer Control Advisory Board.  Appointment expires January 14, 2020.  Reappointment.

Normal Gilchrest, Brinkley, to the Burial Association Board.  Appointment expires December 31, 2018.  Reappointment.

Ronald Ocker, Van Buren, to the Burial Association Board.  Appointment expires December 31, 2018.  Reappointment.

Sandy Stroope, Harrison, to the Arkansas Motor Vehicle Commission.  Appointment expires January 14, 2023.  Reappointment.

John Neal, Harrison, to the Arkansas Local Police and Fire Retirement System Board of Trustees.  Appointment expires January 1, 2020.  Reappointment.

Jack Hill, Springdale, to the Arkansas Local Police and Fire Retirement System Board of Trustees.  Appointment expires January 1, 2020.  Reappointment.

Shirley Pulliam, Blytheville, to the Arkansas Early Childhood Commission.  Appointment expires June 30, 2018.  Reappointment.

Jackie Govan, Scott, to the Arkansas Early Childhood Commission.  Appointment expires June 30, 2018.  Reappointment.

Billie Jo Haymes, North Little Rock, to the Dietetics Licensing Board.  Appointment expires January 14, 2020.  Reappointment.

Kimberly Jablonski, Little Rock, to the Dietetics Licensing Board.  Appointment expires January 14, 2021.  Reappointment.

Linda Means, Little Rock, to the Dietetics Licensing Board.  Appointment expires January 14, 2020.  Reappointment.

Patricia Bryant, Little Rock, to the Dietetics Licensing Board.  Appointment expires January 14, 2020.  Reappointment.

Dr. John Dornhoffer, Roland, to the Universal Newborn Hearing Screening, Tracking, and Intervention Advisory Board.  Appointment expires January 14, 2019.  Reappointment.

Dr. Charles Bower, Little Rock, to the Universal Newborn Hearing Screening, Tracking, and Intervention Advisory Board.  Appointment expires January 14, 2019.  Reappointment.

Una Carroll, North Little Rock, to the Universal Newborn Hearing Screening, Tracking, and Intervention Advisory Board.  Appointment expires January 14, 2019.  Reappointment.

Dr. Jennifer Rigsby, Maumelle, to the Universal Newborn Hearing Screening, Tracking, and Intervention Advisory Board.  Appointment expires January 14, 2019.  Reappointment.

Brenda DeShields, Centerton, to the Electronic Recording Commission.  Appointment expires September 1, 2017.  Reappointment.

Cheryl Wilson, El Dorado, to the Electronic Recording Commission.  Appointment expires September 1, 2017.  Reappointment.

Sharon Blount-Baker, Alma, to the Electronic Recording Commission.  Appointment expires September 1, 2017.  Reappointment.

Alicia Nowotny-Stewart, Clarksville, to the Electronic Recording Commission.  Appointment expires September 1, 2017.  Reappointment.

Mayme Brown, Donaldson, to the Electronic Recording Commission.  Appointment expires September 1, 2017.  Reappointment.

Sharon Brooks, Fort Smith, to the Electronic Recording Commission.  Appointment expires September 1, 2017.  Reappointment.

Brian Bowen, Little Rock, to the Arkansas State Independent Living Council.  Appointment expires February 1, 2019.

Adren Duncan, Little Rock, to the Arkansas State Independent Living Council.  Appointment expires February 1, 2019.  Reappointment.

Jenifer Mason, Jonesboro, to the Arkansas State Independent Living Council.  Appointment expires February 1, 2019.  Reappointment.

Barbara Nolen, Little Rock, to the Arkansas State Independent Living Council.  Appointment expires February 1, 2019.  Reappointment.

Mahdee Raieesdana, Mount Pleasant, to the Arkansas State Independent Living Council.  Appointment expires February 1, 2019.  Reappointment.

Timothy Odom, Cabot, to the Lonoke County Quorum Court District 13.  Appointment expires December 31, 2016.

Jerry Sheridan, Garfield, to the Benton County Quorum Court District 1.  Appointment expires December 31, 2016.  Replaces Ron Easley.

Margaret Dobson, Sheridan, as a Special Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Arkansas.  CV-15-480 Calvin Johnson, and Bd. Of Trustees of the Univ. of Ark. v. Eugene Johnson.  Replaces Chief Justice Howard Brill, who has disqualified himself from the case.

Robert Hudgins, Searcy, as a Special Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Arkansas.  CV-15-362 Richard H. Ashley v. Todd H. Ashley.  Replaces Justice Courtney Goodson, who has disqualified herself from the case.


Tags: Governor, Asa Hutchinson, appointments To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Gov. Hutchinson's Weekly Address: Congressional App Challenge

by Gov, Asa Hutchinson: Last week, I enjoyed visiting with several students who competed in the Congressional App Challenge. The competition was designed to encourage high school students to use computer coding to create their own apps. The students I met were bright, energetic, capable and full of ideas. After meeting with them, I am even more excited about the future of our state and the future of our kids.

Arkansas leaders and educators are on board with the coding initiative, and I applaud Congressman Bruce Westerman for hosting the Congressional App Challenge in Arkansas’s fourth district. In total, 26 students across seven school districts competed in this year’s challenge. The 11 projects came from high school students from South and Central Arkansas.

The competition not only drew involvement from students, but from schools and local leaders who support this effort. The district’s winning app was created by four Hamburg High School students, called “ARSchools.” The app project helped make the Hamburg School District’s website more mobile-friendly by filtering excess amounts of information to streamline the user experience.

I want to brag on the work being done in Hamburg; a small town in South Arkansas with a population of about 3,000 people. Hamburg High School currently has 40 students taking computer science classes. The interest for these classes was so high that the school had to turn people away. But next year, Hamburg is hoping on expanding its course capacity to 80 seats.

Many schools who competed in the app challenge used the MIT app inventor to create their projects—not Hamburg. Those four students decided to write their own code from scratch with a text-based coding language called C#.

These are some incredible kids, and following this project, three of the four Hamburg competitors have decided to major in computer science. The coding initiative in Arkansas has changed the course of these students’ career paths, exposing them to the world of coding and developing their passion for this field. I want to recognize Hamburg High School’s computer science teacher and head football coach, Cecil Cossey. Thank you for making computer coding education a big success in a small town with great kids.

Seeing the Congressional App Challenge engage students and their communities in Central and South Arkansas is extraordinary. These young people have learned the coding skills to be able to produce something tangible with a purpose. I commend Congressman Westerman for his efforts to spearhead this initiative, and recognize all of our federal delegation who are working to expand coding opportunities for every Arkansas student.

Keep in mind that the key part of this initiative is that it brings together students, ideas, problem-solving and technology. The world of computer coding is exciting, allowing people of any age to test their abilities and use digital tools to create something never been done before. These skills are useful in any career, and can be found in everything we do.

And most importantly, it’s for everyone who is willing to learn. We are changing from being consumers to being creators and innovators. And it’s setting all of us on the road to success.

Tags: Arkansas, Governor, Asa Hutchinson, Congressional App Challenge, high school students,computer coding, create their own apps To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Boozman Recognizes WWII & Korean War Veteran Floyd Brantley

Floyd Brantley
Click here to watch excerpts of the interview with Brantley
WASHINGTON – Senator John Boozman released his fourth interview in a series recognizing the service and sacrifice of Arkansas veterans. This spotlight highlights the military service of Floyd Brantley, a WWII veteran who served in the Navy and continued military service in the Air Force during the Korean War, eventually re-enlisting in the Armed Forces when he was 50-years-old.

Brantley grew up in Texas. His brother’s death at the Battle of Guadalcanal while serving on the U.S.S. Atlanta drove him to serve in the Navy during WWII.

Brantley first served as a medic at a fleet hospital in the Pacific where he was assigned to the officer’s section.

He reflected on the injuries of wounded troops he saw saying “it was really hard to take.”

Brantley recalled dumping hospital supplies and equipment in the water once the war was over because the ships going back to the United States had limited space.

“Most of that ended up, jeeps and everything, ended up in the bay. We could not afford to take everything back. So off islands all over the world you have jeeps, medical equipment, you have every type of equipment because all the ships be taking you back,” Brantley said.

During the interview Brantley described his commitment to education and graduating high school. He said 13 ex-GIs enrolled at Lufkin High School but most got discouraged and dropped out. “Three of us stayed with it and got our diplomas. I graduated mid-term 1947.”

Brantley continued his education at Baylor University. During college the Korean War broke out and he was called up by the Navy. In order to finish school, he was discharged by the Navy but had to sign a contract with the Air Force.

He initially retired from military service as a captain, but when he was 50-years-old he decided to re-enlist and completed more than 20 years of creditable service for retirement.

“I became an Air Force cook. All we did was cook, so for five years I got up on the weekend once a month and drove to Hot Springs. The gate would be locked so I had to climb over the back fence in order to cook breakfast,” Brantley said.

Today, 90-year-old Brantley lives in Conway and is an active bicyclist. In November Brantley rode his bike in America’s Parade, the New York parade honoring our veterans.

“Floyd Brantley honorably served our country. I admire his commitment to military service and his desire to continue his commitment to our country when many Americans are looking forward to retirement. He is a true American hero whose service and sacrifice helped the war efforts. I am grateful for his dedication and honored to share his memories of serving in the Armed Forces,” Boozman said.

Boozman will submit Brantley’s entire interview to the Veterans History Project, an initiative of the Library of Congress’s American Folklife Center to collect and retain the oral histories of our nation’s veterans.

Do you know a veteran who you would like Senator Boozman to feature in his Salute to Veterans? Nominate an Arkansas veteran to share their story at Boozman_submissions@boozman.senate.gov.

Tags: Senator, John Boozman, recognizes, WWII, Korean War, veteran, Floyd Brantley To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

First Congressional District Meeting

FIRST CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT
REPUBLICAN PARTY OF ARKANSAS

In accordance with the rules of the Republican Party of Arkansas, a meeting of the First Congressional District is hereby called on this date, February 20th, 2016
 Date                                      Saturday, February  20th, 2016
Location                               EACC Tech Center,
                                                          1790 North Falls
                                                Wynne, AR
REGISTRATION               9:00 A.M -10:00 A.M. – Coffee and Donuts!
                                               
REGISTRATION FEE           $12.00
MEETING                              10:00  A.M. – 12: P.M.
CALL TO ORDER                 10:00 A.M. – Chairman Tommy Land                              
Invocation                            TBA
Pledge                                   TBA
Welcome by Host County
Roll Call:                               Dorothy Crockett
Approval of minutes
Treasures report:                 Bill Hendrix
Speaker-Senator John Boozman  Candidate for re-election, U.S. Senate
                  Curtis Coleman, Candidate for U.S. Senate
                  Cody Hilard,  Candidate for Court of Appeals
                  RPA Chairman Doyle Webb
                  National Committeeman Jonathan Barnett
District Chairman’s Report-Chairman Land
Introduce Guests-County Candidates
Introduce State Reps and State Senate Candidates          
 Minority Report
County Chair’s Reports
Old Business

Adjourn

Tags: NRepublican, First District Meeting, Feb 20, 2016, Wynn, Arkansas To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

CONSUMER ALERT: Fake IRS Calls Scam Consumers

LITTLE ROCK – Scam artists are continuing to pose as Internal Revenue Service (IRS) agents, attempting to pressure Arkansans into turning over personal information or cash. They often demand that the consumer share private information in order to either receive a refund or to pay taxes immediately to avoid being arrested, but it is all an attempt to steal a person’s identity or take their money.
 
These IRS impersonators can be very convincing and have swindled more than $26.5 million from over 5,000 victims across the country since October 2013. The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) reports that roughly 896,000 people across the U.S. have been contacted by such con artists during that same period.
 
Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge issued today’s consumer alert to, once again, warn Arkansans of this scam and offer tips to recognize it, before falling victim to these criminals.
 
TIGTA reports these con artists have also been known to utilize an automated robocall machine, use common names, fake IRS badge numbers and may even know the last four digits of the victim’s Social Security number.
 
“These impersonators can sound authentic, even spoofing caller ID technology to make it look like the call is coming from the IRS office in Washington, D.C.,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Arkansans need to remain diligent in protecting themselves from these scams. If money is actually owed to the IRS, the agency will first communicate the information in writing, and the IRS will never ask for personal or financial information through an unsolicited phone call or email.”
 
Attorney General Rutledge released the following list of actions the IRS will not take, in hopes that Arkansans can spot this scam ahead of time. The IRS will not:

  • Call to demand immediate payment.
  • Demand payment and not allow an appeal of the amount owed.
  • Require taxes be paid in a certain way. For instance, require payment with a prepaid debit card.
  • Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
  • Threaten to bring in police or other agencies to make an arrest for unpaid taxes.
 The IRS strongly recommends Arkansans who receive these threatening calls not give out any personal information and hang up immediately, contact the TIGTA at (800) 366-4484 to report the call and file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission. The agency also requests that any scam emails be forwarded to phishing@irs.gov.

The IRS encourages Arkansans with any questions about owed taxes to contact their office directly at (800) 829-1040.

For more information about other common scams and consumer-related issues, call the Arkansas Attorney General’s office at (800) 482-8982 or visit ArkansasAG.gov or facebook.com/AGLeslieRutledge.

Tags: consumer alert, fake IRS calls, scam consumers, Leslie Rutledge, Arkansas Attorney General To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Boozman for Senate Releases Latest TV Ad "Conservative

Little Rock - Senator John Boozman's campaign released a second television ad today, entitled "Conservative". The ad highlights Senator Boozman's record of helping Arkansans - from his time as an eye doctor, growing a small eye clinic into a large regional practice serving over 80,000 patients - to his ongoing work in the Senate fighting for smaller government, lower taxes and a strong military. Senator Boozman's recent endorsements by the National Rifle Association and the National Right to Life Committee further emphasize his clear, conservative record of service to Arkansans.

Tags: Senator John Boozman, 2016 election, television ad, conservative To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Tracking EPA Regulatory Abuse

by Rep Rick Crawford (AR-1): For the last 10 months, my office has been tracking the development of growing allegations that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) may have side-stepped federal law when they engaged in lobbying U.S. citizens to support a rule that the agency has been pushing, the Waters of the United States rule, or WOTUS.

WOTUS is a rule that would have massively expanded the federal government's regulatory authority over small bodies of water all over our country.

This week during a hearing of the U.S. House Agriculture Committee, I questioned EPA administrator Gina McCarthy about the nature of her agency's actions, which were concluded to be in violation of federal law by the Government Accountability Office.

Tags: Tracking, EPA, Regulatory Abuse, video, Rep Rick Crawford, Arkansas, AR-01 To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

DAY 7: Patriotism, abortion and you

by Shawn Carney, Campaign Director, 40 Days for Life: Abortion destroys the fabric of society – the family.

Over time, those wounds impact entire nations. So your country needs you! That is one of many topics we discuss in this new episode of 40 Days for Life podcast.

Often we are motivated to respond to the crisis of abortion out of love of God and love of neighbor. But we also respond out of love of country.

When participating in 40 Days for Life, some people ask “Is this legal?” or “Will I get arrested?” This week’s 40 Days for Life podcast takes a look at your legal rights when you take part in a peaceful prayer vigil.

My guest is seasoned attorney Matt Britton. Matt has an expansive legal career including four terms as an elected prosecutor, county attorney, and VP and counsel to publicly-traded global tech companies.

Matt has written and spoken countless times on a wide range of legal and pro-life issues in locations across the United States as well as in England, Japan, Mexico, Korea, Singapore, China and locations across the European Union. Matt also serves as 40 Days for Life’s general counsel and chairman of the board. He is married to Libby Britton and they have eight beautiful children.

Learn how you can use your rights to save lives … and why your willingness to do so is so crucial — now more than ever.

Here’s that link again to this new episode of the 40 Days for Life podcast

Allentown, Pennsylvania
 
 
“I know it’s cold,” said one of the 40 Days for Life team leaders in Allentown, “so bundle up! We are praying for all involved to change hearts and minds from a culture of death to a culture of life!”
 
A couple of dozen volunteers joined one morning to pray in the frigid cold. “It was as low as 0 degrees with the wind chill and we bore it as best we could! Stay warm out there!”
 
The Allentown team also passed along a note from a new volunteer, sharing impressions of joining the vigil.
 
“It’s amazing the impact we could have if we simply let the women and workers know that we are on their side – that we love them and they are loved. It destroyed me inside to see a young girl my own age walking in there, possibly for an abortion. I can't imagine what was going through her head. I wish I could just hug her and tell her that everything was going to be okay.”
 
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
 
 
Vigil participants at the 40 Days for Life site in Milwaukee had an opportunity to speak to a young couple … without the interference that the abortion center’s escorts often create.
 
They were soon able to learn that this couple had decided against abortion … and had chosen life for their child.
 
“Please keep this couple and their baby in your prayers,” said one of the team leaders. “Take up your cross and pour your heart into your work for Christ. He will repay you in kind; for you can never outgive God.”

Tags: 40 Days for Life, Day 7, Feb 16, 2016, Patriotism, abortion you To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Happy Presidents Day

Sen. Tom Cotton with Benton Police Officers
by Senator Tom Cotton: I hope you are enjoying this Presidents Day weekend with family and friends. While this holiday is intended to celebrate all past presidents, it originated as a way to honor the birthday of our first President, George Washington. Washington’s birthday was an unofficial observance for most of the 1800s until the late 1870s when Senator Steven Wallace Dorsey from Arkansas proposed the measure to become a federal holiday. We all owe our fellow Arkansan a debt of gratitude for this long weekend!

George Washington’s home and burial spot, Mt. Vernon, is just 18 miles from the U.S. Capitol and I encourage any Arkansans in town to take a trip to see this beautiful, historic, landmark. If you are planning a trip to Washington, D.C., be sure and contact my office for information about Mt. Vernon and other tours and activities in the city.

Tags: Sen. Tom Cotton, President's Day To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Governor Hutchinson Celebrates Arkansas Black History

Gov. Asa Hutchinson (center) signs a
black history month declaration while sitting
beside State Sen. Linda Chesterfield (right).
Governor Asa Hutchinson: February is a month for many things, but perhaps most importantly, it’s a month of remembrance. It’s a time to celebrate Black History and share the stories and legacies that contribute to our nation’s place in history.

Every day I see the monument of the Little Rock Nine on the north end of our capitol grounds. The monument silently captures the struggle of nine African American school children who stood for equality and civil justice for all. It not only reminds me of my responsibility, but it captures a significant piece of both Arkansas and American history.

It’s important for everyone to understand the contributions of African Americans to this country. We honor their achievements by remembering how they fought for the cause of freedom and their contributions to the areas of business, education, medicine and more. They have had a hand in changing the face of this nation, and it’s imperative for us to be a careful guardian of these historic stories. The truth of them, the accuracy of events, the passion involved, and the pain of their struggle—all deserves a place in history and preservation for future generations.

I want to talk about two people from Arkansas that made a significant contribution to American history.

Edith Irby Jones, born in 1927 to a sharecropper and a maid in Conway, became the first African American accepted at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. Amidst segregation, she earned her medical degree and became the first female president of the National Medical Association. She fought the struggle, she was successful, and she is a modern day example for women of any race and color.

Another notable Arkansan, John Herald Johnson, was born in Arkansas City and survived the flood of 1927. He sat atop the river levees with black and white children who huddled together, simply trying to survive. It was during this hardship that Johnson developed an eye for news, and went on to found the Johnson Publishing Company, which today has the brand names of “Ebony” and “Jet.” He was an incredible entrepreneur, publisher, and his roots trace back to Arkansas.

These are just two of many inspiring stories of people from Arkansas and throughout our nation that helped shape the world. There are many others we can celebrate, and I encourage you to find and tell those stories. But today, as governor, I’m pleased to participate in Black History Month and remember the history of all Americans.

We must never forget the pain of the past, nor lose sight of the promise of our future. African American history IS American history, and I am proud to share and remember – today and everyday – the legacies of people who have changed this nation for the better.

Tags: Arkansas, Governor, Asa Hutchinson, Black History To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Boozman Votes in Support of American Workers & Ban Taxes on Internet Access

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) voted to strengthen trade enforcement protections for American businesses and workers and to permanently ban taxes on Internet access. Boozman released the following statement after the Senate passed the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015.

“This bill puts us on the path to long-term economic growth by updating customs and border policies to strengthen trade opportunities for American workers. Modernizing our nation’s trade enforcement policies is an important step in creating a level playing field for American workers and businesses by ensuring that trade is conducted fairly and that our laws are enforced. It also includes important measures to continue the innovation and development by strengthening protections for intellectual property rights and permanently banning taxes on Internet access. These improvements are significant to allowing our nation’s businesses and workers compete fairly in the global marketplace.”


The House of Representatives approved this bill in December. It now heads to the President’s desk and is expected to be signed into law.

Tags: U.S. Senator, Arkansas, John Boozman, votes, supports, American Workers, Ban Taxes on Internet Access To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Boozman Statement on Senate Passage of the North Korea Sanctions Enforcement Act

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) today issued the following statement after Senate passage of the “North Korea Sanctions Enforcement Act of 2016.”

“While President Obama has misjudged the threats posed by ISIS, Iran and Russia, he flat-out ignored those posed by North Korea. The recent aggressive posturing by North Korea is the direct result of a rogue state feeling emboldened by the misguided approach of the Obama foreign policy doctrine.

This failure of leadership has allowed Kim Jun-un to circumvent international sanctions, build his nation’s arsenal and intensify its cyber-espionage activity—all at the expense of the North Korean people who are tortured and starved by his regime.

The deal the President made with Iran gives that regime cover to continue its illicit nuclear program. In a matter of time, the Iranians will simply follow the same course the North Koreans have to garner even more concessions from the West.

That is why Congress is taking the proactive approach that the Administration should have taken in the first place. The unanimous passage of this bill sends a strong message to the dictators of the world—there is going to be a price to pay if you act out in this recklessly aggressive manner.”

Background: The “North Korea Sanctions Enforcement Act of 2016” requires the President to mandate for sanctions anyone who can be tied to the following activities in North Korea: arms trade, development of weapons of mass destruction or their means of delivery, procurement of luxury goods, censorship, money laundering and counterfeiting.

The sanctions would block all property and property interests on any designated person that are in, or come within, the U.S. or the possession of any U.S. person, among other things.

Title II would request the President levy, as appropriate, new sanctions related to nuclear proliferation, human rights abuses, illicit activities and significant activities undermining cybersecurity.

The bill passed the Senate by a vote of 96-0. A similar bill overwhelmingly passed the House of Representatives in January.

Tags: U.S. Senator John Boozman, Senate, passage, North Korea Sanctions Enforcement Act To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

House Passes Nine Veterans Bills

Arkansas Congressional Delegation: Yesterday, the House passed nine separate veterans bills. Included in the package of bills is legislation that would address the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) major construction failures, most notably a hospital project in Aurora, CO, with cost overruns of more than $1 billion. Other bills included one that would authorize an automatic cost-of-living-adjustment for eligible veterans and another that would provide an important fix to the G.I. Bill.

Following passage of the bills, Congressman French Hill (AR-02) stated:
“Our veterans place their trust in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) with the expectation of receiving top-notch service. While VA excels in many areas like providing specialized care to some of our most wounded veterans, it still has major failures that need to be fixed. The bills we passed today address some of those failures by placing an emphasis on not only providing better care for the veterans, but also increasing oversight and accountability on how VA spends the taxpayers money.”Below are the nine bills passed by the House:

H.R. 3016 – Veterans Employment, Education, and Healthcare Improvement Act

H.R. 3106
– Construction Reform Act of 2016

H.R. 2360 – Career-Ready Student Veterans Act

H.R. 3262 – To provide for the conveyance of land of the Illiana Health Care System of the Department of Veterans Affairs in Danville, Illinois

H.R. 4056 – To Authorize the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to convey to the Florida Department of Veterans Affairs all right, title, and interest of the United States to the property known as “The Community Living Center” at the Lake Baldwin Veterans Affairs Outpatient Clinic, Orlando, Florida

H.R. 677 – American Heroes COLA Act of 2015

H.R. 4437 – To extend the deadline for the submittal of the final report required by the Commission on Care

H.R. 3234 – VA Medical Center Recovery Act

H.R. 2915 – Female Veteran Suicide Prevention Act

Tags: U.S. House, passes, Nine Veterans bills To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Womack & Hill Responds to POTUS FY17 Budget

Yesterday, after the president released his budget request for Fiscal Year 2017 Representatives Womack and Hill Respond!

Congressman Steve Womack (AR-3) released the following video in response to the release of President Obama’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 budget request.

Congressman French Hillk (AR-2) release the following statement:“Fortunately for the American people this is the last budget request of this president. This budget is a reiteration of his liberal, government-knows-best policy agenda and offers no solution to balance the budget and solve our debt crisis. Reversing our current fiscal course will be a monumental undertaking that won’t be completed unless we have a president whose priorities match those of the American people and the Congress.”
Tags: Congressman Steve Womack (AR-3), French Hill (AR-2). response, President Obama, FY17 Budget To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Hill Awards GSA Golden Fleece Award

Washington, D.C. - This week, Congressman French Hill (AR-02) announced his award of the "Golden Fleece" award to the General Services Administration (GSA) for the mismanagement of a $75 million building project for the Federal Protective Service (FPS).

To date, Golden Fleece Winners have totaled over $18 billion in Government Waste. Learn more about current GSA mismanagement and past recipients.

Tags: French Hill, Golden Fleece Award, General Services Administration, GSA To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Gov. Hutchinson names Kelly Eichler, Sheffield Nelson to University of Arkansas System Board of Trustees

LITTLE ROCK - Governor Asa Hutchinson today named Kelly Eichler and Sheffield Nelson to the University of Arkansas System Board of Trustees effective March 1, 2016.
  • Kelly Eichler’s appointment will expire on March 1, 2026.
  • Sheffield Nelson’s appointment will expire on March 1, 2025
Governor Hutchinson issued the following statement on Eichler and Nelson:

“I am delighted to appoint Sheffield Nelson and Kelly Eichler to the Board of Trustees and have no doubt they will make tremendous additions to an already stellar group. Their individual backgrounds and experience – not to mention their respective ties to the University of Arkansas System – will benefit their colleagues and provide new perspective in the coming years.”Kelly Eichler is a graduate of the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville where she was a Razorback cheerleader and member of Pi Beta Phi sorority, which was founded by her aunt, Mary Campbell Gregory. She earned her Juris Doctorate from the UALR Bowen School of Law in 1991. Eichler has served as a law clerk at the Arkansas Court of Appeals, as a Pulaski County Deputy Prosecutor, a partner in private practice, and Special Judge in Circuit and Juvenile Courts. She began working for the State of Arkansas in the administration of Governor Mike Huckabee and continues that service today as Policy Director for Governor Asa Hutchinson.

Kelly’s ties to the University of Arkansas System run deep starting with her great grandfather, Sy Campbell, who graduated the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville in 1910. Her grandmother, Erline Campbell Pace, who was president of Pi Beta Phi and crowned Razorback Homecoming Queen, graduated in 1936. Her father and brother, Jim Pace, are also alumni.

In addition, her husband, Brad, head of Corporate Finance at Stephens, Inc., is a graduate of UALR and currently serves on the foundation Board. He was recently named as a Distinguished Alumni and member of Beta Gamma Sigma, a business school honors society. They have two children: Alex and Max.

Sheffield Nelson earned his Juris Doctorate from the University of Arkansas School of Law, Little Rock Division in 1969 and is a graduate of the Arkansas State Teachers College (now the University of Central Arkansas). He has served on the Boards of Philander Smith College and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. He served at two different times on the Arkansas Board of Higher Education.

Nelson is the former chairman, president and chief executive officer of Arkla. For the past 30 years, he has been a senior partner at the law firm, House, Wallace, Nelson and Jewell, and a successor firm, Jack Nelson and Jones.

Nelson served on the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission from 2000-2007. The Sheffield Nelson Dagmar Wildlife Management Area was named after him for his service to the people of Arkansas, as a commissioner. In addition, he has served as president of the Greater Little Rock Chamber of Commerce and as chairman of the Arkansas Industrial Development Commission

Nelson won the Republican nomination for Arkansas governor in 1990 and 1994, and served as co-chairman of the state’s Republican Party from 1991-1992, and as Republican National Committeeman from 1993-2000.

Nelson and his wife, Mary Lynn, have two children, fourteen grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Tags: Gov. Hutchinson, Kelly Eichler, Sheffield Nelson, University of Arkansas, Board of Trustees To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Boozman, Crawford Lead Efforts Calling for U.S. Rice for Humanitarian Assistance

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senator John Boozman and Congressman Rick Crawford led a bipartisan, bicameral effort urging the U.S. government to use American-grown rice for food aid shipments.

In a letter sent Friday to United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Gayle Smith, the lawmakers called on prioritizing American-grown rice for the Food for Peace program.

“With a strong crop of rice this past year resulting in significant stocks, we see a clear opportunity to provide greater assistance in an even more economical fashion to help those in need as a result of the refugee crisis,” the lawmakers wrote in the letter.

USDA and USAID are in the process of selecting commodities to use in emergency response humanitarian efforts. As the nation’s leading producer of rice, Arkansas can play a role in feeding people in need around the world.

The letter was signed by all of the members of the Arkansas Congressional Delegation as well as Members of Congress from other rice-producing states.

Click here to read the letter in its entirety.

Tags: Sen. John Boozman, Rep Rick Crawford, U.S. Rice, Humanitarian AssistanceNSERT TAGS To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Friday, February 5, 2016

President Declares Arkansas Counties Disaster Areas

LITTLE ROCK – President Obama has approved Governor Hutchinson’s request for a major disaster for the State of Arkansas as a result of severe weather and flooding from late December 2015 through January 2016. The declaration will allow residents and governmental bodies in the affected areas, who meet certain criteria, to apply for assistance.

Public Assistance (PA) for emergency work and repair/replacement of disaster-damaged facilities will be available for all 32 counties requested by the state including: Benton, Boone, Bradley, Calhoun, Carroll, Clay, Crawford, Dallas, Drew, Franklin, Greene, Independence, Izard, Lawrence, Little River, Logan, Madison, Marion, Mississippi, Montgomery, Ouachita, Perry, Pike, Polk, Randolph, Scott, Searcy, Stone, Washington, White, Woodruff, and Yell Counties.

Individual Assistance (IA) for individuals and households will be available for residents of 11 of the 19 counties requested by the state including: Benton, Carroll, Crawford, Faulkner, Jackson, Jefferson, Lee, Little River, Perry, Sebastian, and Sevier. Additional designations may be added to the declaration if requested by the state and warranted by results of further damage assessments.

Through the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program, funds will be available for actions taken to prevent or reduce long-term risk to life and property from natural hazards for all areas of the state.

Arkansas Department of Emergency Management and Federal Emergency Management Agency officials will soon announce plans to open offices throughout the affected areas to accept assistance applications.

CONTACT: Whitney Green (publicaffairs@adem.arkansas.gov or 501.683.6700)

Tags: President Obama, declares, Arkansas, disaster areas To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

We have a lot to be proud of in Arkansas

LITTLE ROCK - Governor Hutchinson's weekly radio address: Over the past year, we have worked to grow our economy, create more high-paying jobs, cut taxes for the middle class and introduce computer science at every high school. Our list of accomplishments is long, but there is still much to do.

Arkansas is a small state, but we do a lot of big things. Since January of last year, Arkansas’s Economic Development Commission signed incentive agreements with 122 new and expanding companies. These companies will create more than 5,600 new jobs while investing $2 billion in the state.

We are cultivating an environment of economic growth, and the world is taking notice. I’ve touted our economic success in California’s Silicon Valley, Nevada and New York. My international travels to China, Japan, France, Germany and Cuba have also given me opportunities to emphasize that Arkansas is open for business.

Everywhere I go, I market our state. Why? Because we have a story to tell. And that story includes seven small homegrown businesses that have grown into seven Fortune 500 companies.

We have some of the brightest minds here in Arkansas, and we have the tools to provide industry with opportunities to do great things. As a business owner, you don’t have to live in New York, California, or Texas to see your business grow. Our state stands ready and able to compete in a rapidly evolving, high-tech worldwide economy.

But we need to continue growing our existing businesses, creating new businesses and enticing businesses to locate and expand here. That’s where “Arkansas Inc.” comes in.

“Arkansas Inc.” is a succinct way for us to communicate that Arkansas is in the business of growing business. When it comes down to it, businesses must be lean, fast and focused. In Arkansas, we recognize the needs of industry and can respond quickly and decisively. We are sending a message to high level executives and site consultants that Arkansas is and continues to be a great place to do business.

The launch of “Arkansas Inc.” comes in partnership with the Arkansas Economic Development Commission and the Arkansas Economic Developers from across the state, who work tirelessly to advance the quality of life in Arkansas through economic growth and community development.

Without their efforts and vision, “Arkansas Inc.” would be nothing more than a catchphrase. But today, it is sending a message that when you do business in Arkansas, you’re in very good company.

Tags: Gov. Asa Hutchinson, Radio Address, Weekly Column, Lot to be proud off, Arkansas, To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

Hill Statement on Choke Point Legislation

WASHINGTON Today, the House passed H.R. 766, the Financial Institution Customer Protection Act of 2015, by a bipartisan vote of 250-169. The bill was introduced last year in response the Department of Justice’s initiative known as “Operation Choke Point,” which has targeted legitimate and regulated industries and has caused them to lose access to financial services. After passage of the bill, Congressman French Hill (AR-02) stated:
“While the goals of Operation Choke Point to combat fraud may have been laudable, this initiative went much further targeting legal industries. I have heard from pawnbrokers in Arkansas—legally licensed and state and federally regulated—that have fallen victim to Operation Choke Point by having their bank services limited or discontinued and most recently, a firearms dealer that lost access to his payment processer. Hardworking and legitimate business owners should not have their operations adversely affected because their industry is unfairly targeted by this Administration. I am proud to support legislation that is essential to helping end the egregious abuse of executive power like that on display in Operation Choke Point.”For more info on Operation Choke Point read Did Your Representative Vote To End Operation Choke Point?

Tags: Operation Choke Point, Passes House, Congressman French Hill To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.