Little Rock notebook

Posted: September 10, 2018 at 2:55 a.m.

New recruit class more diversified

The newest class of Little Rock Police Department recruits has a more even racial distribution than the department currently does as a whole.

A memo from City Manager Bruce Moore shows that the new class of 27 recruits is about 44 percent white and 40 percent black. The most recent city data show that the department, which has a total of about 570 employees, is about 64 percent white and 30 percent black.

The memo also shows the current residency of the recruits, with Moore noting that a few are in the process of moving. Nine live in Little Rock, while five live in North Little Rock. Eight live in central Arkansas cities including Alexander, Cabot and Conway. The rest listed residences across the state, including Fayetteville and Star City.

Sales tax revenue less than forecast

City sales and use tax revenue was about $1.3 million less than what the budget anticipated during the first part of 2018, an August report to the Little Rock Board of Directors shows.

Year-to-date sales tax revenue for 2018 rose by 0.54 percent, or $270,816, from 2017, according to the report. But they were 2.5 percent below what the 2018 budget planned for.

Sales and use tax collections for August 2018 were 0.94 percent higher than they were the same month one year earlier.

Expansion planned for Friday Art Night

Organizers of downtown Little Rock’s 2nd Friday Art Night are planning an expanded event for this Friday.

That night will be a more pedestrian-friendly, interactive experience, featuring pop-up artist stations along the Main Street corridor, according to a news release. Core Brewing will provide samples of popular brews to riders of the free 2nd Art

Night Trolley, which will run a regular route between venues.

The artists, business owners and gallery curators who participate have asked the public to bring school supplies the night of the event as well as the week after to support City Year Little Rock’s work in six of Little Rock’s public schools.

The event will take place from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. More information and a desired school supply list can be found at 2ndfridayartnight. org.

N.M. official to talk on pay for homeless

A representative of the Albuquerque mayor’s office will discuss a program the New Mexico city uses to provide an income to homeless people on Wednesday at the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service.

Alan Armijo, director of constituent services for the Albuquerque mayor’s office, will give a talk about the city’s There’s a Better Way program. The program pays members of Albuquerque’s homeless community $9 an hour, cash, to perform a variety of necessary functions in the city. Much of the work is basic cleanup or handiwork, according to a news release from the Clinton School of Public Service.

“Funding through a nonprofit allows the program to be liquid with its cash, even picking up panhandlers on the go and offering them payment immediately for their work,” the release states.

Other cities, such as Tulsa, have launched or are showing interest in launching similar programs. Community activists, including members of the Arkansas Homeless Coalition, have discussed implementation in Little Rock.

Armijo will speak at noon in Sturgis Hall, located at 1200 President Clinton Ave. in downtown Little Rock. His talk is part of the Clinton School Speaker Series and is free and open to the public.

Seats can be reserved by emailing publicprograms@ clintonschool.uasys.edu or calling (501) 683-5239.

It will also be livestreamed at clintonschool.uasys.edu/ uacslive/.