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Committee OKs '18 state budget

2 chambers get $5.49B plan; full ’17 tax haul still in doubt

Subscriber onlyThe Legislature's Joint Budget Committee on Wednesday advanced identical bills setting the state's general-revenue budget for the next fiscal year and learned that uncertainty remains about whether this year's tax collections will fall short. Continue reading...

Deportation stayed for 2 Guatemalans

Subscriber onlyA Guatemalan couple who have lived illegally in Arkansas since 2001 won't be deported this year. Continue reading...

2 convicts appeal to halt April injections

Keep lethal drug secret, AG insists

Subscriber onlyAttorneys for two death-row inmates filed two petitions Wednesday seeking to halt their executions next month while Arkansas' attorney general argued in a separate case that prison officials should not be forced to disclose information about the drugs used in lethal injections. Continue reading...

LR leaders voice worry over uptick in violence

Subscriber onlyHomicides and shootings in Little Rock are up this year compared with recent years, prompting concerns and calls for action from law enforcement and city officials. Continue reading...

Senate endorses special tax on pot

Backers say 4% fee per transaction will raise $1.2M in 2018

Subscriber onlyThe Senate approved a bill Wednesday to levy a special tax on medical marijuana. Continue reading...

Panel rejects procurement-law overhaul

Subscriber onlyAn overhaul of the state's procurement laws died in a House committee Wednesday after engineers, architects and attorneys lined up to say the measure would invite shoddy work. Continue reading...

State Capitol briefs

Subscriber onlyMedicaid-openness bill fails to advance Continue reading...

Senate OKs more time for farmers' tax credits

Subscriber onlyThe Senate on Wednesday approved a bill that would extend the carry-forward period for income-tax credits allowed for water impoundment in reservoirs. Continue reading...

Senate OKs bill on incentives for makers of steel

Big River expansion in state measure’s aim; House next

Subscriber onlyA bill aimed at luring Big River Steel to expand its operations sailed through the Senate Revenue and Taxation Committee and the full Senate on Wednesday. Continue reading...

Severance-tax shift advances in Senate

Bill aims to increase repair funds for roads damaged by gas-drilling traffic

Subscriber onlyThe Senate tax committee on Wednesday recommended Senate approval of legislation that shifts more natural gas severance tax revenue to grants to compensate counties for road damage caused by trucks and other heavy machinery used in the extraction of the resource. Continue reading...

Calendar

Subscriber only The calendar of public events of the 91st General Assembly for today, the 81st day of the 2017 regular session. Continue reading...

Bill targeting lenders' fees going to governor

Subscriber onlyHouse lawmakers reversed course and passed a bill Wednesday that would crack down on lending services that charge high fees. Continue reading...

Plan to fund suicide fight shy a backer

Council committee votes ‘no position’ on measure

Subscriber onlyThe Arkansas Suicide Prevention Council's executive committee on Wednesday withdrew its support from proposed legislation less than 24 hours after its co-chairman threw the council's support behind the bill in testimony before state lawmakers. Continue reading...

Hungry-kid gap echoed at trial

More testify eaters far fewer than listed to get USDA funds

Subscriber onlyAbout 20 people testified Wednesday in the ongoing federal trial of two Arkansans accused of defrauding federally funded feeding programs for underprivileged children, confirming inaccuracies in reports that prosecutors say the defendants falsified to obtain millions of dollars. Continue reading...

Campaign begins for school projects

LR group supports millage extension

Subscriber onlyCivic and Little Rock School District leaders on Wednesday announced a campaign for extending the district's current debt-service tax rate by 14 years to generate $160 million for school construction and repairs. Continue reading...

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