Recent Articles

Arkansas Municipal Auditorium Prepares for Life Again

It was once the the place where the music blazed out into the night from piano players, guitar pickers, drummers, and vocals arriving by way of Highway 67. Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, and Conway Twitty were just a few of the names to become legends that would perform in the early days of the Texarkana Arkansas Municipal Auditorium. Perhaps the most famous performer of them all was Elvis Presley, the boy who would become the King of Rock and Roll. But, all those greats faded away from the Texarkana spotlight over forty-five years ago. For Texarkana, the Interstate arrived, planes began to carry the performers from city-to-city and Texarkana’s small auditorium simply would not accommodate the growing crowds of fans. Continue Reading →

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Arkansas Legislators announce Formation of the Arkansas Republican Women’s Legislative Caucus

Little Rock, AR- The 21 Arkansas Republican Women Legislators announced that they have officially formed the Arkansas Republican Women’s Legislative Caucus (RWLC). Members of the RWLC will focus their
efforts on a legislative package which contains 
‘Bold Initiatives for the Good of Arkansas, as part of their ‘Dream B.I.G.
Arkansas’ campaign. The initial legislative package includes
bills that will assist Arkansas’s families and will move the needle.  These bills include improving access to cancer
treatment and research for Arkansans; training teachers and provision of
structured literacy curricula based on brain science for our public schools; increasing
rural broadband deployment and access; expanding childcare accessibility for
working families through increased entrepreneurship; and reforming juvenile
justice.  The purpose of the caucus’s initial
package is to make a game-changing mark on Arkansas. The caucus said of its goals:

“We are all excited about this opportunity to work together as twenty-one
women strong in the Arkansas Legislature. We will have a great package of bills
that we are proposing for our Dream B.I.G. AR campaign and we are excited to
get to hit the ground running during legislative session.”
Continue Reading →

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January First Marks Historic Day in Miller County, Arkansas

Cathy Hardin-Harrison

Tuesday morning will bring in January first of a New Year and it will also mark a historic event in Miller County, Arkansas.  There has been a lot of talk about the new County Judge, Cathy Hardin-Harrison.  She will be the first female County Judge in Miller County, but there is much more going on for the county history.  The county will have a first-ever female County Judge and it will see a Courthouse with all major positions held by women for the first time in history.  The Tax Collector, Assessor, Treasurer, County Clerk, and Circuit Clerk will all have positions filled by women.  On a county level, only the Sheriff and the Coroner offices will be held by men.  As far as the day-to-day operations at the Miller County Courthouse go, women will be running each office held. 

The swearing in ceremony will be held at the Miller County Courthouse, on the second floor at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday.  While the Courthouse and offices are closed for the holiday, elected officials are expected to be sworn in during the first day of the new year.  Some judges have chosen to be sworn in earlier so they can conduct the ceremony for the County Judge and other major officials for the county.  It is currently unclear if the Sheriff will be sworn in at the Courthouse or not, but major courthouse held offices will start the process at 10:00 a.m.  With the historic event, those wishing to attend should arrive early. An interesting side note to the fact that the county will have the first female county judge is the fact that all major offices in the county will be held by Republican representatives.  Until January 1, the office of Assessor has been held by an appointed person since the retirement of Democrat Mary Stuart.    As of January 1, Miller County will also be served by nine Republican Justices of the Peace (JP), one Democrat JP and one Independent JP.  It is the first time so many Republicans have held major offices in the county since Reconstruction. 

For those unable to attend the ceremony Tuesday, you may also catch it live-streamed on the Facebook Page “The ‘Whose Who’ of Our Miller County”. The page is maintained as a community service by Ronnie Dancer, Sr. of Fouke, Arkansas. The last election cycle, candidates and outcomes, may be viewed online at Election Cycle 2018. Continue Reading →

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Recent Vehicle Burglaries and Thefts

The Texarkana Arkansas Police Department has received numerous reports of vehicle break-ins and burglaries in the past several weeks. In most reported cases the vehicle was left unlocked with valuable items in plain sight.  TAPD is working diligently providing extra patrols, detective investigations, and undercover surveillance to cease this type of criminal activity.  

We are asking that all of our citizens become persistent in locking their vehicles. Ensuring all valuable items are not located inside the vehicle in plain sight. Continue Reading →

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Arkansas Children’s Hospital to Acquire TRIUX™ neo for Functional Brain Imaging

LITTLE ROCK, AR:  MEGIN (formerly Elekta Oy) announced today Arkansas Children’s Hospital has signed an agreement to acquire a TRIUX™ neo for functional brain imaging. MEG is a completely non-invasive diagnostic device and directly measures magnetic activity generated by neurons in the brain. TRIUX neo is being used in the diagnosis and assessment of complex neurological disruptions and is able to detect and localize neural events with millimeter accuracy and with millisecond resolution. This detection capability is impactful when diagnosing patients across a wide spectrum including stop-seizures-meds, brain tumors, traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder, and autism. “MEG is a state-of-the-art device that can precisely localize the source of seizures within the brain to help provide a life-changing cure for select children with uncontrolled epilepsy,” said Gregory Sharp, MD, chief of Neurology at Arkansas Children’s, the state’s only pediatric health system. Continue Reading →

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Bobby Ferguson Park Sign Progress Continues

Texarkana, AR – Enter Bobby Ferguson Park near UofA Way or pass it as you come off the Interstate and you’ll see a nice, rock sign on the hillside just inside the park informing you of the park’s name.  However, if you enter from the Fairgrounds end of the park, there is no sign to indicate the name of the park.  Soon, the lack of a park sign will not be a problem near the Four States Fairgrounds. The Texarkana Arkansas Beautiful Commission works to improve the appearance and beautification of Texarkana, Arkansas.   In addition to having clean-up days, dumpster trash days, planting days, and coordinating education about keeping the city clean, the commission has overseen the implementation of signs for city properties.  The most recent sign, the huge “Welcome to Texarkana” sign on the Interstate was one of the larger sign projects the commission has undertaken in recent years. The commission usually, through suggestions of need, etc. attempts to take on a sign project whenever it can afford to do so.  Funding is supplied through the A&P Commission and the City Beautiful Commission seeks bids, designs the signs, and implements the projects.  Once completed, several other groups, including city maintenance, the Master Gardners, and other volunteer groups join in to assist in planting, watering, and maintaining the signs for the city. The commission’s latest project is underway right now.  The unfinished sign is coming together on the southwest corner of Bobby Ferguson Park.  When finished, there will be two flag polls, the sign, lights, water, and plants to celebrate and enhance the new sign’s location. Continue Reading →

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Social Media Responds to Renaming of Hobo Jungle

Texarkana, AR – Hobo Jungle Park, at least as far as anyone seems to remember, was named after the “Hobos” who once frequented the area when it was owned by the railroads.  The term Hobo started in the late 1890s and referred to a person who would travel around the country seeking work.  Often this group of people would travel by train and stay near train yards or train stops.  When the train would prepare to leave, and the Hobo needed to travel to work, he would usually follow the tracks to the next town or he might “hop a train” and ride in an open freight car as far as he could.  After the city obtained the land, a park was put in that has eventually become a baseball and softball complex in the city of Texarkana, Arkansas.  The park has been named “Hobo Jungle Park” for as long as most citizens can remember, but on Saturday, June 23rd, the City of Texarkana Board met and renamed the park by a unanimous vote to the “Ermer Dansby Pondexter Sports Complex”. As it seems with most change, it did not take long for social media to come alive.  The pictures of the Mayor and others holding a certificate of the name change was published on the Texarkana Arkansas Facebook page and comments started flying.  While there were many positive comments on the name change, there appeared to be an overwhelming number of negative comments.  Comments ranged from “STOP CHANGING OUR LANDMARKS” to “I will still call it Hobo Jungle” and many others. People questioned the meeting and when it was announced.  Some noted that the Texarkana Gazette carried a short article about the meeting on Saturday, the same day as the meeting.  Someone else stated that they had seen it posted on the Facebook page on Saturday, again the same day as the meeting.  A quick look at the Facebook page did not show a note about the meeting and a look at the city calendar showed all stated board meetings on the first and third Mondays, which is normal for the city.  On the calendar for Saturday, June 23, 2018, there was no entry for any meeting or event on the city calendar.  

The posting on Facebook has continued to extend well beyond the twenty-four-hour mark now.  People go on to question facts like the recent poll by the Gazette where the majority did not want to rename the park, the odd timing of the meeting, and the fact that it appeared to be changed without allowing public input from citizens.  Most questioned who Mrs. Pondexter is and what she had to do with the park.  Theories ranged from she was a lady killed when the trains derailed, to she was an outstanding citizen advocate. While citizens continue to debate whether the name should or should not be changed, whether the city should have given more notice or not,  there should be no denying that Mrs. Pondexter is one of Texarkana, Arkansas’ shining stars. Continue Reading →

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Governor Hutchinson Announces $26 Million in New Federal Funds to Expand Child Care Assistance Program to Thousands of Families

Will eliminate the current waitlist for assistance

LITTLE ROCK – With $26 million in new federal child care block-grant funds coming to Arkansas, the Department of Human Services (DHS) can provide child care assistance for up to 3,800 additional children from low-income families – enough to eliminate a waiting list for assistance and still have available funding. This increases the number of children served through the DHS Division of Child Care and Early Childhood Education by 70 percent. Currently, 2,056 eligible children are waiting for assistance because of past funding constraints. “I am grateful that Congress and President Trump saw fit to send more money back to the states,” Governor Asa Hutchinson said. “Success in life depends to a large degree on the quality of education early in life. Continue Reading →

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Governor Hutchinson Announces that CMS Approves Work Requirement for Arkansas Works Enrollees

Change designed to help struggling Arkansans gain new skills, jobs so they can move up economic ladder

LITTLE ROCK – Governor Asa Hutchinson announced Monday that the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has approved the State’s request to implement a work requirement for Arkansas Works enrollees. With this approval, Arkansas becomes one of only three states that currently mandates work for people who want to keep health benefits funded by Medicaid expansion dollars. Governor Hutchinson said the change promotes personal responsibility and will help low-income Arkansans move up the economic ladder. “I have often said that Arkansans understand the dignity of work,” Governor Hutchinson said. “The approval of this work requirement will go a long way to create opportunities for able-bodied working-age Arkansans to enter into training or employment and ultimately climb the economic ladder. Continue Reading →

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Hiring and Firing Seminar Scheduled in El Dorado

Southern Arkansas University with First Financial Bank and the Eldorado Chamber of Commerce present:

Hiring and Firing the Right Way—HR Seminar for Small Businesses
The Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center and the El Dorado Chamber of Commerce presents “Hiring and Firing the Right Way—HR Seminar for Small Businesses.” Learn how to establish a complete hiring and onboarding process and how to avoid pitfalls of an erroneous employee termination. Registration for the event is required as seating is limited!  Thursday, March 29, 2018, at 1:00 PM
 El Dorado Chamber of Commerce
Board Room
111 W Main St. El Dorado, Arkansas
SPEAKER: Janell Morton, Center Director, Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center
FREE! For more information or to pre-register, contact Kristen Cribb. Continue Reading →

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