In large part because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the state Human Services Department has a backlog of applications for Medicaid.
Legislature Approves Record Income Tax Cuts During Special Session
The legislature completed a three-day special session in which it passed reductions in state income taxes that will save Arkansas families and businesses almost $500 million a year when they take effect.
Legislature Convenes in Special Session to Lower Income Taxes
The legislature convened in special session on December 7 to consider reductions in individual and corporate income taxes.
State Agencies Raise Salaries of Entry-Level Employees
State agencies have experienced the same problems as many companies with difficulty hiring entry-level employees. Several agencies have contacted the state Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to report a difficulties attracting applicants for available positions. OPM put together a proposal that allows for higher entry-level salaries for all state agencies and presented it to legislators in June.
Christmas in the Capitol will be December 6
Legislators and other elected officials are gathering gifts for children in state custody, which they will present during a “Christmas in the Capitol” celebration at noon on December 6 in the Old Supreme Court Room of the State Capitol.
Legislature Continues Investment in Broadband Expansion
In the past couple of years Arkansas has made a massive financial commitment to expanding broadband access to all parts of state.
So far $275 million has been approved, and the Legislative Council is set to increase that investment to $400 million when it considers an additional $125 million in broadband proposals at its November meeting.
Solar power growing in Arkansas, thanks to Act 464 of 2019
Solar power is growing in popularity in Arkansas, in large part because of passage of Act 464 of 2019.
State, cities and counties to share settlement of opioids lawsuit
In a settlement of a major lawsuit, pharmaceutical manufacturers who make and market opioids will pay $216 million to Arkansas cities, counties and state government.
Even in Pandemic, AEDC Incentives Attract Job Creating Industries
Business activity was severely affected by the pandemic last year across most areas of the economic spectrum, from the largest corporations to small businesses and individual wage earners. In spite of the challenges created by the pandemic, the Arkansas Economic Development Commission signed incentive agreements for 48 projects that will create or preserve 2,917 jobs in the state. The average wage of those jobs is $22.10 an hour.
Statement from Senator Missy Irvin, Senate Education Committee Chair
Statement from Senator Missy Irvin, chair of the Senate Education Committee:
"I am so pleased to learn that all the parties have come to an agreement that will allow Mr. Nick Smith, Jr. the eligibility to play basketball during his senior year of high school, and I commend his parents for being strong advocates for their son."