DQSD to ask voters for millage increase
District seeking to raise $18m for new high school;
special election set for Feb. 9, 2016

Millage Increase Proposal – Randy Hedge, president of the De Queen School Board, asks community members during a meeting held Tuesday night to support a millage increase on next year’s ballot. The district hopes to raise the millage rate by eight mills for a total of 35.3. Voters will decide the millage increase at a special election set for Feb. 9, 2016.

By Patrick Massey

After years of boasting the lowest millage rate in Arkansas, the De Queen School District will ask voters to change that next year to bring in additional revenue and assist the district in addressing a number of facility issues - including the construction of a new high school campus.

The district announced its hope to increase the millage rate during a meeting held Tuesday night. Over a hundred people were in attendance, including members of the public and district employees. There, district administrators and members of the De Queen School Board outlined their plan to request a millage increase of eight mills - thereby raising the current rate from 27.3 to 35.3 mills.

The increase would add a projected revenue increase of $18 million. The vast majority - $12 million - would go towards constructing a new high school. The current high school campus, built in 1969, was designed to serve classes of around 80 students. With this year's graduating class numbering over 180, school officials say the district cannot hold off building a new campus.

"The district has grown tremendously," School Board President Randy Hedge informed the audience. "But the fact is, we need a new high school. It's become too crowded, too dated, and it's time we grow again... We can't keep growing without your support."

Officials said the high school cannot meet the needs of the bustling class sizes. With class sizes in the primary and elementary schools topping 220, that need is only expected to increase.

Besides lacking adequate room, the 46-year-old building also suffers from defects such as leaking roofs, with one section well known as the "Waterfall Wall" due to its excessive leaks.

"Some rooms in the high school have just one outlet, with 17 things plugged into it," said School Board Member Dr. Kenneth Martin. "Eighty people is what this high school was built for, now we have 180 and soon we'll have 220. We going to have problems if we don't do something about it."

To read the complete article, please see the Nov. 12 edition of The De Queen Bee.


Season Finale – Buried under a mass of Leopards is a White Hall ball carrier. The De Queen defense held the Bulldogs scoreless for the last three quarters enroute to a 41-20 victory in the season finale. Leopards making the tackle are, from left: Alex Alvarado, Leo Dominguez, Hugo Martinez, Brandon Hagood and Hunter Earney.

Filing period closes
No races for county offices, but voters to
decide state representative race in 2016

By Patrick Massey

Sevier County voters will have a simple ballot when it comes to deciding county-level offices in the 2016 primary and general elections after the filing period closed this week without a single contested position.

The filing period, which ran from Nov. 2-9, ended at noon on Monday. Voters will have plenty to decide during next year's contentious presidential and congressional elections, but locally they will see no change in county officeholders.

Voters in Little River County and most of Sevier County will, however, decide the District 4 State Representative in the Arkansas House of Representatives during next year's General Election. Incumbent Republican DeAnn Vaught, who is looking to secure her second term in the House, has been formally challenged by Fonda Hawthorne. Vaught beat Hawthorne in the 2014 elections, but Hawthorne, who is running as a Democrat, has announced via Facebook that she is seeking to reclaim the office. This race will be decided during the Nov. 8, 2016 General Election.

The following individuals have filed for uncontested positions in Sevier County (all are incumbents):
Greg Ray for County Judge
Robert Gentry for Sheriff & Collector
Debbie Akin for County Clerk
Kathy Smith for Circuit Clerk
Judy Smith for Tax Assessor
Risa Godwin Krantz for Treasurer
Rusty Williams for Coroner
Earl A. Battiest for Justice of the Peace, District 1
Charles Keels for Justice of the Peace, District 2
Roxy Ann Stephens for Justice of the Peace, District 3
David Wright for Justice of the Peace, District 4
(Please see No. Two on Page 5A) Roger Whitmore for Justice of the Peace, District 5
Michael Archer for Justice of the Peace, District 7
Kenneth Currence for Justice of the Peace, District 8
Steve Stewart for Bear Creek Constable
Kim Culp for Monroe Constable
Filings under the Independent ticket include (all are incumbents):
Angie Walker for Justice of the Peace, District 6
Greg Wright for Justice of the Peace, District 9
There were no local filings with the Republican Party.

To read the complete article, please see the Nov. 12 edition of The De Queen Bee.


Museum to hold play, “The Monkey’s Paw,” this weekend

The Monkey's Paw – – From left, Hoo Rah City actors Karen Mills, Bill Bigham, Matt Satterfield and Canaan Gideon rehearse for this Saturday's performance of "The Monkey's Paw" at the Sevier County Museum.

DE QUEEN – The Hoo Rah City Players, a theater group hosted by the Sevier County Museum, will host its very first performance this Saturday in De Queen.

The group will perform the cult-classic short story, "The Monkey's Paw." First published in England in 1902 by W.W. Jacobs, the story revolves around three wishes granted to the owner of a mysterious monkey's paw, but the wishes come with an enormous price for interfering with fate.

Kim Huckaby, the Hoo Rah City Players' director, said the group has taken a few liberties to modernize the story, but otherwise audience members should be performed for a fright-filled performance.

"It's going to be scary and a lot of fun," she said. "We've worked hard to get this going and I think the community is really going to enjoy it."

Huckaby said she was approached by the museum earlier this year to begin directing and performing plays on the facility's new stage. To get the ball rolling, Huckaby began contacting former students from the drama program she ran while as a teacher at De Queen High School. She also reached out to fellow classmates and current students at the high school to gather the cast and support crew for the group's first play.

2012 Graduation

2012 Graduation

Tri State Business Directory

Sevier County Fair Premium Sale tops $106,000
Operation Christmas Child hosted in Horatio
Sevier County receives $36,700 from FEMA
Rep. Vaught presents $1K to Mary and Martha Center
Several more arrested for shoplifting in De Queen
Sevier County 4-H’ers hold banquet
Defense on the road
Just like it was drawn up
One half down, one half to go
Leopard harriers point to state meet
A few more yards
Local basketball to begin Nov. 9
Rams slip by Leopards
Horatio wins second Battle of Lions
Cross Country Leopards prepare for state
Leoards rip Hot Springs

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