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Wednesday, May 23, 2018

LITTLE ROCK — The economy in our state is booming, which allows us to keep existing businesses and to attract new ones. Since December, 10 companies have announced that they are expanding their Arkansas operations or plan to open here.

The decorum of historic practice was on full display when the Archbishop bound Harry and Meghan’s arms together with his stole and proclaimed, “What God hath joined together let not man put asunder.” That special moment was richly nostalgic for my wife and me because our vows in an Episcopal…

A vast majority of recreational vacations are water-related, and Arkansas is ready. With more than 600,000 acres of lakes, there’s plenty of space for fishing, swimming, sailing, boating and more.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

There were no emergencies reported in the Cliffs this week. Everyone took time out to honor their mothers and enjoy a day at family worship.

Many if not most popular songs of my teen years were quite meaningless. Bebop a lou la. You ain’t nothin’ but a hound dog. Tutti fruiti, all rooti. Saw Aunt Sally comin’ and ducked back in the alley. One for the money, two for the show, three to make ready, now, go cat go. Stay off of my blu…

Wednesday, May 09, 2018

White Cliffs has become quite the fisher cove this spring. There seems to be many more campers coming to enjoy the fishing and camping than previous times. These campers have very expensive fifth wheelers and exotic boats. I wouldn’t mind taking a ride in one of those boats myself. So, if yo…

“That boy can’t hit a nail,” Pop often proclaimed to the rest of the family about me. As a master carpenter, the only way he judged other people was by their skill, or lack of it, in using the tools of his trade. So, I decided early in life that I would seek means of employment that did not …

It is never lost on us here at the Capitol that a teacher’s day does not end with the bell.  We know they spend countless hours at home grading papers, preparing for tomorrow’s lesson, and thinking about how to reach that challenging student who is falling behind.

Wednesday, May 02, 2018

In 2017, State Revenue Offices served more than two million in-person customers.  Although the process has been streamlined over the years, we recognize a trip during business hours to get your tags or license is rarely convenient for your schedule.

Aristotle described a good essay as having a beginning, a middle and an end. A beginning, he wrote in a treatise entitled Poetics, has nothing before it but something following it. That sounds simple enough, but it is actually quite profound. He went to the trouble of defining a beginning th…

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

This week, several members were updated on the current status of the Arkansas lottery. The director of the lottery informed the Lottery Oversight Subcommittee that revenues are on track to be the second or third highest since the lottery’s inception in 2009.

The suave English professor led with his chin, his eyes vaguely fixed somewhere skyward. Wherever his chin pointed, his feet followed somewhat purposefully. Such a demeanor disallowed greetings or conversations as he made his way across campus to lunch or to the library or to the fountain wh…

LITTLE ROCK — In Arkansas, we keep looking for ways to put money back in taxpayers’ pockets. Just this week, I announced my support for legislation next year that will increase the state’s Homestead Property Tax Credit from $350 to $375. Arkansas homeowners deserve a break, and with our stat…

The benefits of free and fair trade are numerous. Our economy grows when American manufacturers, agricultural producers and small businesses can fairly compete in today’s global marketplace. Americans are safer when we have strong trading partners who are in our corner. When fair trade agree…

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Living in the rural area can be very enjoyable, and it can also provide some very unique problems depending upon the population. It is usually a very tight knit neighborhood with everyone knowing all the families. There is always someone with a challenge that they are not willing to share to…

I used to enjoy listening to Prairie Home Companion on the radio. The genius who originated the show, Garrison Keillor, is one of the best storytellers around. He was an English major at the university when he started the program on the college station. Later, National Public Radio picked it…

LITTLE ROCK — As we approach April 15, also known as Tax Day,  I joined a rally in the rotunda here at the capitol for Arkansas Tax Freedom Day, which was an opportunity for me to talk about my vision for reducing our state’s income tax rate.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

The primary is one of the most important phases of any election. It gives the public the ability to decide the best candidate of each party. But far too often, voters skip the primary and vote only in the general election in November.

Reporters learn to take good notes, clear, decipherable and complete. They hate it when they get back to the newsroom and find confusion on their notepads. Follow-up phone calls are a pain, so seasoned newspaper writers try to get it right the first time. My old notepads from days gone by tr…

Wednesday, April 04, 2018

There were no emergencies in the Cliffs this week, but there was plenty of activity. The campers were on the move, with some going and others coming. I guess the holiday captured different people for the camp site. The fishing was good, I hear. It was so good until my nephew, (I can’t say hi…

Arkansas is continuing to strengthen its role in support of our national security. Whether we’re referring to the 188th Wing at Ebbing Air National Guard Base in Fort Smith or Little Rock Air Force Base (LRAFB), it’s clear that our state is a key component to our country’s security and readi…

LITTLE ROCK — In Arkansas, we have worked hard to retain and recruit industry. In the past three years, our Arkansas Economic Development Commission, led by Mike Preston, has signed 338 incentive agreements, which has led to $7.8 billion in investment and to the creation of 13,000 jobs.

Otis and I visit on the town bench regularly and have done so for many years. I know a lot about him and his family connections—he bridges the cultural divide magnificently. Mention random people in our county to him and chances are he can tell you some of their family stories. I have visite…

Sunday, April 01, 2018

Many thanks for those who assisted with spring cleaning around the City of De Queen last week. City employees got in on the act, some even picked up a week early due to spring break plans. The clean-up was a success with 88 bags of trash removed from the city streets.

National Library Week will be observed April 8-14, 2018 with the theme, “Libraries Lead”. First sponsored in 1958, National Library Week is a national observance sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA) and libraries across the country each April. 

Saturday, March 31, 2018

There was one emergency in the Cliffs this week. Mr. Spigner was taken to the emergency room at Howard County Hospital and forwarded on to the hospital in Hot Springs. The granddaughter, Crissy, told me he was going to be taking some special tests. We are praying that he will be better soon.…

Thursday, March 22, 2018

William Faulkner published multiple versions of “The Bear” in magazines and in collections. In my opinion the best one appears in the collection entitled Go Down, Moses, which Faulkner referred to as a novel. I don’t judge the story to be the best in Western literature by a long shot—I’d go …