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Michael R. Wickline

Stories by Michael R.

State-proposed fiscal '18 budget put at $5.49B

posted: 03/28/2017 4:30 a.m. Discuss

Arkansas' general revenue budget for fiscal 2018 would be $5.49 billion, a $163 million increase over the current fiscal year, according to a proposal released by legislative leaders Monday night.

Panel backs bill on interest rate for teacher plans

posted: 03/28/2017 3:19 a.m. Discuss

A legislative committee on Monday advanced a bill that would modify the method used by the board of trustees for the Arkansas Teacher Retirement System to set the interest rate for deferred retirement plan accounts.

Arkansas legislature's plate full for session's final days

posted: 03/26/2017 4:30 a.m. Comments 3

Arkansas legislative leaders aim to wrap up the regular session early next week, but they still have numerous issues to address.

Arkansas Senate OKs concealed-carry limits; bans proposed for State Hospital, UAMS, collegiate sports

posted: 03/24/2017 4:30 a.m. Comments 7

The ink is barely dry on a new law that will allow some concealed-carry permit holders to take their guns into many public places, and yet a bill that shot through the Senate on Thursday proposes to exempt some locations.

Arkansas governor signs bill expanding where concealed-carry holders can take guns

posted: 03/23/2017 4:30 a.m. Comments 8

Gov. Asa Hutchinson on Wednesday signed into law a bill that will allow Arkansans with concealed-carry permits to take firearms onto public college campuses and many other public places, including into the state Capitol, if they get up to eight hours of training.

Bill to buy poll gear falls short

posted: 03/23/2017 3:54 a.m. Discuss

A legislative panel on Wednesday narrowly rejected a bill that would transfer $18.5 million in surplus funds from the state Insurance Department's trust fund to the secretary of state's office to buy voting equipment for counties.

Panel favors bill adding $8.3B for DHS division

posted: 03/23/2017 3:54 a.m. Discuss

The Legislature's Joint Budget Committee on Wednesday endorsed a bill that would grant $8.3 billion in spending authority for the Department of Human Services' Medical Services Division in the coming fiscal year. Support for the bill came without any debate about the merits of reauthorizing spending authority for the state's Medicaid expansion.

Panel rejects bill to phase out use of surplus funds

posted: 03/23/2017 3:49 a.m. Discuss

The Joint Budget Committee's Special Language Subcommittee defeated legislation Wednesday that would phase out the General Improvement Fund's use of surplus funds for state programs and projects.

Arkansas records-law bill on hold for talks

posted: 03/22/2017 4:30 a.m. Discuss

Sen. Bart Hester, R-Cave Springs, said Tuesday that he's temporarily holding in committee his bill intended to shield attorney-client communications of government agencies from the state's open-records law.

Senate vote favors education accounts

posted: 03/22/2017 3:29 a.m. Discuss

Legislation that would authorize a state pilot program to create education savings accounts for students cleared the Arkansas Senate on Tuesday.

Arkansas senators OK measure to cut jobless-aid length

posted: 03/21/2017 4:30 a.m. Discuss

The Arkansas Senate on Monday handily approved legislation that would reduce from 20 to 16 the maximum number of weeks for which people are eligible for unemployment benefits.

4 teacher pension bills advance

posted: 03/21/2017 3:21 a.m. Discuss

Four bills that would allow the Arkansas Teacher Retirement System to raise more money and-or cut its costs cleared the Joint Committee on Public Retirement and Social Security Programs on Monday.

Number of state employees who make at least $100,000 increases to more than 2,900 | SEARCH LIST

updated: 03/20/2017 4:30 a.m. Comments 16

The number of state employees whose salaries are at least $100,000 increased by 211 this fiscal year to 2,933 — the largest growth in their ranks in almost a decade.

Pawnshop measure gets committee OK

posted: 03/18/2017 3:28 a.m. Discuss

A House committee on Friday endorsed legislation that would create the Pawnbroker Licensure Commission to regulate the pawn industry.

Arkansas Senate passes bill to shift treasurer's office workers

posted: 03/17/2017 4:30 a.m. Discuss

The state Senate on Thursday approved a bill that would put three investment employees in the treasurer's office under the purview of the Board of Finance.

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