The Arkansas Senate on Thursday passed a House bill to approve more than $87 million in state bonds to support an economic development superproject in south Arkansas.
The House was expected to consider an identical Senate bill later Thursday morning, the final votes in each chamber before Gov. Asa Hutchinson makes the incentive package official with a signature.
The Senate voted 30-2 to approve House Bill 1003.
The vote came on the third day of a special session called mainly to consider the Lockheed Martin incentives as it attempts to win a major Department of Defense contract to build Joint Light Tactical Vehicles at an East Camden facility. Hutchinson and other bill supporters say the contract, if awarded to Arkansas, would retain several hundred jobs, create several hundred more and potentially trigger additional investment in an economically-depressed region.
Lockheed Martin is said to be one of three finalists for the contract, which will be awarded this summer. The bonds would not be issued if one of the other finalists gets the contract.
See Friday's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for full coverage.