The private option aginners are establishing a new norm around the supermajority requirement for certain appropriations. The results could be be a fiasco for the Republican majority. Not to mention more gridlock and potential shutdowns, and worse policy outcomes in state government.
Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families — a nonprofit that works for the interests named — has a new blog post illuminating the problem we've cited about Gov. Asa Hutchinson's free-lunch highway plan. It's simple: You don't get something (better highways) for nothing.
Gov. Asa Hutchinson yesterday announced that former state representative Duncan Baird will be the new State Budget Administrator at the Department of Finance and Administration. Baird had been serving as Budget Director in the governor's office.
Will the capitol critters be doling out corporate welfare soon? Lots of rumors have been floating about a potential legislative special session to be called by Gov. Asa Hutchinson later this month. The session would convene just after Memorial Day, when the legislature would take up a proposed economic development project.
The state auditor's office decision to publish the names and addresses of people with unclaimed property only online as part of what is known as the "Great Arkansas Treasure Hunt" stung the Arkansas Press Association, and the APA is asking its members to call legislators. But legislators passed a law in the latest session to allow the auditor to do just that.
Treasurer Dennis Milligan caves for now on his plan to delete all emails after 30 days. It's time for constitutional officers to adopt the same transparency rules that govern all other state agencies. The excuses are ludicrous; the only reason to delete public records is to conceal the record from the public.
Blue Hog: Attorney General Leslie Rutledge and six AG staffers participated in Huckabee campaign event during normal office hours, in violation of state election laws. The AG's office responds that the employees were on leave and did not use state resources to participate in the event.
State Treasurer Dennis Milligan fired his outreach manager yesterday, the office has confirmed. David Singer was hired by Milligan in January as assistant legislative affairs and communications manager. In March, his title was changed to outreach manager. He briefly worked at the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette before his hiring by Milligan and for Stephens Media prior to that.
Asked specifically if "keeping a child locked in a room everyday for at least four hours" — a situation described by a babysitter for Justin and Marsha Harris — constituted abuse, a DHS spokesperson said it would likely result in a call to the child abuse hotline for possible investigation.
The state is going to change the renewal decals for car tags on March 16. Instead of getting two decals to place on a license plate, only one decal with both month and year will be necessary in the future.