News provided by News Director Linda Boyer

Arrest Report:


Ronald D. Bruner - Berryville - 46 - rape, sexual assault 2nd degree

Shelby R. Collins - Harrison - 22 - hold for other agency

Joe D. Massey - Batesville - 31 - court appearance

Dusti J.L. Sorcearelli - Eureka Springs - 33 - white warrant

Justin F. Wilson - Harrison - 33 - revocation of suspended sentence

​Jeremy W. Worsham - Berryville - 37 - failure to appear x 2


James A. Engel - Berryville - 43 - failure to appear, failure to pay

Anna M. Escoto - Berryville - 41 - hold for other agency

Darren J. Ledbetter - Berryville - 26 - public intox, disorderly conduct

Tony L. Portwood - Doniphan, Mo - 35 - public intox, disorderly conduct

Daniel J. Renowden - Fayetteville - 29 - domestic battery, public intox

Joe Serna - Green Forest - 30 - public intox, disorderly conduct

Michelle L. Sjolin - Green Forest - 30 - driving on suspended, unsafe vehicle, no proof of insurance


Elijah C. Anglin - Berryville - 28 - theft

Christopher E. Baum - Green Forest - 41 - hold for other agency

Nicholas S. Graves - Green Forest - 26 - aggravated assault on police officer, public intox, crimi8nal trespass, resisting arrest, battery, hold for other agency

Bradley D. Hill - Springfield - 37 - public intox

Matthew T. Pardew - Berryville - 49 - violation of protection order, fleeing

Erich W. Skaggs - Harrison - 32 - speeding, no child safety restraints, no insurance, careless & prohibited drivng


Terry M. Anderson - Berryville - 21 -DWI, careless driving, n o insurance, speeding

Kristi D. Brinkman-Lee - Berryville - 40 - hold for other agency

Teresa M. Chairs - Fayetteville - 39 - speeding, driving on suspended, no proof of insurance

Cameron T. Crawford - Harrison - 20 - hold for other agency

John C. Demerchant - Berryville - 45 - domestic battery, 3rd degree battery

Cameron J. Dunaway - Berryville - 25 - 72 hour mental hold

Jimmy L. Fancher - Green Forest - 50 - DWI, careless and prohibited driving, driving on suspended license, no proof of insurance

Bradley D. Hill - Springfield - 37 - public intox 

​Dustin W. Troxell - Berryville - 22 - public intox


James W. Brantley - Odessa, Tx - 67 - bench warrant sexual assault 1st degree


Sarah E. Cadenhead - Springdale - 29 - DWI, drinking on highway, failure to change over driver's license, no proof of insurance

​Kevin F. McGeehee - Alpena - 26 - no driver's license, theft of property


Justin L. Brown - Harrison - 28 - hold for other agency

Matthew C. Caudle - Harrison - 31 - hold for other agency

Vanessa A. Chastain - Lead Hill - 42 - hold for other agency

James L. Emond - HOliday Island - 45 - domestic battery

Heather S. Hooker - Berryville - 25 - DWI, endangering welfare of minor

​Travis T. Short - Green Forest - 21 - failure to appear

To view the Arrest Report please scroll down below the News

News For Monday, July 19, 2014

Quorum Court Approves Ordinance on 2nd and 3rd Readings

The Carroll County Quorum Court Friday passed an Ordinance, on its second and third reading, declaring that the Carroll County Sheriff will collect fines assessed in the Circuit Courts.  It passed both readings by a vote of 6-5.  Sheriff Grudek also gave his mid-year report for the Sheriff's office.  He reported all departments are under budget.  Revenue collected year to date from the Sheriff's office, Detention Center and Central Dispatch total $1.3 million dollars. 1,238 citations were adjudicated, which includes the CCSO and ASP.  32 for DUI/DWI; 59 for Driving on Suspended; 78 for no or Expired License; 85 no insurance; 158 no seatbelt; and 409 for speeding.  

A Resolution confirming the Appointment of Mark Minton to the Western Carroll County Ambulance District was approved.  Minton will replace Joe McClung Jr.  

J.P. Ron Flake gave the Court an update on the Water Committee efforts to bring water to north central Carroll County..............

The next meeting of the Quorum Court will be August 15th.

Little Rock Woman Killed in Bicycle Accident

​39-year-old Laura Wooldridge of Little Rock died after a bicycle accident Saturday in Eureka Springs.  The accident happened in the woods at Lake Leatherwood during the Fat Tire Festival around 9:30 a.m..  Wooldridge was able to walk out of the trail carrying her bike.  Emergency crew showed up to assist.  She was walking, talking and responsive, but seriously hurt. The fire department called air-evac and she was airlifted to a Fayetteville hospital. She passed away a short time later.  A memorial ride was held Sunday afternoon at 1:00 p.m. in North Little Rock near the Big Dam Bridge.  

Harrison Man Sentenced  for Murder

A man from Harrison received a 40-year prison sentence after he admitted killing a toddler.  Quinton Huett, 23, told a judge that he beat to death his girlfriend's daughter, 21-month-old Jordan Evans, two years ago. Huett was charged with capital murder, but the plea agreement to a lesser charge kept him from receiving a life sentence.

Huntsville to get Second Fire Station

The City of Huntsville has begun accepting bids for its second fire station, to be funded through bond monies approved by voters last August.  Work for the station — which will include all areas of its construction, such as dirt work, concrete work, drainage, electrical and plumbing work — will be out for bid until 4 p.m. on Aug. 22.   The building will “meet the newer standards  for safety and health,” Huntsville Fire Chief Jeremy Shinn said, and will be equipped with a gear room, bunker room, living quarters, a shower, a kitchen, a classroom, a foyer and office space.  The new station, which will be located on Harmony Road, will also feature a drive-thru port for its engines, opposed to the stationon Church Avenue, where firefighters have to back each engine inside.

Alpena Man Involved in Missouri Accident

An Alpena man is involved in a two vehicle crash in central Missouri near Fulton on Saturday.  Police say 31-year-old Amber Carter of Fulton was eastbound on Highway 54 when she slowed down for traffic. That’s when 41-year-old Rafael McCoy struck her vehicle from behind driving a pickup.  Seven-year-old Kris Karnes, 30-year-old Mandie Rinehart, and Carter were all taken to a nearby hospital by a private vehicle. They are all listed with minor injuries. 

Walmart CEO Highest Paid Arkansan

The chief executive officer at Walmart was the highest-paid public company executive in Arkansas last year.  That's according to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, which added salary, bonus incentives, perks, above-market returns on deferred compensation, and including the estimated value of stock options and awards granted during the year to come up with its list of highest-paid CEOs in the state.    

Douglas McMillion, who took over the position at Walmart in February, received a compensation package valued at $25.3 million last year. That's about double what he received in 2012 when he was an executive vice president at the retailer.  Two Tyson Foods trailed McMillon by almost $5 million. Chief operating officer James Lochner earned $20.8 million in 2013, while chairman John Tyson received $20.5 million.

Unemployment Rate Declines in Arkansas

Data collected by the U.S. Department of Labor and the Bureau of Labor Statistics release a report showing the unemployment rate dropping two-tenths of a percent from May to June.  According to the findings, the unemployment rate in May was 6.4% which dipped to 6.2% in June. Arkansas’ civilian labor force declined 9,300– a result of 6,700 fewer employed and 2,600 fewer employed Arkansans.  Nationally, the jobless rate declines to 6.1% in June. 

Not Enough Signatures Verified

Arkansas Secretary of State Mark Martin says the Arkansas Alcoholic Beverage Amendment did not meet the signature requirements after the verification process. The proposed amendment requires an additional 17,133 verified signatures to reach the 78,133 needed to be placed on the general election ballot. The Secretary of State’s Office has notified the petition sponsor that they now have an additional 30 days to collect signatures to compensate for those disqualified during the signature verification process.

State Capitol Week in Review
From Senator Bryan B. King
July 18, 2014

Under new immunization requirements being considered by the state Board of Health, children who will be 11 or older on September 1 must have a Tdap shot in order to attend a public or a private school. The Tdap shot protects against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis. 

Parents will be in compliance with Board of Health requirements if they have been taking their children to their family physician to receive their shots, as recommended by the CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP).

Prior to this school year, the Tdap shot was required for students entering the seventh grade.  The new requirement means that the majority of children will get the required immunization at a younger age, if they have not already had it, because most children are older than 11 by the time they enter the seventh grade. The ACIP recommends the Tdap shot for all children age 11 and older. Only one Tdap shot is needed.

The purpose of the change in immunization requirements is to better protect children who are at an age when they are likely to get pertussis, which is also known as whooping cough. It is very contagious and it can cause uncontrollable fits of coughing that make it hard to breathe.  Some cases can even be fatal.

Health officials noticed an increase in the number of 10 and 11 year olds who got whooping cough, and that the number of cases declined in children old enough to be in seventh grade.  The new requirement is expected to lower the frequency of cases in these children according to Health Department officials.

In 2013, public health experts noticed a spike in the number of cases of whooping cough. There were 466 cases reported in Arkansas, compared to 80 cases in 2011, just two years earlier. 

Parents who choose not to immunize their children must get an exemption from the state Health Department’s Immunization Section.  To do so, call 501-661-2169 or contact the department at this email address: immunization.section@arkansas.gov

Another new requirement for children’s immunizations that will take effect in the coming school year is that seventh graders must have received a meningococcal shot against meningitis.  Also, students will have to receive a shot before they turn 16, regardless of their grade level.  If they had a meningococcal shot before their 16th birthday, they will need to have a second one. Students who are 16 on or before September 1 will have until October 1 to get the shot.

There is a change in regulations governing chickenpox.  Previously, children could forego the shot if a parent could show they had actually contracted the disease, but that method was beginning to prove unreliable.  Under the new regulations, it will require the report of disease from a medical professional for a child to avoid the requirement for having varicella vaccine, which is the shot for chickenpox.

There are several other changes in the required schedule of immunizations. Following the ACIP recommendations of your family physician will more than satisfy the minimum requirements set out by the Board of Health. More information about the requirements can be found on the Arkansas Department of Health’s website at www.healthy.arkansas.gov.

The Health Department has an immunization registry that physicians, clinics and health care providers can access.  The registry is a record of the immunizations given to children in Arkansas. Health care providers are obligated by state law to report to the registry all immunizations they give to anyone under the age of 22.If you have any questions or comments about legislative issues, please contact me at 870-438-4565 or brian.king@senate.ar.gov

News For Friday, July 18, 2014

Madison County Rodeo Week Kicks Off Saturday

The 17th annual Madison County IPRA/ACRA Rodeo will kick off this week with a Poker Run at 10 a.m. Saturday morning, followed at 7 p.m. by a ranch rodeo, which will include team roping, steer mugging, and other competitions involving what competitors could see on a ranch, rather than a normal rodeo, according to Madison County Rodeo Board President Janet Glenn. Glenn said the event is not formally sanctioned by the rodeo, but it precedes a week-long event expected to bring herds of locals to the Madison CountyFairgrounds through the rodeo’s last day next Saturday.

The rodeo will host Gospel Night at the fairgrounds on Wednesday, followed by Kids Night Thursday at 6 p.m. Kids Night is free to the public. Regular rodeo events will begin Friday, July 25, with mutton bustin’ at 7 p.m. and the rodeo at 8 p.m. on both Friday and Saturday.   Admission is $10 for adults and $5 for children. Children under three years of age get in for free. Fore more information about the mutton bustin’ events, call Wild Horse Saddlery at 789-5800. For more information about the rode, call Janet Glenn at 479-422-2555 or Tish Carter at 479-209-2107.

Berryville Public Schools
Board of Education Regular Meeting
Monday, July 21, 2014
6pm 3-5 Cafetorium

Call to Order
Approval of Previous Minutes
Financial Reports
Student, Teacher, & District Recognitions
Person/Groups Who Wish to Approach the Board
Personnel Policy Committee
Old Business

New Business
1. Athletics Purchase
2. School Board Election Resolution
3. Techology needs for the District
4. Out of State Travel - Liability Insurance
5. Student Drug Testing Policy
6. New Position - Asst. Superintendent

Superintendents Update
Administrator Reports
1. Classified
2. Certified

​Ever Thought About Running for a Local Office or Commission Seat?     

Too often when a local election comes up you can hear members of the Eureka Springs' electorate say, "Why don't more people run?" or "Why didn't so and so run?"  Before that election when the sample ballot comes out, people who might have been thinking about running will say, "I wish I had run." or "I wanted to run but I had no idea how to get on the ballot."  When you see a board or commission meeting on TV and that body has one or more vacancies you might hear, "I wish I was sitting at that table."  

Well some of those mysteries are about to be answered... and you are invited.  On Thursday, July 24 at 5:30pm at the Best Western Eureka Inn, the Governmental Relations Committee of the Greater Eureka Springs Chamber of Commerce has arranged a presentation by  David Schoen of the Arkansas Municipal League (AML).  He will be discussing two documents produced by AML: Guidebook for Municipal Officials of Mayor/Council Cities and 2014 Municipal Election Information.  There will also be time for Q and A.      

"It has been said that all politics is local," said Mike Bishop, chamber president, "and we have so many local people who could really help our community through their involvement in our local government.  This presentation is designed to answer some questions these leaders might have allowing them to take that first step: throwing their hat into the ring."  

The AML presentation comes on the eve of the first day potential candidates may file for local offices by turning in their completed petitions to the county clerk.  Petitions, which are now available from the county clerk, must be submitted no later than August 15 in order to have their name placed on the November ballot.   "Our committee hopes people interested in running for office or those simply interested in the process will come join us on the twenty-fourth at the Eureka Inn," Bishop concluded.  "We have so much leadership in this community, so many could help by getting involved, we just hope those individuals will come and discover how to take that first step.

"Huntsville to Offer Citizens Alert System

The Madison County Record reports the Huntsville City Council at Monday’s meeting approved Resolution 8-14, which amends the budget to fund a notification system designed to inform residents in case of an emergency, disruption in utility service, inclement weather, as well as a provide a variety of other alerts.  The resolution allocates $5,260 for the purchase of the system, which is offered bythe CodeRED Emergency Communications Network. That amount will come out of the city’s unappropriated general funds. The notification system will be free to residents who sign up for it. Blane Coger, the city’s assistant fire chief, said he hopes to begin offering CodeRED by the first of August.

City Attorney Rusty Cain said that the CodeRED contract will provide for the service to be offered to up to 4,000 registrants – with a variation of 20 percent – in the Huntsville Fire Department’s response area.Cain said the initial contract is good for one year, but it is renewable at the same rate as long as the city meets the terms. Coger said that CodeRED has stated that it will allow for one person to sign up multiple phone numbers under that person’s name, and that would only count as one registrant toward the city’s maximum. He said that those who sign up for the service may have alerts sent as a voicemail to a phone, via text message,or through email.

Arkansans Not too Optimistic about Economy

The inaugural report of the Arvest Consumer Sentiment Survey was released today and indicates that the sentiment of Arkansas consumers regarding their views on the economy are lower than those of consumers in neighboring states of Oklahoma and Missouri. All three states trailed the national consumer sentiment index for June as reported by Thomson Reuters and the University of Michigan.

The Arvest Consumer Sentiment Survey is conducted by the Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER) in the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas. The University of Oklahoma’s Public Opinion Learning Laboratory conducted the 1,200 phone surveys.  The consumer sentiment index for Arkansas was 67.4, trailing that of Missouri (68.6) and Oklahoma (76.4). The national index for June is 82.5. These new consumer sentiment data indicate that Arkansas can expect continued on-again, off-again growth. Until consumers indicate that they feel confident about their economic futures, personal income growth will be the key to additional spending and a breakout recovery. 

The Arvest Consumer Sentiment Survey will be conducted twice a year with the next survey expected to be completed in late November. With each study, the index score will be released first, followed by additional information regarding specifics of consumer activities and plans.

Pryor, Boozman Defense Provisions Benefit Arkansas Servicemembers, Rural Fire Departments

U.S. Senators Mark Pryor and John Boozman today applauded the committee passage of the Defense Appropriations Bill, which provides critical funding for our nation’s troops and national security priorities. The bill passed the Appropriations Committee unanimously and will now head to the full Senate for passage. 

“The Administration is making reckless decisions without considering consequences to the security of our nation or dedication of our men and women in uniform. Arkansas has a long tradition of military service, and we need to ensure that our servicemembers have the equipment and resources necessary to continue to answer the call of duty. That’s why I’ve worked hand-in-hand with Senator Boozman on this bill to secure a strong future for our troops, military installations, and first responders,” Pryor said.

“This bill is vital to our national security. It ensures our servicemen and women have everything they need to complete their missions safely and successfully. I am pleased that the committee backed our provisions to modernize the fleet used by the Arkansas National Guard Wing, protect the 39th Infantry Brigade Combat Team from unwarranted cuts and prevent DoD from hastily shutting down ROTC programs that put young Arkansans on the path to becoming great Army officers,” Boozman said.  Pryor and Boozman are members of the Senate Appropriations Committee.

News For Thursday, July 17, 2014

Carroll-Boone Water District Board Meeting

Today the CB Water District Board expects to hear an update regarding the controversial construction of the fluoride-dispensing project.  Also expected to be discussed is the payments from Delta Dental for the facility.  Other agenda items include approval of insurance for employees exposed to silica, a part of the fluoridation process; elect a secretary/treasurer to replace Harold Collins who passed away on June 28.  Also on the agenda, recommendations for a rate increase and water revenue bond issued related to the AR Hwy 62 widening project, and hear report on resumes received for the general manager position.  

The Eureka Springs City Council in 2012 passed a resolution oppossing the fluoridation of water.  A law passed by the Arkansas Legislature in 2011 requires any city that serves over 5,000 residents to add fluoride to its drinking water.

Eureka Springs Council Approves Master Trail Plan

The Eureka Springs City Council at their meeting this week approved the Master Trail Plan to the delight of dozens of concerned residents who showed up to urge their support.  The Council also re-affirmed their support of a 2012 endorsement of marriage equality by adopting a resolution and passing it.    Bill Featherstone with the Parks Commission said recently, "I'm very confident that both Planning and Council, who are both dedicated to doing what is in the best long-term interests of the city at large, will also recognize the Trails Master Plan for what it is, a very efficient tool by which to improve the quality of life for those who live here and to improve the Eureka Experience for those who visit here."

Blue Eye Man Injured in Motorcycle Accident

A man from Blue Eye crashed his motorcycle down a 25-foot embankment last night near Ridgedale.  According to the Missouri Highway Patrol, 38-year-old Dean Rogers was driving eastbound on Highway 86 when he drove off the road and traveled down a steep embankment, hitting several bushes and trees along the way.  Eric Nielsen with the Southern Stone County Fire Protection District says the man was trapped under the motorcycle when first responders arrived.  Western Taney County Fire Protection District provided mutual aid in the rescue efforts. Dean was taken to Cox Medical Center Branson for serious injuries. 

New Berryville School Superintendent Dr. Phil Clark

New Berryville School Superintendent Dr. Phil Clark, originally from Sheridan, Ar., spoke at the noon hour Kiwanis meeting Wednesday at the Town & Country Lanes Restaurant  in Berryville.  Dr. Clark has been "on-the-job" for 17 days he said, and anxious to meet Monday night with the School Board for their first regular meeting since he began.

Escaped Inmate Captured

Police have captured an inmate who escaped from a northern Arkansas jail.  37-year-old Shane Lee Mitchell was caught by Independence County police around 2am Thursday.  The Stone County Sheriff's Department says it received word early Thursday morning that Mitchell had been apprehended. The department reported Mitchell missing from the county jail on  Wednesday afternoon. It's unclear how he got out. Stone County jail records indicate Mitchell was being held for a probation violation.  It was thought he might be heading to Jonesboro.

Expert Educates Coaches, Trainers on Heat Illness

As football practice begins to ramp up throughout the state, a University of Arkansas professor is helping to educate parents, coaches and trainers about the dangers of heat-related illness.  Brendon McDermott, assistant professor of exercise science, studies heat and hydration issues and works to educate groups about ways to avoid illness - and possible death -while exercising in the heat.  McDermott, who is also a certified athletic trainer, is featured in an hourlong documentary about those potential perils produced by the Arkansas Educational Television Network.  The documentary airs Monday on the network.

An Act to Increase The Arkansas Minimum Wage Meets Initial Count 

Arkansas Secretary of State Mark Martin announced An Act to Increase The Arkansas Minimum Wage has met the initial signature count requirement. The amendment needed 62,507 signatures; the initial count was over 64,000. The Secretary of State’s Office is now moving to the signature verification stage. Meeting the initial count qualifies the petition sponsor for an additional 30 days to collect signatures, to compensate for any that may be disqualified during the signature verification process. 

​Area Schools are Getting Involved in a Statewide Effort to Increase Internet Access for Students

Arkansas ranks near the bottom of the country for high speed internet access and digital learning, and the Governor formed the FASTERArkansas committee to find a fix.  The organization kicked off a statewide tour at the Fayetteville Town Center Tuesday, bringing awareness to the issue and offering a solution.  "Our state pays, on the average, 3 times more for broadband and less access than other states," says FASTERArkansas Vice-Chair Kathy Smith. "We wanted to address that and see if we could improve that." 

Smith says ARE-ON, the Arkansas Research Education Optical Network, is a taxpayer funded network that already connects universities and medical institutions, but state law blocks K-12 schools from using it.  "There are 42 states that have an ARE-ON-like network, an optical network," Smith says. "Of those 42, Arkansas is the only one that restricts K-12 access."Smith says opening the network to schools would greatly increase broadband access at a lower cost, but it would also allow schools to use internet2, a content rich network where students can participate in real time with scientists and others in the field worldwide. 

Bass Pro Shops hosts free Professional Bull Riders family event at stores across the U.S. and Canada

The Professional Bull Riders, Inc. (PBR) and Bass Pro Shops are teaming up to host a PBR family event July 26 and 27 that will include free crafts, face painting, costume contests, bull roping and free gifts. At participating stores, visitors can meet professional bull riders and see a live bull, too.  “With PBR Days, Bass Pro Shops continues to go beyond the expected to support our sport,” said PBR Chairman and CEO Jim Haworth.  “The PBR Days event is one of the most interactive and engaging activities our sponsors produce. It serves our core fan base, a large sector of which is the outdoor enthusiast, and cultivates new fans by bringing the PBR experience to everyone in person at Bass Pro Shops.  We’re really looking forward to this year’s event, as it coincides with the National Day of the Cowboy.”

At select Bass Pro Shops stores, PBR fans will get to see live bulls from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday, July 26. In addition, some stores will give fans a chance to meet a professional bull riding expert and learn more about bull riding on Saturday, July 26 from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. More information about which store locations offer these opportunities is available at http://www.basspro.com/pbr.  Plus, kids can come dressed in their best cowboy or cowgirl attire to take part in the best dressed “Cowboy or Cowgirl Contest” on Sunday, July 27.  Judging will begin at 2:30 p.m. and one lucky participant can win a $50 Bass Pro Shops gift card, which will be awarded at 3 p.m. Sunday, July 27.

Other free activities the kids can enjoy include:
• Stick bull riding• Bull roping
• Flint the Entertainer face painting
• Cactus cowboy craft

In addition to the fun activities, a free cowboy hat light-up key chain will be given to the first 100 customers on each day of the PBR family event.Rider expert appearances, activities and crafts vary by store location and are subject to change. For more information, please visit basspro.com/pbr and click on your store page or visit your local store for details. The following locations are excluded from this event: Branson, Missouri; Miami, Florida; Islamorada, Florida; and the Outlet Store in Springfield, Missouri.

Investments in health coverage, education paying off for Arkansas Kids - State still ranks poorly in economic well-being of children

Arkansas made gains in health coverage and education over the last year, but the child poverty rate went up to 29 percent. Those ups and downs are consistent with national trends, according to the 25th edition KIDS COUNT Data Book, an annual report on the well-being of our nation’s children from the Annie E. Casey Foundation.

Arkansas improved in every health category measured by the Casey Foundation. The number of children without insurance is down to an all-time low of six percent. Child deaths per 1,000 also decreased, as did the number of low-birth weight babies and teens who abuse alcohol or drugs. These gains show that investments in health programs that help kids – especially ARKids First – have made huge improvements in Arkansas.

The state also made gains in education, increasing the number of proficient scores in reading and math. The number of kids attending pre-K has remained steady, despite a lack of added funding from the state budget. Funding for the state’s pre-K program has not increased in seven years (effectively it’s been cut if you consider inflation and cost of living increases). The initial investment the state made in pre-K after the Lake View case was a good start. However, Arkansas would greatly improve in this category with extra state funding.

The report was not completely positive. The child poverty rate in Arkansas increased to 29 percent in 2012, up from 25 percent in 2005. Other states are experiencing similar increases in child poverty, likely due to the depth and severity of the recession.

A few other interesting points from the report:
•    Nationally, a smaller percentage of children live in families in which no parent has a high school diploma – from 22 percent in 1990 to 15 percent in 2012.
•    The teen birth rate is at a historic low.
•    The child poverty rate is increasing nationally, as well. Although it dropped from 18 to 16 percent from 1990 to 2000, the rate had reached 22 percent by 2010 and has remained at roughly that level. In 2012, nearly 16.4 million kids were living in poverty.
•    By 2018, children of color will represent a majority of children.
•    Despite tremendous gains during recent decades for children of all races and income levels, inequities among children remain deep and stubbornly persistent.

The KIDS COUNT Data Book features the latest data on child well-being for every state, the District of Columbia and the nation. This information is available in the KIDS COUNT Data Center, which also contains the most recent national, state and local data on hundreds of measures of child well-being. Data Center users can create rankings, maps and graphs for use in publications and on websites, and view real-time information on mobile devices.

News For Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Deed Scam Tricks Homeowners Into Sending Money

Scammers doing business under multiple names — including Record Transfer Services — are soliciting consumers nationwide who conducted recent real estate transactions.  The company tries to trick people into paying more than $80 for useless property records, including deeds that they can get for a few bucks from their county government.   They are deceived by Record Transfer Services' formal-looking letter, which looks like a government bill and asks for an $83 "document fee" for a deed and "real property records" by a certain deadline.

The letter says to send money to Record Transfer Services — or one of its aliases, Property Transfer Services, Conveyance Transfer Services, Record Retrieval Department and National Deed Service — at an address in South Dakota, Delaware, California or Michigan.  Many of those addresses are actually UPS post boxes, the Public Investigator's investigation shows. Some of the companies list the same phone number, (888) 874-4669.

The notice from Record Transfer Services asks for $83 to obtain a deed to the property and a property assessment profile.  Property owners can obtain the same type of documents by only paying .50 cents to $1 per page at the clerk's office.  The note from Record Transfer Services indicates that a transaction took place. The bottom of the page does state that the letter is a solicitation and by all means people should not feel obligated to pay the amount stated.  According to the Better Business Bureau, Record Transfer Services who sent out the notices is not accredited to its standards and is rated an F. 

Teen Critically Injured after Fall

A Jonesboro hiker is hospitalized after falling off the Lost Valley Trail in the Buffalo National River area.  National Park Service (NPS) officials say the 18-year-old man slipped Monday night while trying to cross a rock gap at the top of Eden Falls.  The victim took an initial fall of 10 feet before he was stopped by a ledge, but wet conditions caused him to slip again and fall another 15-20 feet. 

The NPS says his hiking companion lost sight of him after the final fall but was assisted by two University of Arkansas students, Cameron Cheri and Kenny Lewis, who were also hiking.  Due to a lack of cellular coverage, unidentified hikers traveled out from Lost Valley to call Buffalo National River dispatch. Once the page was received, Buffalo River Search and Rescue (BUFFSAR) team members were sent to the scene with the three young men assisting in the recovery.  BUFFSAR volunteer and EMT Chad Wilt was the first rescuer to arrive at Lost Valley and was led by Cheri and Lewis to the victim in the slot canyon between the Upper and Lower Eden Falls. While badly injured, the victim was conscious but did not remember falling, the NPS said. At last report, the injured man was stable and in intensive care.

Old Glade Post Office Relocated to Beaver Lake

A post office building from the 1800s that was moved when its town was flooded has been returned.  The building that housed the Glade Post Office and store from 1890 to 1945 was relocated to a hill overlooking Beaver Lake on Monday. The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports the building was recently donated to the Glade Community Historical Society.  The building was moved from Glade to Pea Ridge 53 years ago when the lake was created. A family used it as a storage shed before donating it to the society.  The Benton County Historical Preservation Commission paid $8,000 for the 20-mile transport. Preservationists plan to renovate the structure starting with a new tin roof.

Walton's Top Forbes' List as Wealthiest Family

What do the Koch family, Mars family, S.C. Johnson family and Rockefeller family all have in common? Well, besides all being multi-billion dollar empires, they all have less money than the Waltons of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. of Bentonville. Forbes recently ranked America's richest families, who combined for an aggregate wealth of $1.2 trillion, and the Walton family — made up of Christy Walton, Jim Walton, Alice Walton, S. Robson Walton, Ann Walton Kroenke and Nancy Walton Laurie — was the wealthiest with a combined net worth of $152 billion.

Here's what Forbes had to say about the wealthiest family in America.  "Unrest has beset the Walton's Wal-Mart empire. Workers at one of the world's biggest employers went on strike to protest low wages and have led a movement to unseat Rob Walton as chairman, but family's tight grip on the retailer — together they own 51 percent of the shares — gives them effective veto power. With $476 billion in revenue, Wal-Mart still reigns as the world's largest retailer, a far cry from the company started by Sam Walton and his brother James in a small Arkansas town in 1962."  The Waltons were followed by the Koch family, with a net worth of $89 billion, and the Mars family, with a net worth of $60 billion. The Walton family's reign as America's wealthiest is large enough that the net worths of its two closest competitors could be combined, $149 billion, and still fall short by $3 billion.

Mercy Clinic Donations Support Families and Children - “Force for Good” grants totaling $86,500 benefit nine local programs.  

Twice each year, Mercy Clinic doctors and co-workers pull out their personal checkbooks and give to local charitable organizations that address immediate needs in our community. In the past ten years, Mercy Clinic’s “Force for Good” has handed out more than $1.68 million.  It’s time for another round of grant awards. Nine organizations will receive grants ranging from $1,500 to $17,500. The gifts in this round total $86,500 and benefit local family and children’s programs that do everything from provide kids with new shoes to school supplies.

In Hollister, a $10,000 grant award will benefit “Gift of Hope,” which provides essentials and pathways to independence for families in Taney County. It helps with everything from college scholarships to holiday assistance. This money will go toward its Backpack Club, which sends food home with 850 children each weekend.

Amazon Asks FAA to Test Drones Outside

Keep laughing at Amazon's Prime Air drone delivery video if you want to but the company is moving forward as though it's serious. Bloomberg points to a letter filed with the FAA asking for permission to take its unmanned flying machines out of their test facility, "to do what thousands of hobbyists and manufacturers of model aircraft do every day." 

The FAA is still putting tight controls on the commercial use of drones, but Amazon Global Public Policy VP argues that one day its Prime Air drones will be as common a sight as mail trucks on the road are today. He says that the company's indoor tests in Seattle have brought its "highly automated" small unmanned aircraft systems (sUAS, for short) to ninth-gen vehicles -- CEO Jeff Bezos told shareholders it was on the 5th and 6th gen in April. They can travel at 50mph carrying 5 lb packages (which covers 86 percent of Amazon's deliveries) easily, and have been tested for agility, flight duration, redundancy plus other factors. The FAA has yet to respond to the petition, but who knows, maybe soon area residents can keep an eye on the sky and go Blu-ray hunting.