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Lisa Hammersly

Northwest Business Reporter
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Recent Stories

Health care mandates staying put

GOP revamp would have eliminated 10 ‘essential’ benefits

The failure of Republicans to replace the Affordable Care Act means insurers will continue to cover 10 federally required minimum benefits for consumers, at least for now.

No cases identified to verify FOI claims by Arkansas' 2 university systems, highway department

Agencies say public-files law unfair

For weeks, lawyers for Arkansas' two university systems and the state Highway and Transportation Department have told legislators that they face an unfair advantage in court because of the state's public records law.

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Panel endorses limit for open-records law

UA, ASU say bill needed for court cases

A bill to halt public access to government records related to "pending or threatened" litigation -- which opponents say would undermine the intent of Arkansas' Freedom of Information Act -- is expected to go before the state House of Representatives for a vote on Monday, says supporter Rep. Bob Ballinger, R-Berryville.

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Arkansas colleges aiding in less-open FOIA bid

Emails promote litigation shield

The University of Arkansas and Arkansas State University systems are helping state Rep. Bob Ballinger write an amendment to the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act that legal experts say isn't needed and would cripple citizens' access to public records.

Bills to narrow Arkansas public-files law get panels' OK

Measures pertain to schools, police, Governor’s Mansion

Three voice votes by Arkansas legislative committees advanced bills Thursday to narrow Arkansans' rights to government records.

2 bills bad news for open-records law, experts say

Two legislative bills scheduled for an Arkansas House committee hearing today would gut the state law that gives taxpayers access to public records, according to a law professor and the director of the Arkansas Press Association.

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In dark on bids Arkansas senator submitted, companies say

Senator says not true, filed after talking to contractors

Two contractors say state Sen. Jake Files prepared and submitted bids under their companies' names without their knowledge.

Fort Smith ballpark concerns detailed

Files: Filled out forms for others

FORT SMITH -- State Sen. Jake Files told Fort Smith officials last month that he filled out and signed a tax record for a subcontractor and prepared two more subcontractors' price quotes to secure a $46,500 grant from the state General Improvement Fund, city records show.

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Arkansas governor plans to look into infant sleep death rate

Infant deaths on governor’s radar

Gov. Asa Hutchinson says he'll look into whether Arkansas provides enough funding and needed programs to reduce the state's high rate of infants who die in their sleep.

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DEAD ASLEEP DAY 3: Stopping killer of babies takes money

How Arkansas, others try to curb sleep deaths

The number of healthy infants who die in their sleep in Arkansas remains stubbornly high despite decades of efforts by public health officials. Even with a raft of new programs since 2010 that emphasize safe-sleep practices, Arkansas still ranked second-highest in the nation when the latest federal health data on Sudden Unexplained Infant Death were released in December.

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