Our network

News

Arkansas House OKs bill to soften social media protections


LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - The Arkansas House has passed a bill to soften social media protections for employees in the state.

In a 91-1 vote on Monday, the House exempted schools, daycares, summer camps, churches and religious-oriented employers from the state's social media rules.

The law adopted in 2013 protects current and prospective employees from having to disclose their social media username and password or change their privacy settings. Another change endorsed by the House would remove a ban on businesses forcing employees to "friend" another employee or a supervisor.

Supporters of the bill say the law is too restrictive and that employers need access to employees' social media.

The bill now heads to the Senate.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Man with blue light attempts to pull driver over


LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) – A man was arrested on Friday afternoon for impersonating a police officer.

Travis Franklin, 52, who was driving a white Ford Crown Victoria, attempted to use blue lights to stop a driver on Hwy. 67/167 South.

The man followed Franklin to 3rd Street, where his car slid on ice into a parking lot, striking a parked vehicle.

According to police, Franklin's vehicle was equipped with blue lights inside a push bumper on the front. Communications notified the Arkansas State Police and they responded to the scene.

Franklin was issued a traffic citation for careless and prohibited driving with an accident. Franklin was arrested by the Arkansas State Police and his vehicle was towed to the police impound lot.

Franklin was charged with second degree criminal impersonation, violation of the blue light law.

Applications due for Common Core council


LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - A hot topic for education in Arkansas is Common Core.

On Friday, the application phase for those interested in joining the state's advisory council closed.

Last week, Governor Asa Hutchinson called for a 16 member council with Lt. Governor Tim Griffin as the chairman to see if Common Core is working in the state.

Griffin says there's been a lot of interest in the council with more than 700 applications turned in. He says the mission for the council is clear.

"We want to listen to Arkansans from all around the state and hear their perspective on this and I want to get out and around the state as much as possible," said Griffin.

Ultimately the governor holds the final decision.

Two men arrested for southwest Little Rock hotel shooting


LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - Two men have been arrested in connection with a shooting that occurred on Tuesday night.

Calvin Williams, 23, was arrested on Thursday for first degree murder, terroristic act and first degree battery after being released from UAMS for a gunshot wound to the chest.

Ralph Armstrong, 25, turned himself in on Friday. He was also charged with first degree murder, terroristic act and first degree battery.

The shooting occurred at the America's Best Value Inn at 7900 Scott Hamilton Drive on Tuesday. Michael Strickland, 24, was shot and died at the scene.

Crews work to keep plows on the road


LITTLE ROCK, Ark.(KTHV)- Snow plow drivers aren't the only ones working 12-hour shifts to keep up with the slick roads.

Mechanics inside each Arkansas highway department garage are busier than ever. Grader operator David Tenner says his unit is important to snow and ice removal.

"This is the workhorse of the bad weather."

Maintenance is critical to keeping snow removal trucks on the road.

At 24 hours a day, nonstop, Tenner says that creates a lot of breakdowns, as well as the need for routine maintenance.

"You got to keep maintenance up on them all the time regardless. Every hundred hours you've got to change oil and change everything out on it."

Arkansas university president opposes highway funding bill


LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - The president of the Arkansas State University System says a bill to compensate for dwindling highway maintenance and construction funding would be "catastrophic" for higher education in the state.

Charles Welch told the system Board of Trustees on Friday that he opposed the bill approved a day earlier by the House Public Transportation Committee.

The measure would gradually divert the money from the state's general revenue over a 10-year period. State finance officials say the plan would cost the state nearly $35 million in the coming fiscal year and $548 million once fully implemented.

Welch says he'd like lawmakers to find a way to support highways without taking money away from education.

Arkansas highway officials say the change would help close the gap between the state's road needs and funding.

Hutchinson orders flags flown at half-staff in memory of P.O.W.


LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (February 20, 2015) – Governor Asa Hutchinson, in tribute to the memory of Corporal C.G. Bolden, an Arkansas native and American war hero, has directed that the United States flag and the state flag of Arkansas be flown at half-staff from sunrise to sunset on February 21.

Governor Hutchinson issued the following statement on Cpl. C.G. Bolden:

Corporal Bolden represented the best of America. The return of his remains back to Arkansas after 63 years reminds us all once again of the enormous sacrifice of our men and women in uniform and the sacrifice of their families. We owe them all a debt we can never fully repay. Today, we are honored to recognize Corporal Bolden, a Korean War hero and forever one of Arkansas's own.