The Bowen Gym: Not Just Indefensible, But Also Illegal!

Bowen Gym - Legal Training

You might recall our earlier coverage when Attorney General Dustin McDaniel "donated" $100,000 of your money to the University of Arkansas at Little Rock Bowen School of Law – to subsidize what appears likely to be a sickness-causing fitness center. (The gym, containing seven fitness machines, lacks any shower facilities or any other way for patrons to clean themselves; because of limited shower facilities in the basement, it is only usable by about two law students at any given time, assuming … [Read more...]

Another Case Shows Need For Right-To-Record Law

Filming Cops (Sebastian County)

Another law enforcement agency was in the news recently after it paid the cost for attempting to restrict the right of citizens to film law enforcement. After a Sebastian County Sheriff’s Deputy agreed to accept a $40,000 judgement against himself for, apparently, arresting a citizen who was filming cops executing a search warrant, the Sebastian County Sheriff’s Office decided it needed to remind its employees about a little ol’ thing called the Constitution. From Arkansas News: Following … [Read more...]

REPORT: Arkansas A ‘Sinkhole’ State

State Debt 2200 Per Person

If your wallet feels a little lighter lately, that’s because the state of Arkansas has you on the hook for approximately $2,200. According to the 2013 Financial State of the States Report released recently by Truth In Accounting, Arkansas state government owes approximately $9.2 billion, which is more than its $7.5 billion in assets. Arkansas is one of many “sinkhole states” which owe more money than they currently have in assets, according to the report. From the report: The state of … [Read more...]

Act 312 Stops Illegal Voter ‘Education’ in Texarkana

arkansas news

We write a lot here about all the bad laws that come out of the state legislature, but today we want to focus on one of the best ones: Act 312 of 2013, sponsored by state Rep. Nate Bell. As we wrote in November, Act 312 prohibits government employees from using taxpayer-funded resources to influence the outcome of ballot measure elections. Violating this act amounts to a Class A misdemeanor; furthermore, whoever violates it will both lose his or her job and be barred from future Arkansas … [Read more...]

Sales Tax Holiday Leads to High Tax Hangover

Sales Tax Free Weekend

All tax reductions aren’t created equal -- and nowhere is this more evident than in this weekend’s annual sales tax holiday. Because of tax changes passed in 2011, some purchases of clothing and school supplies will be free from taxation on Saturday and Sunday. Many politicians in the middle of campaign season take the week before this holiday as a chance to boast about their tax-cutting bonafides. However, this temporary tax respite leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to fostering … [Read more...]

Report: Only “Robust Growth” in Little Rock Is from Government

Arkansas capitol

Another new study adds to the evidence we’ve written recently about: namely, there's lots of room for improvement with respect to economic growth in central Arkansas. According to the Manhattan Institute’s America’s Top Metros report, the Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway area ranks 90 out of 100 metros in economic recovery from the recession since 2009. (To be clear: #1 is the top; #100 is the bottom.) From the report: Unlike most of the bottom 20 on our list, the Little Rock MSA is … [Read more...]

The Not-So-Independent Citizens Committee

Independent Citizens Committee

Over the weekend, Republicans at their party convention voted to oppose an upcoming “ethics reform” ballot measure in 2014 that waters down term limits for state legislators. Here is the report from the AP: Arkansas Republicans have voted to oppose a ballot measure that would loosen the state's term limits and tighten state ethics laws. Delegates at the state GOP's convention on Saturday approved a resolution opposing the proposed constitutional amendment appearing on the November ballot. … [Read more...]

Judge McGowan Benchslaps Act 1413

A-lonely-gavel

One of the most offensive bills that the Arkansas General Assembly passed last session was SB 821/Act 1413. This bill, which we warned the legislature about, almost seemed designed to make it more difficult for citizens to pass laws by means of ballot initiatives. Act 1413 created a new set of regulations that controlled the registration, tracking, and training of those who gathered signatures for petitions. Earlier this week, we were very pleased to see Judge McGowan’s decision to the effect … [Read more...]