Government Wants to — Kill More of Us?

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I have some very bad news, which will likely grieve you to your core as it did me: Rep. David Fielding (D-Magnolia) does not read The Arkansas Project. If he did, he would have seen my post last month about a new report that shows government texting-while-driving bans have been linked to an increase in auto accidents. Instead, the honorable representative, according to KATV, is planning to proceed with even stricter restrictions on texting-while-driving: The draft calls for tough penalties on … [Read more...]

VIDEO: Lawmakers Question Agency Officials Over Interpreter Hire

Arkansas journalists are paying lots of attention to the scandal surrounding state Treasurer Martha Shoffner (and rightfully so), but they shouldn’t overlook the fallout from Bill Walker's hiring of an unqualified friend to serve as a sign language interpreter for the state.  As we previously reported, the interpreter has since been removed from that position and shifted into another position in the agency. The Personnel Services Committee has been reviewing the hire.  They met yesterday. … [Read more...]

The Anatomy of Corruption, Bill Walker Style

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I reported on July 18th that the Legislative Council’s Personnel Services committee was reviewing the hiring of Miss Clara Taylor--a woman who was hired to serve as a sign language interpreter for the state, despite her lack of credentials for the position.  That review has now been conducted and completed by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and has produced this 15-page document which is full of fun facts for taxpayers. Now, this report is filled with oodles of background information … [Read more...]

The Concerns of the Deaf Are Finally Heard

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Friday news dump by state government!  I haven’t been able to find this story anywhere else, so I am taking a huge career risk here by acting upon this information, but the Arkansas Times is reporting that our friend Bill Walker has issued a statement saying that he has actually removed unqualified interpreter Clara Taylor from her position.  This of course is a story we have been following for a while here at The Arkansas Project, advocating Taylor’s removal because of her apparent inability to … [Read more...]

Career Education Department Remains Blind to the Needs of the Deaf

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Another government screwup in the Department of Career Education:  a state employee has stood up to his superiors, even though senior management is intent on packing state government payrolls with unqualified political hires. Why does the Beebe administration continue to tolerate mid-level bureaucrats who stand in the way of progressive cronyism? What on earth are these bureaucrats doing, standing in the way of hiring a completely unqualified sign language interpreter? David McDonald … [Read more...]

Taste of Freedom: Let’s All Raise A Glass To Liberalizing Liquor Laws!

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A dedicated Arkansas Project reader sends along a link to this nifty map from those limey toffs at the BBC offering "a snapshot of wet and dry America." They slipped out of their powdered wigs and put on their thinking caps to generate this graphic detailing the lingering effects of alcohol prohibition here in the U.S. With 43 dry counties in red, Arkansas looks to be a national leader (?) on this front. I don't think I realized how much of the nation lives in open territory when it comes to … [Read more...]

Auditors: State Unemployment Overpayments Only $44 Million!

What a relief!

A long-awaited audit of the state unemployment insurance (UI) program was the focus of a legislative hearing Tuesday, and since that's been a subject of interest here on The Arkansas Project lo these many months, I strolled over to see what was going down. You'll recall in September of last year, a U.S. Dept. of Labor report indicated that Arkansas had made an estimated $161 million in "improper" UI payments  from 2007-2010. The Dept. of Workforce Services (DWS), which administers … [Read more...]

Burris on Arkansas Budget Battle: ‘They Don’t Like What We’re Doing Because It’s Effective’

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Rep. John Burris, the Republican minority leader in the Arkansas House of Representatives, spoke to a meeting of the Central Arkansas Young Republicans today at Whole Hog Cafe in Little Rock. Since I've written here about the budget debate at the Capitol, I stopped by to hear Burris's thoughts on the current state of play. Burris, who along with his colleagues has proposed budget reductions totaling some $21 million, noted that Gov. Mike Beebe has been unreceptive to his message of reining in … [Read more...]