House members have now begun the second week of the 2021 Regular Session.
Wednesday, January 13, 2021
We’re almost a month into our COVID-19 immunization program, and today I’d like to emphasize the importance of Arkansans taking one of the two approved vaccines so that we can stop the coronavirus and get back to our lives.
Public participation is an essential part of our democracy. In preparation for the upco
Wednesday, January 06, 2021
While we prepare to enter a new year and begin the 2021 Regular Session, we want to take a moment to review what has been taking place at the State Capitol in 2020. Some of the work accomplished in 2020 lays the foundation for future legislation.
Duck hunting is one of the great cultural traditions of Arkansas, and it also pumps a lot of money into our economy.
Wednesday, December 30, 2020
The Task Force to Advance the State of Law Enforcement in Arkansas submitted its report to me last week, and I’d like to talk about some of the action items the members recommended.
I hope everyone had a merry Christmas and will have a happy New Year as we are fast approaching 2021. As I reflect on the past two years, I can honestly tell you that my heart is full and grateful. As most of you know, my term as Arkansas state representative for District 11 has come to an e…
Wednesday, December 23, 2020
Merry Christmas everyone! As a reminder, all state and federal facilities will be closed on Thursday, Dec. 24, and on Friday, Dec. 25 in observance of the Christmas holiday.
Sherian Kwanisai stepped into Arkansas history last week as the first person in the state to be vaccinated for COVID-19, and today I’d like to talk about the significance of this in our nine-month battle against the coronavirus.
Wednesday, December 16, 2020
On Thursday, the advisory committee of the Federal Drug Administration said “yes” to the emergency use authorization of the first coronavirus vaccine in the United States, and today I’d like to talk about what that means for Arkansas.
I would like to take a moment to congratulate my House colleague, Rep. Vivian Flowers. This past week, Rep. Flowers was named the National Black Caucus of State Legislators (NBCSL) of the year at the Annual Legislative Conference held Nov. 30 thru Dec. 5.
Wednesday, December 09, 2020
As I write this communication to you, Congress is currently working on extensions for the CARES Act that will, hopefully, bring some much-needed relief to our neighbors who need it most.
Today I’d like to talk about the Natural State’s spirit of giving, which I’ve witnessed consistently through the years. When a friend or neighbor is in need, Arkansans show up in a hurry with pickaxes and open wallets.
Wednesday, December 02, 2020
Last week was Thanksgiving week, and Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays of the year. I do like the reminder that we as individuals and as a state and nation should pause and give thanks. I grew up in a small country church in which we always sang the old hymn, “Count your blessings,…
I hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving and was able to limit travel and celebration groups as much as possible. Please remember that we are still battling COVID-19.
Wednesday, November 25, 2020
First, I would like to wish you and your family a happy Thanksgiving. It is the time of year when we get together and express our appreciation and love for those whom we are blessed to call family. This year is different and challenging. We are still wrestling with COVID-19. Unfortunately, o…
This year for the first time, enrollment in computer science courses topped 10,000, the sixth straight year enrollment has increased, and today I’d like to talk about what’s happening and what’s down the road.
Wednesday, November 18, 2020
I hope that you had a chance to honor veterans last week. I shared what the Assembly has been doing in support of veterans including making business and job search easier as well as continuing research to aid in uplifting veterans if they have struggles.
This is National Apprenticeship Week, and today I’d like to discuss the progress we’ve made in expanding registered apprenticeship programs throughout Arkansas.
Wednesday, November 11, 2020
November is National Adoption Month in Arkansas, and Nov. 21 is National Adoption Day. Today I’d like to share the story of an amazing employee of the Division of Children and Family Services, which is a part of our state Department of Human Services, or DHS.
Wednesday, November 04, 2020
The blazing foliage of fall is reason enough to travel the Natural State this weekend, but there’s more to autumn in Arkansas than the brightly colored leaves. Today I’d like to mention a few spots worth a visit this time of year in addition to the trails of leaves.
I just want to take this time to congratulate everyone on using your voice this past week with your vote!
Wednesday, October 28, 2020
Recent events around the nation have led to discussions about law-enforcement practices. Today I’d like to talk about the progress Arkansas has made with crisis intervention training for police officers and the Crisis Stabilization Units that offer an alternative to jail for people who are s…
There are only three months to go in year one of our governmental transformation process in Arkansas. Last year in our legislative session, the 92nd General Assembly passed Act 910, the “Transformation and Efficiencies Act.” The initial Act took effect this year and the governor’s cabinet se…
Wednesday, October 21, 2020
Please join me in recognition of an especially important cause. Breast cancer. In 2017, 2163 Arkansans were reported as having breast cancer and we grieve the loss of 414 of our loved ones to the disease. The most frequently diagnosed cancers in our state include lung, colorectal, prostate c…
Monday was the first day for early voting, and today I’d like to talk about what will be on the ballot.
Wednesday, October 14, 2020
In October, we are bringing attention to the challenge of drug addiction, and today I’d like to highlight some efforts to slow it.
There are so many important dates coming up that affect our lives here in Arkansas. One, as you know, is the coming election. Vote, vote, vote! Make a voting plan.
Tuesday, October 06, 2020
Our students are back in school, and now is the time to focus on the best educational resources. Forty-one percent of every tax dollar that comes into the state of Arkansas is allocated for K-12 public schools. The state provides almost half of school district revenues.
In the six years since I signed the Computer Science Initiative legislation, the success of it has far exceeded my expectations, and today I’d like to talk about a new report that offers some bold recommendations for the future of computer science education in Arkansas.
Wednesday, September 30, 2020
Vote! Vote! Vote! Voting season is here and there are a few deadlines and reminders I would like to share.
Wildfires out west have been in the headlines for weeks, and today I’d like to share some news about state and federal responders from Arkansas who are out there fighting them.
Wednesday, September 23, 2020
Today I’d like to share two pieces of news that illustrate how Arkansas has fostered an environment that encourages high-tech entrepreneurs and the educators who mentor and inspire them.
Tuesday, September 22, 2020
The coronavirus pandemic has forced us into a new normal, and that means more and more people are conducting daily activities remotely. People are working, schooling, and churching from home. Students are participating in distance learning, parishioners are attending church services online, …
Wednesday, September 16, 2020
Today I’d like to share a story about the business success of a family that also is an economic development success for southeast Arkansas.
For now, we have a new normal, maneuvering COVID-19. We are wrestling with life’s challenges from a new perspective and approach. Mental health issues are on the rise. As a result, thousands of Americans die every year from suicide.
Wednesday, September 09, 2020
This was Labor Day weekend, which means summer is over, and we’re heading into the election season.
We are still battling COVID-19, and more and more Arkansans are now working remotely. As we embrace our new normal, access to high speed internet is a growing need in our business and education settings.
Wednesday, September 02, 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic has threatened the survival of many small businesses in Arkansas, and today I’d like to share good news about a grant program that will help. It is the Arkansas Historic Preservation and Main Street Arkansas grants.
I am asking District 11 to join me in praying for and watching out for our youth. Last week I had the distinct pleasure of meeting the Lake Village School Prayer Warriors to do just that.
Wednesday, August 26, 2020
This year marks the centennial of the 19th amendment giving women the right to vote in the United States. Arkansas was the 12th state to ratify the 19th amendment on July 29, 1919. The 92nd Legislative Assembly had the privilege of celebrating 100 years of women voting in Arkansas, and this …
Most Arkansas schools are starting back, and I’d like to offer some thoughts as we head into an academic year unlike any in my lifetime.
Wednesday, August 19, 2020
Parents, teachers, and students have a big job preparing to return to school this fall while still in the middle of a world pandemic. In preparation for back to school, the Arkansas Department of Education (ADE) is excited to announce the “Ready for School Resource Call Center.”
COVID-19 has highlighted some of the shortcomings of our broadband connectivity, but the pandemic also has created opportunities for us to accelerate our expansion of internet service, which I’d like to talk about today.
Wednesday, August 12, 2020
I have appointed Dr. José Romero as secretary of the Arkansas Department of Health, and today I’d like to share some things about the man who is assuming this job in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.
None of us thought that at this time we would still be in the thick of a world pandemic. As we enter the fall months and kids head back to school, it is a great time for all family members to get updated on immunizations.
Wednesday, August 05, 2020
As medical professionals and leaders continue to fight to get this pandemic under control, there are some actions that will aid us in doing just that-contact tracing.
Under our state’s broadband initiative, the number of Arkansans with access to high-speed internet is increasing, and today I’d like to talk about the Arkansas Access Point Project, a new program that will make the world wide web available for thousands more students.
Wednesday, July 29, 2020
This week, I met with doctors, nurses, and respiratory therapists at Washington Regional Medical Center in Fayetteville who have been on the front line of saving lives during this coronavirus pandemic. They were tired and stressed, but their work makes me grateful for their services and sacr…
Exactly 30 years ago on July 26, 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law. This law made it illegal to discriminate against our fellow citizens because of a disability.