Arkansas Physicians Resource Council Honors Dr. Ray Hull

From Left: Vickey Boozman, wife of Dr. Fay Boozman; Dr. Ray Hull, award recipient; Jerry Cox, President of Family Council; and The Rev. Tom Hatley who nominated Dr. Hull.

Dr. Ray Hull of Rogers is the 2015 recipient of the Fay Boozman Award, given annually by the Arkansas Physicians Resource Council division of Family Council.  In honor of the late Dr. Fay Boozman, this award is given to a physician who lives out his or her Christian faith in his personal and family life, in professional practice, and in community.

Dr. Fay Boozman (1946-2005) is remembered by those who knew him as a man of bold faith, humble love, and endless optimism. His sudden death, as a result of a farming accident in 2005, stunned us and broke our hearts. He is deeply missed. He was, as one of his many admirers has said, “one of the good guys.”


Family Council Calls on Justices to Stand by Arkansans

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

On Tuesday, the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in Obergefell v. Hodges. This is considered by many to be a landmark case that will determine the future of marriage in America.

Family Council President Jerry Cox released a statement, saying, “Contrary to what some may believe, this is not simply a fight over same-sex marriage. This is about how marriage will be defined in America and who gets to write that definition.”

Cox said the U.S. Supreme Court should uphold state marriage laws in order to be consistent with its decision in United States v. Windsor. “In that ruling, the court said that marriage would be defined by each individual state. Upholding state marriage amendments as constitutional is the only way the court can be consistent with its 2013 Windsor decision.”

Cox said state marriage laws do more than simply ban same-sex marriage. “When the law says marriage is the union of one man to one woman, that is not simply a same-sex marriage ban. That defines the institution of marriage, and it prevents any other union from being classified as ‘marriage,’ including everything from same-sex marriage to polygamy.”

Cox said the U.S. Supreme Court should respect the will of the people concerning marriage. “If the court chooses to strike state marriage laws now, it will be doing so at the expense of democracy. Voters in Arkansas and thirty other states chose to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Voters in only three states have voted to define marriage differently. Every poll in more than a decade has indicated Arkansans still support the definition of marriage they adopted in 2004. This is something voters have handled very capably up to this point. Unilaterally striking these state marriage laws would signal that voters are incapable or irrelevant in the eyes of the U.S. Supreme Court.”


State Starts with Minimal Cuts to Lottery Expenses

According to an article published in today’s Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, the Department of Finance and Administration is starting with minimal cuts to expenses at the Arkansas Lottery.

According to the article, DFA has eliminated 6 staff positions totaling roughly $400,000 in salary costs.

Of course $400,000 sounds like a lot of money, but consider this: The Arkansas Lottery hopes to allocate around $78,000,000 for college scholarships this year; however, ticket sales have continued to struggle, and the Arkansas Lottery is giving less than 19% of its gross revenue to the scholarship fund.

Even if DFA gives all $400,000 to the scholarship fund, that amounts to a 5% increase in scholarship dollars at best.

This year, the Arkansas Lottery plans to spend $6.45 million on salaries and benefits, and roughly $338.5 million total. Reducing salary expenses by $400,000 represents a savings of only 6.2% on staff compensation, and it amounts to a little over 0.1% of the Lottery’s overall expenses.

While we are glad the Arkansas Lottery Commission has been abolished and Lottery operations are merging with the Department of Finance and Administration, the average state lottery allocates 30% – 35% of its gross revenue for things like education or scholarships; Arkansas is allocating less than 19%.

Eliminating costs and redundancies at the Arkansas Lottery may be a step in the right direction, but it’s probably going to take more significant measures to turn the Arkansas Lottery into even an “average” program.