Open Season on People of Faith in Eureka Springs

Eureka Springs may be the toughest place in Arkansas for people who want to practice their Christian faith in the public square. Tuesday’s passage of a so-called “anti-discrimination” ordinance has made it a lot harder for Jews, Christians, Muslims, and anyone else of faith to exercise their religious beliefs. Now, it’s open season on people in those groups.

Rather than preventing bias and discrimination, this ordinance makes discrimination the law in Eureka Springs. People of all faiths have always enjoyed religious freedom in Eureka Springs. Under this ordinance, citizens can be forced to choose between obeying their faith and obeying the City of Eureka Springs.


Lottery Scholarship Proceeds Drop in April

Yesterday the Arkansas Lottery released its financial report for the month of April.

According to the summary, the Arkansas Lottery took in roughly $33.9 million in April, and paid out $5.9 million–about 17% of its gross revenue–for scholarships.

Scholarship funds were down by more than $1 million from March, when the Lottery allocated $6.9 million for college scholarships.

Since July 1, 2014, the Arkansas Lottery has sold roughly $339.7 million worth of tickets, and has allocated $58.8 million for scholarships–again, about 17% of its revenue.

At this rate, the Arkansas Lottery ought to finish Fiscal Year 2015 with $71 – $75 million in its college scholarship fund–significantly less than the $81.2 million lottery officials initially budgeted for scholarships this year.

You can see a full breakdown of lottery revenue and scholarship allocation for Fiscal Year 2015 below.

Month Gross Lottery Revenue Paid to Scholarships % Gross Revenue
July $30,925,067.43 $5,928,447.99 19.2%
August 31,571,412.10 5,296,965.80 16.8%
September 30,710,493.31 4,317,227.10 14.1%
October 32,959,739.29 5,939,625.59 18.0%
November 30,617,278.28 5,577,035.16 18.2%
December 34,507,731.54 5,474,318.77 15.9%
January, 2015 35,433,619.67 7,287,773.28 20.6%
February 41,770,314.46 6,161,343.01 14.8%
March 37,367,453.25 6,898,524.35 18.5%
April 33,866,970.54 5,881,005.95 17.4%
Total $339,730,079.87 $58,762,267.00 17.3%


Home Schoolers: Here is an Opportunity to Amend S.B. 810

IMG_6796Yesterday Governor Asa Hutchinson announced a special session of the Arkansas Legislature will convene in two weeks.

The scope of the special session will be very narrow; however, this session is an opportunity for the legislature to address some of the concerns home schoolers have raised about the recently-passed S.B. 810, which deals with educational neglect reports made to the Child Maltreatment Hotline.

While we believe this law poses relatively little threat to home schoolers, many families have expressed concerns about S.B. 810, and we are committed to seeing those concerns addressed.

Governor Hutchinson has promised to work with DHS and the Child Maltreatment Hotline to ensure S.B. 810 does not adversely affect home schoolers. However, the Arkansas Legislature has an opportunity to address those concerns more permanently at the special session later this month, if Governor Hutchinson includes S.B. 810 on the agenda for the session.

If you would like to ask Governor Hutchinson to include S.B. 810 on the agenda for the special session, you can call his office in Little Rock at (501) 682-2345.

If you have any questions, feel free to call our office at (501) 375-7000.