YOUR LOCAL AND REGIONAL NEWS
FCPD THEFT INVESTIGATION
The Forrest City Police Department is on the lookout for a stolen car.
Ms. Karen White of Forrest City contacted police Monday (2/6) to report that her car was stolen while parked at 816 West Broadway.
The stolen car is a black, 4-door, 2004 Pontiac Grand Prix with Arkansas tag number 872 ZNB.
A witness was able to provide police investigators with a description of a pickup truck that may have been involved in the theft.
The investigation is ongoing.
CONTROVERSIAL BILL DISCUSSION
The Black Legislative Caucus hosted State Sen. Dan Sullivan (R) on Monday to discuss his bill that would eliminate affirmative action in Arkansas.
Since first going into effect during President Lyndon Johnson’s administration, affirmative action has been a platform that has given women and minority communities access to better jobs and education.
Sullivan’s bill would scratch “equity” and “civil rights” from the portion of Arkansas code dealing with this, and it would eliminate affirmative action and teacher retention programs targeting minority communities.
Sullivan said the current affirmative action program “discriminates” against people because it excludes “others who need help,” and he said this bill would lead to better outcomes.
Black lawmakers pushed back on Sullivan’s assertion that affirmative action is discriminatory. State Rep. Fred Allen (D) shared his own personal story of being hired out of college with the help of affirmative action, as managers did not want to hire him despite being qualified.
State Sen. Reginald Murdock (D) said that “this is not discriminating against people,” adding that “this is just trying to level the playing field.”
Black leaders and Sullivan agreed to continue the dialogue around the bill in coming days and weeks.
ARK GAS PRICES
The price of gasoline fell slightly in Arkansas over the past week but remains well above what motorists paid a month ago. (Channel 8, Jonesboro)
According to GasBuddy.com, the average price of a gallon of regular unleaded fell 3.3 cents last week to $3.11. That’s 16.8 cents higher than a month ago and 3.9 cents a gallon higher than the same time last year.
The national average fell 4.4 cents a gallon to $3.44. Diesel prices dropped 5.2 cents in the last week to $4.60.
Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, said that “for the first time in 2023, the national average price of gasoline has seen a weekly decline, primarily thanks to a sharp and sudden drop in the price of oil.”
While he expects to see more declines in diesel prices, he says gas prices are expected to make a U-turn and start to increase as we get closer to summer.
SFC PRODUCTION MEETINGS
St. Francis County will be involved in the following production meetings:
--Monroe & St. Francis County Rice & Soybean Production Meeting
Location: Woodruff Electric (Forrest City)
Date and Time: February 14, with registration beginning at 8 a.m. and program at 8:15 a.m.
(Will conclude at noon)
--Peanut Production Meeting
Location: Woodruff Electric (Forrest City)
Date and Time: March 7, with program beginning at 9:15 a.m. (Will conclude at noon)
Also, a Pesticide Applicator Training will be held Thursday, February 16th, at 9:15 a.m. at the St. Francis County Museum. The fee is $20/each.
For more information, call 870-261-1730.
SFC EXTENSION REPORT
One of the highlights of the month of February is Valentine’s Day and with that the giving of gifts, especially chocolate.
In her educational report this month, St. Francis County Family Consumer Science Agent Marla Lane talks about the history of chocolate in America:
That’s Ms. Marla Lane, Family Consumer Science Agent for St. Francis County.
LEE CO PRODUCTION MEETINGS
The Lee County Extension Service has announced the schedule for their 2023 Crop Production Meetings and Pesticide Applicator Trainings.
--Cotton & Corn Production Meeting
Feb. 7 at 8:30 a.m. at Lon Mann Research Station in Marianna
--Pesticide Applicator Training
Feb. 28 at 9 a.m. at Lon Mann Research Station in Marianna
--Peanut Production Clinic
March 7 at 9:15 a.m. at Woodruff Electric in Forrest City
--Pesticide Applicator Training
March 23 at 9 a.m. at Lon Mann Research Station in Marianna
If you have any questions or concerns, call the Lee County Extension Service at 870-295-7720.
RED CROSS BLOOD APPEAL
February often brings unpredictable winter weather that can cause blood drive cancellations and make it difficult for donors to make it to their appointments safely.
With the potential weather-related impact to the blood supply, the American Red Cross donors are urged to make and keep appointments to help prevent a shortage in the weeks to come.
Donors of all blood types – particularly type O, are needed by hospitals to meet the demand.
In thanks for helping keep hospital shelves stocked, all who come to give in February will get a $10 Amazon.com Gift Card by email, thanks to Amazon.
Those who come to donate this month will also automatically be entered to win a trip for two to Clearwater Beach, Florida. Details are available at RedCrossBlood.org.
To schedule a time to give blood, visit RedCrossBlood.org, download the Red Cross Blood Donor App or call 1-800-RED CROSS.
--The City Council of Forrest City will meet Tuesday (2/7) at 6 p.m. at City Hall.
--St. Francis Country Ministerial Alliance, three-night revival wraps up tonight (Tuesday) at 6:30 p.m. at Connect Point Church in Forrest City. Guest speaker will be Carolyn Motton. Allen Calvert is the host pastor.
--The East Arkansas Community College Board of Trustees will meet Thursday (2/9) at 6 p.m. in the EACC Boardroom.
--The Gospel Wonders of Brinkley present an Oldies but Goodies Gospel concert Saturday, February 11th at the Brinkley Convention Center. Doors open at 5:00 pm with the concert starting at 6:00 pm. Also that night, they will be raffling two Valentine’s Day baskets. See any member of The Gospel Wonders to purchase a ticket to win. Tickets will be $2 for the baskets and admission to the concert is $10.
--Newcastle Fire Department will have their annual chili fundraiser Friday, February 17th at First Baptist Church on North Rosser in Forrest City. Tickets are $8 in advance and $9 at the door. For advance tickets, contact Samuel Pettus at 870-317-5426, Kendall Pettus at White Motor Company or any auxiliary member.
-- The Hunter Fire Department is having their 33rd Annual Fish Fry & Auction Friday, February 17th at 6 p.m. at the Hunter Community Building and catered by Cajun Express. Tickets for adults are $15 and children 12 and under are $8 and can be purchased at the door. Contact any firemen to purchase gun raffle tickets or they can be purchased at the fish fry. If you have questions, call Stanley Johnson @ 870-734-6569.
--East Arkansas Community College will present the Bar-Kays featuring a Soul2Soul Revue Tribute to Stax on Saturday, February 18th at 7:30 p.m. at the EACC Fine Arts Center. Tickets are $44 and are available online at www.eacc.edu, by calling 870-633-4480, ext. 352, or in person at the Fine Arts Center Ticket Office.
--Salem Baptist Church at 105 Haven St. in Forrest City will host a Black History Celebration on Saturday, February 18th starting at 4 p.m. Host is Pastor Louis Ford. If you have any questions, please contact Prentice Hoard @ 731-608-8023. Everyone is invited to attend.
--Days Temple Church of God in Christ in FC will host a Black History program Sunday, February 19th beginning at 11a.m. The public is invited to attend. The speaker will be District Missionary Rosie Beard. An old-time dinner will be served. If you have any questions, please contact Dorothy Norment at 633-5910.
-- Attention all non-profits in the St. Francis County area: The St. Francis County Community Foundation is now accepting applications for their Giving Tree Grant Cycle. Applications are available online at www.arcf.org/stfranciscounty. For more information, contact Robyn Jayroe @ 870-261-2060. Deadline to apply is Feb. 15th.
-- In celebration of Mother Ernestine Weaver’s 85th birthday she is hosting a Drive-Thru Food Donation event benefitting the St. Francis County Food Pantry. The event will take place Friday, Feb. 24th from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Forrest City Civic Center. For questions, pick-up service, or additional information, please contact Mother Weaver at 870-633-7198.
-- The Region 7 “Me Over Meth” Conference will be Tuesday, February 28th at the Technology Center for the Delta in Wynne. Please register for the free conference by texting 870.408.1939. The conference will be from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and lunch will be provided. For more information, visit their website www.meovermeth.org. The conference is sponsored in part by the UALR Midsouth Center for Prevention and Training and Crowley’s Ridge Development Council.
--IRS certified volunteers are currently offering free tax preparation assistance at the Forrest City Public Library. This is for households making $73,000 or less. Drop-Off days and times are Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays only, from 9 a.m. to 12 noon and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Call the library at 633-5646 for more information.
--Graveside service for Lana Hughes Lemke, 76 of Forrest City will be Tuesday (2/7) at 2 p.m. at Forrest Park Cemetery. Visitation will be Tuesday starting at 1 p.m. at Stevens Funeral Home in Forrest City, which is in charge of arrangements.
--Funeral service for Mack Norris, 87, of Little Rock, formerly of Haynes will be Saturday (2/11) at 11 a.m. at the Forrest City Civic Center. Visitation will be thirty minutes prior to the service with Miles Mortuary of Forrest City in charge of arrangements.
--High School Basketball--
In high school basketball action Monday night:
--Riverview over Helena-West Helena, 67-57
--Southside Batesville over Forrest City, 38-28
Games on schedule for tonight (Tuesday) include:
Sr. Boys & Girls (unless otherwise indicated)
--Forrest City at Trumann
--Marvell-Elaine at Scott Charter
--Blytheville at Wynne
--Augusta at Clarendon
--Brinkley at Bradford
--Cross County at Carlisle
--McCrory at Hazen (Sr. Boys only)
--Bay at Earle (Sr. Boys only)
--Nettleton at Marion
--Searcy at West Memphis