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Sex offender arrested for entering school

August 21, 2014

A registered sex offender was arrested Wednesday for allegedly entering Ringgold Elementary School without an escort, a violation of his terms.
Robert Warford, 39, of Saline County alleged entered Ringgold Elementary School with his child on the first day of school.
"Warford did have a legitimate reason to be at the school, but violated his terms of release by not notifying staff and requesting an escort while on school premises," said Lt. Kevin Russell, Benton Police Department spokesperson.
Warford is a level three sex offender, Russell said.

Billingsley announces candidacy for Bryant City Council

August 21, 2014

Carlton Billingsley has announced he will oppose Gary Hollis for the Ward 2, Position 2 seat on the Bryant City Council.

The position currently is held by Randy Cox, a candidate for the mayoral seat.

Billingsley, a long-time resident of Bryant, says he cares about the community and seeks "an opportunity to lead the community in a positive direction for all residents in the city of Bryant."

Billingsley said he cares about each resident in Bryant and hopes to make the city better for everyone.
"I'm looking forward to the opportunity to bring new ideas," he said.

Driver wrecks, charged with DWI

August 21, 2014

James Matthew Shelnut, 41, of Benton was charged with misdemeanor driving while intoxicated Tuesday.

According to an incident report from the Saline County Sheriff's Office, Shelnut was westbound on West Longhills Road in Benton when he lost control of his 1998 Chevrolet Z71, crashing into a telephone pole on the north side of the roadway.

The crash occurred 453 feet from the intersection of West Longhills Road and Gabby Lane.

Bryant bond issue back in discussion

August 21, 2014

Bryant bond issue back in discussion

Sarah Perry

Bryant City Council will be meeting in a special session at 6 tonight tonight to discuss a bond proposal previously rejected by voters.

This issue, which was voted down in May, has been revised to include only the park section of the bond, said Mayor Jill Dabbs.

The meeting was requested by Aldermen Wade Permenter, Brenda Miller, Rob Roedel and Scott Curtis. Alderman Mike Chandler also said he is in favor of the meeting but will be out of town, she said.

McMahan encourages residents to run for office

August 21, 2014

A letter from Bauxite Mayor Johnny McMahan, dated July 30, was sent to a select number of Bauxite residents to encourage them to run for the offices of alderman, mayor and town treasurer in the November 2014 general election.

According to McMahan, the letter was sent out to about 15 residents.

The letter stated: "I am asking you personally to consider becoming one of these candidates as I believe Bauxite needs intelligent, serious and dedicated people to help our town through the next two to four years."

Accident involving school bus, car reported in Bauxite

August 20, 2014

An accident involving a school bus and a car was reported on Wednesday evening near Bauxite Cutoff Road, according to Lt. Scott Courtney, Saline County Sheriff's Office spokesperson.

Children were on board the bus at the time of the accident, but only three minor injuries were reported, Courtney said.

More details will be released at a later time.

Benton church offering way to avoid financial distress

August 20, 2014

First United Methodist Church of Benton is participating in Financial Peace University, a nine-week course designed to provide families and individuals with with practical tools to gain control of their finances and set themselves up for long-term financial success.

Classes meet once a week for a different lesson taught by program founder Dave Ramsey on DVD followed by a small-group discussion. Lessons include budgeting, relationships and money, getting out of debt, saving for emergencies and investing.

Advocate group monitoring Alexander juvenile center

August 20, 2014

After an increased number of reported assaults at the Arkansas Juvenile Assessment and Treatment Center in Alexander, an advocacy group, Disability Rights Center of Arkansas, is now monitoring the center.

The center has released a report about its findings but will still monitor the center, said Justin Nickels, communications specialist with the facility.

"We hope this report and the recommendations made within will help to move the discussion in the direction of creative and positive next steps toward a truly effective and humane juvenile justice system," according to the report.

Bauxite sells land to state highway department

August 20, 2014

The Bauxite City Council has approved a resolution to allow the sale of small amount of property to the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department.

In a regularly scheduled meeting of the council Monday night, the council members agreed to sell approximately 10 square feet of land to the Highway Department for $100.

Mayor Johnny McMahan said the state agency is interested in enlarging the Rock Island Railroad bridge by straightening out Arkansas 183. The property to be purchased from Bauxite is located past Arkansas Labeling on the left side of the highway, near Bryant.

C.W. Lewis, taxes focus of press conference

August 20, 2014

Benton Parks Department and UALR-Benton Center have joined forces to breathe life back into C.W. Lewis Stadium.

The partnership was announced by Benton Mayor David Mattingly at a press conference this morning.

Additionally, Mattingly announced plans for a phased-in reduction of personal property taxes during the next three years, the location of a police/fire substation on Arkansas 5 near Alcoa Road and an agreement with Saline County to use the CodeRED system currently in place.

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