Ozarks At Large

Weekdays at noon and 7 p.m. and Sundays at 9 a.m. on 91.3 FM

This locally produced news magazine has covered news, sports, politics, arts & culture and the quirky and unusual happenings in the Ozarks for more than three decades.

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Z. Sitek / KUAF

The 15 community action agencies across Arkansas have started taking applications for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, which helps low income households with energy bills. The executive director of the Washington County Economic Opportunity Agency says she expects more applications than usual because many more people are struggling financially during the pandemic.

For information and applications:

Courtesy / Arkansas Legislature

On the first day of the Arkansas Legislative Session, Rep. Stephanie Flowers, a Democrat from Pine Bluff, suggested an update to a rule requiring face coverings. She proposed an amendment penalizing anyone who fails to wear one at all times by docking per diem payments. The amendment was rejected on a voice vote.

Courtesy / Ashley for Arkansas

An expected controvery over the race for House District 32 did not materialize during the first day of the 2021 Legislative Session. Roby Brock, from our content partner Talk Business and Politics, and John Brummett, from the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, reflect on the legal challenges to Democrat Ashley Hudson's election to the post in their weekly conversation.

With election season behind us, the Arkansas Public Policy Center has shifted its attention to the Arkansas Legislative Session. The center will continue its efforts to educate voters by sharing information about redistricting, as well as any constitutional amendments legislators refer to voters.

In this story from the archives, we travel back to the week in 1999, when the General Assembly opened for its Regular Session and Mike Huckabee was inaugurated as the governor of Arkansas. At the time, Ozarks at Large's Dan Bennett was in Little Rock covering the 82nd General Assembly.

Courtesy / Arkansas Story Vault

In the spring of 2020, five student interns at the David and Barbara Pryor Center for Arkansas Oral and Visual History began working on a series of short documentaries about the Marshallese community in Northwest Arkansas. Because of the pandemic, they had to alter their plans and produced a podcast instead. All six episodes of the Arkansas Atoll Podcast are available now. 

On today's show, we speak with local bar owners about a lawsuit filed against state officials after the governor extended an 11 p.m. curfew on establishments that have on-premise alcohol permits. Plus, the 93rd General Assembly convenes today in Little Rock, so we take a look at COVID-19 protective measures being taken at the Arkansas Capitol and the bills that have already been filed by lawmakers. And, we hear about this weekend's Saturday Series at the Shiloh Museum of Ozark History, which will focus on an Ozark folk artist.

Courtesy / Maxine's Tap Room

The owners of more than 20 bars in Arkansas, including several in Fayetteville, have filed a lawsuit challenging the state’s 11 p.m. curfew, which Governor Asa Hutchinson enacted back in November at the recommendation of the Winter COVID-19 Task Force. The original order was supposed to expire on Jan. 3, but late last month, the governor extended it an additional four weeks. Bar owners say they're being unfairly targeted without any supporting data from the Health Department.

Courtesy / Arkansas General Assembly

The 93rd Arkansas General Assembly convenes today with lawmakers, staff, lobbyists and the public required to observe strict COVID-19 protective procedures. Incoming Senate President Pro Tem Jimmy Hickey, R-Texarkana, walks us through the new pandemic rules.

Courtesy / Sarah Kellogg / KUAR News

The Regular Session of the 93rd General Assembly convenes today. Lawmakers have already filed bills on topics ranging from abortion to hate crimes. Sarah Kellogg, with our content partner KUAR, speaks with AP reporter Andrew Demillo to learn what we can expect from the 2021 session.