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The LATEST from AR

  • June 4, 2010

    Arkansas: Improving Public Safety and Containing Corrections Costs

    Arkansas's prison population is projected to grow by as much as 43 percent over the next decade. Building and operating new prisons to accommodate this growth will cost approximately $1.1 billion between 2010 and 2020. With the state prison system already at full capacity, Arkansas policy makers are considering data-driven alternatives that will contain prison growth and corrections spending while protecting public safety. This June 2010 report detailed the steps state leaders took to advance public safety policy solutions.

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    • Stateline Story
    May 18, 2010
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    TODAY'S TAKE: While much of the nation may be focusing today (May 18) on key U.S. Senate primaries in Arkansas, Kentucky and Pennsylvania, a special statewide election in Arizona could gauge voters' temperature on the question of whether or not to raise taxes. Arizona voters will decide whether to endorse Republican Governor Jan Brewer's proposal to raise the state sales tax by a penny to 6.6 percent.
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    • Stateline Story
    May 18, 2010
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    As early voting, mail-in voting and other more convenient means of casting ballots become common, the old-fashioned precinct polling place is going out of style.
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  • April 1, 2010

    Prison Count 2010

    For the first time in nearly 40 years, the number of state prisoners in the United States has declined, according to Prison Count 2010, a survey by the Pew Center on the States. more

    • Stateline Story
    March 22, 2010
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    As states become determined to keep more school money inside the classroom, rather than in an administrative office, they are beginning to turn to the thorny issue of consolidation as a way to save on administrative costs. But consolidation of anything related to schools is notoriously difficult, and doesn't always turn out to provide the fiscal windfall states hope for. Implementation is fraught with complexities. Communities worry about the possibility of local schools closing even when it's promised that proposed changes would be largely administrative.
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    • Stateline Story
    February 26, 2010
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    Economists credit the federal stimulus package for helping bring an end to the recession. Most governors say the money prevented more drastic spending cuts and tax increases in their states. But a few Republican governors who took the money contend the stimulus was a mistake.
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    • Stateline Story
    February 22, 2010
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    Faced with historic revenue drops, states have tapped their rainy day funds in fiscal 2009 and 2010 at levels not seen since the 2001 recession to help close budget gaps totaling some $290 billion. The decision to go to these funds has renewed the debate about how much states should be setting aside in reserves and when to use the money. A few states, meanwhile, have been able to leave their funds intact.
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    • Stateline Story
    February 22, 2010
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    TODAY'S TAKE: The fiscal year that begins in July for most states will be "the most difficult to date," according to a survey of 45 states released at the winter meeting of the National Governors Association.
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  • February 18, 2010
    Fact Sheets: The Trillion Dollar Gap

    Fact Sheets: The Trillion Dollar Gap

    This 2010 report on funding state employee retirement benefits examined the roots of states' significant shortfall and how the economic crisis spurred states into action.

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    • State Fact Sheet
    February 18, 2010
    The Trillion Dollar Gap: Arkansas

    The Trillion Dollar Gap: Arkansas

     Arkansas is managing its long-term pension liability well, but it needs to improve how it handles the bill coming due for its retiree health care and other benefits.

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