Daily Legislative Update

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

23rd Day of 89th General Assembly—Fiscal Session

Written by Kenny Hall, Angela DeLille and Andrew Parker of the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce, this Daily Update is provided by the Springdale Chamber to interested members.



 The Arkansas House approved SB 111 this afternoon by a vote of 76 to 24. This bill reauthorizes funding for the "private option." The bill needed 75 votes from the 100 House members to pass and had failed on four previous votes the week before last. It now goes to Gov. Mike Beebe, who will sign it.



State Chamber/AIA President Randy Zook says this was a tough vote and a smart move that is good for Arkansas. We say thank you very much to the members who supported the private option.


SB 111 allows Arkansas to use federal Medicaid funds to purchase private insurance for thousands of low-income residents. The program was approved last year as an alternative to expanding Medicaid under the federal health law. Governor Beebe has said rejecting the $915 million in federal funds for the private option would jeopardize other state services. Beebe's proposed $5 billion budget relies on $89 million in savings he says the private option will create by cutting down on hospitals' uncompensated care costs.


If you asked your legislator to vote for the private option, please be sure and say thank you. Here is a link to today’s vote:



The candidate filing period closed at noon yesterday with 412 people filing. There will be one contested Supreme Court race and one contested Court of Appeals race. The State Senate will have three Republican primary races and three General Election races. The State House will have three Democratic primaries, 18 Republican primaries and 36 General Election races.


Click on this link to see who has filed:




State Senators: 501-682-2902

State Representatives: 501-682-6211

To view schedules, calendars, bill information and legislator information, visit:

To view live stream video and audio from the Arkansas House of Representatives,


State Chamber/AIA Staff:

Randy Zook, President/CEO: eat0@eau0eav0eaw0" target="_blank">eat0@eau0eav0eaw0

Kenny Hall, Executive Vice President: eat2@eau2eav2eaw2" target="_blank">eat2@eau2eav2eaw2  

Angela DeLille, Director of Governmental Affairs:

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Andrew Parker, Director of Governmental Affairs:

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State Chamber/AIA phone: (501) 372-2222

State Chamber/AIA web site: