State Representative Kathy Webb
House District 37
 
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Happy New Year 2012
Posted by Kathy Webb on 2-Jan-2012

Happy New Year! I hope you enjoyed the holidays and 2012 is off to a great start. The biggest news from the Capitol is that preparations for the fiscal session are continuing (more on that later). However, there are several acts from the previous session that take effect January 1, 2012.  This year there are over 20 acts, laws change everything from taxes to traffic tickets.

        Starting this year, you will not pay any state sales tax for new or used vehicles sold for under $4,000.  The tax breaks provided in Act 753 also apply to trailers and semi-trailers.  The previous exemption was for those purchases under $2,500.

        Another new law is designed to protect Arkansas families from carbon monoxide poisoning.  Act 146 will require carbon monoxide detectors be placed in all homes constructed after January 1st.  According to the Centers for Disease Control, unintentional CO exposure accounts for an estimated 15,000 emergency department visits and 500 unintentional deaths in the United States each year.

        Hopefully, you won’t be pulled over by a police officer. But if you are, you may notice some changes.  Act 908 authorizes the use of electronic traffic tickets.  Police officers will still have to provide you with a printed copy, but technology now allows the officers to enter the information electronically.  This reduces miscommunication from handwritten tickets.  It also reduces the amount of time an officer spends writing out the information while both parties are on the side of the road.  Although this law does not require that departments have the technology, it does permit the electronic transfer of information between the departments and the courts. This will improve government efficiency and save taxpayer dollars.

        In an effort to reduce prison overcrowding and provide effective drug treatment, the legislature passed a bill increasing court costs for specific drug offenses.  In Act 730, those fees will be used for drug courts and other substance abuse programs. 

        During the regular session, the General Assembly also recognized the growing amount of families charged with taking care of elder loved ones and the court challenges that often come as a result of moving those family members to the caregivers home.  Act 159 is the Act to Adopt the Uniform Adult Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Jurisdiction act.  This act orders cooperation between courts in Arkansas and outside states when proceedings need to be held to establish adult guardianships. 

More positive changes are on the horizon for Arkansas in 2012.  Pre-filing for appropriation bills begins on January 9th.   Budget hearings begin January 17, and are conducted by Joint Budget Committee, which I Co-Chair with Senator Gilbert Baker. The fiscal session begins on February 13th, and with very few exceptions, deals only with appropriations bills.   Given economic indicators, there will certainly be challenges before us in the new year, but we expect the outcome will continue to move the state in the right direction. 

Thank you for allowing me to represent you. And please let me know if I can answer questions or assist you in any way.

 

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Happy New Year 2012 2-Jan-2012
Thanksgiving News 28-Nov-2011
Veteran's Day 11-Nov-2011
Arkansas Drug Courts 7-Nov-2011
Nov. 8 election information 25-Oct-2011
Budget Matters 10-Oct-2011
Committee Meeting Updates 3-Oct-2011
Recap of NCSL 15-Aug-2011
Little Rock Central High Baccalaureate Speech May, 2011 28-July-2011
Academic Challenge Scholarship Update 18-July-2011
Summertime Heat Information 6-July-2011
Ending Hunger in Arkansas 20-June-2011
Post Legislative Update 9-June-2011
Legislative Update 5-May-2011
Happy Earth Day! 22-Apr-2011
Legislative Update 04/04/2011 4-Apr-2011
Legislative Update 03/28/2011 28-Mar-2011
Legislative Update 03/21/2011 21-Mar-2011
House update 03/12/2011 12-Mar-2011
House update 03/08/11 8-Mar-2011
House update 02/14/11 14-Feb-2011
House update 02/08/11 8-Feb-2011
Legislative Update 01/30/2011 30-Jan-2011
New Session Update 14-Jan-2011
Final notes on the year 2011's new laws. 31-Dec-2010
Hunger relief in Arkansas 20-Dec-2010
Getting ready for the 2011 session 11-Dec-2010
Bill Filing Facts 30-Nov-2010
A few words about our Veterans 15-Nov-2010
Scholarship Lottery Enhancements 1-Nov-2010
Domestic Violence Awareness and Legislation 22-Oct-2010
Upcoming Legislative Session Preparations 15-Oct-2010
New Provisions for the Affordable Care Act 1-Oct-2010
Education and School Funding Update 25-Sep-2010
Redistricting Update 2-Sep-2010
Jobs for Seniors -SCSEP 27-Aug-2010
Town Hall Meeting on Corrections Reform 20-Aug-2010
Extreme Heat Information 9-Aug-2010
Update on New Health Insurance Plans 23-July-2010
Medicaid Funding to Arkansas 16-July-2010
Federal Stimulus Money to Arkansas 16-July-2010
AR School for the Blind- Graduation Speech. 28-June-2010
Open Forum - August 19 - 6:30 pm Fletcher Library 25-June-2010
Scholarship Lottery Recipient Information 17-June-2010
Arkansas's Corrections System 10-June-2010
Arkansas' Trauma System 3-June-2010
Amendment 33 and Higher Education costs 26-May-2010
The Arkansas Scholarship Lottery 19-May-2010
Working for you even after the Fiscal Session is over. 12-May-2010
Energy Summit, New Orleans 29-Sep-2009
States and Foreign Policy 8-Sep-2009
Obesity, Diabetes and Menu Labeling 6-July-2009
Rise in Extremist Violence 16-June-2009
Serving Up Solutions 16-May-2009
Earth Day 2009 22-Apr-2009
Legislature Adjourns 9-Apr-2009
Climate Change Not Happening in Arkansas 1-Apr-2009
Domestic Partner Registry 26-Mar-2009
President Clinton, Senators Bumpers and Pryor 20-Mar-2009
House Rules and LR Marathon 14-Mar-2009
Stimulus Update 11-Mar-2009
Trauma System Approved 8-Mar-2009
Environmental / Energy news from the House of Webb. 2-Mar-2009
 


 

 
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