Living in Harmony: Grant Funding Aims to Improve Two Rivers Park for Pedestrians and Cyclists

Two Rivers Park rendering

Pulaski County, Ark. – Pulaski County received a $330,000 grant from the Arkansas Department of Transportation’s Transportation Alternatives Program for trail improvements in Two Rivers Park. Terms of the grant also require a 20 percent investment from the county totaling approximately $83,000.

“We’ve been working with members of the biking community, organized cycling clubs and representatives of both city and county to put forth ideas to increase cycling safety along the Arkansas River Trail and its connections,” County Judge Barry Hyde said. “By separating cyclists and pedestrians there will be less possibility for conflicts or accidents.”

The $400,000 project includes an alternative trail, or spur, designed to direct more experienced cyclists, who ride at higher speeds, away from pedestrians and runners. The clearly signed, 16-foot-path includes a dashed center line to signify travel in both directions for more experienced riders.

The second element of the project features a traffic-calming circle constructed just south of the new spur to reduce on-path gathering. A bike rack and fix-it station will be located near the restroom while benches, water fountain and the kiosk will be relocated next to the pedestrian circle.

“This is just one of many projects in Two Rivers Park; there are more improvements and additions to come,” Hyde said. “It’s my goal that Two Rivers Park is welcoming and safe for all who wish to visit.”

Media Contact:
Cozetta Jones
501-541-4119
cjones@pulaskicounty.net

Driving Economic Growth: County Receives EDA Grant Funding to Improve Critical Road in Little Rock Port

Zeuber Road

Pulaski County, Ark. – Pulaski County Government announced today that it received a $2 million grant from the Department of Commerce, U.S. Economic Development Administration to make infrastructure improvements to Zeuber Road in support of future industrial development in Pulaski County.

The EDA grant will be matched with funds from Pulaski County and the City of Little Rock totaling $1 million. The Office of Governor Asa Hutchinson is also making a substantial contribution of $2 million.

“The importance of economic development in Pulaski County cannot be stressed enough,” said County Judge Barry Hyde. “Many thanks to the Department of Commerce for the investment and support in Pulaski County’s infrastructure improvements. The Little Rock Port is our most valuable asset in bringing domestic and international manufacturing corporations, heavy industry, and jobs, to the Central Arkansas region.”

“I’m pleased the Department of Commerce recognizes the potential economic impact the Zeuber Road project holds for the Port of Little Rock, the city, Pulaski County and the region,” U.S. Senator John Boozman said. This investment will help support future growth and improve safety by upgrading the roadway to meet the standards necessary for increased usage and access. It will also create jobs and enable future economic development. I thank Secretary Ross and the EDA for supplying this critical funding.”

The $5 million project is expected to grow the U.S. exports and increase foreign direct investment in addition to enhancing the commuting area in Little Rock Port Authority, Industrial Park. Once completed, this investment will expand the transportation network that serves vital industries, which will strengthen the regional economy, support private capital investment and create jobs. The anticipated outcome is more than 300 jobs and $60 million in private investment leveraged.

EDA press release

Media Contact:
Cozetta Jones
501-541-4119
cjones@pulaskicounty.net

Pulaski County Offices Closed for Labor Day

Pulaski County offices will be closed on Monday for the Labor Day Holiday. All trash pick-up routes will be a day behind. Be safe this holiday weekend.

County Judge and Quorum Court Member appointed to National Association of Counties Subcommittees

County Judge Barry Hyde and Justice of the Peace Paul Elliott have been appointed to subcommittees the National Association of Counties’ Justice and Public Safety Steering Committee. Hyde was appointed to serve on the Juvenile Justice Subcommittee for a one-year term. Elliott was appointed to the law enforcement subcommittee to also serve a one-year term. Both were nominated by the Arkansas Association of Counties and NACo’s President Greg Cox.

NACo’s Justice and Public Safety Steering Committee has jurisdiction over matters pertaining to the judicial system and public safety. For justice, the committee focuses on policy impacting juvenile justice and delinquency, substance abuse, mental health, and other issues that impact county judicial systems.

For public safety, the committee’s focus includes policy related to comprehensive emergency management, first responders (Fire, Police, EMS), Homeland Security, and more.

As members of the Justice and Public Safety Steering Committee, Hyde and Elliott will have the opportunity to introduce policy resolutions and platform changes before both the Legislative and Annual Conferences.

Learn more about the National Association of Counties at http://www.naco.org/what-we-do/about-naco.

Connecting Veterans to Services: Pulaski County to Host Benefits Fair

Pulaski County in partnership with the Arkansas Department of Veterans Affairs, will host a free Veterans Benefits Fair, Saturday, October 5 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at UA-Little Rock, College of Business Atrium.

Vendors will share information, answer questions regarding healthcare needs and perform wellness checks. Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System and Department of Veterans Affairs will assist veterans in signing up for benefits and making claims. Veterans are asked to bring their DD214. Spouses are also encouraged to attend.

“These events allow the community to focus on the importance of providing services to people who have devoted a part of their lives in service to our country,” said Pulaski County Veterans Services Officer, Albert Harkins. “It also shows younger people how the public views veterans and puts a spotlight on military careers.”

Arkansas is home to more than 225,000 Veterans with 30,934 in Pulaski County. The estimated total Arkansas economic impact is $4.5 billion to $5 billion, making them, if they were an industry, the fourth largest in the state.

For more information about the benefits fair or veterans’ services, call Albert Harkins at 501-340-6157.

County receives grant to extend housing and clinical services to persons living with HIV and AIDS

Pulaski County Community Services received a $383,000 Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) grant from the City of Little Rock Department of Housing and Neighborhood Programs. HOPWA is a federally funded grant through the Office of HIV/AIDS Housing (OHH) in the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Pulaski County will administer the grant and provide housing services to low-income individuals living with HIV/AIDS. Community Health Centers of Arkansas (CHCA) is the partner organization that will provide office space and access to health clinics for a grant administrator.

To qualify for the HOPWA program, an individual must be receiving healthcare and maintain adherence to medical provider requirements. If an individual seeking housing assistance is not receiving healthcare, CHCA will assist in finding a connection with a qualified provider.

“We want to ensure that Pulaski County citizens living with HIV/AIDS have a stable environment that supports their needs,” said Pulaski County Community Services Director, Fred Love. “A stable home supports their overall health outcomes and improves the likelihood clients will be compliant with taking their medications.”

According to the Arkansas Department of Health’s 2017 HIV Surveillance Report, there were approximately 61 new AIDS cases and 102 new HIV cases in Pulaski County. Of the county population, the stage 3 AIDS prevalence was 902. The HIV prevalence was 1,264.

The cost of health care and medications, coupled with the risk of housing discrimination makes individuals living with HIV/AIDS more likely to become homeless. According to the National Coalitional for the Homeless, up to 50 percent of persons living with HIV/AIDS in the U.S. are at risk of becoming homeless.

“We’re excited to be partnering with the county on such a worthy endeavor,” said LaShannon Spencer, chief executive officer of Community Health Centers of Arkansas. “People with AIDS/HIV provide value to our community, and CHCA wants to do our part to meet their needs.”

The three major programs that Pulaski County Government will administer through the HOPWA grant are Tenant Based Rental Assistance (TBRA); Short Term Rent, Mortgage and Utility Assistance (STRMU); and Permanent Housing Placement Services. These services will be extended until funds are exhausted.

For more information, call Pulaski County Community Services at 501-340-6157 or Community Health Centers of Arkansas at 501-374-2148 or visit www.chc-ar.org.

Media Contact
Cozetta Jones
Pulaski County Government
Communications Director
cjones@pulaskicounty.net

Lights, Camera: A Call to Action! PCYS hosts the Annual Champions of Youth Luncheon October 29

Pulaski County Youth Services will host the 2019 Champions of Youth Luncheon, Tuesday, October 29 at 11:30 a.m. at the Arkansas Governor’s Mansion located at 1800 Center St., Little Rock, AR 72206.

This year’s award recipients are

  • Visionary Award honoree, Arkansas Advocates for Youth and Families;
  • Lifetime Achievement Award honoree, Greater Little Rock Delta Sigma Theta Alumni Chapter;
  • Pulaski County Youth Services Partner in Education honoree,Pulaski County Special School District;
  • Director’s Choice Award, Broadway Joe;
  • and the PCYS Champion of the Year Award honoree, Ned Perme.

This year’s theme is “Lights, Camera: A Call to Action. PCYS is issuing a “call” to be more involved in the lives of Pulaski County youth.

Proceeds from the luncheon benefit the after-school, out-of-school and community programs provided by Pulaski County Youth Services, free-of-charge in underserved communities.

Donations to Youth Services are tax-deductible and benefit programs focused on improving academic performance while keeping kids off the street and out of trouble. Table sponsorships start at $500. Get your tickets here.

All Youth Services’ programs are free-of-charge; helping hardworking Pulaski County families save an average of $5,000 a year on childcare. Annually, thousands of young people improve test scores, increase financial literacy, develop job skills, and build self-esteem in more than twenty Youth Services programs.

Visit the Pulaski County Youth Services website for more information on programs.

More Facts about Pulaski County Youth Services

  • Pulaski County Youth Services Suits for Youth is a program for young men ages 11-19. Suits are donated and provided to young men, preparing them for job interviews, scholarship interviews and even worship services.
  • Pulaski County Youth Services’ Ready, Set, School Pre-School Readiness Program is provided in partnership with Pulaski County Special School District and serves Harris, Cato, Daisy Bates and Oak Grove Elementary Schools.
  • Pulaski County Youth Services’ Shoe into Success program provided 90 pairs of shoes to elementary students of four schools in 2018. The Program addresses and promotes complete wellness.
  • The PCYS provided ACT Prep to 386 youth in 2018. Many students increased scores, making them eligible for scholarships and reduced chance of remedial courses.
  • More than 1,000 youth were served during PCYS’ Annual Back Drive in 2018

Deadline for Arkansas Disaster Assistance August 7

The deadline is August 7 to register for Federal assistance for damages sustained in the flooding that occurred from May 21 to June 14. There are multiple ways to apply.

Northside of Big Dam Bridge is open. Pedestrians and Riders be cautious.

The northside gate of the Big Dam Bridge is open! Please be aware, there is limited access to the river trail.
 
When arriving at the Big Dam Bridge northside landing, pedestrians and bicyclists must make an immediate left toward Cooks Landing Park, keep to the Northshore trail (near ADEQ) and continue to Burns Park. Pedestrians and bicyclists should to be cautious there are potholes and still a bit of dirt and sand.
 
Pulaski County Public Works, the City of North Little Rock – Government and the Little Rock District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have been hard at work to get the northside open for citizens to enjoy the holiday weekend.
 
Happy July 4th Everyone!
Cozetta Jones
Communications Director
cjones@pulaskicounty.net

501-340-8523

Pulaski County Offices Closed for Independence Day

Pulaski County offices are closed Thursday for the Independence Day Holiday. No garbage routes will run Thursday, July 4th but will resume and run one day late Friday and Saturday. Waste Management will run Friday and Saturday.