Pulaski County Government Completes New Lobby Furnished with LRSD Student Art




Pulaski County Government celebrated the opening of its new lobby at the downtown Little Rock administration building with a ribbon cutting ceremony.

The lobby includes turnstiles that require county employees to swipe their ID badges to enter the building. There is a security guard and a Pulaski County Sheriff’s Deputy who monitors the entrance daily. All visitors will sign in and wear a visitors badge while in the building.


Dr. Danny Fletcher of the Little Rock School District’s Instructional Resource Center.

“The lobby renovation was done in an effort to increase security and the safety of Pulaski County employees and visitors,” County Judge Barry Hyde said. “My goal is to create a more modern and professional appearance in the administration building. We want visitors to feel that they’ve entered a professional environment where the number one priority is customer service.”

The lobby also features artwork from Henderson Middle School students, grades 6th – 8th and art teacher, Cathy Dillon. Danny Fletcher, Ed.D. of the Little Rock School District’s Instructional Resource Center and Elsa O’Neal of Henderson Middle School worked with the county to select the best pieces to display.

“I am honored to have our students’ work displayed in the Pulaski County Administration Building.  I hope that visitors enjoy the work on
display in the newly renovated space,” said Henderson Middle School Art Educator Elsa O’Neal. “It is wonderful for the students’ work to be displayed and appreciated by the community and we appreciate the opportunity. Special thanks to Judge Hyde for his appreciation of the visual arts and his invitation to display our student’s artistic efforts.”

“Using local students’ artwork is a wonderful way to showcase their amazing work and it’s cost effective for Pulaski County,” Hyde said.
“Why spend unnecessary funds on expensive artwork, when we can give these kids the opportunity to display their best work to Pulaski County employees and visitors. We’ve even had a few patrons express interest in buying the artwork.”

Judge Hyde plans to provide the opportunity to all Pulaski County School Districts.

County Assessor’s Office Completes Annual Cereal Drive for 15th Year

Assessor 2The Pulaski County Assessor’s Office, for the 15th year, donated 488 boxes and $200 to the Amboy Community Food Pantry to fight hunger during the summer months. This year, through an agreement with Kroger, the staff was able to purchase the cereal by the case instead of single boxes.

“We are grateful to the Kroger management staff in Bryant who made it easier to transport the cereal to the food pantry,” said county assessor employee and project coordinator, Lisa Mayers. “We’ve had years where we had 500 loose boxes. Visually it looks great but logistically not so much.”

The food pantry serves approximately 2,700 families per year in North Little Rock and surrounding areas. It is governed a board that consists of local pastors who work together to ensure the communities in which they serve are fed both physically and spiritually.

“No one is turned away. Everything that’s on the shelf goes to someone who’s hungry,” Mayers said. Patrons are able to sit down with the pantry volunteers, discuss their needs, and make a list and ‘shop’ the pantry. “There are no pre-made packages. The volunteers make sure that exact needs are met.”

The Assessor’s Office partners with the food pantry twice per year; cereal drive in summer and hams in the winter. Last year the Assessor’s office collected funds to purchase more than 100 hams that were donated to the food pantry.

“The duties of the Assessor’s Office place us out in the community and provide us with the opportunity to encounter the wonderful citizens of Pulaski County,” said County Assessor Janet Ward Troutman. “Perhaps this is why we feel the need to go to extra lengths to fulfill our civic duties rather than simply fulfilling our legal ones. We really do mean it when we say, ‘We love our taxpayers.’”

County Offices Closed for Independence Day

In observance of Independence Day, all county offices will be closed Monday, July 4, 2016.

Pulaski County Housing Agency will place 150 on waiting list

The Pulaski County Housing Agency will accept 150 requests for placement on their Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program Waiting List on Thurs. June 30, 2016 at 8 a.m. at the Arkansas State Fairgrounds. This is for placement on the waiting list only. Please bring a valid ID. For safety and security reasons, no lines or standing will be allowed before 7 a.m. For more information, please call 501-340-8230.

Brownfields Workshop to Focus on Redevelopment and Grant Writing

The Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality, the Pulaski County Brownfields Program and the Technical Assistance to Brownfields Program (TAB) at Kansas State University will co-host a FREE brownfields resources workshop on Thursday, July 15 at 5301 Northshore Drive in North Little Rock. This workshop will focus on the various resources available to assist with redevelopment of brownfields sites to bring them back to beneficial use. The workshop will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and lunch will be served.

Workshop Agenda

Morning topics: “Redevelopment Funding & Revitalization through Brownfields”

Does your community have an abandoned building, old gas station or other potentially contaminated building that is impeding your communities’ future growth?  Topics are designed to help you and your community gain a better understanding of what a Brownfield is, learn how Brownfield revitalization can be a part of your community’s economic development strategy, and hear from state and national representatives on resources available to you and your community. Success stories will be presented.

Afternoon: “EPA Brownfields Grant Proposal Writing Strategies”

Topics will focus on information for local governments and non-profit organizations and their grant writers interested in applying for EPA Assessment (Community-Wide, Site-Specific or Coalition) or Cleanup Grants. Participants will learn response strategies to writing a successful proposal, utilizing the TAB EZ on-line grant writing tool; strategies for planning and community involvement, and partnering strategies required for successful proposals and brownfields initiatives in general.

One-on-one site consultations with the experts.

If you have a brownfield site you would like to discuss with workshop experts, please send in your responses to the KSU TAB Community Consultation – Four Questions Survey by July 8 to: Blase Leven, baleven@ksu.edu. If you need a copy of the survey, please click here.

Who should attend? Local and regional government officials, economic and community development organizations, lenders and real-estate professionals, property owners, consultants, and anyone interested in learning about brownfields or about financial resources for local redevelopment.

Registration: Cost is free and lunch will be provided, but registration is required by July 11.

(If you need assistance with your registration, please contact Sheree Walsh, chsr@ksu.edu, 785-532-6519)

For more information contact:

Josh Fout, Pulaski County, jfout@pulaskicounty.net, 501-340-3594

Blase Leven, KSU TAB, baleven@ksu.edu, 785-532-0780


Youth Services to Host ACT Prep Sessions

ACT image


Pulaski County Youth Services is hosting three, one-week ACT Summer Intensive sessions from June 27th through July 15th at North Little Rock High School.

Classes are from 9 a.m.-noon, Monday through Friday (with the exception of July 4th) for 9th-12th graders and will cover each of the ACT test topics: English, math, reading, and science reasoning.

Applications are accepted on a first come, first served basis and students will be assigned to a one-week session.

For more information or to request an application, call 501-340-8250.

Pulaski County Brownfields Receives $820,000 Grant, Highest Awarded


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Friday that the Pulaski County Brownfields Program will receive $820,000 in grant funding; highest amount awarded under the 2016 EPA Assessment, Revolving Loan Fund and Cleanup (ARC) Grant Competition.

“As one of only fourteen Revolving Loan Fund Grants awarded in the nation, the Pulaski County Brownfields team is honored to be recognized by the U.S. EPA for its continued commitment to community revitalization,” Brownfields Administrator Josh Fout said.

Pulaski County Brownfields is also one of two in Region 6, which includes Louisiana and Texas, to receive the highest grant award. The grant funds will be used for cleanups and community engagement activities to be distributed as follows: $620,000 for hazardous substances and $200,000 for petroleum.

“For the second year in a row Josh Fout has brought national recognition to the Pulaski County Brownfields Program,” Pulaski County Judge Barry Hyde said. “These grant funds will reduce environmental hazards, initiate more development in key areas of the county and create jobs.”

The Pulaski County Brownfields Program and the Our House Children’s Center received the Phoenix Award for Excellence at the National Brownfields Conference in Chicago in 2015. The redevelopment project transformed a 31-year-old contaminated property into a place where homeless and near homeless children can receive care and support.

“The Brownfields Program is making tremendous strides toward revitalizing areas in Pulaski County one ‘brownfield’ at a time,” Pulaski County Community Services Director Fred Love said. “I’m extremely proud of the Brownfields staff for all of their hard work and the Revolving Loan Fund board of directors who have been steadfast in ensuring funds are distributed responsibly and efficiently to projects that will make a significant impact on the community.”

For more information about the Pulaski County Brownfields Program, call 501-340-3376 or read more.

Youth Services Provides Backpacks to Our House Youth

L-R: Our House staff Desirae Holmes and Maureen Martin; Our House Executive Director, Georgia Mjartan; Judge Barry Hyde; Youth Services Staff Whitney Dobbins, Jimmy Warren and Connie Holland; Our House staff Joy Ritchey and Caitlyn Selakowich (front).

Pulaski County Youth Services and Pulaski County Judge Barry Hyde presented 50 food backpacks to the Our House Shelter on May 11 for their youth residents. The food backpacks were donated and assembled at the Global Youth Service and Prevention Day event on April 17, hosted by Pulaski County Youth Services, sponsored by the Sodexo Foundation, the City of Little Rock, Philander Smith College, Kroger and the Department of Human Services-Division of Youth Services.

This project is part of the Pulaski County Youth Services Imagine Possibilities Program, a comprehensive program designed to help homeless youth, youth in foster care, and youth with disabilities to live happy and productive lives, allowing them to become successful, self-sufficient adults in addition to providing programs that help youth to develop personally and academically.

Program activities include tutoring, mentoring, physical fitness activities, health and nutrition education, leadership development, financial literacy, entrepreneurship programming, college and career preparation, ACT Prep, and other special programs and opportunities to meet the special needs of each young person. Read more about Youth Services Programs.

County to host annual mulch giveaway May 20 and 21

IMG_1271Pulaski County Road and Bridge will give away free mulch Friday, May 20, 2016 and Saturday, May, 21, 2016 from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. each day, at the intersection of 32nd and Woodrow (formerly Smokey Hollow Foods facility). Every year, the county turns all debris collected throughout the county into mulch that is given back to the people of Pulaski County.

“We usually have enough mulch to distribute throughout the county. But, because we had such a mild winter, we don’t have the amount that we usually do.  That’s why we have to initially keep everyone to a two-scoop limit,” said Pulaski County Public Works Director, Barbara Richard. “Our goal is to provide as much as we can to everyone.”

The two-scoop limit means that each recipient will receive only two scoops from a front-end loader. If there is a substantial amount of mulch at the end of the drive, the Road and Bridge Department will review how best to distribute the remainder to county residents.

For more information on the mulch drive, please call Pulaski County Road and Bridge at (501) 340-6800.

Vision 2025 program kick-off proves successful

IMG_7571Pulaski County Youth Services kicked off its Vision 2025 Leadership Institute with the 2016 Women’s Power Breakfast Saturday, April 16. More than 160 filled the Little Rock Club to honor prominent female community leaders Linda Leopoulos, Tjuana Byrd, Georgia Mjartan and Senator Joyce Elliott, who received the Philanthropy Award, Advocate for Youth Award, Visionary Award and Lifetime Achievement Award respectively. All expressed the need to become more involved in lives of our youth and to the 33 girls who will participate in the Leadership Institute, they were told to always live in their truth.

The event raised more than $8,000 that will benefit the program which also received approximately $40,000 in grant funding and expects to receive more.

The first of its kind in Central Arkansas, the Vision 2025 Leadership Institute was created to provide a year-long training that focuses on empowerment, leadership development, mentoring, entrepreneurship, community services, and academic advising, thus allowing young women to complete high school and further their education at the post-secondary level. The first session will be held May 14.