Cozetta Jones
Communications Director
cjones@pulaskicounty.net

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Events Calendar

Feb
8
Tue
6:00 pm Agenda Committee Meeting @ Quorum Court Meeting Room
Agenda Committee Meeting @ Quorum Court Meeting Room
Feb 8 @ 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm
COVID 19 – County Quorum Court Procedures for Attending Meetings and Public Comment The public may attend the meetings in person but must wear a proper face covering and adhere to social distancing guidelines while[...]
Feb
22
Tue
6:00 pm Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream
Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream
Feb 22 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream | Little Rock | Arkansas | United States
COVID 19 – County Quorum Court Procedures for Attending Meetings and Public Comment The public may attend the meetings in person but must wear a proper face covering and adhere to social distancing guidelines while[...]
Mar
8
Tue
6:00 pm Agenda Committee Meeting @ Quorum Court Meeting Room
Agenda Committee Meeting @ Quorum Court Meeting Room
Mar 8 @ 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm
COVID 19 – County Quorum Court Procedures for Attending Meetings and Public Comment The public may attend the meetings in person but must wear a proper face covering and adhere to social distancing guidelines while[...]
Mar
22
Tue
6:00 pm Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream
Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream
Mar 22 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream | Little Rock | Arkansas | United States
COVID 19 – County Quorum Court Procedures for Attending Meetings and Public Comment The public may attend the meetings in person but must wear a proper face covering and adhere to social distancing guidelines while[...]
Apr
12
Tue
6:00 pm Agenda Committee Meeting @ Quorum Court Meeting Room
Agenda Committee Meeting @ Quorum Court Meeting Room
Apr 12 @ 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm
COVID 19 – County Quorum Court Procedures for Attending Meetings and Public Comment The public may attend the meetings in person but must wear a proper face covering and adhere to social distancing guidelines while[...]
Apr
26
Tue
6:00 pm Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream
Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream
Apr 26 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream | Little Rock | Arkansas | United States
COVID 19 – County Quorum Court Procedures for Attending Meetings and Public Comment The public may attend the meetings in person but must wear a proper face covering and adhere to social distancing guidelines while[...]
May
10
Tue
6:00 pm Agenda Committee Meeting @ Quorum Court Meeting Room
Agenda Committee Meeting @ Quorum Court Meeting Room
May 10 @ 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm
COVID 19 – County Quorum Court Procedures for Attending Meetings and Public Comment The public may attend the meetings in person but must wear a proper face covering and adhere to social distancing guidelines while[...]
May
24
Tue
6:00 pm Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream
Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream
May 24 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream | Little Rock | Arkansas | United States
COVID 19 – County Quorum Court Procedures for Attending Meetings and Public Comment The public may attend the meetings in person but must wear a proper face covering and adhere to social distancing guidelines while[...]
Jun
14
Tue
6:00 pm Agenda Committee Meeting @ Quorum Court Meeting Room
Agenda Committee Meeting @ Quorum Court Meeting Room
Jun 14 @ 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm
COVID 19 – County Quorum Court Procedures for Attending Meetings and Public Comment The public may attend the meetings in person but must wear a proper face covering and adhere to social distancing guidelines while[...]
Jun
28
Tue
6:00 pm Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream
Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream
Jun 28 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Full Quorum Court Meeting @ Live Stream | Little Rock | Arkansas | United States
COVID 19 – County Quorum Court Procedures for Attending Meetings and Public Comment The public may attend the meetings in person but must wear a proper face covering and adhere to social distancing guidelines while[...]

Pulaski County News & Announcements

Pulaski County Courts Implement Text Notification System, FTA Reduction Hopeful

Many people miss court dates for various reasons, including misunderstanding court orders, forgetting an appointment or facing practical obstacles, from transportation to lack of childcare.

December 2021, District Court Judge Butch Hale’s staff sent its first court date notification via the text message notification system, eCourt Date.

eCourt Date founder Ibrahim Aissam, launched the system in 2019. It’s a mobile notification system that communicates court dates, reminders and additional court correspondence.

He explained that It’s easier for a person to be notified of a traffic ticket and any court obligations by text message, or an email instead of waiting weeks to get a mail notification, or maybe the court doesn’t have your correct address.

“We’re big supporters of eCourt,  they’ve been wonderful to work with I can’t say enough about what they’ve done for us, we primarily use them to notify defendants of their court date, which cuts down on our failures to appear, which is a big concern of most courts, the number of people that fail to appear, unfortunately, is very high,” Judge Hale said.

Judge Hale also said eCourt helps his staff by being easy to use. “My chief court clerk Grace has been advised me as to insofar as the ease of use to it and the wonderful support that we’ve gotten from the court staff they’ve been available practically 24/7.

“After the first of January, I have noticed a significant decrease in our failure to appears,” Chief District Court Clerk, Grace Gault said.

The system helps the public by reminding them of when their court dates are, which cuts down on fares to appear, which cuts down on potential warrants or their suspension of driver’s licenses, according to Judge Hale. He also mentioned that the system reminds residents about payments that are due and when they’re scheduled for their drug tests.

Judge Hale is thankful to his chief district clerk Grace Gault for their help with getting the system implemented.

“We’d also like to thank Judge Barry Hyde for providing us with this opportunity and Victor McMurray for his leadership and guidance throughout this process,” Judge Hale said. 

The goal is to close the gaps in communication between offenders and the judicial system and reduce failures to appear (FTA). Some may not have an email address or a mailing address, but more than 90% of Americans own a cell phone. This system is considered best practice nationally, reducing FTAs by 30%. 

Pulaski County Judge Barry Hyde suggested the system and approved the purchase of eCourt Date; however, the decision to use the system is voluntary.

“I’m glad to see county courts signing on to modernize our court system. eCourt Date will transform our courts to make them more efficient, accessible and environmentally friendly by reducing paper. I hope to see more courts signing on to this new technology,” said Hyde.

In addition to Judge Hale, Circuit Court Judge Catherine Compton, and Juvenile Judges Tawana Byrd and Shanice Johnson have implemented the system.

“We are in a time where we have more technology at our disposal and are obligated to use it. eCourt date is a great tool to bring the Court into the 21st century as it allows us to send text reminders to litigants regarding hearings and other case-related matters. I am excited to implement this technology in 10th Division,” Judge Shanice Johnson said. 

In 2020, the county was invited to become an Advancing Pretrial Policy and Research Action Site. APPR works with criminal justice professionals and their community partners to improve pretrial systems. Pulaski County is one of six research action sites in the U.S. 

A working group of approximately seven legal professionals and organizations is receiving technical assistance, data and evaluation support.

“Reducing FTAs was an area that could be addressed fairly quickly,” said Hyde. The group agreed the service was needed, and we got it done.”

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Pulaski County Awards $289,000 to Innovation Hub, Expanding Access to STEAM Learning

Pulaski County awarded $289,000 to the Arkansas Regional Innovation Hub at Winrock International to bring STEAM hands-on field trips to students.

“We are excited about what this funding can do to expose so many youth to STEAM and will continue to fund other programs that inspire our leaders of tomorrow,” Pulaski County Judge Barry Hyde said.

Funding from the county marks the Innovation Hub’s first Mobile Makerspace award specifically targeting Pulaski County students. The funds free learning opportunities for more than 1,000 students from December 2021 through September 2022.

Mobile Makerspace, also known as “The Innovation Hub on Wheels,” was created in 2018. Its purpose is to make tools and resources accessible for youth in underrepresented areas. The Hub uses two units to bring hands-on education to students across Arkansas. Sessions include tools and real-world problem-solving that challenge and motivate youth and teachers.

“We are thrilled to receive this funding and so thankful for our partnership and support from Pulaski County. Judge Hyde has been a supporter of our mission and work since our inception,” Errin Stanger, Director of the Innovation Hub at Winrock International said.

Stanger also said this partnership enables the Hub to empower students and expand opportunities. The nonprofit has served more than 16,000 people, visited 22 counties with its Mobile Makerspace, and looks forward to visiting more Pulaski County schools in the future.

“This award allows the county to support innovative educational tools as well as show our youth the power of technology,” Judge Hyde said.

“Experiences such as the Mobile Makerspace ignite passions of our children and transforms their imagination into reality.”

Learn more about the Mobile Makerspace

Help Pulaski County Prioritize American Rescue Plan Funds

Pulaski County Government is asking the community for input on how the American Rescue Plan Funds should be allocated. Funding can be used to:
  • Respond to the COVID-19 public health emergency.
  • Address the negative economic impacts the community has experienced as a result of COVID-19.
  • Provide assistance in disproportionately impacted neighborhoods.
  • Provide premium pay to employees who are doing or did essential work – working in businesses considered high risk, working with the public, and/or distributed goods – during the COVID-19 public health emergency.
  • Invest in water and or sewer infrastructure.
  • Invest in broadband infrastructure.
Please take a few minutes to complete the survey. Your voice is important to us!
For more information, read the American Rescue Plan Fact Sheet.  

Emergency Rental Assistance Funds Projected to be Disbursed by November, Begins Transition to State Program

Pulaski County has closed applications for the Emergency Rental Assistance Program. The county has disbursed approximately 60 percent of its ERAP funds to rent and utility assistance to households; the remaining funds are obligated to pending applicants.

Pulaski County is working with the Arkansas Department of Human Services to transition completed applications to their program by the first of November. Applicants should expect notification letters in the coming weeks.

“This program was beyond anything we could have imagined in terms of the significant need,” said Pulaski County Judge Barry Hyde. “We ask for patience as we transition from the County ERAP program to DHS’s rental assistance program. I commend Community Services Director Fred Love and his staff for projecting the end of program funding and immediately executing a transition plan. We appreciate the state’s willingness to work with us to ensure Pulaski County residents remain in stable housing.”

Pulaski County received $10.5 million from the U.S. Treasury for the Emergency Rental Assistance program in April 2021. Since launching the program, the county has received more than 18,000 applications.

“I’m proud that we have been able to help families through this challenging time,” said Hyde. “Pulaski County Community Services employees have done a yeoman’s job. They’ve worked through staffing shortages, COVID-19 exposure, and the overwhelming amount of applications. They’ve been the true demonstration of public servants.”

County COVID-19 Executive Order Extended to Nov. 28

From the order: “County services and county-supported services remain available to the public. Pulaski County continues to encourage the public and county-paid personnel to conduct business with or between the County and Courts digitally, by phone, email, online, or video conference and to utilize the digital tools implemented in response to COVID-19 to the extent that such use expands access to county and county-supported services.

Courtrooms and associated offices are exempt from this order and instead are subject to the restrictions if any, imposed by the Arkansas Supreme Court and/or presiding Judge.

Voters entering county facilities are not required, as a condition on participation in an election, to wear a mask or other face-covering; however, the County Board of Election Commissioners is strongly encouraged to give all due consideration to the seriousness of COVID and to accommodate unmasked voters in a way that best protects the health and safety of election workers, county employees, and other voters.”

Updated COVID-19 Executive Order

County Nears 90 Percent Solar Power with Public Service Commission Approval

The Arkansas Public Service Commission approved Pulaski County’s application to build a net-metering facility in excess of 1,000 kilowatts. The approval was made possible through the Arkansas Renewable Energy Development Act of 2001.

“We are very excited to move forward with our solar project. We’ve been working diligently for the past six years to see it come to fruition. In combination with our first solar array, located near the county jail, the county will near 90 percent solar-powered once online,” said Pulaski County Judge Barry Hyde.

The solar array will be constructed in the Little Rock Port Authority on Zeuber Road. As stated in the order, by County Attorney Adam Fogleman, “the project will provide multiple benefits including distribution system, environmental, public policy and economic benefits.”

See PSC order of approval

http://www.apscservices.info/pdf/20/20-062-U_26_1.pdf

County Judge’s COVID-19 Executive Order Updated Through Oct. 3

From the executive order: The pandemic novel virus COVID-19 has continued its spread across the nation, including Arkansas and Pulaski  County, and while numbers fell significantly this spring, the Delta variant of COVID-19 has resulted in the exponential growth of the number of confirmed positive cases. Hospitals across the south are at or near capacity, and COVID is causing an unsustainable strain on hospitals already struggling to staff their facilities.

Therefore, County Judge Barry Hyde declared that the state of public health emergency will continue and be renewed, and this order shall continue through October 3, 2021.

COVID-19 Updated Executive Order – Sept/Oct 2021

County Program Aims to Address Mental Health Challenges in Families and Educators

“Mental Health Heroes” Assists Those Affected by the COVID-19 Pandemic

Pulaski County (September 1, 2021) – From our oldest to youngest, Arkansans have been affected by the pandemic in ways that have changed lives forever. Since March 2020, Pulaski County has recorded the most cases, deaths and hospitalizations. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention research shows that children in Arkansas are more likely to endure adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) than children in most other states because of the pandemic.

Pulaski County Youth Services, known for its innovative programming, has launched a free counseling program focused on those directly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic in Pulaski County.

The Pulaski County Youth Services Mental Health Heroes program provides resources through therapy and counseling sessions for students, educators and school support staff directly impacted by the loss of a loved one to Covid-19, addressing the potential academic loss with various tutoring and academic enhancement opportunities, physical fitness and nutrition activities, and planned monthly events for the families and school staff.

“Due to the catastrophic effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, I felt it was our responsibility to address the emotional well-being of our youth. I envisioned PCYS creating a program that would directly impact youth who lost a parent, sibling, or teacher to COVID-19,” Pulaski County Youth Services Director Jamie Scott said. “By implementing the Mental Health Heroes program, we will address the mental health issues and more, impacting these families during this global pandemic.”

PCYS is partnering with Arkansas Holistic Therapy, Roots-Raices Bilingual Counseling, A Better You Therapeutic Solutions, Key 2 Success Counseling, Argenta Counseling and Life Strategies Counseling, Inc.

“Director Scott and her staff have worked tirelessly for months on creating the Mental Health Heroes program to address the needs of our youth and families in our county, as mental health has risen to be one of the unaddressed pressing needs during the COVID-19 pandemic. We are excited to partner with various local organizations to bring this needed program to fruition,” County Judge Barry Hyde said.

For more information, call PCYS at 501-340-8250, email Machael Borders-Hoskin at mborders-hoskin@pulaskicounty.net or register below.

Mental Health Heroes – Youth Link

Mental Health Heroes – School Staff Link