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Scott County flooding takes lives

Last week the weather was the big issue. Scott County suffered severely with the flooding and the tragic loss of Sheriff Cody Carpenter and Game and Fish Joel Campora, who lost their lives while attempting to rescue two women in a flooded home that then imploded. Our prayers go to their families for this tragic loss.

Governor Beebe appointed Charles Robinson as the new state treasurer. He will serve until January 2015. He is a certified public accountant and a certified fraud examiner. He is retired from the state where he headed the legislative audit division for 28 years. He has said that he would have liked to decline the salary but was told he could not but he said that he would return the salary less what was paid for state and federal taxes because he did not want there to be any statement about double dipping. He does draw state retirement.

The legislature earlier this year approved a cleanup bill to provide for prudent management of state treasury funds. Act 1088 was prompted in part by reports last year that the treasurer had changed long standing procedures and invested state funds with a select few firms. The act expands the membership of the state Board of Finance and requires that at least one member have experience in commercial banking, one member have experience in the buying and selling of securities and another member have five years’ experience as a certified public accountant. Members of the Board of Finance must abstain from voting on issues affecting any business or organization with which they are connected. The Board shall select a chief investment officer within the Treasurer’s office, and the Board may also hire investment counselors and money managers to regularly examine the investment practices of the Treasurer’s office. The act lists the qualifications needed by employees who manage money and make investments for the Treasurer’s office and the Board of Finance. The new law sets standards of transparency and accountability that will prevent any repeat of the practices that raised so many questions last year.

If you would like to contact me please email me at bruce.holland@senate.ar.gov or call my office at 650-1884 or write me at P.O. Box 2387 Greenwood, Ar. 72936.

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