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[15 Jul 2014 | No Comment | 3,323 views]
The Nobles Law Firm is now open

As of July 1, the Nobles Law Firm opened its doors in scenic downtown Benton and is now accepting clients. The firm’s sole lawyer is Ethan C. Nobles (me!), managing editor of First Arkansas News.
Those who know me are aware that I used to practice law at a firm called Nobles, Poore & Jones (later called just Nobles & Poore after Jones went off to Tunica to deal cards) for four years in Fayetteville. Those who know me really well are aware that I totally hated every minute of that …

Business, Community, Featured, Features and such, News, Politics »

[3 May 2014 | No Comment | 4,633 views]
Alcohol sales in Saline County?

If you’ve been out grocery shopping, filling up your car at a gas station or have been in public in Saline County at all lately, the chances are good you’ve been approached by a petitioner asking for your signature so that the issue of whether package sales of alcohol should be allowed in our neck of the woods will be included on the November ballot.
The same effort is going on in Craighead County and both petition drives are spearheaded by a group out of Little Rock called Our Community, Our …

Business, Featured, News, Retrogaming, Technology »

[23 Apr 2014 | No Comment | 3,764 views]
Hyperkin announces Retron5 delay, price increase

About this time last year, First Arkansas News ran an article waxing poetic about the forthcoming Hyperkin Retron5. The Retron5 has been promoted as just the machine a lot of us people who love classic console gaming have wanted for a long time. The problem with a lot of classic consoles is that they look terrible on HDTV sets and the Retron5 is supposed to solve that problem by upscaling games to run in 720p high definition through an HDMI port.
Anyone who has ever plugged, say, a Sega Genesis into …

Business, News, Technology »

[4 Mar 2014 | One Comment | 5,505 views]
So long, Epinions

Epinions members got a bit of a shock last week when logging into their accounts and learning the 15-year-old consumer reviews site is effectively shutting down as of March 25.
Epinions was a site that paid contributors to review products, based on the notion that reviews of products from unbiased consumers have value. The site started in 1999 back when everyone and their dog was trying to figure out how to make a buck or two on the Internet and actually did pay its members cash for submitting reviews.
The reasons Epinions …

Business, News »

[31 Jul 2013 | No Comment | 4,977 views]
Tax free weekend coming Saturday and Sunday

It’s time once again for the state of Arkansas to help ease those back to school shopping blues a bit with a tax free weekend.
According to the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration (DFA), the tax free weekend starts at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday (Aug. 3) and ends at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday. During the weekend, sales tax will not apply to certain School Supplies, School Art Supplies, School Instructional Materials and clothing. To be clear, “tax free” means that no state or local sales or use taxes will be …

Business, News, Real Estate »

[26 Jul 2013 | 2 Comments | 3,596 views]
Arkansas metro home sales up in June

The City Wire in Fort Smith has posted its June Arkansas Homes Sales Report for four metro areas in Arkansas and sales numbers continued to climb during that month.
The report covers the four largest metros in Arkansas — central Arkansas, the Fort Smith area, the Jonesboro area and northwest Arkansas. Except for the Fort Smith area, all metros reported gains in sales for June. Furthermore, sales for the six months of 2013 were up 9.57 percent compared to the first half of 2012. Average sales prices in those areas stood …

Business, News, Real Estate »

[26 Jun 2013 | No Comment | 814 views]
Arkansas home sales up through May

Housing markets in Arkansas continued to improve in May according to the latest version of the Arkansas Home Sales Report from The City Wire in Fort Smith.
The monthly Arkansas Home Sales Report covers the four largest areas of the state — central Arkansas, Fort Smith, Jonesboro and northwest Arkansas. In those areas, sales were up more than 10 percent through May and average sales prices were up 15 percent for the first five months of the year. The only one of those areas to show declines in sales through May …

Business, Education, News »

[18 Jun 2013 | No Comment | 1,244 views]
Steely announces launch of Sparkible

Mike Steely announced the formation of Sparkible, a non-profit education focused on innovation and startup learning. If the name “Steely” sounds familiar, it should — we visited with him a couple of weeks ago about innovation and economic growth in Arkansas.
Steely, formerly of Arkansas Capital Corporation, has partnered with David Moody to open Sparkible. The new company, according to a news release, is kicking off a series of summer camps established with the goal of teaching Arkansas kids how to harness innovative ideas and build companies based on them. Steely …

Columns and other comments, Features and such, News, Real Estate »

[13 Jun 2013 | One Comment | 1,434 views]
CCOA observes National Homeowner Month

June is National Homeownership Month, and Credit Counseling of Arkansas (CCOA) is using this month to call attention to the opportunities consumers have to achieve sustainable homeownership through access to professional housing counseling and homebuyer education.
CCOA is a non-profit organization and HUD-approved housing counseling agency that offers services to help people get into, and stay in, affordable housing, a news release states. Although the national housing trend is improving, there are still many homeowners who are struggling to make mortgage payments. CCOA’s free foreclosure prevention counseling sessions help homeowners assess …

Business, Columns and other comments, Features and such, Made in America, News »

[8 Jun 2013 | 2 Comments | 1,432 views]
Innovation key to economic recovery?

It’s no secret that the economy may be recovering but people are wondering where the jobs are. According to the Arkansas Department of Workforce services, the unemployment rate here in the Natural State was 7.1 percent in April — an improvement over 7.3 percent in the same month a year ago.
Here’s something to keep in mind, however — the Department of Workforce Service reported there were 1.236 million Arkansans working in April, down from 1.263 million jobs reported a year ago. How did unemployment decline even though fewer people were …