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Panel to examine Ark. Forestry finances

A Democratic representative from Marked Tree and a Republican senator from Mountain View will chair a subcommittee focusing on the financially troubled Forestry Commission as the Arkansas Legislature holds budget hearings.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A Democratic representative from Marked Tree and a Republican senator from Mountain View will chair a subcommittee focusing on the financially troubled Forestry Commission as the Arkansas Legislature holds budget hearings.

Rep. Buddy Lovell and Sen. Missy Irvin were named Tuesday as co-chairs of the Joint Budget Committee's subcommittee focusing on the agency. The panel is the only budget subcommittee that is expected to meet during budget hearings.

The commission in December announced it would lay off 36 workers because of a $4 million shortfall. Gov. Mike Beebe has requested $2.7 million from the state's surplus, some of which will repay federal grants the agency had been misusing to operate. Legislative auditors are also looking into the commission's finances.

 

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