Cecillea Pond-Mayo

Recent Articles

Arkansas House of Representatives Weekly Post 11-25-2021

Small businesses are the heartbeat of our neighborhoods and the lifeblood of our local economy. 

In Arkansas, small businesses make up the majority of the business landscape, at 99.3% of all businesses in the state. This equates to 258,552 businesses. Small businesses can be found in every corner of our state. 

Small Business Saturday is the day after Black Friday. It is a day to celebrate and support small businesses and what they do for communities. If you are looking for a way to find unique gifts while also supporting the local economy, Small Business Saturday is the perfect day to do so. Continue Reading →

Filed under: ,

Arkansas House of Representatives Update 10-29-21

According to the American Diabetes Association, approximately 363,781 people in Arkansas, or 14.8% of the adult population, have diabetes. 

Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in the United States and the number one cause of kidney failure, lower-limb amputations, and adult blindness. In the last 20 years, the number of adults nationwide diagnosed with diabetes has more than doubled. November is National Diabetes Month, a time when communities across the country team up to bring attention to diabetes and its devastating consequences. People with diabetes have medical expenses approximately 2.3 times higher than those who do not have diabetes. Diabetes and prediabetes cost an estimated $3.1 billion in Arkansas each year. 

In the most recent legislative session, we passed Act 643, which mandates that the Arkansas Medicaid Program cover a continuous glucose monitor for an individual if the individual has either a presence of Type 1 diabetes or any other sort of diabetes with the use of insulin more than two times daily. Continue Reading →

Filed under: ,

Arkansas House of Representatives Update 10-15-21

According to the Arkansas Department of Health, 1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer. It is the most common form of cancer and the second leading cause of death among women. In 2018, there were 2,339 new breast cancer cases and 368 cancer deaths in the state. 

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, an annual campaign to raise awareness about the impact of breast cancer and the importance of early detection. In 1997, the Arkansas General Assembly passed the Breast Cancer Act, which led to the ADH’s BreastCare program. The BreastCare program coordinates efforts with providers to offer no-cost screenings and follow-up services to eligible women who are uninsured or underinsured. 

Last year, the program served 8,403 women in fiscal year 2021. Continue Reading →

Filed under: ,

Arkansas House of Representatives Update on New Congressional Boundaries

This week, the House passed legislation outlining new boundaries for Arkansas’ four congressional districts.  

HB1982 and SB743 are identical bills that divide the state into the following districts:

The first congressional district includes the counties of Arkansas, Baxter, Boone, Chicot, Clay, Craighead, Crittenden, Cross, Desha, Fulton, Greene, Independence, Izard, Jackson, Lawrence, Lee, Lincoln, Lonoke, Marion, Mississippi, Monroe, Phillips, Poinsett, Prairie, Randolph, St. Francis, Searcy, Sharp, Stone, and Woodruff. It also includes and a portion of Pulaski County. The second congressional district will include the counties of Cleburne, Conway, Faulkner, Perry, Saline, Van Buren, White, and a large portion of Pulaski County. The third congressional district will include the counties of Benton, Carroll, Crawford, Madison, Washington, and a portion of Sebastian County. Continue Reading →

Filed under: ,

Arkansas House of Representatives Update 9-18-21

In the United States, someone dies by suicide approximately every 11.1 minutes, and in Arkansas, on average, every 16 hours. Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death among people aged 10–34 and the 10th leading cause of death overall in the U.S.. The overall suicide rate in the U.S. has increased by 35% since 1999. September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. It is a time to raise awareness on this stigmatized and often taboo topic. Continue Reading →

Filed under: ,

Arkansas House of Representatives Update 9-10-2021

There are three legislative meetings scheduled this month to review proposals for congressional redistricting. Arkansans are welcome to attend these meetings and comment on the proposals. The proposals will be outlined in bills drafted by legislators. We have provided a link to the bills at www.arkansashouse.org. The House and Senate State Agencies and Governmental Affairs Committees will be meeting jointly in the MAC building located directly behind the State Capitol. Continue Reading →

Filed under: ,

Arkansas House of Representatives Update 9-3-21

Rice is grown in over 40 Arkansas counties. The crop contributes billions to the state’s economy and accounts for approximately 25,000 jobs, crucial to rural communities. September is National Rice Month, a month-long celebration of all things rice. In Arkansas, we have a great deal to celebrate. Our state is home to 2,300 rice farms and 96% of those farms are family owned and operated. Our farmers produce more than 9 billion pounds of rice each year. Continue Reading →

Filed under: ,

Arkansas House of Representatives Update 8-27-2021

This week, the Arkansas Legislative Council Higher Education Subcommittee reviewed details of a new program designed to benefit Arkansans who have been economically impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Reimagine Arkansas Workforce Project provides funding for qualifying individuals to complete online training at no cost in order to meet workforce needs across the state. The U.S. Department of Education awarded a grant worth over $13 million to the Arkansas Workforce Development Board and the Arkansas Division of Workforce Services to fund the Reimagine Arkansas Workforce Project. Project partners include state agencies, U of A Global Campus Professional and Workforce Development, Shorter College, and iDatafy LLC. The partners expect to serve 3,000 Arkansans. Continue Reading →

Filed under: ,

Arkansas House of Representatives Update 8-20-2021

Everyone has a responsibility to ensure students arrive at and from school safely. This includes being mindful of student safety when approaching school buses. 

We want to take this week to remind Arkansans to obey all traffic laws whenever they are near a school bus. 

It is illegal to pass a stopped school bus whenever its red lights are flashing, as students are present. The fines, penalties, and punishment for anyone found guilty of illegally passing a stopped school bus were increased dramatically by Act 2128 of 2005, also known as Isaac’s Law. 

The legislation was named in honor of Isaac Brian, an elementary school student in the Bryant School District who was struck and killed when a driver illegally passed his school bus while students were exiting the vehicle. 

The law requires drivers to stop on two-lane and four-lane highways in both directions, even those with a middle lane. Drivers cannot attempt to pass in any direction until the school bus vehicle has finished receiving or discharging its passengers and is in motion again. In the 2021 Regular Session, the General Assembly passed Act 264 to clarify the distance and areas where drivers must stop. Continue Reading →

Filed under: ,

Arkansas House of Representatives 8-6-21

This week, House members convened in the House Chamber for two orders of business.In accordance with ACT 403 of the Regular Session, the House convened as a committee of the whole on Tuesday, August 4, to consider whether to terminate the Governor’s July 29, 2021 declaration of a statewide public health emergency.When it was determined that no concurrent resolutions had been filed in the House and that one resolution filed in the Senate had been withdrawn, the House adjourned its committee of the whole. Since no resolution was adopted by the General Assembly, the Governor’s declaration remains in effect for 60 days.The House convened on Wednesday, August 4, for an Extraordinary Session.The Governor called for the session primarily for two purposes.The first item on the call was to allow public school boards and open enrollment charter schools to implement masking protocols for children under 12. Children under 12 are currently not eligible to receive the vaccine for COVID-19.The second purpose listed on the call was to concur with the Governor’s decision to terminate the state’s participation in federal pandemic unemployment compensation program often referred to as PUA.In response, to the call the House considered two pieces of legislationHB1001 outlines the General Assembly’s concurrence with the termination of PUA in Arkansas.This bill passed in the House with a vote of 74-17-0HB1003 stated that a public school district can mandate the use of a face mask, shield, or other face covering only with approval of the school board and if the district or area served by an open-enrollment charter school has a fourteen-day COVID-19 infection rate of at least 50 new known infections per 10,000 residents of the public school district based on the most recent data published by the Department of Health or the Arkansas Center for Health Improvement. Currently, 100 school districts meet that criteria.HB1003 outlined certain exemptions and limits such mandates to 60 days. This bill underwent Committee review, but did not advance to the House floor. Continue Reading →

Filed under: ,