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President approves governor’s request for disaster declaration

President approves governor’s request for disaster declaration


NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A Tennessee bill allowing law enforcement to ticket drivers seen holding their cell phones in their hands while driving will take effect July 1.

The law bans any use of a cell phone held in hand while driving, including hand-held calls, music control and navigation. The law would be an expansion on the current offense for talking on a handheld device while driving in a school zone.

The law allows law enforce-ment

to issue citations

for $100, with a possible increase to $200 if a crash is involved.

Exceptions include drivers using the phone for navigation while it is in their cup holder or attached to the vehicles’ dash.

There are some devices you can use and still be connected thanks to Bluetooth features found on most phones. Using it with your car stereo could require an upgraded radio system.

“Basically when they get in the vehicle its automatically going to pair,” store manager Curtis Crowe said. “The phone can be in a purse, or pocket, and once you get a phone call, its going to pop up on the unit answer it and talk hands free.”

Cheaper models can be installed for around $200, but fancier models can fully integrate your phone into you car with Android Auto or Apple CarPlay.


LITTLE ROCK — On Saturday, President Trump approved a major disaster declaration for the state of Arkansas.

The governor says it will cost more than $27 million just for temporary housing, repairs, and replacement housing. Additional infrastructure losses could exceed $100 million.

More than 857 homes suffered major damage or were destroyed.

“For all the loss we’ve seen, it’s not as bad as it might have been because of the remarkable way Arkansans have pitched in to help, from the 6-year-old in Faulkner County to high school students to senior citizens.”

“The President has approved the Major Disaster Declaration for the State of Arkansas,” said Governor Asa Hutchinson. “My request was submitted yesterday. Very quick action which allows FEMA to provide individual & public infrastructure assistance in the impacted counties. This is the 1st step in our recovery.”

The disaster declaration will provide individual and public infrastructure assistance in the following counties: Conway, Crawford, Faulkner, Jefferson, Perry, Pulaski, Sebastian, Yell.

Federal disaster assistance has been made available to supplement state and local recovery efforts in the areas affected by this historic flooding.

Grants, temporary housing, and home repairs are available as well as lowcost loans to cover uninsured property losses.

Homeowners and business owners who sustained losses can apply for assistance by registering online at


Federal officials issue warning of Hep A contamination of frozen berries

JACKSON, Miss. — Federal officials are warning consumers to avoid certain brands of frozen berries sold at Kroger and other grocery stores over fears of Hepatitis A virus contamination. The berries were sold nationwide under the grocery store’s “private selection” brand. The contamination was discovered during a frozen berry sampling by the Food and Drug Administration, the grocery chain said.

The recalled brands are the private selection frozen triple berry medley, the private selection frozen triple berry medley and the private selection frozen blackberries. There have been no reports of hepatitis A linked to the consumption of the items, the FDA said.

Symptoms of Hepatitis A infection include fever, headache, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain and yellowing of the skin or eyes.

Consumers who’ve eaten the recalled frozen berries are urged to consult with their health care professionals to determine whether vaccination is appropriate.

Those with symptoms should get treatment immediately.

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