Kids at the Capitol 2015

This legislative session, like many others before it, had its ups and downs. The children and families of Arkansas won some, but suffered some major losses as well. The Private Option, Arkansas’s version of Medicaid expansion, will continue to provide health coverage for low-income Arkansans, at least through 2016. However, changes are likely on the horizon. Our state’s Arkansas Better Chance preschool program received new funding for the first time in eight years. We had hoped for a $16 million increase, but newly-elected Gov. Asa Hutchinson said $3 million was all the budget could bear. After-school programs set forth in law way back in 2011 were once again denied the money they need to operate. Just $5 million would get these programs off the ground.