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BBB offers 10 tips for safe online shopping


Free diabetes health checks in Pine Bluff

There will be a Diabetes Health and Wellness Expo today (November 20) from 10 until 2 at the Pine Bluff Convention Center.

Free blood pressure and cholesterol checks, B.M.I and dental screenings, vision examinations, health information, and so much more will be available to those that attend.

You can even chat with a doctor, visit the mock pharmacy and mock grocery store and take part in the exercise and fitness obstacle course.

The health fair is free and open to the public.

800 Arkansans have 2009 tax return checks waiting for them

These are federal income tax refund checks that have been mailed out, but returned by the U.S. Postal Service as undeliverable. Almost all are from year 2009 tax return filings.

To receive their undelivered checks, people on the list need only contact the IRS with a current mailing address. This can be accomplished most easily online via the IRS Website.

Federal jury convicts Pine Bluff, Ark., osteopath


A news release Wednesday from the office of U.S. Attorney Jane Duke said 42-year-old Dr. Kelly Dean Shrum had been convicted of health-care fraud and of misdemeanor misbranding.

The release said Shrum was ordered to forfeit $75,000 of proceeds from the health-care fraud.

Shrum was accused of giving women a birth-control device not approved in the U.S., and then billing Medicaid for a more expensive U.S.-approved device.

Shrum -- now of Monticello -- says he acted in good faith and was assured by other doctors that the device was identical to the U.S.-approved version.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

CASA receives $3.5 million grant to build new facility

Executive Director Karen Palmer,  said "This is great news for the victims of domestic violence and their children, the new facility will allow us to expand our services to work towards ending domestic violence."

The Donald W. Reynolds Domestic Violence Center will allow CASA to provide shelter, counseling, support groups, food, clothing, school supplies, legal advocacy, GED and computer classes to victims of domestic violence.

The new shelter will double the capacity of clients being served in the current shelter. The secure shelter will include a conference room, computer lab, teen room, beauty shop, and a support group room.

In addition to serving more clients, CASA will continue to address the needs of the children. With age-appropriate indoor and outdoor activity areas, children will now have a safe place to play and recover from the effects of living in a violent home.

Update: Arsenal completes chemical weapons disposal operations

For 60-years, crews have stored more than 3,000 tons of the nation's original chemical agent stockpile at the Pine Bluff Arsenal.

It will take about two years to dismantle the disposal facility, but the arsenal itself isn't closing.

The Pine Bluff Arsenal has accomplished a significant milestone by safely disposing of 12-percent of the nation's stockpile of chemical weapons, stored at the highly secure facility.

Mark Greer is the site project manager. He says, "The need was to eliminate the risk of those storing those munitions to the public and getting that risk out of the way. Plus, we have an international treaty that imposed certain deadlines to meet in destroying these chemical agents."

The chemical weapons disposal operations began in 2005. Robotic equipment disassembled the weapons then each component was incinerated. Employees hired for the mission knew the day would come when the facility would close.

Ark. college president takes post in Texas


Phil Shirley says his resignation from Southeast Arkansas College is effective Jan. 1 and he takes over at Clarendon College on Jan. 3. The 64-year-old Shirley is a native of Texas and says he wants to return to that state before retirement.

Shirley has spent 11 years at the Pine Bluff college and is credited with helping increase enrollment from about 1,200 to about 2,300 students.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)