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FEMA revises local flood map

JONESBORO — Revised Preliminary Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) are available for review by residents and business owners in portions of the City of Jonesboro and unincorporated areas of Craighead County, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has announced.

Craig Light, Jonesboro’s chief engineer, said there are a few changes in the proposed map, which guides flood insurance costs in specific neighborhoods.

“The boundaries have changed some, so I would really recommend everybody take a look at it,” Light told The Sun Monday.

The most significant change locally was in the size of the floodplain along Butler’s Ditch in the industrial park, Light said, adding that he disagrees with the findings. He said he expects the city to appeal that portion of the proposed revision.

Property owners are encouraged to review the latest information to learn about local flood risks and potential future flood insurance requirements. Community stakeholders can identify any concerns or questions about the information provided and participate in the appeal and comment periods for the maps, FEMA said in a news release.

For this physical map revision, the FIRMs for Craighead County serve multiple purposes, including defining Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHAs). SFHAs are areas at high risk for flooding. Communities and residents can use the information to make informed decisions about building, development and flood insurance.

FEMA stresses that flooding can and does happen outside of the most vulnerable areas.

Review the preliminary flood maps by visiting the local floodplain administrator (FPA). A FEMA Map Specialist can help identify community FPAs. Specialists are available by telephone at 1-877-FEMA-MAP (1-877-336-2627) or by email at FEMAMapSpecialist@riskmapcds.com.

The preliminary maps may also be viewed online:

The Flood Map Changes Viewer at http://msc.fema.gov/fmcv.

FEMA Map Service Center at http://msc.fema.gov/portal.

Light said his staff is also preparing an exhibit that will be available soon on the engineering page of the city’s website, www.jonesboro.org.

For more information about the flood maps:

Use a live chat service about flood maps at http://go.usa.gov/r6C (just click on the “Live Chat” icon).

Contact a FEMA Map Specialist by telephone at 1-877-FEMA-MAP (1-877-336-2627) or by email at FEMAMapSpecialist @riskmapcds.com.

There are cost-saving options available for those newly mapped into a high-risk flood zone.

Learn more about flood insurance options by talking with your insurance agent or visiting https://www.floodsmart.gov.


Just before noon Saturday, Jonesboro Fire Department’s Engine 3 was dispatched to the Jonesboro Airport for a report of a field on fire. Crews from E3, Tanker 1, Engine 7, Engine 1, Battalion 1, Battalion 2, and two mobile brush units battled the fire and the high temperatures into the afternoon hours until it was fully extinguished. No flights were affected, Airport Manager George Jackson said on Monday.

Grass fire at airport


News
Craighead, Jackson counties remain medium virus risk

JONESBORO — Coronavirus infections continued to rise last week, but at a slightly slower pace, a Sun review of Arkansas Department of Health reports showed.

Statewide, there were 4,657 new cases between June 14 and Sunday, an increase of 5.2 percent. Craighead County’s 229 new cases was an increase of 4.6 percent during that period. Active cases rose by 26.1 percent to 8,761 statewide as of Sunday, while Craighead County’s active cases were up by 17 percent.

Craighead and Jackson counties were both classified as medium community levels by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Monday. Community levels in Greene, Clay, Cross, Lawrence, Mississippi, Poinsett and Randolph counties remained classified as low. The CDC factors hospitalizations and the number of new cases as part of this criteria.

Hospitalizations statewide rose from 176 to 196 during the previous seven days. COVID-related patients in Northeast Arkansas hospitals went from 37 to 36.

The health department reported 251 new cases statewide on Monday, including 14 in Craighead County.

Craighead, Cross and Greene counties had one death each.

Northeast Arkansas COVID-19 cases by county, June 14 through Sunday:

Craighead – 229 new cases, (increase of 10 from last week); 462 active cases (increase of 67); 335 total virus related deaths (increase of 1).

Greene – 83 new cases (decrease of 11); 169 active (increase of 25); 175 deaths (increase of 1).

Jackson – 37 new cases (increase of 25); 46 active cases (increase of 29); 64 deaths (unchanged).

Lawrence – 29 new cases (decrease of 16); 50 active (increase of 19); 81 deaths (unchanged).

Poinsett – 45 new cases (increase of 16); 80 active (increase of 20); 128 deaths (unchanged).

Mississippi – 52 new cases (same as previous week); 114 active cases (increase of nine); 213 deaths (unchanged).

Randolph – 30 new cases (increase of 16); 40 active cases (increase of 3); 89 deaths (unchanged).

Cross – 36 new cases (increase of 13); 37 active cases (increase of 8); 87 deaths (increase of 1).

Clay – 13 new cases (decrease of 13); 38 active cases (increase of 5); 94 deaths (unchanged).


News
Man, 18, gets $150k bond in shooting

JONESBORO — District Judge David Boling found probable cause Monday to charge a Jonesboro man with first-degree domestic battery and felony theft of $5,000 or less in a shooting that occurred Saturday.

Police arrested Keontaye Adam Droughn, 18, of the 500 block of Bradley Street, on Sunday night in the shooting of Bryana Robinson, 21,

Shortly after 9 p.m. Saturday, dispatch was notified that a female had been shot near the intersection of French and Bradley streets.

The victim was treated on scene until EMS arrived and took over medical care. The injuries are believed to be non-life-threatening, and she was transported to St. Bernards Medical Center.

According to the probable cause affidavit, detectives interviewed the victim at the hospital.

“The victim stated that she had picked up her boyfriend, Keontaye Droughn, at approximately (7:30 p.m.) and they began arguing while traveling together,” the affidavit states.

“During the drive Mr. Droughn made the statement to Ms. Robinson to ‘shut the (expletive) up yelling, or you’re going to make me hurt you and I don’t want to hurt you.’”

The affidavit said Robinson decided to take Droughn back to his residence, and when they arrived Droughn took his son inside from the back seat of the vehicle. Robinson stepped out of the driver’s side and stood behind the door of the vehicle.

“Ms. Robinson saw Mr. Droughn open the front door and at that point she heard loud bangs and saw that Mr. Droughn was brandishing a pistol in her direction and had shot at her,” the affidavit states. “Mr. Droughn returned into the residence at that point and Ms. Robinson then felt blood running from her upper ankle where she had been shot.

“Mr. Droughn came back outside and approached Ms. Robinson, and out of fear of him she began to hit him but fell over. Mr. Droughn then took her Gold Apple Iphone 12 Pro Max and fled on foot northbound on Bradley Street.”

Boling set Droughn’s bond at $150,000 and set his next court date for July 29.


News
Primary runoff election today

Today is election day for the primary runoff, with polls open from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

In Craighead County, voters will see one race on the ballot, the Republican runoff for county clerk between Nancy Robbins and Mary Dawn Marshall.

Any person who voted in the Republican or in the non-partisan primary or did not vote in the primary but is registered to vote can cast a ballot in the runoff, according to Craighead County Election Coordinator Jennifer Clack. Voters who cast ballots in the Democratic primary May 24 cannot vote in the Republican runoff, she said.

The 2nd Judicial District prosecuting attorney race was the other race on the Craighead County ballot that was not decided during the May 24 primary election. Because it is a non-partisan election, the runoff between Sonia Fonticiella and Martin Lilly for that position will be held in conjunction with the November General Election.

Clack said early voting numbers for today’s runoff had exceeded her expectations.

“I didn’t expect much more than 100 a day, and we’ve gone over that, Clack said. “So, we are pretty pleased with the turnout.”

Clack said the final day of early voting on Monday was especially busy.

With three hours left on Monday afternoon, 680 ballots had been cast. The break down for the early voting polling sites was 555 voters in Jonesboro and 125 in Lake City.

Other area runoffs, all on the Republican ballot, include:

Greene County: sheriff, Brad Snyder and Sheriff Steve Franks.

Poinsett County: county judge, John K. Hutchison and J.C. Carter.

Lawrence County: county judge, Gary Barnhill and Ron Ingram; county clerk, Brandi Parker and Michelle Sheets.

Jackson County: state representative in District 39, Robert Griffin and Wayne Long.

Election results will not be ready by press time for Wednesday’s Sun. Results will be published online and in Thursday’s edition.


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