On the legislative front:
* BIG RIVER STEEL: The enabling legislation for state incentives to build a steel mill in Mississippi County won approval in a House committee today. The legislation was approved yesterday in the Senate. Full report from Talk Business.
* OBAMACARE ADVANCES: The legislation to implement the Obamacare Medicaid expansion in Arkansas through a "private option" scheme was approved in Senate committee this morning.
* SPEAKER CARTER: MORE HELP FOR THE RICH AND A SOP FOR OTHERS: Do I detect a compromise tax plan percolating in the House? Speaker Davy Carter has amended his tax-break-for-millionaires bill today, the one that slashes the tax on capital gains, which are the profits on sale of appreciated assets. Previously, in the first year, he more than doubled the tax break on capital gains, but ONLY for gains of $5 million or more. A tax break only for millionaires. But wait. There's more. The amendment keeps that break, but gives a TOTAL income tax exemption for profits of more than $10 million. That's a gift worth hundreds of thousands of dollars to the very wealthiest in Arkansas. Nice. But, the amendment also adds Rep. Charlie Collins, the would-be income tax cutter, as a sponsor. And it adds new standard income tax deductions for all taxpayers.