Arkansas legislators adjourn but return Tuesday

Gov. Asa Hutchinson wants legislators to stick around for additional work on pharmacy benefits, highway funding and other matters. (Photo: KATV)

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) -- The Latest on the Arkansas Legislature concluding its fiscal session and starting a special session (all times local):

4 p.m.

While Arkansas legislators have just wrapped up a session to work on the state budget, Gov. Asa Hutchinson wants them to stick around for additional work on pharmacy benefits, highway funding and other matters.

Hutchinson on Monday called a special session to convene Tuesday morning.

Legislators are being asked to examine reimbursement rates established by pharmacy benefit managers under state insurance programs and consider whether Arkansas should change the permit process for animal waste systems. Also, lawmakers are to consider state law revisions tied to match federal highway laws regarding definitions of alcoholic beverages and open containers to avoid highway funding penalties.

Another provision would loosen regulations on all-terrain vehicles, and another would open up the use of tax-deferred tuition savings programs for use at primary and secondary schools as well as colleges.


2:30 p.m.

Members of the Arkansas Legislature have ended their 2018 session to consider state financial matters but are expected back Tuesday for a special session.

The House and Senate adjourned Monday afternoon after previously approving a $5.6 billion state budget that takes effect July 1. The funding plan is $173 million larger than the current budget and includes $64 million for a reserve fund that could be used for highways and also for tax cuts.

Legislators expect Gov. Asa Hutchinson to call a special session that could begin Tuesday, but the governor has not provided a list of what might be on the agenda. It's expected to include the regulation of pharmacy benefit managers and changes to the open container law that officials say are needed to protect highway funding.

AP-WF-03-12-18 2109GMT

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