Sarah Kellogg

KUAR Morning Edition Host and Reporter

Sarah Kellogg is the Morning Edition host and a reporter for KUAR.

Sarah was drawn towards radio reporting her freshman year in college at the University of Missouri in Columbia, where she already knew she wanted to be a journalist. Throughout her junior and senior years, Sarah reported and produced stories for KBIA, the NPR member station in Columbia. She received her bachelor’s of journalism in Radio/Television reporting with an emphasis on radio.

Immediately after graduation, she wanted to get more experience in political reporting so she went back to Mizzou for her master’s in public affairs reporting, where she spent her final semester as the Missouri statehouse reporter for KBIA.

Now in Arkansas, Sarah is putting that master’s degree to use, covering the statehouse for KUAR. When she’s not in the newsroom, she’s normally watching a lot of movies, hanging out with her cats and trying out new recipes.

Email: sarah@kuar.org

Newsroom: 501-683-7400

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Asa Hutchinson governor
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

 

Monday marks the beginning of the 2020 Republican National Convention, with the first night’s agenda including the state roll call to nominate President Donald Trump for re-election. 

This year’s convention, similar to the Democratic National Convention, will be mostly digital due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, who spoke during the 2016 RNC, said Monday on NPR’s Morning Edition that his statements about then-candidate Trump being "transparent and straight-talking" remain true.  

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Arkansas’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for July dropped one percent from June, to a total of 7.1% according to data released from the U.S. Department of Labor.

According to report released today from the Arkansas Division of Workforce Services, the unemployment rate decreased from 8.1% to 7.1%. The unemployment rate for Arkansas is just over three percentage points lower than the national unemployment rate that sits at 10.2%

Governor's Office

Arkansas added over 500 new coronavirus cases Thursday as the start date for schools is set for Monday, fewer than five days away.

The state saw 549 new cases, bringing the state’s total to 54,765. Of those total cases, 5,666 are considered active according to the state Department of Health.

The number of hospitalizations in the state neither increased nor decreased, staying the same at 499. 10 more Arkansans have died from the coronavirus, bringing the death toll to 641. 

Governor's Office

Arkansas is submitting its application to the Federal Emergency Management Agency in order for qualified Arkansans to receive $300 a week in Enhanced Unemployment Compensation. This announcement comes as the state added over 700 new coronavirus cases to its total.

Speaking during his daily briefing on the pandemic, Gov. Asa Hutchinson said though the state legislature approved of the unemployment compensation Tuesday through a peer review and said funding still needs to go through the Legislative Council, it was important to apply early.

Governor's Office

After announcing its lowest number of new coronavirus cases in over a month on Tuesday, Arkansas saw nearly double the number of daily cases Wednesday, bringing the total to over 51,000.

The state added 703 new cases Wednesday. The total number of COVID-19 cases in Arkansas is now 51,114.  Of those cases 6,725 are considered active, with 741 of total active cases in correctional facilities and 69 of them in nursing homes.

Pulaski County had the highest number of new cases with 78. Logan County added 47 new cases, while Sebastian County had 43.

Governor's Office

Arkansas has seen its lowest number of new COVID-19 cases in more than a month as the total number of cases surpasses 50,400. 

According to numbers from the Arkansas Department of Health, the state added 383 new cases. Hospitalizations and those on a ventilator both decreased by one for a total of 507 Arkansans hospitalized and 116 patients on a ventilator.

The number of deaths due to COVID-19 in the state increased by 11 for a total of 566.

Governor's Office

Arkansas’s health secretary believes the number of new coronavirus cases is currently at a rate where the state’s plan to reopen schools in over two weeks can still move forward. This statement comes as the state’s total number of COVID-19 cases passes 47,000.

According to numbers from the Arkansas Department of Health, the state added 735 new cases on Thursday. The total number of cases is now 47,028.

Governor's Office

Around 27,000 Pandemic Unemployment Assistance claims and approximately 10,000 unemployment insurance claims in the state of Arkansas are currently on hold due to fraud concerns, according to the state.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson said any fraudulent claims filed to the state will be turned over law enforcement and the FBI.

Governor's Office

Arkansas has lifted a directive that required all patients about to undergo an elective surgery to get tested for COVID-19 beforehand. This decision comes as almost 800 more cases of the coronavirus were recorded on Thursday.  

According to numbers from the Arkansas Department of Health, the state added 791 new cases, bringing the state’s total to 41,559. Of those total cases, 6,580 are considered active.

During Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s daily briefing on the coronavirus on Thursday, acting Secretary of Health Dr. José Romero spoke on the decision to repeal the directive.

Governor's Office

Arkansas has recorded its highest number of COVID-19 deaths in a single day as the total number of cases in the state surpasses 40,000.

The state saw 734 new cases Tuesday, according to numbers from the Arkansas Department of Health. The total number of coronavirus cases in the state is now 40,181. Of those cases, 6,595 are considered active.

The state recorded 20 deaths from COVID-19, bring the total to 428. The number of Arkansans hospitalized with the virus is now 501 due to an increase of 12.

Daniel Breen / KUAR News

Even in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic, construction of the new Arkansas Arts Center building in MacArthur Park is still ongoing and according to the center, on schedule. KUAR spoke with Dr. Victoria Ramirez, executive director of the Arkansas Arts Center about the continued work. Below is a transcript of the aired conversation.

Governor's Office

Arkansas reported over 1,000 new cases of the coronavirus Thursday. It is the second highest number of cases recorded in the state total, and the highest recorded of non-incarcerated people.

According to numbers from the Arkansas Department of Health, the state recorded 1,013 daily cases, bringing the total number of cases in the state to 36,259. Of those cases, 7,009 of them are considered active, with 146 in nursing homes.

Currently, 14 counties in Arkansas have 112 or more active cases of COVID-19.

Governor's Office

The total number of coronavirus cases in Arkansas has surpassed 35,000 as the number of hospitalizations dropped one day after reaching a new highest peak.

According to numbers from the Arkansas Department of Health, the state added 591 new COVID-19 cases. While this number is lower than previous days, the amount of testing also decreased. The total number of cases is now 35,246, while the total number of active cases is 6,876.

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Arkansas’s unemployment rate fell for the second month in a row after surging in the spring due to the coronavirus pandemic.

According to numbers from the Arkansas Division of Workforce Services, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped 1.6% in June for a total of 8% unemployment.

This marks the second month of falling unemployment as some Arkansans return to work, though coronavirus cases in the state continue to increase.

Governor's Office

Arkansans across the state will soon be required to wear face masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19 due to a mandate issued by the governor on Thursday. This comes as the state experienced its third highest daily increase in new coronavirus cases since the beginning of the pandemic. 

The mandate goes into effect on Monday and will expire once the state of emergency concerning the pandemic ends. Currently that public health emergency is set to expire in just over two weeks, though it could be extended again.

Governor's Office

The total number of coronavirus cases in Arkansas has officially passed 30,000 as the state saw more than 500 new cases on Wednesday. 

According to numbers from the Arkansas Department of Health, there are 564 new cases of the coronavirus in the state, bringing to the total number of cases to 30,297. The death toll also increased by four, for a total of 335. Hospitalizations for the coronavirus increased by 13, for a total of 458. There are now 94 Arkansans on a ventilator, an increase of three

Dicamba damage
University of Arkansas

Though a federal appeals court ruling in early June overturned the Environmental Protection Agency’s approval of three variations of a controversial herbicide, the impact of the court’s decision was initially unclear.

Governor's Office

After what appeared to be the beginning a downward trend, Arkansas had its highest ever recording of new COVID-19 cases, with the total now surpassing 22,000.

The state saw 878 new cases, a number that more than doubles the number of new cases announced on Wednesday.  The total number of coronavirus cases is now 22,075.  Of the total number of cases, 6,098 are considered active, an increase from Wednesday, when the state saw its first day of fewer active cases in days.

Governor's Office

Arkansas appears to be on a downward trend of COVID-19 cases as the total number of cases falls short of 21,200.

According to numbers from the Arkansas Department of Health, the state saw a total of 420 new cases Wednesday, bringing the state’s total to 21,197. Of those cases, 5,757 are considered active. That’s a decrease of 219 compared to Tuesday’s numbers.

The number of Arkansans hospitalized also went down by 15 for a total of 275. The state did see an increase of seven in coronavirus deaths, with the total now 277.

Governor's Office

The number of active cases and hospitalizations due to COVID-19 continues to reach record highs in Arkansas, as the number of total cases surpasses 18,000.

According to the Arkansas Health Department, the state saw 687 new cases of COVID-19 Thursday, bringing the state’s total to 18,062. Of those total cases, 5,695 are considered active. That’s the fourth highest number of daily cases the state has recorded.  96 of the new cases were from Washington County, while 45 were from Benton County and 44 from Pulaski County.

Central Arkansas Library System

Though the Central Arkansas Library System is in the middle of reopening all of its branches since closing them in March due to the coronavirus pandemic, patrons visiting their local branch will see some changes.

Monday, June 22, marked week three of CALS's reopening strategy, with the Children’s, Thompson and Williams libraries opening for the first time. The system’s largest branches, the Terry and Main libraries will open last on June 29.

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For the first time in months, Arkansas’s unemployment has dropped, though the number of those unemployed still remains higher than before the coronavirus pandemic hit the state. 

Arkansas’s unemployment rate dropped to 9.5% in May, around 1.3% lower than its April percentage of 10.8%. The decrease in unemployment follows the national trend, though the United States’ jobless rate is almost 4% higher at a rate of 13.3%.

Governor's Office

Arkansas’ governor is extending the state’s public health emergency for an additional 45 days as the state continues to see more cases of the coronavirus.

According to the Arkansas Department of Health, the state saw 322 new cases of COVID-19 Thursday, bringing the state’s total to 13,928. 11 more people have died from the coronavirus as well. The state’s death count is now at 208.

Governor's Office / YouTube

Arkansas saw its third highest number of new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday as the total number of cases in the state nears 11,000.

According to the Arkansas Department of Health, 448 new cases have been recorded. The total number of cases is now 10,816. Of those cases, 3,294 are considered active.

The total number of Arkansans hospitalized with COVID-19 is now 187. That’s an increase of six. 171 Arkansans have now died from the coronavirus, also an increase of six compared to yesterday.

City of Little Rock

The City of Little Rock has announced the members of the independent review committee that will investigate the practices and procedures of the Little Rock Police Department.

Little Rock Mayor Frank Scott Jr. announced the creation of the committee back in May as a response in part, to multiple lawsuits against the department’s chief Keith Humphrey as well as the city by LRPD officers and employees. 

Downtown Little Rock
Wikimedia Commons

The City of Little Rock has announced an initiative that allows restaurants that want to temporarily expand their outdoor dining availability due to the coronavirus pandemic to do so.

In a news conference Friday, Mayor Frank Scott Jr. said the city should give restaurants a greater flexibility on where they can place tables for outdoor dining.

"So what that basically means is this dine-out initiative is the allowance of more tables at restaurants’ parking lots, sidewalks and lawns in a very socially-distant way," Scott said.

City of Little Rock

The city of Little Rock is pushing its curfew back a couple of hours for the weekend, with plans to lift it Monday morning.

The curfew, previously beginning at 8 p.m. is now from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. Friday through Sunday.

Speaking during a news conference on Friday, Mayor Frank Scott Jr. showed his appreciation for the peaceful protesters, and the protests themselves, which he called "very effective."

Arkansas Department of Health

The northwest region of Arkansas continues to lead the state in new cases of COVID-19 as the total number of cases has surpassed 8,400.

According to the state Department of Health, Arkansas added 358 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the state’s total to 8,425. Of those new cases, 2,355 are considered active. 151 people have died from the coronavirus in the state, an increase of nine.

Governor's Office

Law enforcement arrested 79 people Tuesday night in Little Rock, the fourth consecutive night of protests against police brutality. The protest was one of many across the nation in response to the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis in late May. 

Speaking during a news conference about the protests on Wednesday, Little Rock Mayor Frank Scott Jr. said while he wouldn’t be mayor without the work of peaceful protestors before him, as mayor, it’s his job to protect the city.

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Revenue in Arkansas exceeded predictions but fell below figures from a year ago, according to the latest revenue report from the state Department of Finance and Administration.

According to the report released Tuesday, the state collected just under $482 million in Gross General Revenues for May. That’s 15.6% above the forecast, but 2.9% less than last May.

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