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J.W.’s News Update: Thursday, November 17, 2011

Casinos may be coming to Arkansas. Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel has approved the wording of a proposed consitutional amendment to allow casinos to be built in seven Arkansas Counties, clearing the way for supporters to begin gathering signatures.

The amendment would allow for casinos in Boone, Crittendent, Garland, Jefferson, Miller, Puilaski and Sebastien Counties. Supporters will need to submit 78,133 signatures to the state by July 6th to get the measure on the November 2012 ballot.


Today is the 36th Annual Great American Smokeout promoted by the American Cancer Society. President Barack Obama who was just pronounced tobacco-free on Halloween says he quit by chewing nicotine gum. He concedes quitting smoking is hard and adds, ‘Believe me, I Know.”

The President says some tobacco companies are fighting new cigarette warning label because they don’t want to be honest about the consequences.


In economic news:

U.S. Builders started slightly fewer homes in October, but submitted plans for a wave of apartments, which is a mixed sign for the struggling housing market.

Meanwhile the number of people applying for unemployment benefits fell last week to the lowest level since early April, sign that layoffs are easing and hiring may be picking up. The Labor Department says weekly applications dropped by 5,000 to a seasonally adjusted 388,000.


In Sports:

Arkansas High is preparing for its long  journey to Jonesboro in the 2nd round of the Class 6A Football Playoffs in Arkansas. The winner will likely face El Dorado in the state semi-final next week.


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