LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders declares a state of emergency through an executive order in response to the winter weather that moved into Arkansas on Jan. 30.
According to the executive order, Sanders is using $250,000 from the Governor’s Disaster Response and Recovery Fund to be used at the discretion of the director of the Arkansas Division of Emergency Management to defray both program and administrative costs.
“Adverse circumstances have been brought to bear upon the citizens and public properties within Arkansas,” the order states. “These political subdivisions require supplemental assistance from the State to recover from these losses.”
A separate executive order removes certain regulations for commercial vehicle drivers for 30 days. The order applies to vehicles hauling heavy equipment, oversized loads, transformers, necessary hardware, and other transmission and distribution equipment to line crews for the purpose of restoring power to citizens.
The second order says it applies to commercial carriers transporting essential items of commerce to customers in Arkansas including groceries, pharmacy items, medical equipment, goods, commodities, fuel, poultry, livestock and feed.
The second order also suspends all provisions of regulating procedures for multiple departments in order to “render maximum assistance” to the Arkansas Department of Energy and Environment and the Arkansas Department of Public Safety.
Sanders also activated the state’s National Guard on Jan. 30 to assist with the latest round of extreme winter weather.
The support teams will come from the 142nd Field Artillery Brigade, according to Lt. Col. W. B. Phillips II, Arkansas National Guard State Public Affairs Officer.