AR Attorney General speaks out on Craigslist and consolidation

By Brandi Hodges - bio | email

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) – One school district is adapting to changes that not only come with a new year, but also come with an added city of students.  Though the merger between Weiner and Harrisburg is a done deal it's still being challenged!

"I have family in Weiner and I know this school district, I know this community and I know these people," said Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel.

McDaniel said he's torn in two directions.

"I am very, very sympathetic to this situation in this community.  I know that this school is important to that community," said McDaniel.

It is his job as the state's lead attorney to defend the state of Arkansas.

"To the extent that they have sued the state over statutes that have been tested and retested and upheld by the courts, my job is to defend the statutes," said McDaniel.

Supporters of the Weiner School District filed a lawsuit back in June against the state of Arkansas.  The issue at hand is the effect consolidation has on rural farming communities.

"I frankly don't see any novel arguments brought including agro-terrorism or agri-terrorism ," said McDaniel.

The state school system has been out of court for a couple of years now and McDaniel said he doesn't want to put the educational system back in the same situation by making district by district exceptions to the law.

"We've come too far to have an educational system that is blessed by the courts for us to put it at risk the entirety of public education in Arkansas," said McDaniel.

Another big issue that McDaniel talked to folks about at a meeting of the Rotary Club in Harrisburg on Thursday is Craigslist.  The website that deals in classified advertisements is being targeted by multiple states, including Arkansas, for their "adult services" section of the site.

"We are saying to Craigslist, 'You committed to us that you would do a better job of policing your website.  You committed to us that you would not let this continue,' they have let it continue and it's wrong," said McDaniel.

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