Associated Press

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Crews in central Arkansas rescued 17 students after a school bus drove off the road and got stuck in floodwaters.

The Pulaski County Sheriff's Office says the bus became stuck Wednesday morning in a rural part of North Little Rock. No one was hurt.

Authorities say crews with the county's road and bridge department backed a truck up to the rear of the bus and rescued the students, eight at a time.

Flood warnings are in effect Wednesday across several states, from Texas to Ohio.

Arkansas lawmakers have advanced a proposal to allow taxpayers with tax-deductible 529 college savings plans to withdraw funds for tuition at public, private and religious K-12 schools.

A legislative subcommittee on Wednesday recommended including the change in a budget bill for the state treasurer's office. The proposal now heads to the Joint Budget Committee.

A former Arkansas judge who admitted giving lighter sentences to men in return for sexual favors was investigated for similar crimes two decades ago but was never charged because he gave up his job as a deputy prosecutor.

Joseph Boeckmann later became a district judge, then preyed on men who appeared in his court for minor offenses. He pleaded guilty last year to wire fraud and witness tampering, and faces sentencing Wednesday.

The government says the FBI investigated Boeckmann more than 20 years ago but that no one raised a red flag when he later ran for the bench.

All but a dozen Arkansas House members have gone through voluntary courses on sexual harassment that are being offered in response to a wave of high-profile misconduct cases nationwide.

Eighty-seven of the House's 99 members attended a course that was offered throughout the day on Wednesday, according to sign-in sheets released by the chamber. A spokeswoman for the House said the other 12 members of the chamber are scheduled to attend a make-up course being offered next week. There is one vacant seat in the 100-member House.

An Arkansas lawmaker says he won't push for a measure easing a requirement for concealed handgun trainers during this year's session after the governor said he supports delaying the mandate's deadline so the issue can be addressed later.

Republican Sen. Trent Garner said Thursday he'll drop his proposal removing the requirement that concealed carry instructors offer both the regular training and the enhanced training under an expanded concealed handgun law approved last year.

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