“Boards and commissions have also undergone extraordinary growth since the early seventies when the number hovered around 175. The number of Arkansas boards and commissions is 388…and growing. A closer look at the trend shows that the median year of creation for all Arkansas boards and commissions is 1978, meaning half of them (in the 123 years since Arkansas adopted its current constitution) were formed in just the last 19 years. In 1983, Arkansas, led by then Governor Clinton and backed by both houses of the legislature, allowed its sunset law on boards and commissions to elapse. Some 37 states have sunset laws to govern growth of boards and commissions.”  Murphy Commission, Policy Foundation project, 1998


(December 2015)  Arkansas has an estimated 350 boards and commissions, along with committees (110), councils (39), departments (60), and task forces (42) bringing the total to more than 500 separate state government entities, according to records.  A preliminary review found overlapping state entities in the following five public policy areas:


  1. Alternative Energy

(Alternative Fuels Commission; Arkansas Alternative Energy Commission; Governor’s Commission on Global Warming)


  1. Education

(Arkansas Blue Ribbon Commission on Public Education; Arkansas Commission for Coordination of Educational Efforts; Arkansas Public Schools Accountability Advisory Council; Arkansas Legislative Task Force on Higher Education Remediation, Retention and Graduation Rates; Commission on Improving Public Schools Basic Skill Opportunities; Committee on Closing the Academic Achievement Gap in Arkansas; Public Education Technology Advisory Board)


  1. Fiscal

(Arkansas Sales Tax Advisory Committee; Governing Board to the Streamline Sales Tax Administrative Act)


  1. History

(Arkansas History Commission; Arkansas Legislative Task Force on the Assessment and Improvement of Arkansas History Education in Public Schools)


  1. Substance Abuse

(Prescription Drug Advisory Commission; Drug Abuse and Violence Prevention Task Force; Task Force on Mental Health and Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention; Task Force on Methamphetamine; Task Force on Substance Abuse Prevention; Task Force on Substance Abuse Treatment Services)