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LITTLE ITALY, Ark. (KTHV)- A historic community in the heart of the state is petitioning to become the 501st town in the state of Arkansas. Little Italy is located between Pulaski and Perry County, but despite the fact it has thrived for the last 100 years, they still have not become an official town.

Krisy Eanes, the co-chair of Little Italy's Task Force wants to change that. "We need to gain 200 signatures of people living in the boundary who are also voters." Eanes has been working for more than three years to gain signatures. "We have about half of the signatures we need," said Eanes. "We're going to have them done by the end of the year, before the 100 year anniversary of Little Italy."

Five original families from Italy immigrated in 1915 to the community between Pulaski and Perry County. Olga Dal Santo is one of the last living original family members from Italy. "I'll be 90 years old next year," said Dal Santo.

Dal Santo has lived with her husband John Dal Santo in Little Italy for more than five decades. John thinks there's a specific reason why other generations kept on with the Italian tradition. "We have a sense of care, a sense of family," said Dal Santo. "I think that's why generations got used to our living, they appreciate that."

Becoming a town would improve the community's infrastructure. This would create protected bike lanes, speed limits and establish a city works department. If the community gathers enough signatures and presents them to the county court, the request would head to the secretary state's office.

"The date that it arrives at the office would be the official day of incorporation."

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