Local News

  • ‘Good budget’ official with no tax hike

    It’s official now: Property tax rates in Roane County will not increase for the 2016-17 fiscal year.

    The Roane County Commission voted unanimously during Monday’s regular meeting to keep the rates the same.

    “It’s a good budget with no tax increase for the citizens of Roane County,” Commissioner Stanley Moore said.

    The rural property tax rate will remain $2.575 per $100 valuation.

    The rate in Kingston, Oliver Springs and Rockwood will stay at $2.515.

  • Watkins looking forward to building on successes

    July 1 marked a change for Roane County Schools.

    Leah Rice Watkins took over as director of schools, replacing Gary Aytes, who retired on June 30.

    Watkins said she appreciates the welcome she’s received from the community so far.

    “I look forward to serving them and working to grow the school system and continue the good works that have been started,” she said.

    The Roane County Board of Education picked Watkins in April to succeed Aytes. Her four-year contract started on July 1 and expires on June 30, 2020.

  • Roane lawmen get big support

    Before adjourning Monday night’s Roane County Commission, Chairman Ron Berry took some time to pay homage to local law enforcement.

    “I think it’s an appropriate time for us to say thank you to our police departments, our sheriff’s department, for the way that they’re handling things in Roane County,” Berry said.

    The commissioners and those in the crowd then stood to their feet to applaud.

  • ‘Who we are, what we do and how we do it’

    Michael Dunn Center recently added three new board members, Beth Stubbs, Sandy McPherson and Suzie Jones Clay, and those members spent a day last week going through a two-part orientation.

    The first part was in a classroom, while the second part was touring the facility and some of the homes in the community.

    “Who we are, what we do, and how we do it,” that’s what Michael Dunn Center President and CEO Mike McElhinney said was the main thing being taught to the trio.

  • Harriman Council hopefuls want to attract business

    Three candidates for Harriman City Council attended a recent candidate forum at Harriman’s David Webb Riverfront Park.

    Shauna Hines, Tim Johnson and Tyler Manning all shared their perspectives on how to bring industry and business to Harriman and other city needs.

    “We need jobs,” said Hines.

    She said she also believes the city needs more for children to do, because it will keep them out of trouble and away from things like drugs.

  • Oliver Springs OKs $1.98 million budget with no tax hike

    Oliver Springs officials recently passed the town’s budget for 2016-17, just in time for the new fiscal year which began July 1.

    The $1.98 million budget does not include a tax increase, said Mayor Cecil Crowe.

    “With a lot of time and effort, we were able to manage [proposed expenditures] and not given anyone an increase,” he said. “Everyone worked hard, and we were able to get a balanced budget.

    “I applaud everyone who helped make this possible.”

  • Clarification

    Two individuals identified last week as having resigned from the town of Olivers Springs are still employed.

    Eddie Kelley still works as the town’s Park and Recreation director. Though former Water Department Supervisor Eugene Brummitt did resign his position, he currently works for the department part time.

  • Ellis excited about role in GOP Convention

    Roane County Commissioner Randy Ellis loves politics.

    Next week, he will participate in what could be a major event in American politics. Ellis will be an alternate delegate at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio.

    “I’m excited; this is the first time I’ve been,” Ellis said. “I’ve always been the nerd that watches the whole thing on TV.

    “It’s exciting to be a part of the process.”

  • Today’s the deadline for entering cobbler contest

    Those wishing to participate in Harriman’s Fruit Cobbler Festival need to register by today, Monday, July 11, to compete.

    Those wishing to compete can visit www.cityofharriman.net or the city’s Facebook page for details.

    Cornstalk Heights Historical Community Association is providing homemade ice cream to go with the cobblers.

    Rebecca Schwepfinger, the city’s special events coordinator and public relations officer, said the festival, from 5 to 8 p.m. July 23, concludes with a screening of children’s movie Big Hero 6 at dark.

  • High winds leave many powerless, toss around trampolines and debris

    Thunderstorms blowing through the area Thursday evening left broken trees, power outages and blew items ranging from a portable toilet to a trampoline far from their homes.

    Robert and Jo Riggsby returned to their home on Emory River Road near Kingston to find an addition to their lawn: a trampoline that had made its way from a neighboring yard.

    “To pull up to your yard and see that is a shock,” Jo Riggsby said Friday. “You can’t even see their house from our house. It was in their yard; now it’s in ours.”