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Local News

  • Balloting begins in big Roane election

    Friday was the first day of early voting for the 2014 Roane County General Election, and turnout was reportedly good throughout the county.

    Voters are choosing from a big ballot that includes most county offices, the 9th Judicial District and primaries for U.S. and state House and U.S. Senate.

    Early voting sites in Roane County are community centers in Harriman, Kingston and Rockwood, and Oak Ridge First Christian Church.

    Voting hours are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday through Aug. 2.

  • OS mayor irked he was unaware of TDEC fine

    Oliver Springs Mayor Chris Hepler doesn’t like the state’s protocol for enforcement notifications.

    The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation recently fined his town $175,200.

    “I was fully aware that an order was coming, but completely unaware that it had been released,” Hepler said.

    He didn’t find out until he was contacted by the Roane County News on the evening of July 7.

  • Wamp defends claims from in absentia Fleischmann

    Weston Wamp was asked what is his line-in-the-sand issue on immigration reform during his appearance at Thursday’s Roane County Tea Party meeting.

    The question was rather timely; his opponent in the Republican Primary, Congressman Chuck Fleischmann, is now running a TV ad accusing Wamp of supporting “amnesty for illegal immigrants.”

  • Fatal hit-and-run suspect due in court next month

    A Harriman woman accused of a fatal hit-and-run will have her preliminary hearing Monday, Aug. 25.

    Raychell Christine Huckelby, 47, 222 Roberts St., was arrested for DUI the night that 59-year-old pedestrian Daniel Hester was struck and killed on Pansy Hill Road.

    Harriman Police Chief Randy Heidle said Officer Joe Sherrill had been parked off Pansy Hill Road on May 8 when he witnessed Huckelby’s truck stop, back up and then pull away.

    Heidle said the officer followed behind Huckelby because a light was out on her vehicle.

  • Harriman officials condemn Ruritan apartments

    A Harriman apartment building was condemned last month after city officials deemed the structure unsafe.

    That means the apartment building at 230 Ruritan Road can no longer be inhabited.

    Harriman Building Inspector Maria Nelson addressed a June 23 letter to the owner, Haskell Hill, after she and Dr. Julian Ahler, Harriman’s health officer, inspected the property and found it unsafe and dilapidated.

    “I and Dr. Ahler made a visit to the premise and found it an immediate threat to the tenants,” Nelson wrote.

  • Pair pleads to multi-county heists

    Mark Andrew Randolph and Rufena Jean Bunch pulled into a Sonic drive-in on Kingston Pike in Knoxville on Sept. 25, 2013.

    The two Roane County residents had other things in mind besides ordering food.

    “Over the intercom, defendant Randolph asked the waitress to bring change for a $100 bill,” federal court records state, “and when the waitress approached defendant Randolph’s vehicle, defendant Randolph pointed a firearm at her and demanded all of her money.”

  • Choice of insulation fuels fire

    An office and storage building was gutted by fire at Railcar Service Group, 663 Emory Drive, in Harriman on Tuesday afternoon.

    Harriman Fire Department responded to the fire at 2:23 p.m. and found heavy smoke coming from the rear of the building.

    “The owner advised me that they were cutting the metal from the wall on the inside and the wood in the wall caught on fire,” reported Fire Capt. Preston Hamby.

    Fire Chief Brad Goss said the owner had explained they had been doing some remodeling and were doing something around a metal chute.

  • Money pours into Stockton race

    Roane County Sheriff Jack Stockton continued to haul in the money for his re-election bid during the second quarter.

    His campaign financial disclosure report for the period, which covered April 1 through June 30, shows he raised $21,600.

    “We’ve been extremely blessed,” Stockton said. “The Lord’s been good to us, and the people in the county have been good to us.”

    Stockton is seeking his third term as sheriff of Roane County.

    He faces Rockwood Police Department Patrolman Jared Hall in the Aug. 7 election.

  • Tough budget ahead for Harriman

    Harriman residents can breathe a sigh of relief for now.

    No property tax increase has come up so far during discussions of this fiscal year’s budget.

    Residents shouldn’t expect any fancy new projects either, however.

    “This is a lean budget,” said Councilman Lonnie Wright.

    “It is the leanest I’ve had to work with,” agreed Treasurer Charles Kerley.

    The budget also uses up the fund balance. Kerley said reserve funds are what is keeping the city in the black.

  • Early voting recommended because of lengthy ballot

    A long ballot has Roane County Administrator of Elections Charles Holiway asking people to vote early.

    “The more people that vote early should shorten the lines on Election Day,” he said.

    Election Day is Aug. 7. Early voting starts today and runs through Aug. 2.

    Early voting hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays.