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Local News

  • Rockwood steers clear on cold meds

    Rockwood won’t be joining the effort to regulate certain cold medicines.

    Rockwood City Attorney Greg Leffew recommended the city not pass such laws, which are aimed at making methamphetime ingredients harder to get.

    Leffew noted recent opinions by the state attorney general and Municipal Technical Advisory Service that such local laws were illegal.

    Councilwoman Peggy Evans, who has medical professionals in her family, said she believes those who want to make the drug will find a way around any restrictions.

  • GUEST OPINION: Don’t worry Santa, ‘war’ on Christmas isn’t real

    By CHARLES C. HAYNES

    First Amendment Center

    When I read that 52 percent of American adults say they believe in Santa Claus (according to a survey from Public Policy Polling), I wasn’t surprised to learn in the same poll that 42 percent also believe there is a “war on Christmas.”

    After all (spoiler alert), both are figments of the imagination.

    Belief in Santa, at least, perpetuates a spirit of joy and goodwill.

  • Ash spill tore apart community

    Having raised her children in the same house that she grew up in, Kim Harris had a connection to her homeplace that doesn’t show up in a property appraisal.

    “When my husband and I first got married, we would buy trees for Christmas and plant them, and I could tell you what year we planted what tree,” she said. “You can’t put prices on that.”

    Harris said TVA wasn’t concerned with sentimental value when she and her husband negotiated with the agency to buy their Swan Pond Circle Road home following the ash spill.

  • Police say Walmart shoplifter changed clothes in aisle

    A Harriman woman decided to change clothes in the aisles at Rockwood Walmart, trashing her own clothes while police say she attempted to shopliftaround $1,100 in merchandise.

    The incident happened Tuesday around 6:30 p.m.

  • A SPECIAL NOTE FROM LICK SKILLET

    Gentle Reader: You may recall that in our concluding last week we reminded everyone of our usual practice of taking a brief hiatus for the holidays.

    We do this for two reasons, the first being our life-long pattern of taking time off from whatever we were usually doing to instead do holiday related activities in a more relaxed manner than would be possible if we were also pursuing our regular activities — a practice we highly recommend.

  • Commissioner’s home gutted in fire

    Roane County Commissioner Jerry Goddard and his wife, Sherron, lost their home in a fire late Tuesday night around midnight.

    “I assume they lost everything. You hate it any time, but this time of year it seems to be worse,” said Randy Scarborough, Midtown Volunteer Fire Department Chief.

    Scarborough said it may have been a heater malfunctioning in the basement that caused the fire, which came up through the kitchen area.

    Harriman Fire Department is closest to the home and ran mutual aid with Midtown.

  • Remembering the ash spill

    It’s been nearly five years, but Melinda Hillman still has vivid memories of Dec. 22, 2008.

    “I got up and went outside as I usually did to drink my coffee and look out over the lake,” she said. “It looked like a giant moonscape.”

    What Hillman saw from her Emory River Road home was the result of an early-morning dike failure at the nearby TVA Kingston Fossil Plant.

    More than 5 million cubic yards of fly ash spilled over 300 acres, some of it in strange blocks that locals immediately dubbed “ashbergs.”

  • Murder mystery in Rockwood?

    The body of Janice Pugh Tollett of Rockwood was found outside her mother’s home at 404 Tedder St. Sunday.

    “They found her lying back there behind the house,” said Ralph Hedrick, her cousin. “Nobody knows how she got back there. You can tell there had been a lot of movement. There was mud on the cars. She was lying in a mud hole.”

    Hedrick said an autopsy is being done on Tollett, whose home was across the street from where she was found.

  • DAG backs off smurf turf war

    Even though city ordinances banning the sale of pseudoephedrine without a prescription have been deemed illegal, one proponent believes the amount of attention drawn to the issue could be beneficial.

    “I am hopeful that the number of localities that have passed such ordinances will have brought enough attention to the legislature to ensure that they take some sort of affirmative action on the issue,” District Attorney General Russell Johnson said.

  • Students can now register at RSCC

    Registration is under way for the spring 2014 semester at Roane State Community College.

    Students need to be aware when they register that the college has a Jan. 6 fee deadline.

    Students who have registered must pay their fees by Jan. 6 at 4:30 p.m. to keep their class schedules for spring semester.

    Students can pay fees at www.roanestate.edu. They need to log in to RaiderNet and click “Your Account” to get started.

    Students can pay by phone using major credit or debit cards. The number is 882-4515.