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Local News

  • Lions eye screenings
  • Checking out the solar switch
  • Stevens leaves private practice to join prosecutor

    Kingston attorney Terry L. Stevens II has joined the staff of District Attorney General Russell Johnson as an assistant district attorney.

    Stevens was sworn in at a ceremony by Criminal Court Judge E. Eugene Eblen.

    The number of assistant district attorneys in the 9th Judicial District had not grown since the 1990s, when Charles Hawk was in office.

    It took lobbying by Johnson to create the position that Stevens filled.

  • Grandsparents celebrated at Midtown Elementary

      Extra smiles and giggles filled Midtown Elementary’s cafeteria last week as grandparents enjoyed lunch with their grandchildren to celebrate Grandparents Day.
       “This is a big day for us,” Kendra Inman, principal at Midtown, said “The children have been so excited and looking forward to it.”
       Quentin Kolski, fifth grader, enjoyed a Thanksgiving style lunch with his Nana and Papaw Tuesday.
       This was Frank and Pat Kolski’s first time visiting Quentin’s school.

  • Prescriptions for cold meds won’t prompt drug cartels, DA insists

    A scare tactic, or a legitimate concern?
    That’s part of the debate surrounding law enforcement’s effort to make people get a prescription to buy medicines containing pseudoephedrine, a key ingredient in the manufacture of methamphetamine.

    Carlos Gutierrez, senior director of state government affairs for the Consumer Healthcare Products Association, said violent Mexican drug cartels are one of the repercussions of prescription-only pseudoephedrine laws.  

  • Mayor eyes change to ‘pass’ vote

    Potential changes to the Rockwood City Charter will be discussed by city officials this week.
    “We aren’t talking about a great deal of changes, per se,” said Mayor James Watts.
    “What we are looking at, as you know, we changed our election date. Our charter says our election will be held in June. That kind of thing.”
    The Rockwood City Council workshop on the charter will begin at 5:30 p.m. Sept. 19, in Rockwood City Hall.

  • Closed roadway not all it’s cracked up to be?

    Wanda Smith regularly traveled Airport Road until recently, when Roane County Highway Department closed the road to through traffic.
    The Morgan County businesswoman, who owns the Trading Post in Pine Orchard, is anxious to see the road repaired. She cites the inconvenience of traveling extra miles through Westel or taking Interstate 40.
    “I have a business on Airport Road,” she said. We have to travel all the way around Westel all the way around to get to the bank in Rockwood.
    “I’m not the only one.”

  • Leon’s trial put off again

    U.S. Magistrate C. Clifford Shirley Jr. continues to allow Leon Houston to delay his federal trial.
    Houston was scheduled to stand trial on Sept. 24 on a charge of possessing a firearm while being an unlawful user of a controlled substance.
    Prior to this month, two previous trial dates had been postponed.  
    Houston filed a motion last week to continue the Sept. 24 trial.
    The U.S. Attorney’s Office did not object, and it was moved to Nov. 4.
    Houston’s trial on a second charge of threatening to kill attor-

  • Library patron booted for ‘questionable issue’ involving computer use

    Kingston Director of Library Services Steve Jacks said a patron has been suspended from the library over what he called a “questionable issue” involving one of the facility’s computers.
    “We didn’t suspend him for watching pornography — because it was never proven he was watching pornography,” Jacks said.
    “But I had staff concerns about behavior, and we decided to suspend him until the library board could talk,” he said.
    Jacks said the library board addressed the matter during a meeting on Thursday.

  • Officials worry revamped offramp could worsen traffic

    A traffic signal has already been approved for the Interstate 40 exit 350 westbound offramp, but the new design for the ramp itself has some officials worried.
    The ramp presently splits at its intersection with Pine Ridge Road in the Midtown area.
    One lane swings toward Harriman proper, while the rest of the lane continues so drivers can turn toward Hwy. 70 or go back onto the interstate.
    However, the state plans include two lanes that go straight to the red light at Pine Ridge Road.