Local News

  • City due to start budget talks for FY14

    Rockwood officials aren’t waiting until spring to start talking fiscal budget 2014.

    Rockwood City Recorder Becky Ruppe laid out a tentative schedule of what she’d like to see the budget calendar be for this year.

    The schedule begins this month, with department heads due to receive forms to list budget requests.

    Ruppe believes the city can pass a budget by July 1.

    “I don’t see any reason why we can’t make this happen,” she told the Rockwood finance committee.

  • Another meth lab found: Two jailed in latest 100 Oaks incident

    Police reported finding a meth lab at 100 Oaks Apartments last Tuesday.

    That’s the same complex where police arrested seven people in connection with a lab last month.

    Tuesday’s incident resulted in two arrests. James Christopher Lombardo, 33, and Arthur Lee Wilson, 47, are charged with promotion of methamphetamine and possession of drug paraphernalia.

    The apartment complex is at 900 E. Wheeler St., Rockwood.

  • County gets big refund on Kingston water bills

    The city of Kingston wrote a check to Roane County for $106,162.74 last week.

    The money was a refund for overcharges on the county jail’s water bills.

    “We ended up billing them for water that we didn’t sell them because the meter was giving us an inaccurate reading,” Kingston City Manager Jim Pinkerton said.

    Roane County Executive Ron Woody said Kingston Mayor Troy Beets brought him the check on Feb. 4.

    “It’s a lot of money for a city to turn over at one time,” Woody said.

  • Alexander rankled by report of decline in health insurance

    U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., pounced on a recent report by the Congressional Budget Office that said 7 million fewer people will have employment-based health insurance by 2022 because of the Affordable Care Act.

    The controversial law, commonly referred to as Obamacare, was passed by Congress in 2010.

    “The Congressional Budget Office’s nonpartisan report confirms the failures of the health care law,” Alexander said in a prepared statement.

  • Barter brings its act to Roane

    The Barter Theatre, Virginia’s state theatre, did production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Roane County High School last week.

    Seen here is Helena, who is pursued by both Lysander and Demetrius. Lysander originally is in love with Helena’s friend Hermia, but a woodland spirit named Puck accidently uses a love spell on him instead of Demetrius.

  • Rockwood makes first payment to utility

    The city of Rockwood recently paid a portion of what is still owed in TVA funds to the Rockwood Water, Sewer and Natural Gas Department.

    “It is the first time we’ve been able to make a payment,” said Rockwood City Recorder Becky Ruppe of the $18,500 payment.

    The remaining $100,000 debt is what the city owes for TVA funds designated for Rockwood Water, Sewer and Natural
    Gas projects by the Roane County Eco-
    nomic Development Board after the Dec. 22, 2008, ash spill at Kingston Fossil Plant.

  • Watts Bar Utility District closes on $6.855 million loan

    Watts Bar Utility District of Roane, Rhea and Meigs counties has closed on a $6.855 million loan through the Tennessee Utility Assistance, LLC municipal finance program.

    The loan will be used to refinance outstanding bonds for significant interest cost savings of more than $726,000.

    Standard and Poor’s, one of the major credit rating agencies, assigned its “A+” rating to the Series 2013 Bonds.

  • Couple says armed robber demands pills

    A Kingston couple told police a man broke into their home armed with a handgun and robbed them of pills.

    The incident was reported on Feb. 6.

    Kingston police responded to 137 Scott Lane to investigate shortly after 5 p.m.

    The report said James Cooper and his wife, Lisa Johnson, told police a white male with blonde hair wearing a gray sweatshirt knocked on their side door and asked to use the phone.

  • Women accused of sneaking contraband to prison crew

    Two Loudon County women are in trouble with the law for allegedly trying to hide contraband for a state prison work crew.
    According to court records, Christina R. Moore and Ronda A. Henderson have been charged with possession of methamphetamine for resale, possession of suboxone for resale, criminal trespassing, vandalism, possession of drug paraphernalia, criminal conspiracy to introduce contraband into a penal facility, tampering with evidence and violation of the drug free school zone act.

  • Sulfur dioxide leak sets off alarm

    Leaking sulfur dioxide, a toxic gas, set off alarms at the Oliver Springs Wastewater Treatment Plant on Joel Road in Roane County Wednesday morning.
    A HAZMAT team dealt with the situation.
    “We don’t know what caused it. There was a leaking valve,” said Howie Rose, director of Roane County Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security. His and other agencies responded to the scene.