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Local News

  • Hurdle cleared for land annexation

    Harriman officials are moving forward with a referendum to annex three properties neighboring where Covenant Health plans to build a hospital in the Midtown area.

    Harriman City Council approved Mayor Chris Mason’s request to put the referendum involving about  five residents on the June ballot.

    Councilman J.D. Sampson said he hadn’t had a chance to visit with other area residents, but he plans to see if he can generate any interest from others who might like to be in the city.

  • Austin facing DA opposition in fight for citizen rights

    District Attorney General Russell Johnson is still planning to oppose Thomas Alva Austin’s petition to have his rights restored.

    Austin was a Roane County General Sessions Court judge before he went to prison for extortion.

    “As I have stated to you earlier, it is my intention to oppose the petition and I will be filing a formal response in the near future since it now appears that you intend to move forward with the request,” Johnson wrote Austin attorney Browder Williams.

  • Bowers marks soulful link with Fisk Jubilee Singers

    Students at Harriman’s Bowers Elementary School got treated to 140 years of tradition last Wednesday.

    The Fisk Jubilee Singers gave a rousing performance inside the school gym.

    “We’re honored to have them,” first-grade teacher Christy Ruskey said.

    The singers are students at Fisk University in Nashville. They travel the country and the world performing.

    In 2009, they received a Grammy nomination for a collaboration with music artist Jonny Lang.  

  • EMS in $300,000 range for overtime

    Some Roane County commissioners want the ambulance department to look into reducing the amount of overtime its giving employees.

    From July 1 to Feb. 10, $316,171.66 was spent on overtime pay. There is still more than four months left in the fiscal year.

    Commission Chairman James Brummett has suggested the department “work intuitively on all scheduling to avoid excess overtime.”

  • Grant helps Harriman, Rockwood save money

    A green movement will help two Roane County communities save money on their utilities.

    Both Harriman and Rockwood have Energy Efficiency and Conservation block grant dollars allotted to help them renovate city buildings to make them more efficient.

    Rockwood City Recorder Jim Hines said the city has $100,000.

    The project will be to change and replace all the lighting fixtures in the municipal complex. The work will replace about 300 fixtures with energy efficient fixtures, Hines said.

  • Confusion reigns in convening of county's urban growth board

    Harriman will have to wait a little longer before the committee to consider urban growth amendments reconvenes.

    A meeting set for Feb. 28 was cancelled. Roane County Executive Ron Woody sent a letter to each cities’ mayor, Roane County Chamber of Commerce, Roane County Soil Conservation District, Roane County Board of Education, Rockwood Electric Utility and Volunteer Energy Cooperative.

  • Cleaning up

    Jose Parez picks up trash alongside Interstate 40 at the Midtown interchange last week.

  • City founder namesake for university

    What is the connection between Fisk University and Harriman?

    Students and faculty at Bowers Elementary School can tell you.

    While researching the Fisk Jubilee Singers, they discovered the man for whom the university is named — Gen. Clinton B. Fisk — also played a role in the founding of Harriman.    

  • Tiger Haven strikes back at county

    Last month the Roane County Commission instructed County Executive Ron Woody to write Tiger Haven a letter requesting a group inspection.
    The answer came this week.
    “Tiger Haven respectfully declines the commission’s request for such an inspection,” Tiger Haven attorney S. Douglas Drinnon informed Woody in a letter on Wednesday.
    Drinnon added that, “as a courtesy,” he would allow Woody to take a tour of the property.

  • Workshop schedule eyed

    Harriman City Council has a lot to deliberate on this year, including annexation, the completion of the Princess Theater and a continued focus on cleanup.
    That’s why, in the light of holidays and bad weather cutting into workshops, several council members recommended diving back into the routine.
    “We got a lot of work that needs to be done,” said Councilman J.D. Sampson.
    “I think we need to get back on track with our workshops. I think we all agree our plate is full,” Councilman Lonnie Wright said.