Local News

  • 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.

  • Meth labs spotted in T-bird, camper, Rockwood home

    A traffic stop on the interstate led to the discovery of a methamphetamine lab earlier this month.
    It was one of several labs authorities have discovered recently.

    According to a Roane County Sheriff’s Office report, Deputy Michael Self stopped a Ford Thunderbird on Interstate 40 with six people inside on Sept. 7.
    One of the occupants, Raymond Racey, had an outstanding warrant.

  • More than moving to consider when selling your home

    Internal Revenue Service
    If you’re selling your main home sometime this year, the IRS has some helpful tips for you.
    Even if you make a profit from the sale of your home, you may not have to report it as income.
    Here are 10 tips from the IRS to keep in mind when selling your home:
    • If you sell your home at a gain, you may be able to exclude part or all of the profit from your income.

  • OUT to LUNCH: Chef Roy’s sure to please at his Market Street Bistro

    I previously wrote about the site of today’s “Out To Lunch” adventure in March 2009, when it was called Market Street Fountain.
    Last April, Roy Vomfell opened the restaurant as Market Street Bistro.
    Located next door to Food City in Kingston’s Ladd Landing, the Bistro menu consists of European-style deep-dish pizzas, pastas, salads and sandwiches.
    Its website, www.marketstreetbistro.com, includes a menu and plate presentations of many Bistro favorites.

  • City puts 911 contract on hold

    Kingston City Council members deferred a decision on a 911 contract another month when questions arose as to which calls dispatchers would send to local responders.
    In the wake of an ongoing budget crisis with the county service, 911 director Mike Hooks asked local municipalities last year to pony up additional cash, on a graduated annual schedule, to make up for revenue shortfalls.
    Local 911 services are funded in large part by taxes on telephone landlines, and the advent of cellphones has drastically cut into that revenue.

  • Martial arts master True to form

    Isshin-ryu karate is one of the country’s most popular forms of martial arts, and Harriman’s Tommy True has stayed true to its teachings for 50 years.

    True, a grand master,  operates a school in Harriman, in his Trenton Street location for more than 30 years.
    “I have the oldest Isshin-ryu school in the state of Tennessee right now,” True said.
    With snowy white hair and a boyish grin, True doesn’t look like a dominating force in martial arts, but his dedication and skill are respected.