Local News

  • Image-conscious agency touts cleanup work since disaster

    TVA is conscious about its public image. When 60 Minutes ran a story about the ash spill, the agency put out a statement criticizing the news agency.

    When the civil trial over the disaster started in September, TVA issued a statement touting the work it had done to restore the area around the Kingston Fossil Plant.

    So it came as no surprise that TVA officials were willing to discuss the ongoing cleanup a few days before the three-year anniversary of the disaster.

  • Sustainable Roane: Energy, recycling initiatives abound

    First it was just an idea: Let’s make Roane County a sustainable community.
    After nearly a half a million dollars in grants and a rapidly spreading grassroots movement, Roane County is starting the year 2012  greener than ever before.
    It took the TVA ash spill, an environmental disaster of national proportions, to spark the movement.

  • Resolve to be ready if disaster strikes in 2012

    As 2011 — one of the most active years for disasters in recent history — comes to a close, the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency and Federal Emergency Management Agency are encouraging people to Resolve to be Ready in the new year by making a resolution to be prepared for emergencies.
    “Every family, community and state are susceptible to disasters,” said TEMA Director Jim Bassham. “The most effective way to protect our homes, businesses and loved ones is for everyone to take preparedness as an individual responsibility.”

  • Wandering child’s uncle sentenced

    James Saylor reported to the Roane County Jail on Wednesday to serve 48 hours for his guilty to plea to reckless endangerment.
    Rockwood police took out a warrant for Saylor, 30, in September after a 2-year-old he was supposed to be watching was found wandering in the middle of East Evans Street.
    According to court records, Saylor pleaded guilty on Dec. 12. He was fined $100.
    All jail time, except for 48 hours, was suspended.

  • More sue TVA over ash spill

    One of the final lawsuits filed against TVA before the three-year anniversary of the ash spill lists around 330 plaintiffs.
    The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Knoxville on Dec. 21.
    The Dec. 22, 2008, disaster at the Kingston Fossil Plant released more than 5 million cubic yards of fly ash into the environment.

  • We predict 2012’s top stories

    Last year the Roane County News staff moved away from focusing on the top stories of the past year and decided to turn our focus toward potential big stories in the year ahead.
    We like doing that because it gets us thinking of the future and it allows us to tell you what we expect to be spending our resources on next year.
    Here are 12 local stories we believe will be well worth watching in 2012:
    • Change of leadership in the school system: Roane County Schools Director Toni McGriff says she will retire after school ends this spring.

  • Support breaks abuse cycle

    Victims of domestic violence often feel like they have nowhere to turn, especially when their partners have alienated them from loved ones and have control of finances.
    Sharmin Bradley, the Roane County domestic violence advocate with Child & Family Tennessee, wants to make sure these victims know someone cares.

  • Surplus projected in school construction

    A report to the Roane County Economic Development Foundation about the school system’s building program was lacking in details, but one man says money should be left when work is complete.
    The school system was the biggest beneficiary of the foundation, which dispersed $43 million to Roane County government agencies after the TVA ash spill.
    Lee Maines, who was hired to oversee the program, appeared before the foundation last week to give an update on the projects.

  • Hines still to get city paycheck

    Rockwood City Council didn’t approve proposed contracts for outgoing city recorder Jim Hines to continue building inspection and city recorder duties, but that doesn’t mean he’s going anywhere.
    Rockwood Mayor James Watts said Hines would continue at his current pay scale and be paid by voucher until someone could be hired to replace him.
    “Every two weeks he’ll submit a voucher for his pay,” Watts said following the meeting.
    For many on the city council, money was the issue with both contracts Hines proposed.

  • County wins grant for HVAC work

    Roane County was awarded a $100,000 grant from the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development earlier this month for heating and air-conditioning units,  ductwork, controls and thermostats at the Roane County Courthouse.
    “Anytime we can use somebody else’s money to help us out, that’s a good thing,” County Executive Ron Woody said. “It gets us started a little early on the project.”