Local News

  • Judge dispute could be costly

    Taxpayers in the 9th Judicial District could be on the hook for thousands of dollars if a special election is ordered for circuit court judge.

    The position is currently held by Mike Pemberton, who defeated Tom McFarland in the Aug. 7 election.

    McFarland is now suing Pemberton, the Roane County Election Commission and Tennessee Coordinator of Elections Mark Goins in Roane County Chancery Court.

    McFarland wants the election voided and a new one held.

  • ‘Substance’ sought in school budget

    Roane County Executive Ron Woody said he wasn’t surprised the County Commission turned down the Board of Education’s request for a 9-cent increase in the property tax rate.

    “I still think it was because the commission did not have the substance that they needed to sink their teeth into something that they could really support,” Woody said. “I think that was the biggest problem right there. The commission does not have good data from the schools.”

    School officials provide commissioners a copy of their proposed budget each year.

  • Elvis is back in the building — for a good cause
  • Suspicious death was heart attack

    A man found dead in his Rockwood apartment died of natural causes.

    “The death has been ruled through the medical examiner as natural,” said Police Chief Danny Wright.

    Rockwood police first treated the death of Stephen Miller, 48, as suspicious.

    “We got a call on a welfare check late Sunday night about 10:30 or 10:45 at the apartment behind Hardee’s,” Wright said.

    “At that point in time, the death was suspicious in nature. I made the decision to have TBI come in and process the scene,” Wright added.

  • Cheerleaders rally at Harriman Care and Rehab
  • When mental illness, crime collide

    Criminal offenders often are mentally ill, and a program offered in Oak Ridge is geared at helping police to understand and difuse situations dealing with those people.

    A crisis intervention team teaches law enforcement on how to interact, understand and serve mentally ill residents they come in contact with.

    “It is a real vessel to get folks where they need to be when it comes to interfacing with officers,” said Brian Buuck, co-chairman of the CIT Taskforce.

    Buuck said it helps keep officers and the public safe.

  • Fall is here
  • GUEST OPINION: Social media no longer ‘toys’ of free expression


    First Amendment Center

    Time to take social media out of the freedom of expression “toy box.”

    Serious issues and serious work now abound in this relatively young method by which we not only exchange information, but also to rally to causes and hold public officials accountable.

    Just a few years ago, scarcely a few percent of Americans turned to Twitter, Facebook and the like for real news and issues. The medium was dismissed as the stuff of gossip, personal notes and largely meaningless personal snapshots.

  • Hook, line and sinker

    Madison Baker has been fishing since she was 4.

    The teen takes her hobby seriously, with more trophies than she can carry. She comes by the competitive spirit honestly.

    “My grandmother (Elizabeth Baker) did it professionally. It is just something I’ve always been taught to do, and I love fishing,” Baker said.

    Her mother, Ann, said Elizabeth fished in different circuits and often traveled to compete.

    It has paid off already.

    “She won a Ranger boat,” Ann said.

  • Bowers students getting exposure to undersea

    A group of Bowers Elementary School students are being taught about coral reefs this semester.

    Their connection with the topic is particularly interesting.

    Recently they met with Jessica Fain and Bruce Cantrell, two Roane State Community College professors who are vying to break a world record by living 73 days under the ocean at Jules Undersea Lodge in Key Largo, Fla.

    Fain and Cantrell also will be teaching a class and conducting live programs that will be available free to the public.

    What do the Bowers kids think about all this?