Local News

  • Rocky’s sentence to come from brother’s judge

    When Rocky Houston is sentenced in federal court, his fate will be determined by the same judge who sentenced his brother.

    Houston attorney Michael McGovern contended U.S. District Judge Danny Reeves should recuse himself from the sentencing because of what he was exposed to during the trials and sentencing of Leon Houston, who is Rocky Houston’s older brother.

    The judge disagreed.

    “Houston’s motion has no factual support and no legal merit,” Reeves said in his order of denial.

  • Southern dining for all tastes here

    If you like the food from Robert DeBinder’s kitchen, you have to give credit to his grandmother.

    As a small boy in Knoxville, he stood on chairs at Gloria Jean Everett’s side in the kitchen, watching and helping her prepare specialties like chicken and dumplings, country-style steak and other family favorites.

    The mother of five’s home later became the default mealtime gathering place for those children and their grandchildren, including DeBinder.

  • County executive hopefuls to take part in forum

    Roane County Republican Women will continue its series of forums this week when the group hears from candidates for county executive.

    Incumbent Ron Woody and challenger Mike Farmer will participate in the forum, which begins at 7 p.m. June 26 in Michael Dunn Center at 629 Gallaher Road, Kingston.

    Candidates for public defender and Roane County Commission Districts 4, 5, 6 and 7 will also take part in the forum.

    The moderator will introduce those involved in the forum, explain the ground rules and introduce the candidates.

  • Renaissance fair aims for 2015 opening

    Clashing swords and the clink of armor are familiar sounds for Lars and Barrie Paulson.

    From 1984 to 1993, Lars Paulson went to school at the Ringling School of Art and Design in Sarasota, Fla. He has been a designer and manager for festivals including, Ringling Museum Medieval Fairs, Kansas City Renaissance Festivals and Minnesota Renaissance Festivals.

    “His whole life has been in creative arts,” said wife and business partner Barrie Paulson, who once toured as a performer for the festivals.

  • County workers poised for pay raise

    Roane County has yet to complete the budget process for the 2014-15 fiscal year, but employees and property owners might find something pleasing about where the budget stands right now.

    It calls for a 3-percent raise for county employees — and no increase in the property tax rate.

    “The employees have served us well over the last few years without raises,” Roane County Executive Ron Woody said.

  • Candidates for sheriff open up at 2nd debate

    Last week’s debate between Roane County Sheriff Jack Stockton and challenger Jared Hall was more lively than the one they had in April.

    The pair tackled some of the same topics, but there was more back-and-forth discussion this time.

    “Whether we use the DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) program or something like it, I will offer it back to Roane County Schools,” Hall said.

    “I feel, based on my past experience working with the school system right here in Roane County, that they will be more than eager to accept it.”

  • Kamp aims to ease kindergarten transition

    Laughing and learning are normal occurrences at Kingston Elementary during the school year.

    But what’s commonplace in the school’s classrooms during the summer?

    The same thing — at least during Kinder Kamp for incoming kindergartners.

    “It is a huge help for them to come and get familiar with it all,” said Kingston Elementary kindergarten teacher Jennifer Raymer.

    “It helps with the transition so much.”

  • Softball team’s Pink Out game cites Narramore

    Pink clothing is not unusual on the field at many children’s softball games.

    But at a game last week at Midway, the preponderance of pink had special impact.

    When Midway 8-and-under hosted a Pink Out game against Kingston last Monday, it was in honor of April Narramore.

    The longtime South of the River resident was diagnosed with breast cancer in April.

    “The ‘C’ word is always devastating,” Narramore said, “but I haven’t been alone through any of it.”

  • Sewer issue may be resolved

    Kingston officials hope they’re on the verge of settling a longstanding issue with the wastewater treatment expansion and putting the long-delayed project on a fast track to completion.

    City Council members learned this month of the latest meetings between city officials and the contractor for the wastewater plant expansion.

    A subcontractor hired by the chief contractor damaged an oxidation ditch a couple of years back, causing delays and, potentially, cost overruns.

    The project required an initial $262,000 in engineering and related costs.