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Local News

  • Kirkham apologizes for prank

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    Roane County Property Assessor Teresa Kirkham has apologized to the Panama City Beach, Fla., Police Department.

    In a letter dated May 3, Kirkham wrote that she deeply regrets that a private prank created difficulty for the police department.

    “I am therefore extending an apology to you and your department for any inconvenience this may have caused,” she wrote.

    “When I return to Panama City Beach, I will come to your office and apologize to you personally.”    

  • Kirkham apologizes to Florida police force

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    Roane County Property Assessor Teresa Kirkham has apologized to the Panama City Beach Police Department.

    In a letter dated May 3, Kirkham writes that she deeply regrets that a private prank created difficulty for the police department.

    “I am therefore extending an apology to you and your department for any inconvenience this may have caused,” she wrote. “When I return to Panama City Beach, I will come to your office and apologize to you personally.”

  • Vandals tear up veterans statue in Harriman park

    By CINDY SIMPSON

    csimpson@roanecounty.com

    The Roane County Veterans Memorial at Harriman Riverfront Park was vandalized over the weekend.

    The head on a statue of a soldier was broken off.

    A gazebo was damaged, and lights and signs were removed.

    Harriman police reports said the memorial statue had been knocked off the platform it was attached to and the head is missing.

  • OUCH! Tax assessment hikes leave some gasping

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    If the crowd that gathered in Claude and Judith Prater’s Sequoyah Shores living room Monday evening was any indication, there are some upset property owners in Roane County.

    The source of the anger is the reappraisal notices that arrived in the mail over the weekend.

    Claude said he gasped when he saw the appraised value on his property was nearly half a million dollars.

  • Utility head accuses council trio of illegal meetings

    By CHERYL DUNCAN

    cduncan@roanecounty.com

    The general manager of three Rockwood public utilities is accusing three Rockwood City Council members of violating the Tennessee Open Meetings Law in an attempt to oust him from his job.

    In a lawsuit filed Thursday in Roane County Circuit Court, Rod King contends Rockwood Vice Mayor Peggy Evans and council members Ray Collett and Bill Thompson had secret meetings to discuss action that would lead to his removal as head of Rockwood Water, Wastewater and Natural Gas.

  • TVA goes with on-site ash storage for Phase 2 cleanup

    STAFF REPORTS

    Cheaper and least disruptive.

    TVA cited those factors for choosing on site disposal for the ash that’s removed in Phase 2 of the disaster cleanup.

    Phase 1, which is nearing completion, involved removing ash from the Emory River. Phase 2 includes removing ash from the embayment and closing the failed dredge cell.

    TVA said the work is expected to take almost four years and cost about $270 million.

    Three alternatives were considering for Phase 2; TVA went with the cheapest option.

  • Kilgore can be deposed in TVA lawsuits

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    TVA’s attempt to prevent Tom Kilgore from being deposed was unsuccessful.

    In a ruling handed down Thursday, U.S. Magistrate Bruce Guyton ruled that plaintiffs suing TVA over the fly ash catastrophe can depose Kilgore, the agency’s president and CEO.

  • Senior center sought

    By CINDY SIMPSON

    csimpson@roanecounty.com

    Ann Griffin Varga is retired, and she’s looking for something to do.

    The problem: No central place exists in Roane County where she and others her age can share a pursuit of common interests and hobbies.

    Advocates for the area’s aging, however, hope to see that soon change with construction of a senior center in a central area.

    “We’re ready for it,” Varga said. “Us seniors don’t have any place to do anything in the winter.”

  • Rocky Houston released from jail

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    Last week Roane County Sheriff Jack Stockton said he expected Rocky Houston to be released from jail any day now.

    That day came Wednesday.

    "I got an order from the court today about 12:35, and he was out of here shortly after 1," Stockton said.

  • Reappraisal notices hit mail

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    Roane County property owners should receive their new appraisal notices in the next few days. Property Assessor Teresa Kirkham said they will be mailed out today, May 14. In this final installment of a question-and-answer session, Kirkham discusses several topics, including her reluctance to disclose the location of the reappraisal office.

    Why do the county and cities depend so much on your office to set their budgets?