Local News

  • Truck versus trees
  • Plucked from the ice

    Neil Crass hadn’t used the boat he purchased last year.

    “I bought it to duck hunt in and had never gotten to take it out,” he said. “About two weeks ago I was thinking, why in the world did I buy this boat?”

    He’s not asking any more.

    Crass, his son, Hunter, and Blair Volunteer firefighter Larry Sather used the boat Saturday to rescue three boys who had fallen into the Emory River.

    The incident began around noon on Saturday in the area of 161 Lakewood Estates Lane.

  • TVA ash spill mediation gets extended again

    Chief U.S. District Judge Thomas Varlan has approved another extension in the TVA ash spill mediation. It’s the fourth time Varlan has done so since he ordered the sides into mediation on Nov. 20, 2012.

    The ash spill occurred at the Kingston Fossil Plant on Dec. 22, 2008. The spill released more than 5 million cubic yards of fly ash.

    TVA became a magnet for lawsuits after the disaster, which the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regards as one of the worst ever.

  • Now North Carolina is dealing with ash spill

    Officials with Duke Energy and the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources were responding to a coal ash spill in Eden, N.C. Ash spilled into the Dan River.

    According to Duke Energy, a broken stormwater pipe at the retired Dan River Steam Station in Eden caused the breach.

  • After 50 years on board, McNelley steps down

    A longtime Rockwood planning commissioner and former Rockwood mayor has resigned from the Rockwood Board of Zoning and Planning Commission.

    He was put on the planning commission since shortly after World War II by Col. Clint H. Putman.

    “I worked with him to organize and put together the planning commission,” McNelley said. “It has been more than 50 years.”

    McNelley, 86, he decided to take a step back. He is continuing his role on the 911 board and his involvement in his church activities.

  • Changes for REU board mean former employees can serve

    Former employees can now sit on the Rockwood Electric Utility Board.

    Rockwood City Council unanimously approved first reading of an ordinance to allow retirees or former employees to be on the board that oversees the utility’s operation, including its budget, and potentially issues that impact retirees or former employees themselves.

    City Council members believe it will give the board the benefit of the former employees’ knowledge and expertise.

  • Horsehead Corp. fines for emissions

    Horsehead Corp. in Rockwood was cited by the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation for exceeding its permitted emission limits in December.

    It was fined $500.

    Its emissions of cadmium and chromium were above those allowed under its initial permit.

    Horsehead officials contend the emissions are below what is required to be protective, and that TDEC is currently amending the permit, company officials said.

  • Bigger building, more jobs: Blue Bell expanding Roane County facility

    Blue Bell Creameries is expanding its facility in the Roane Regional Business and Technology Park.

    The project will take the facility from 1,300 square feet to more than 12,000 square feet.

    Leslie Henderson, president and CEO of The Roane Alliance, said the expansion could mean more jobs.

    “They expect to create 14 new jobs total from their expansion in addition to the 10 they had before,” she said. “Right now they are at 18 and they expect to be at 24 by year’s end.”

  • Creswell new Roane Alliance CEO

    Wade Creswell will be the next president and CEO of The Roane Alliance.

    The organization’s board of directors selected him to succeed Leslie Henderson, who is retiring at the end of March.

    “I’m super excited about it,” Creswell said. “It’s a great opportunity. Hopefully I’ll get a chance to make a great difference in my community.”

    Henderson announced her retirement last year.

    Creswell said he looked into the job and became intrigued.

  • False alarm? You may be paying for it in Rockwood

    First reading of a Rockwood ordinance creating a permit requirement for alarm systems in the city and charging a penalty for excessive false alarms passed unanimously last week.

    “We have times where we get swamped by false alarms,” said Rockwood Police Chief Danny Wright.

    “A lot of times we’re going to a house or business or the fire department is answering them where we have no idea who a responsible party is, whether we need to make entry if it is a medical alarm or not, somebody to get a-hold of,” Wright said.