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Local News

  • Keeping business clean a goal in Kingston

    By JENNIFER RAYMOND

    rcraymond@bellsouth.net

    Kingston City Council members are looking at ways to keep the city clean, in more ways than one.

    They are putting in place restrictions and requirements for adult-oriented businesses before it becomes a problem.

    Led by Councilman Norman Sugarman, they have drafted and approved an ordinance dealing with these types of businesses.

    “We have some teeth in it to stop them or restrict them,” Sugarman said.

  • Grave markers fodder for thieves

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    rclawrence@bellsouth.net

    Metal thieves have shown no limits on what or who they’re willing to steal from.

    A man was badly burned last month because authorities said he was trying to swipe copper from a power pole. Metal bandits have also hit churches and a Habitat for Humanity house.

    The dead is not even immune.

    This week, the Roane County Grand Jury indicted a husband-and-wife team for allegedly stealing bronze markers from grave sites.

  • Commissioners dismiss Scruggs' ethics complaint

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    rclawrence@bellsouth.net

    Complainers are 0-for-4 with the Roane County Ethics Committee.

    Three complaints filed with the committee last fall were found not credible — as was another last Thursday.

    The most recent was filed by county resident Tony Scruggs against Melvin Moore, an employee in the property assessor’s office.

    It took the committee less than 10 minutes to determine the complaint was not credible.

    “It was that simple,” committee member Wade McCullough said.

  • Kirkham says she felt McFarland had conflict

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    rclawrence@bellsouth.net

    Chancellor Frank V. Williams III recused himself from the case involving Roane County Property Assessor Teresa Kirkham’s cell phone records.

    Kirkham said she believes County Attorney Tom McFarland should have done the same.

    “I’m confident in McFarland’s abilities, but I felt like he had a conflict,” Kirkham said.

  • Elderly man found dead in home

    By JUDY UNDERWOOD

    Morgan County News Editor

    An elderly Sunbright man was found dead in his home Saturday.

    Sheriff Dennis Ledbetter said William Jerry McCowan, 83, is believed to have died from natural causes and may have been dead for about three days.

  • Hwy. 27 project funded for ROW purchase

    By JUDY UNDERWOOD

    Morgan County News Editor

    Expansion of State Route 62 from Wartburg to Petit Lane is already underway but progress is also being made on the expansion of U.S. Highway 27.

    Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) Commis-sioner Gerald Nicely was in Morgan County for the official groundbreaking of the Highway 62 project a few weeks ago.

    At that time Nicely said a portion of the U.S. Highway 27 project has been funded to purchase right-of-way.

  • Four-day school week? Rising fuel costs prompt speculation

    DAMON LAWRENCE

    rclawrence@bellsouth.net

    The school system will present a budget for the 2008-09 fiscal year that won’t require a property tax increase to fund.

    The Roane County Board of Education approved the almost $61.8 million budget Thursday night. The budget passed 9-0.

    “I’m satisfied with it,” board chairman Earl Nall said. “I wish we could have asked for more, but these are just not good times to ask for more money.”

    The county commission is the funding body for the school system.

  • Three Roane Countians dance way to honors

    By JENNIFER RAYMONDee

    rcraymond@bellsouth.net

    Three Roane County students have something to be proud of.

    All have made impressive accomplishments through their background in dance.

    All three studied at Arts In Motion Dance Studio in Roane County.

    Abbey Austin, 18, has been with the studio since it was first opened by her mother, Jennifer, 15 years ago.

    She was accepted to college at Shenandoah Conservatory in Virginia, where she will study musical theater.

  • Patton lawsuit date changed to avoid conflict

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    rclawrence@bellsouth.net

    The case of former constable Mark Patton versus Roane County will not conflict with voting at the courthouse for the Aug. 7 election.

    Chancellor Billy Joe White tentatively rescheduled the case for Aug. 22 during a hearing that featured some heated exchanges between lawyers.

    Roane County Attorney Tom McFarland was seeking to have the case moved from Aug. 7 because the courthouse is closed that day because of the election.

  • Speeding tickets down on Roane highways

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    rclawrence@bellsouth.net

    In this day of record high gas prices, drivers are really looking to save.

    One way is to drive slower.

    “It’s not a myth,” said David Clifton of David Clifton Chevrolet-Buick-Pontiac in Rock-wood. “If you cut down on your speed, it will increase your gas mileage.”

    Whether drivers are doing it is not exactly clear.

    The number of speeding tickets issued by the Tennessee Highway Patrol was down over the first five months of 2008.