Local News

  • State fund designated for victims of violent crimes

    National Crime Victims’ Rights Week is April 10-16, and Tennessee State Treasurer David H. Lillard Jr. reminds the public about a fund designed to help innocent victims of violent crimes in the state.

    The Criminal Injuries Compensation Fund serves victims who have no other means of helping to defray the costs of eligible expenses, including medical bills, mental health counseling, and lost wages.

  • 8,000-plus expected at Windrock Spring Jamboree

    A convoy of all-terrain vehicles and RVs will be making their way to Oliver Springs starting Thursday for Windrock Park’s 2016 Spring Jamboree.

    “It’s a lot of fun,” Windrock Park General Store Manager Connie Wadley said. “People get real excited for this. We’ve got mud bogs that people really like along with drag races and guided rides.

    “This is a good way for people to meet other people that enjoy doing the same thing. It’s also very family-oriented. The whole family can enjoy this.”

  • Treatment byproduct traces in HUB, Roane Central water

    Trihalomethanes are a byproduct of disinfecting water that can be cause for concern if they reach certain levels.

    Harriman Utility Board’s single violation in this year’s water quality report was related to the locational running annual average of trihalomethane levels being at 80.93 parts per billion at one testing location in 2014.

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency maximum contaminant level is 80 parts per billion.

  • Harriman paving two streets in public housing developments

    Harriman City Council is now looking to pave two city streets in the Harriman Housing Authority public housing communities.

    Bennett Circle and Crestview Avenue have been added to the list of roads city officials hope to pave with a portion of $2 million in money the city borrowed.

    “I’m very excited for us and the residents,” said Amy Hall, Harriman Housing Authority director.

    “It’s going to make the city look better.”

  • Sitzlar ‘ready now’ for director

    Shelia Sitzlar recalls getting a phone call four years ago from then outgoing Roane County director of schools Toni McGriff.

    “She said, ‘Are you going to apply for that job?’” Sitzlar remembers. “I said, ‘No,’ and she said, ‘Why not?’ I said, ‘Because I’m not ready.’”

    Sitzlar, the principal at Kingston Elementary School, doesn’t feel that way anymore.

    She was one of three people the Roane County Board of Education interviewed for the director of schools job on Monday.


    Two teens escaped from Roane Academy on Monday.

    Omni Visions President and CEO Steve Norris said they got away by climbing over the perimeter fence.

    “It’s unfortunate and I hate it, but it is what it is,” Norris said.

    The incident was reported to dispatch at 2:19 p.m.

    Deputies with the Roane County Sheriff’s Office responded and apprehended one of the escapees at 3:18 p.m. The other was captured at 4:20 p.m.

  • Roane water quality shows low lead levels

    Lead levels are a growing concern in the wake of the devestatingly high exposures found in Flint, Mich.’s, drinking water.

    Customers there found levels far beyond the Environmental Protection Agency’s action level of 15 parts per billion, but local customers can rest assured that such levels aren’t a concern here based on local utilities’ water quality reports.

    Watts Bar Utility District Assistant Wesley Barger said utilities get no say in which customers are selected for testing. They merely provide the means to collect the sample.

  • Crowded field? Or political strategy?

    Roane County Road Superintendent Dennis Ferguson lost every South of the River precinct in the 2012 election.

    The man who won them all, Jim Beason, was hired by Ferguson’s department last week.

    “It’s purely political,” Brian Mullins said.

    Mullins and Kingston Public Works Director Tim Clark are trying to unseat Ferguson in this year’s election.

    Beason made all the moves a candidate would normally make to run for road superintendent this year before opting not to.

  • First round of school director interviews today

    The Roane County Board of Education plans to interview nine candidates for its director of schools position this week.

    The group includes five people from outside the county – William E. Childers, Eric Ely, D. Scott Porter, David M. Roper and Leah Rice Watkins.

    School board members received brief biographical information about them last week.

    According to what was provided, Childers has a Monteagle address. He served as an interim director of Grundy County Schools.

  • Pinwheels for Prevention: It's National Child Abuse Prevention Month

    April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, and CASA of the Ninth Judicial District is heightening that awareness with a pinwheel garden on the lawn of the Roane County Courthouse in Kingston.

    The Pinwheels for Prevention Campaign advocates for children deserving of a happy, healthy childhood within the parameters of Roane, Morgan and Loudon counties, and throughout the state and nation.