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Local News

  • Houstons' bond remains at $900,000

    Rocky Houston was on his best behavior during Thursday's hearing at the Roane County Courthouse. However, that wasn't enough to convince Judge James "Buddy" Scott to lower his bond. After close to six hours of testimony, court recesses and arguments by lawyers, Scott decided that bond for Rocky Houston and his brother Leon Houston should remain at $900,000 for now.

  • Train strikes vehicle with woman in it

    Roane County E-911 received a call at 12:17 a.m. Tuesday that a train had just hit a car outside of Rockwood, with a female driver inside.

    The Norfolk-Southern train was traveling southbound and struck the vehicle at McNew Road near Manufacturers Road off of Hwy. 27.

    The accident was near the Roane County Animal Shelter.

    According to spokesman Robin Chapman of Norfolk-Southern, the car was parked on the railroad crossing.

  • 'Higher standard' needed for constables

    Roane County Commissioner Mike Hooks had some pointed questions for constable candidate Ray Murray during a public hearing earlier this month.

    “Could you elaborate on your formal law enforcement training and whether or not you are a graduate of any law enforcement academy?” Hooks asked.

    “No, I’m not a graduate of any law enforcement academy,” Murray responded. “No law enforcement training is required.”

    Murray is right.

  • A proud and solemn day
  • Emory River land acquisition completed near Frozen Head

    Late last week, Governor Phil Bredesen announced that the Emory River acquisition adjacent to Frozen Head State Natural Area and Park has been completed. The acquisition is part of an overall 127,854 acre project to connect forestlands in Morgan, Scott, Campbell and Anderson counties.

  • County restores Davis Road to list

    County commissioners voted Monday night to restore Farley Davis Road to the road list at 1.7 miles.

    The situation has been under review by the road committee for several weeks and members of the McCartt family were happy with last night’s decision.

    Descendants of Pleas and Annie McCartt brought their concerns along with their attorney to the October Morgan County Road Committee meeting.

  • 'Dropout factories' dropping off list

    Local school officials have plenty of allies in their dismay about a recent study conducted by Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.

    A Google search of the term “dropout factory” reveals pages and pages of stories on the Internet of schools across the country disputing the findings of the study.

    Dropout factory was the label Johns Hopkins researchers gave high schools whose graduating classes were 60 percent or less the size the same class was when it entered the high school.

  • Gas spike hits hard

    Feeling like your pockets are being drained at the pump?

    You aren’t alone. Heading into the weekend, Tennesseans were paying around $3 a gallon for regular unleaded gasoline.

    “There’s a lot going on right now, and none of it is real good as far as gas prices are concerned,” said Don Lindsey, a spokesman with AAA East Tennessee.

    Last year about now, the average price of regular unleaded gas in Tennessee was $2.08.

  • Changing of the guard

    Celebrating the lives of deceased veterans and honoring their families is something that the Roane County Military Memorial Honor Guard feels privileged to do.

    “It’s our way of giving back to society,” said Lloyd Turner of Kingston, commander for the group of volunteers.

    But some of the veterans in the group are growing too old to hold up to the rigors of rifle salutes and standing at attention.

    Group leaders say it is time to recruit more volunteers.

  • Riverboat official seeks deferment from Kingston

    The Watts Bar Belle is chugging along — but not at the pace its investors had anticipated.

    Dave Westberg approached the Kingston City Council last month to tell them about his current financial woes.

    After providing city officials with financial statements, he was back again at a council workshop this week.

    He asked for help from the city, which is where the Watts Bar Belle is docked.