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Letters

  • Immigration reform both pro-growth, pro-agriculture

    Earlier this year, the U.S. Senate passed a commonsense immigration reform measure in a strongly bipartisan fashion. This was an important step in the right direction – especially for producers, farm workers and rural communities.
    The historic legislation passed by the Senate provides a pathway to earned citizenship for the 11 million people who are in our country today without authorization. They will have to go to the back of the line, pay fines and settle taxes they owe our nation.

  • Consolidation of schools? Writer doesn’t like idea

    The school board has mentioned it is planning a study on school consolidation.  

    Consolidation is not a good idea in my opinion. Say Rockwood High was closed and then we had to bus high school students to Kingston where a larger high school was build.

    A lot of new families moving to Roane County would probably not move to Rockwood if they had to bus their children to Kingston  and so would live in Kingston or wherever there was a high school.  

  • Wish we could all turn $10 into $40 like initiative did

    The 2013 Pro2Serve Challenge for Roane Imagination Library has drawn to a very successful close.  

    Approximately 100 businesses and individuals in the county took to heart the challenge of raising $7,500, an amount to be matched by Pro2Serve.

    That amount would be matched once again by the Governor’s Books From Birth Foundation.  

    That’s right, a donation of $10 turned into $40.

  • Mammoth hazard lurks for those who boat at night

    A terrible fatal boating accident on the Hudson River recently reminded me of the close calls I have had with the dark hulks called barges.

    Drunk, under the influence or stone-cold sober, the operators of these commercial barges are dangerous to captains of small craft and extremely so when boating at night near the lights of a city.

    On a dark night, the outlines of the sides of the barges being pushed are without lights of any kind.

  • Schools director says pricey bags won’t be ordered

    I would like to explain the confusion over the “bag” issue that has occurred with the school system. 
    These bags WERE NOT ORDERED AND WILL NOT BE ORDERED BY THE SYSTEM. 
    It has always been the procedure of the courthouse to call when they receive a questionable requisition from different departments. 
    They will then send the requisition back for review.  I did not receive a call on this requisition. It was sent to the newspaper instead of calling me. 

  • Bag-gate shows time for change on school board

    The proposed purchase of two $585 mailbags is just a sample of the wasteful spending of the school board, and they seen to be untroubled by this expense. The post office will furnish bags for free. Makes us wonder what more they are wasting tax payer dollar on.
    Roane County News did a wonderful job in reporting this — many thanks. It is definably time for a change on the school board.
    Roane County School Board asked the County Commission for a tax increase. The School Board just can’t operate within a budget. 

  • American-made motorcycle bags cheaper, sturdier

    Roane County School’s requisition to purchase mailbags to transfer school and courthouse mail at a cost of $1,170.00 is asinine. 
    Essentially, they are asking to spend $585 per bag for the equivalent of two Harley Davidson saddle bags, and they probably won’t be sewn as well as regular Harley Davidson products.
    My family and I grew up in the textile business, and my brother still runs the leather goods company that makes a percentage of Harley’s leather goods. 

  • Teachers’ pay is hard-earned and well-deserved

    I listened with interest to the discussion of the Roane County School Board at its monthly meeting last week, but was even more interested in comments within the crowd.
    When the salaries of the teachers and other instructional staff were mentioned, a gentleman sitting near me pointed out that teachers in Roane County are paid the 15th highest rate in the state.
    I detected some disdain in his voice.
    I wanted to stand up a shout, “You bet they are, and they deserve every penny and more!”

  • School board members need to open their eyes

    Kudos to the Roane County News staff and County Budget Director Kaley Walker for bringing to light the new $585 mailbags to be purchased by our director of schools, Gary Aytes.
    The article describing how Mr. Aytes is considering the purchase of two designer briefcases made in Italy doesn’t look good for a director who is agonizing over what he can cut from the school budget since no property tax increase was approved, and therefore, the school budget is looking at a huge shortfall.

  • Sharpton taking advantage of Martin outcome

    Trayvon Martin’s death has triggered the Rev. Al Sharpton to instigate a national response.
    The weekend talk shows have this upheaval front and center and it will sizzle on the skillet of public opinion until the next newsy event, probably the arrival of Kate’s baby.
    So what will all this demonstrating and talking achieve?
    Nothing, I suspect, since the vast majority of the general public has already moved on and understand why the verdict was “not guilty.”