http://www.roanecounty.com/todaysopinions/rss.xml en Harriman Lions Club ‘eats-for-eyes’ event had backing http://www.roanecounty.com/content/harriman-lions-club-%E2%80%98eats-eyes%E2%80%99-event-had-backing <p> Once again, the Harriman Lions Club had a successful pancake breakfast at Roane Street Grill. We served approximately 250 people on May 23.</p> <p> This is our annual major fundraiser for the programs which we sponsor and support. Following our primary goal of sight preservation, we provide photo eye screening each year for over 400 Roane County children. We pay for eye examinations and/or glasses for 25-35 people yearly. We also contribute to local charities as the need arises.</p> GUEST OPINION: A look at the news with freedom’s eye http://www.roanecounty.com/content/guest-opinion-look-news-freedom%E2%80%99s-eye <p> By GENE POLICINSKI</p> <p> First Amendment Center</p> <p> The public furor and the televised flames that reached from Ferguson to Baltimore over the last 10 months have faded &mdash; for now &mdash; from the headlines.</p> <p> For some, though, consideration of what happened and how the news of those events was reported remains very much in mind &mdash; an aspect of First Amendment freedoms we don&rsquo;t often consider.</p> Gillum amused by Texas residents’ fears of takeover http://www.roanecounty.com/content/gillum-amused-texas-residents%E2%80%99-fears-takeover <p> Texans are at it again!</p> <p> Has anyone noticed that many Texas residents are becoming extremely concerned, even paranoid, that President Obama allegedly is planning to use the Army&rsquo;s Special Ops training exercise code named Jade Helm 15 to &ldquo;take over the state&rdquo; and impose martial law?</p> <p> They think the U.S. Army will infiltrate their population and execute a takeover.</p> <p> Even the governor and lieutenant governor have indicated they have the same thoughts.</p> <p> What is it about the water in Texas that poisons residents&rsquo; minds?</p> Resident makes case for support of school tax hike http://www.roanecounty.com/content/resident-makes-case-support-school-tax-hike <p> I am one of those who believes we should take whatever steps that are necessary to keep our Roane County schools well funded.</p> <p> If that means a property tax hike, I&rsquo;m all for it.</p> <p> The county property tax on our house is currently $714 per year. A large tax hike, say 10 percent, would cost us only another $71.</p> <p> I don&rsquo;t think that would put us in the poor house. That&rsquo;s a piddling amount of money, about what it would cost a couple to go out to eat and go to a movie in Knoxville.</p> David Morgan’s salary should be taken to pay state http://www.roanecounty.com/content/david-morgan%E2%80%99s-salary-should-be-taken-pay-state <p> Property Assessor David Morgan&rsquo;s salary is about $75,000 per year, I believe. So he has been paid $150,000 (two years) to do nothing.</p> <p> With the deadline approaching, he took vacation. From what? Showing up at the office and not working?</p> <p> Stop paying him. Or at least garnish his wages until the state is repaid in full. Make it so he pays before he leaves office.</p> <p> I just realized I know nothing about being a property assessor, so I am overqualified and plan to run for the office.</p> Gift to church destroyed by fire couldn’t be better http://www.roanecounty.com/content/gift-church-destroyed-fire-couldn%E2%80%99t-be-better <p> Thank you, H.G. Furniture, for the piano that you gave to Grace Baptist Church in Decatur.</p> <p> We lost our church last year due to a fire. Lord willing, we&rsquo;ll have a floor to put the piano on soon.</p> <p> The devil has been fighting us in all directions. The McKameys say it best when they sing, &ldquo;In the middle of it all, there is Jesus.&rdquo;</p> <p> Please pray for our church. May God bless.</p> <p> Kay Andrew</p> <p> Ten Mile</p> Rockwood’s animal control officer goes beyond the job http://www.roanecounty.com/content/rockwood%E2%80%99s-animal-control-officer-goes-beyond-job <p> His business card says City of Rockwood Animal Control and Codes Officer. To me, Mark Neeley is so much more.</p> <p> In his more than two years at Rockwood&rsquo;s tiny animal shelter, he has dealt with almost 1,600 animals.</p> <p> Of those, 320 were taken to the Roane County Animal Shelter, 122 were returned to their owners, and homes were found for 944.</p> <p> While the typical euthanasia rate at an animal shelter is 70 percent, Mark&rsquo;s is about 3 percent. In my opinion, this is because of his hard work and determination that no adoptable dog is put down.</p> Investing in us will help county, cities http://www.roanecounty.com/content/investing-us-will-help-county-cities <p> <em>By Ron Woody &bull; For Roane Newspapers</em><br /> Back in February, I wrote a draft paper titled Community Investment Fund (CIF), an &ldquo;Initiative to Grow&rdquo; program.</p> <p> I sat on the article for a number of weeks, and then started pitching the concept to our city and county leaders to see if they would be receptive to further study and consideration of the initiative.</p> <p> Input was received from city mayors and managers as we met in our semi-monthly meeting.</p>