Local News

  • Dumping infuriates Kingston leaders



    Officials from Kingston and the state were quick to track down the culprit in last month’s illegal dumping incident that fouled a stream from Peach Street to Watts Bar Lake.

    It turned out the white sludge material involved concrete byproducts dumped by a contractor doing work for Oak Ridge Utility District in the Buttermilk Road area.

    The dumped material ran about a mile downstream to the lake.


    The Taco Bell in Kingston had another new sign put up last week — but this time it had nothing to do with weather.

    Its message was straight to the point:

    Micaiah, Prom? -Noah

    The message was posted Wednesday for all to see as teenage traditions took form.

    Roane County High School junior Noah Cash asked his best friend Micaiah Allen, senior homeschool student, to prom in the most unique of ways.

    “I would do anything for her,” Cash said.

  • Harriman manager may be able to surplus items



    Harriman City Manager Kevin Helms may soon be able to follow through on a simple housekeeping task without going before Harriman City Council.

    The City Council voted on first reading of an ordinance last week that would give Helms the responsibility to surplus city personal property, with the sale of any single item estimated to have a value exceeding $1,000 to come first to the full Council.

  • County, cities pooling road resources, pending approval



    Roane County’s Road Department is making agreements with the county’s four cities to work together and share resources.

    Rockwood City Council approved the agreement at last month’s meeting, and Harriman City Council approved it this month.

    “It is something we should have been doing a long time ago,” said Rockwood Mayor Mike “Brillo” Miller.

  • County may put cap on funding for nonprofits



    Some officials want to see a cap on the amount of money Roane County donates to nonprofits.

    The County Commission’s budget committee voted unanimously to recommend a resolution to the full Commission that will limit the amount to $140,000 for the 2015-16 fiscal year.

    The commission is expected to consider the resolution at its Feb. 9 meeting, which starts at 7 p.m. at the courthouse in Kingston.

  • Harriman OKs Allison Rehn as city’s attorney



    Harriman selected attorney Allison Rehn to fill the city attorney post left vacant when Harold Balcom resigned last


    “I’m just thankful you’re interested in the position,” Harriman City Councilman Chris Ahler said.

    “We need to fill it, and you have great credentials.”

    Added Councilman Wayne Best, “I’m just glad we have somebody to call when we have a problem.”

  • Fire drives out residents

    Kingston firefighters fought a kitchen fire at Kingston Four Apartments Tuesday.

    “The fire originated on the left front eye of the stove,” said Fire Chief Willie Gordon.

    The occupant of that apartment is staying with her mother.

    The occupant of a second apartment which suffered water damage is also staying with family.

    Gordon said it will be a few weeks before the residents could return to those apartments.

    Gordon said Harriman Fire Department and Midtown Volunteer Fire Department also responded to the fire.

  • Tweaking beer laws gets complicated, officials find

    Deciding where beer can be sold is getting complicated, Kingston city officials are learning.

    City laws prohibit beer sales a certain distance from schools, churches and public gathering places.

    But because differing state laws govern the sale of hard liquor, a city business might be denied from selling beer near a such a facility, while liquor can be sold from even closer.

  • Buzz over ‘found’ 5 acres

    What once was lost has now been found. And it was right under their noses the whole time.

    Kingston officials recently added 5 acres to the city’s holdings.

    City Manager David Bolling said he just found out about the parcel a couple of days ago and is still trying to find out more about its history.

    The land, some of it wooded, is in the vicinity of Ladd Landing Boulevard and High Point Orchard Road and backs up to Interstate 40.

    It’s near Lawnville Road and the back side of the high-end Ladd Landing development.

  • Building inspection crunch taxes city

    Kingston’s fire chief went to the City Council workshop this week with an armload of blueprints for a new insurance office.

    “These are just for the retaining wall,” Willie Gordon lamented, rattling the big sheets of paper for the Farm Bureau insurance building going up at the corner of Kentucky and Spring streets.

    His point wasn’t lost on council members.

    Gordon has, since 2001, been wearing two occupational hats. Along with his fire chief duties, he also acts as the city’s building inspector.