Local News

  • Kingston makes use of leftover water funds

    With a waterline connection to Rockwood in under budget, Kingston City Council members have turned one project into four.

    The Rockwood interconnection project began with a roughly $2 million federal grant-loan combination to enable Kingston to purchase additional water — if needed — from Rockwood.

    The project wrapped with money to spare. Kingston officials want to use the remaining $724,000 for further water line improvements. But any new work must have a connection to the original project.

  • Woman doesn’t fall for bold scam attempt

    A persistent scammer refused to take no for an answer from one Kingston woman.

    “Oh, they’ve called. It is bordering on harassment,” said Dottie Hulbert recently.

    “I ‘won’ $2.5 million and a 2014 Mercedes,” Hulbert said of her would-be prize offerings. She received multiple calls for several days from the culprits.

    Hulbert said she was told someone would call to set up the Mercedes delivery and that she would need to send $771.63 for the taxes before they’d send her the check.

  • Kingston seeks cheaper rates on employee health insurance

    In their never-ending quest to cut costs, Kingston City Council members looked to reduce one of the city’s largest annual outlays by calling for new insurance quotes.

    In the end, though, council members decided that other pastures aren’t always greener and elected to stick with the current package—a combination of Cigna and Blue Cross, obtained through the state of Tennessee—to provide insurance benefits for its employees.

  • Changes being considered in Rockwood parks management

    Rockwood City Council will be deciding the fate of park and recreation director Jody Mioduski at its meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday.

    Mioduski was put on administrative leave earlier this month, and many officials were left initially in the dark about why he was out.

    Mayor James Watts confirmed Tuesday that Mioduski’s future with the city would be part of the discussion Thursday, and said they’d had calls from residents about his “management style.”

    Watts said he feels it is time to move in a different direction.

  • Kingston tightening budget belt

    Kingston City Council members prepared for the coming year of fiscal belt-tightening by approving on first reading a spartan budget plan for 2014-15 at the May 13 council meeting.

    Kingston City Manager David Bolling called it “a tough budget … a necessity budget,” and the numbers bear him out.

    The general fund in the 2014-15 plan — which still has to pass a second reading at June council sessions — is set at nearly $5.3 million, about $100,000 less than the current one.

  • Rockwood eyes modest tax hike

    Rockwood officials will likely have the first reading of its budget Thursday at 6 p.m.

    At press time, officials said the proposed budget includes a property tax increase of 5 cents — from 95 cents per $100 valuation to $1 per $100 valuation.

    “Basically I am going to let the council take the budget and go through it and make recommendations,” said Mayor James Watts.

    What of the proposed 5-cent hike?

  • Yet another residency challenge

    The controversy surrounding the residency of circuit court judge candidate Mike Pemberton is not over.

    Chattanooga attorney Wes Kliner filed a complaint with the Roane County Chancery Court, contesting the Roane County Election Commission’s decision to put Pemberton on the ballot for the Aug. 7 election.

    Kliner represents Kingston resident Willis Hall, a former client of Tom McFarland. Pemberton and McFarland face each other in the race.

  • Cherokee Middle School: Sixth-graders burn off steam

    Cherokee Middle School sixth-graders were able to change things up at the end of the year.

    Instead of sitting at their desks, they spent a day at Southwest Point involved in physical activity.

    Students participated in a track-and-field event that included  a softball throw, standing long jump and a series of races.  Awards were given in each category.

    They also played kickball.

  • Lights out on Ruritan Road, at least for now

    A stretch of Ruritan Road won’t be as bright in the near future.

    Harriman City Council members agreed to cover selected lights to test the impact. Whether the change is permanent depends on how the diminished lighting is viewed.

    “I talked to one of them in the neighborhood out there, and they think it would be a good idea,” said Councilman J.D. Sampson.

    Sampson recently marked lights he thought were unneeded, saving utility costs for the city. However, officials agreed to cover the lights first.

  • Kingston greenway project honored

    As Kingston’s Ladd Landing Greenway enters the next phase of its development — including exercise stations and bird-watching kiosks — it is already being recognized for excellence.

    Kingston City Council members learned at May council sessions that the greenway has been selected as a recipient of the John S. Wilder Rebuild Tennessee Award from the Tennessee Development District Association.