Local News

  • Harriman eyes lot for fire training

    Harriman Fire Department has found a new use for a city owned piece of property that could benefit all of Roane County.

    Harriman Fire Chief Brad Daniels proposes using the former Coleman Log Company property for a fire tower and burn room for training purposes.

    It’s on lower Margrave Drive, past the Harriman Public Works.

    “This has been a goal of mine and the men of the department. We need a place where we can sharpen our skills on a daily basis so we can give the best service to our citizens,” said Daniels.

  • Harriman police chief resigns

    Less than two years on the job, Harriman Police Chief Derek Pacifico has resigned.

    “Although there is still much to do, it has come time for a change in leadership,” Pacifico said in a letter posted on the Harriman Police Department’s Facebook page. “As such, as of midnight Sunday the 22nd, I have resigned my position as Chief of Police.”

    A post from Pacifico said the letter was sent to the men and women of the Harriman Police Department.

  • Former RPD officer charged with domestic

    A former police officer is facing a domestic assault charge. David Blake Norman, 32, was booked into the Roane County Jail on April 17 around 11 p.m.

    The alleged victim is his wife.

    Roane County Sheriff’s Office Capt. Tim Hawn spoke with Danielle Norman about the alleged assault earlier that day.

    “Danielle stated that Blake struck her in the side of the face on the right side, causing her nose to bleed,” Hawn wrote in an incident report.

    The report also said Hawn noticed blood and bruising on Danielle’s face.

  • Blencoe hopes her bid for office inspires Dems

    Mary Ellen Blencoe, Democratic candidate for the 32nd District State House of Representatives seat, is enthusiastic about being a part of the election process even though she admits that she might not even be living in Roane County come the Novemeber election.

    Backed by Roane County Democratic party leaders wearing “Blue Wave” t-shirts that symbolize the party hopes for the 2018 election, Blencoe told the meeting of local Democrats that she made the decision to run as more of a statement of encouragement to Democrat voters and candidates.

  • Watkins gets performance bonus of 15k

    Roane County Director of Schools Leah Rice Watkins received a $15,000 performance bonus in 2016-17, her first year on the job.

    The bonus is the maximum amount allowable under the contract she signed with the Roane County Board of Education. The contract was set to expire on June 30, 2020, but the board extended it last year to June 30, 2021.

    The $15,000 bonus was in addition to the $120,000 salary Watkins received in 2016-17. Her salary for 2017-18 is $125,000.

    The bonus amount is based on the school board’s evaluation of the director.

  • Roane County positive despite audit findings

    Roane County’s most recent state audit noted some findings in the Office of Director of Accounts and Budgets.

    “The office had deficiencies in budget operations,” the audit said.

    The audit occurs annually and is conducted by the Tennessee Comptroller of the Treasury. It was released last month.

    One of the deficiencies listed said total expenditures in the General Debt Service Fund exceeded total appropriations by the County Commission by $11,564.

  • Sales tax goes on ballot in Harriman

    Harriman officials are putting a sales tax issue on the ballot for August.

    The Harriman City Council approved second reading at their meeting this week. The city is asking voters to raise the local option sales tax from 2.5 percent to 2.75 percent with the intent all additional revenue would go to fund streets, bridges, sidewalks and storm water systems.

  • Big dreamer in a small town

    Almost every day, rain or shine, an orange clad youth can be seen in makeshift practice, devoutly honing his football skills.

    Decked out in UT clothes, pads and a helmet, 18-year-old Colton Ruehle goes to the Walnut Hill boat ramp near his home and practices, spiraling a football and attacking his makeshift practice dummy, a desk chair, with as much ferocity as he can muster.

    “He’s out here every day. Rain. Snow. It don’t matter,” said mom Vicky Brown.

  • Elderly lady nabbed for harboring runaway Roane County teen

    A 74-year-old Madisonville woman was booked into the Roane County Jail last weekend.

    Vickie E. Wattjes is charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor and harboring a runaway juvenile.

    According to the warrant, Roane County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Stan Hohulin responded to 107 Rileys Creek Road on Sunday to investigate a report about a missing juvenile.