Local News

  • Chlorine leak resolved at Jellico water system

    The chemical is used at the utility to kill bacteria in the water and is released from a tank into the water by a regulator.

    The regulator on the tank malfunctioned when no one was present at the lab, according to Jellico Utility General Manager Mike Bethurem.

    Though the chemical was leaking for less than 24 hours inside the building which houses the chlorine tank, it was enough time for the gas to be sucked into an air conditioning system and dispersed into the lab, said Bethurem.

  • Hobo dinner set to benefit LaFollette Library

    The Friends of the Library are not setting out to feed the hungry with a hobo dinner on April 5. Instead they are setting out to make some money for the building of a new LaFollette Library.

    Eunice Reynolds, Friends of the Library board secretary, expects a large turnout at the dinner because so many people stand to benefit from a new library, she said.

    The dinner, offered from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the cafeteria of the new LaFollette Elementary School, will offer a full meal of country cooking.

  • LaFollette Civil War site receives marker

    Some things are worth the wait, and after nearly a year’s worth of efforts, the Big Creek Gap Civil War site received a historic marker yesterday.

    Through the Civil War Trails program, and with efforts from local citizens such as Bill Claiborne, the valuable historic site will finally receive the recognition it deserves.

    The Civil War Trails program is a multi-state program that identifies, interprets, and creates driving tours of both the great campaigns and the lesser know Civil War sites, according to Director of the Civil War Trails program, Mitch Bowman.

  • Two arrested for meth manufacture

    A pillow in the back window of a swerving car was only the first sign for deputy Jeremy Myers to make a traffic stop off of Towe String Road.

    John Charles Riggs, 35, of Jacksboro, was sitting in the driver’s seat and acting strangely as the deputy approached, said Campbell County Sheriff Gary Perkins.

    Riggs allegedly told Myers there was no narcotics in the vehicle and gave permission to search, said Perkins.

    The search revealed a container of drug paraphernalia and several items used to manufacture methamphetamine, according to Perkins.

  • LUB extends Baird's contract: adopts new policy

    At Monday night’s LaFollette Utilities Board meeting, LUB General Manager Kenny Baird’s contract came up for review. Board members discussed Baird’s performance as a manager and decided to extend his contract by one year.

    “He’s well respected in the region and I think we should hold on to him as long as we can,” said Howard St. James.

    “I personally feel like the utility is one of the best run entities in LaFollette,” said board member Ken Younce.

  • East Tennessee Quality Growth: looks ahead for the future

    In a world constantly changing and growing, many counties in East Tennessee are beginning to map out a plan for the future; a plan known as quality growth.

    East Tennessee Quality Growth is a new program encompassing the 16 county region that comprises East Tennessee.

    Bill Claiborne and Fred Cole are Campbell County’s representatives on the board.

    After attending a regional workshop to launch the program, Claiborne and Cole brought ideas back to the county in the hopes of spreading the importance of quality growth.

  • Search led to seizure at Caryville motel

    It was a tip that led Caryville Detective Stephanie Smith to a local motel room to investigate the possible selling of drugs in late March.

    When Smith was informed Wanda Faye Odell, 46, of Caryville, was allegedly selling Oxycontin out of a motel room, she went to the hotel room to speak with Odell.

  • Jellico to hold Gem City Trading days on Saturday

    This Saturday, Jellico will host its first Gem City Trading Days in the Veteran’s Park.

    “We’ve got a dead spell with nothing going on right now so we thought it would be a way to get people to come out of the house, come down and bring anything they want to sell,” said Jellico Tourism Director Jake Bennett.

    “As the old saying goes, one person’s junk is another’s treasure,” said Bennett laughing.

  • Mural brightens halls and lives

    With birds jutting out from the walls and seashells lining parts of the floor, downstairs at the LaFollette United Methodist doesn’t seem like brick and mortar.

    On the walls of the section the church reserves for children, Billie Sue Hunter and her band of merry artists have transformed the space. What was once just block and paint now depicts the seven days of creation in a series of murals.

    It is a site that draws oohs and aaws from the children who frequent the halls. It also draws a few of those from the adults as well.

  • Branam suspended; investigation ongoing

    It has been a week since news of a Jacksboro Middle School teacher’s suspension broke.

    Since that time there seems to be more questions than answers.

    Dr. Michael Martin, director of schools, has confirmed that Dean Branam, a 30- year veteran of the Campbell County school system, has been suspended with pay as a result of inappropriate behavior with a student.

    “I suspended him with pay pending the investigation that is being conducted by the Jacksboro Police Department,” Martin said via telephone on Tuesday.