In a video message released this evening, Dolly Parton announced a new effort by The Dollywood Company and The Dollywood Foundation to establish a fund to assist the victims of the Great Smoky Mountain wildfires in Tennessee. The new My People Fund will provide $1000 each month to Sevier County families who lost their homes.
A Coeburn Virginia Man Accused Of A String Of Burglaries Has Admitted To The Crimes In Wise County Circuit Court. 26 Year Old Michael Sluss Plead Guilty To Four Counts Of Breaking And Entering Residences, Two Counts Of Grand Larceny, Possession Of Stolen Property, Possession Of A Firearm By A Convicted Felon And Violation Of His Probation. He Faces Over A Hundred Years In Prison When He’s Sentenced On February 17th.
A Jonesborough Man Accused Of Killing His Parents And Aunt Has Admitted To The Crimes In Washington County Tennessee Criminal Court. 39 Year Old Daniel Henry Plead Guilty To Three Counts Of First Degree Murder In The Deaths Of Robert And Melody Henry And His Aunt Barbara Hammonds At The Family’s Home On Skyline Drive Last October. A Judge Ordered Henry To Serve Life In Prison Without The Possibility Of Parol. He Claims To Have Killed The Three Family Members Because They Told Him He Wasn’t Good Enough.
Plans Are Moving Forward For A New Johnson City K-8 School In Boones Creek. School Leaders Are Eyeing A Smaller School To Eliminate 2-Million Dollars Off The Total Cost Of Construction. This Would Eliminate The Auxiliary Gym, One Of The Softball/Baseball Fields And Eight Classrooms. The School Will House 800 Students At First And Would Eventually House 11-Hundred. The School Board Is Expected To Continue Meeting To Make Changes Before Moving Forward On A Unanimous Vote.
Kingsport Police Are Searching For The Driver Of A Truck That Crashed Into A House And Fled The Scene. They Are Searching For 45 Year Old Harold White Jr. According To Police, White Allegedly Failed To Negotiate A Curve, Lost Control Of A Pickup Which Traveled Across A Yard, Went Airborne And Crashed Into A Home On Gravely Road. The House Was Shifted And Sustained Extensive Structural Damage. The Resident, Who Was Home At The Time Of The Crash Escaped Injury. A Warrant Has Been Issued For White. He’s Described As A White Male, 6-1 295 Pounds With Brown Hair And Brown Eyes. Anyone With Information On His Whereabouts Should Contact Police.
A Hawkins County Grand Jury Has Indicted A Man Accused Of Punching The Father Of A Deputy Who’d Arrested His Son. 66 Year Old Ronald Helton Sr. Is Charged With Felony Retaliation. He’s Accused Of Punching Gary Pease In The Face At His Fall Creek Dock Road Home In Russellville. Pease Is The Father Of Deputy Erick Pease Who Had Arrested Helton’s Son Previously. Helton Faces Up To Two Years In Prison. He’s Scheduled To Appear In Court Soon.
The Three Potential Sites Being Considered For A New Sullivan County High School Range In Tax Appraisal Value From 500-Thousand Dollars To 3-Million Dollars. The New School Would Serve 17-Hundred Students And Has An Estimated Price Tag Of 60-Million Dollars. The Sites Include Land Adjacent To The Airport Parkway, Lynn Road Just Off Exit 63 Of Interstate 81 Behind The Old Sam’s Wholesale Club, And The State Route 126 Site Near The Carolina Pottery Development. The School Board Will Meet In The Morning At 9 Am To Narrow Its Choice Of Sites.
A Company Is Asking A Federal Judge To Order Johnson City And The State To Issue The Necessary Licenses To Open A Methadone Clinic In The City. Tri Cities Holdings Tried To Open A Similar Facility A Few Years Back But The State Denied Its Certificate Of Need Application. Attorneys On Both Sides Of The Case Have Submitted Summary Judgments To The Judge On Why The Suit Should Either Be Dismissed Or Decided. The Company Wants To Receive Money For Legal Fees And Damages And To Receive The Go Ahead To Operate A Clinic In Johnson City. The City Is Arguing The Plaintiffs Don’t Have Any Standing Or Direct Injuries To Bring The Lawsuit. A Decision Is Expected In Early January.
Elizabethton Police Have Arrested A Man For Trying To Hold Up A Local Bank. 33 Year Old Alexander Leroy Allegedly Entered Carter County Bank On Bemberg Road Around Lunchtime Yesterday And Demanded Cash From The Tellers. Witnesses Said The Suspect Did Not Show A Weapon. Tellers Were Unable To Give Him Any Money So He Fled The Bank Empty Handed. He Was Arrested A Short Time Later And Is Charged With Attempted Aggravated Robbery. He Remains In The County Jail. A Court Date Is Set For January 24th.
Two Tri Cities Men Are Among Eight People Facing Charges In A Human Trafficking Operation Based In Morristown Tennessee. 27 Year Old Benjamin Bailey Of Greeneville And 43 Year Old Tommy Sells Ii Of Blountville Were Charged With Patronizing Prostitution During A Two Day Operation Headed By The Tennessee Bureau Of Investigation, Homeland Security And Morristown Police. Undercover Agents Posted Online Advertising With Eight Men Responding To The Ads. All Eight People Have Bonded Out Of Jail. They Will Appear In Court Soon.
A Proposal For Washington County Tennessee To Spend Over 778-Thousand Dollars For Johnson City, Kingsport And Jonesborough To Extend Water Lines To Rural Parts Of The County Has Been Put On Hold. The Reason Is To Allow For A Survey To Determine How Many Rural Households Qualify For Federal Assistance. If At Least 51-Percent Qualify As Low To Middle Income, The Proposed Water Lines, Which Affect Approximately 60 Homes, May Be Paid For Using Federal Community Development Block Grant Funding Instead Of Local Municipal Funds. The Delay Will Last 60 To 90 Days.
The 40-Dollar Hawkins County Wheel Tax Increase Proposal Is Once Again Back On The Table For Consideration. The Measure Was Pulled Last Month Due To Residents Speaking Out Against It. County Leaders Then Proposed Cutting Government Operations, Including Local Government Jobs. The Re-Proposed Tax Hike Would Be In Effect For One Year And Would Expire In February 2018, Assuming The Commission Approves A Funding Replacement Plan To Help Alleviate The General Fund’s 2-Million Dollar Deficit. County Leaders Will Meet Again On December 19th.
Abingdon Main Street Is Hosting Its First “Holidays On Main” Holiday Shopping Celebration This Weekend. The Event Will Feature Shopping Deals, Refreshments, And A Holiday Window Display Contest. Additionally, Abingdon Main Street Will Officially Roll Out An Abingdon-Specific Smartphone App And Will Invited The Public To Join In. The Event And Smartphone App Will Take Place On Saturday
The Theater Company That Operates In The Kingsport Town Center Is Apparently On The Way Out. Hull Property Group, Doing Business As Kingsport Mall LLC, Has Been Making Plans To Evict Frank Theatres From The Old Fort Henry Mall. The Group Alleges Frank Theatres Breached Its Lease And Was Given Notice To Vacate The Mall Last October And Hasn’t Paid Rent Since March. Hull Property Group Self Manages Its Entire Retail Portfolio And Oversee’s The Mall’s Leasing, Property Management And Marketing Operations.
Johnson City Property Tax Payments Are Due By The End Of The Year. Mailed Payments Must Be Postmarked By December 31st. The Final Due Day To Pay In Person Without Penalty Will Be January 3rd. Penalty And Interest Will Begin To Accrue On January 4th.
A Racing Legend Has Been Cleared To Race. Doctors Said Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Can Get Back To Racing Full Time In 2017. He Voluntarily Took Himself Out Of Competition In July After Suffering Concussion Symptoms. Earnhardt Missed A Total Of 18 Races With Alex Bowman And Series Champion Jeff Gordon Substituting For Him. He’s Expected To Make His Debut At The Gatorade Duets And The February 26th Daytona 500.
Hawkins County School Leaders Are Proposing A Revised Religion In The Curriculum Policy. The Policy States Educational Content Of A Religions Nature Shall Be Presented In A Factual, Objective And Respectful Manner Within Four Specific Guidelines. No Changes Have Been Made Because School Leaders Want To Take More Time To Review The Textbooks And State Standards More Closely Before Making Changes.
Erwin Leaders Have Decided To Move Forward With Rezoning The Town’s Elm Street School Property. This Will Clear The Way For A Georgia Developer To Renovate And Re-Purpose The 1922 School Building Into Upscale Condominiums. The Ordinance Is Scheduled For A Second-Reading And A Public Hearing December 12th.
Work Crews Are Working To Demolish The Old Tva John Sevier Fossil Plant In Rogersville. The Plan Is To Recycle The Scrap And Use The Land For Potential Industrial Development. There’s A New Natural Gas Power Plant Operating Just Next Door To The Old Facility. The Goal Is To Have Everything Completed By The End Of Next Summer. TVA Officials Plan To Work With The Economic Developments To Come Up With What Will Be A Good Fit For The Site In The Future.
The Tennessee Department Of Safety And Homeland Security Along With The Tennessee Highway Patrol Are Asking The Public To Donate Food And Supplies To Support Those Affected By The Devastating Wildfires That Swept Through The Smoky Mountains. The Collection Period Will Take Place Now Through Tuesday, December 20. Members Of THP Will Deliver The Collected Items To The Smoky Mountain Area Rescue Ministries. Suggested Items Are: Blankets, Bottled Water, Canned Food, Non-Perishable Food, Factory-Sealed Food Items, And Pet Food. The Public Can Drop Off Items At Any Of The Eight THP District Headquarters Statewide Including The Fall Branch Office.
A Burn Ban In Place Since November 9th In Scott County, Virginia Has Been Lifted. Due To Recent Rainfall, The Board Of Supervisors Voted Unanimously To Remove The Ban.