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Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Newport City Council
Members of the Newport City Council hired a female firefighter at their Tuesday evening meeting. The Fire Civil Service Board recommended the two top candidates, Amanda Reaves and Patrick Sheldon. Alderman Jeff Fancher said the department currently has three vacant positions. The council members said both candidates were well qualified, but they voted four-to-one to hire Reaves. She has a strong background as a member of the Cosby Volunteer Fire Department. The council members indicated they believe the civil service regulations should be modified, and indicated that Sheldon may be offered a different position in the city. Fire Chief Randy Ragen also recognized Firefighter Donnie Rollin who recently retired, and who had served as the department's chaplain. City Manager James Finchum reported that a truck route downtown will be enforced just as soon as signs designating the route are erected. A speed monitor on the Cosby Road in Bryant Town, soon will be operable. The body approved an ordinance which requires those who develop sites on commerce corridors in the city also install sidewalks. The areas affected are Highways 25/70 and 321. Members named the Newport Planning Commission to also serve as a Design Review Commission, and they adopted a master plan for the development of downtown. The council agreed to advertise for bids for the completion of the Tanner Building. The winner of the bid also is expected to serve as the construction manager. Kirk Street in West End will be closed to traffic on September 16, from noon till 6:30pm. The East Tennessee Baptist Association has planned a Legacy of the Mountains Community Event and a concert by Michael Combs on that date. Alderman Jeff Fancher said he is continuing to work on a combined effort with Cocke County to fund the animal shelter. He argued that "the community is too small to have two animal shelters." Fancher said that a rescue group, "Go North" has agreed to accept healthy and well-behaved dogs for adoption in several northern states. He said the group currently works in 20 counties. The council agreed to front the cost of an upgraded railroad crossing project at Mims Avenue and Main Street. The $313,000 cost will be reimbursed by TDOT and the railroad. A new patrol car will be purchased with drug seizure money. Police Chief Maurice Shults said no taxpayer money will go into the purchase of the vehicle which will be used by DARE/School Resource Officer Sgt. Justin Vinson. Residents of Richland Park called on the council to pass a resolution to prohibit double-wide mobile homes in the Richland Park subdivision in the future. The council took no action on the request which was sparked by the recent location of a double-wide in the subdivision. Residents said they are concerned that the home will devalue their properties.

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Thursday, August 17, 2017

  • Former jailers arrested
  • Commodity distribution next week
  • Black bear caution
  • East Tennessee has retirement affordability
  • Park officials continue their search for teen
  • Tree cutting to slow traffic in Gatlinburg

    Wednesday, August 16, 2017

  • Cocke Grand Jury
  • Fletcher Ervin obit
  • Agribusiness grants
  • Dolly to record children's CD
  • Cocke County energy grant

    Tuesday, August 15, 2017

  • Tax freeze for seniors
  • KOA Lane fire
  • Lee touts vouchers
  • Seniors and opiods
  • Comments on Sunday officer involved shooting

    Monday, August 14, 2017

  • Shooting Update
  • Cocke County officer involved shooting fatality
  • McMahan charges are pending
  • Clevenger injured in Saturday incident
  • Morris arrested on drug charges
  • Help to protect the Golden-Winged Warbler
  • Gas prices expected top drop

    Sunday, August 13, 2017

  • Smokies offers new education initiative
  • Roe recuperating following surgery
  • New truancy guidelines
  • Munsey sentenced

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