The great radio debate

It’s been simmering, quietly and semi-below the surface for several years. The discussion over the radio system used to dispatch fire and police responders to emergency scenes has ebbed and flowed over that time, sometimes more actively, sometimes less so. The system is used to communicate back and forth between the dispatch center and trouble scenes in the field: status […]

Blount County teacher charged with sexual misconduct

Ashley Parkins Pruitt, 28, a teacher at Appalachian High School, was arrested last Thursday and charged with three felonies and two misdemeanors in relation to inappropriate contact with three students. The charges stem from her alleged activity with the students during the months of September, October, and October of this year. The allegations are of sexual intercourse, oral sex, and […]

Swearing in, litigation, grants top November agenda


In what could be a significant step toward resolving a chronic problem with maintaining Blount County rural roads, county attorney Jeff Sherrer recommended filing a request with the Circuit Court for a declaratory judgement to establish the legal width of a prescriptive right-of-way on Heaton Road, located in District 3 on Straight Mountain off U.S. 231, about six miles east […]

Cindy Massey

appointed to circuit clerk position

Cindy Massey has been appointed circuit clerk by Circuit Judge Steven King. She will fill the unexpired term of current Circuit Clerk Mike Criswell, who resigned effective the end of November. The term for the elective position runs until January 2019. Massey has served as secretary to the circuit judge since 2006. Before that she worked as a clerk in […]

Giving gifts globally

Marla Smith, pictured, member of Lester Memorial United Methodist Church in Oneonta, along with Kossie Buckelew, are serving as relay center chairwomen for the effort to bring gifts to children all across the world. Operation Christmas Child, a project of Samaritan’s Purse, has provided 113 million children in more than 150 countries with gifts since 1993. The group is hoping […]

Giving Thanks

As we gather let’s next give week thanks with family and friends day. for The the bounty safe, plentiful we enjoy to count not our just blessings, produce food that is on available this the holiday, clothing, but on a daily housing, to us and the every basis. medicines, products fuel, to These and used to a tremendous items don’t […]

OPD cracks eyeglass case

Oneonta police officers arrested Brian Scott Burrell, 53, of Birmingham, on charges including two counts of seconddegree theft of property and one count of first-degree receiving stolen property last week, according to Oneonta Police Chief James Chapman. Allegedly, Burrell stole 32 designer eyeglass frames from two Oneonta businesses – The Eye Shop and VisionSource. The frames averaged $200 each. The […]

Church versus conference case continues

Blount County Judge Steven King has yet to rule on the Oct. 1 case involving the United Methodist Conference and Oak Grove Methodist Church, but the multipleyear case is still weighing heavily on church members’ minds. Five years ago, Oak Grove Methodist Church members voted to withdraw from and stop supporting the United Methodist Conference. Following this decision, all locks […]

The candidate of the religious right


This was probably one of the dullest and least interesting gubernatorial election years in memory. It stemmed from the fact that Robert Bentley was a popular incumbent governor and nobody dared to run against him in the Republican Primary. These days winning the Republican Primary is tantamount to election in the Heart of Dixie. The only really exciting race was […]

New police vehicles approved


Acting police Chief Dan Freda gave the Blountsville Town Council estimates for two new vehicles for his department during Monday night’s meeting. Freda explained to the council the need for the vehicles, citing as an example that the department’s newest and best vehicle is currently undergoing engine work. He recommended the purchase of two 2015 Chevrolet Tahoes, at a cost […]