West Blount Fire Department creates full-time paid positions

In its Aug. 9 meeting, the West Blount Fire and Rescue Department board of directors took a step toward professionalizing the volunteer department by creating two 12-hour paid shift positions – one daytime and one nighttime. Previously, the department has been an all-volunteer organization with no paid positions. The board also authorized paying all volunteers on a per-call basis during […]

Wallace State

Oneonta Center will offer associates degrees

Plans for a new Oneonta campus center announced last week following a meeting of local and Wallace State Community College officials include “required courses for completion of the Associate of Arts and Associate of Science degrees as well as other workforce-relevant certificates and credentials,” according to a Wallace State news release issued Monday. The course offerings “will be equal in […]

Council approves draft beer sales for retailers

The Oneonta City Council gave its approval for draft beer sales to already licensed alcoholic beverage retailers. The decision at the last council session followed a scheduled 15-minute public hearing just prior to the regular meeting. No one spoke at the hearing. Councilors also voted to annex the Mickey McCreless residence off Woodard Drive. Members expressed their pleasure that some […]

New administrators named

for Locust Fork High and Susan Moore Elementary

In a called meeting last Friday, the Blount County Board of Education named a pair of new administrators for Locust Fork High School and another for Susan Moore Elementary. Thomas Smitherman returns to Blount County as Locust Fork principal. Smitherman has been the assistant principal at Moody High School for the last two years but previously served in Blount County […]

Jason Phelps highlights Go Build Alabama campaign

Chamber lunch today

The campaign to educate young people on the value of learning a building trade will be the speaker’s theme at the Blount County-Oneonta Chamber of Commerce luncheon today at noon at Twin Oaks at Heritage. The speaker is Jason Phelps, executive director of the Alabama Construction Recruitment Institute (ACRI). Phelps worked with ACRI’s board to create the Go Build Alabama […]


BLOUNT COUNTY DEMOCRATIC EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE will meet on Saturday, July 25, at 9:30 a.m., in the conference room of the Oneonta Public Library. The public is welcome to attend. MUSTANG BACK-TO-SCHOOL CONSIGNMENT SALE will be tomorrow, July 23, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday, July 24, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturday, July 25 (50% off day), […]

Blount County Museum to host renowned genealogist

Robert S. Davis of Wallace State Community College – Hanceville will present “Finding Your Civil War Family’s Experience” at the Blount County Memorial Museum in Oneonta, Sunday, July 26, at 2 p.m. as this month’s local historical society presentation. Davis supervises the genealogy collection at Wallace State. That collection has special records available from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Missouri, and Texas. […]

Book details author’s personal journey through tragedy

After years of encouragement from friends and family, Harriet Cornelius, 78, has written a book,“Finding Joy in Grief.” Begun in 2013 and self-published in 2014, Cornelius’s autobiographical work tells the story of her journey of Christian faith in the face of immense loss. After surviving an abduction in 1986, the author lost her third son, Neal, in a car accident. […]

Divided Snead council names Hicks police chief

In a 3-2 split, members of the Snead Town Council voted to appoint Alan Hicks the town’s new police chief. Hicks replaces Phillip Weaver who resigned at the April 27 council meeting (later delaying his departure until the end of May). Mayor Curtis Painter and councilmen Tim Kent and Charles Sanders voted to name Hicks. Councilors Greg Ogles and Phillip […]

BP money helps but more needed


The week leading up to the Fourth of July had a lot of fireworks. In fact, my guess is that when we look back at the year 2015, we will look to that week as the most momentous of the year. It was like bang, bang, bang. The declaration by the Supreme Court that same sex marriage is the law […]