The DeKalb County Commission is trying to figure out a way to give property tax relief to eligible senior citizen property owners without having to adopt the property tax freeze which was overwhelmingly approved by voters at the polls last November
Counties and cities in Tennessee can now freeze the property tax rates for eligible homeowners 65 and over. State lawmakers gave local governments the authority to enact the tax freeze during the legislative session
The adoption of a property tax freeze by local governments is the final step in an effort to limit the impact of rising assessments and property taxes on seniors with fixed incomes. The process began with Constitutional Amendment No. 2 which received an 83 percent "yes" vote statewide in the 2006 general election.
In DeKalb County, the vote was 4,125 (83%) to 805(16%) in favor of the Constitutional amendment
Smithville Municipal Judge Hilton Conger may decide soon whether horses, being kept on a small lot between Luttrell and Anthony Avenue must be removed, based on alleged violations of city property maintenance regulations.
The owner of the horses, Seth Billingsley has been cited into city court by the police department. Chief Richard Jennings says he surveyed the property last Friday, November 23rd and found probable cause to issue the citation.
Seth and his wife Janohn Billingsley reside at 857 Anthony Avenue.
The citation alleges that Seth Billingsley is in violation of a city ordinance in regard to:
A Dowelltown woman, charged with forgery and theft, is among those arrested within the past week by the DeKalb County Sheriff's Department.
Sheriff Patrick Ray says 31 year Carla Denise Chapman of Snow Hill, Dowelltown was charged on Monday, November 19th with twenty counts of forgery and two counts of theft of property under $500. According to Sheriff Ray, On June 12th Chapman allegedly stole blank checks from a residence on Snow Hill Road Dowelltown, forged the victim's checks, and went to various businesses and cashed them. Then on October 31st, Chapman went to a residence on Old Snow Hill Road, Dowelltown and allegedly took various checks out of the victim's truck, forged the victim's checks, and went to various businesses and cashed them. Chapman is under a total bond of $210,000 and her court date is November 29th.
The mobile home of Teresa Stanley at 352 Adcock Cemetery Road was damaged in a fire around 3:00 a.m. Monday morning.
County Fire Chief Donny Green says Ms. Stanley told firefighters that she was awake when the fire started. According to Ms. Stanley, she heard a very loud popping sound, looked down the hall and saw fire and smoke coming from an electrical breaker box.
She got out of the trailer safely and went across the street to contact 911. She then stayed with a neighbor while firefighters fought the blaze.
Green says although there was some smoke throughout the structure, the fire was contained to the hallway and a bathroom of the residence. Ms. Stanley's personal belongings were also saved.
Members of the Midway, Cookeville Highway, and Short Mountain Highway stations responded along with a tanker truck. EMS was also on the scene as a precaution, but there were no injuries.
DeKalb County's unemployment rate for October was 4.3%, up from 4.1% in September but still down from 4.8% in October, 2006.
DeKalb County's Labor Force in October was 10,290. A total of 9,850 were employed and 440 were unemployed.
Tennessee's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for October was 4.6 percent, down from the September rate of 4.7 percent. The United States' unemployment rate remained unchanged from a month ago at 4.7 percent.
County non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rates for October show 41 counties decreased, 40 counties increased and 14 counties remained the same.
Knox County registered the state's lowest county unemployment rate at 3.3 percent. Lincoln County followed at 3.4 percent. Maury County had the state's highest at 8.7 percent, followed by Marshall County at 8.2 percent.
As part of the effort to StopLitter™ in Tennessee, Governor Phil Bredesen and TDOT Commissioner Gerald Nicely today awarded Dekalb County with a litter grant in the amount of $29,237.
“Each year volunteers pick up nearly 25.5 million pounds of roadside litter,” said Bredesen. “Litter is an eye-sore, it’s costly to clean up and can be harmful to our environment, but it’s totally preventable. These funds will be used by counties across the state to organize their pick-up efforts and conduct educational campaigns to teach children and adults about the importance of keeping Tennessee beautiful.”
“It’s time people realize that the roadside is not a trash can,” said Representative Frank Buck. “I support all efforts to educate people on the consequences of littering in Tennessee and encourage citizens to report litter when they see it happening.”
Litter grant funds are distributed annually by TDOT to all 95 Tennessee counties.
The 12th annual Angel Tree Project is underway and your support is needed to help make this holiday season merrier for hundreds of less fortunate children.
Laura Stone, President of DeKalb County Angel Tree Incorporated, says this program has been reorganized. "This is our 12th annual Angel Tree Project. It's basically the same program but we've come under a different organizational aspect of it. We are now a non-profit organization in the process of getting our 501c3 status. I am the president and Lisa Vaughn is the secretary-treasurer. We have a board of directors made up of Marie Blair, LaVaughnda Midgett, Charlie Parker, and Tim Woodward. We're working together with the community this year as a group in order to provide presents, like we always have, for the needy and disadvantaged children of the community."
Smithville Police arrested a Cookeville woman on drug charges Saturday after answering a shoplifting complaint.
37 year old Lois Ann McCloud of 627 Rice Circle, Cookeville was charged with simple possession of a schedule IV controlled substance (xanax) and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia. Her bond is $2,500 and she will appear in General Sessions Court on the charges December 6th.
The arrest warrant states that " Officer Matt Holmes responded to a shoplifting call at Gordon's Hardware and was advised that the subject had left. A description was given of the car and it was stopped at Wal-mart. Upon speaking to both subjects in the vehicle, they admitted to being at Gordon's Hardware but denied shoplifting anything. They also consented to a search."
Smithville Police Officer Travis K. Bryant has received a commendation for his efforts to obtain equipment for the department.
The commendation, signed by Mayor Taft Hendrixson, Police Commissioner Cecil Burger, Chief Richard Jennings, and Lieutenant Steven Leffew states that "On behalf of the Smithville Police Department, I would like to commend you for your recent efforts in your capacity in the Traffic Division"
"Due to your determination, the police department has received vital equipment and training at no cost, through financial grants."
"As a result of your patience and determination, the Smithville Police Department has been equipped with two in-car video systems, two lap top computers, an EC IR Intoximeter and a hand held Intoximeter. Our officers also have received specialized training at no cost to the City of Smithville."