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Director of Schools Patrick Cripps Addresses Rotary Club

August 1, 2016
Becky Thompson, Chad Colwell, Lindy Jenkins, Chris Griffith, Mr. Cripps, Jim Beshearse, George Oliver, Brenda Cantrell, and Pam Redmon.

Director of Schools Patrick Cripps was the guest speaker at the Smithville Rotary Club last Tuesday.

“Mr. Cripps gave us an update on the many great things going on in our school system as well as some of the goals he has for the 2016-2017 school year,” said Rotarian Clint Hall.

“We also look forward to starting an Interact Club this year at DCHS. Mr. Cripps is definitely on the "Energy Bus" and we know great things are ahead for our school system,” he added.

Pictured: L to R, Becky Thompson, Chad Colwell, Lindy Jenkins, Chris Griffith, Mr. Cripps, Jim Beshearse, George Oliver, Brenda Cantrell, and Pam Redmon.

Three Named in Sealed Indictments Arrested

August 1, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page
Brandi Lynn Dorris
Amanda Brooke Washer
James Robert Lee (Jimmy) Fuson
Kathy Irene Miller
Caleb Lee McGhee

Three people named in sealed indictments by the DeKalb County Grand Jury last Monday, July 25 have been picked up by the Sheriff’s Department.

Sheriff Patrick Ray said 33 year old Brandi Lynn Dorris of Liberty is indicted for possession of a schedule III controlled substance ( 4-Suboxone) with the intent to sell or deliver on or about December 21, 2015. Her bond is $30,000 and she will be arraigned in DeKalb County Criminal Court on Monday, August 8. Dorris was arrested on Tuesday, July 26.

28 year old Amanda Brooke Washer of McMinnville Highway, Smithville is indicted for Simple Possession of a Schedule VI drug (Marijuana) on or about December 14, 2015. Her bond is $2,500 and she will be arraigned in criminal court on Monday, August 8. Washer was arrested on Wednesday, July 27.

29 year old James Robert Lee (Jimmy) Fuson of Four Seasons Road, Smithville is indicted for theft of property over $500. His bond is $7,500 and he will be arraigned in criminal court on Monday, August 8. He was arrested on Thursday, July 28.

According to the indictment obtained by WJLE, Fuson did knowingly obtain or exercise control over certain property, to wit: $905 the property of Middle Tennessee Outfitters between January 1 and February 23, 2016 with the intent to deprive Middle Tennessee Outfitters of its property, constituting the offense of theft.

Two other people also named in sealed indictments by the grand jury last week have yet to be arrested.

Meanwhile in other cases, 53 year old Kathy Irene Miller of Martin Drive, Liberty is charged with driving under the influence. Her bond is $1,500 and she will make a court appearance on August 11. Sheriff Ray said that on Tuesday, July 26 a deputy responded to a reckless driver on Highway 70 from the Dowelltown area. The officer spotted the vehicle and noticed that it crossed the center line several times. He stopped the automobile and spoke with the driver, Miller. Her speech was slurred and she was very unsteady on her feet. Miller submitted to but performed poorly on field sobriety tasks. She also took a blood test.

20 year old Caleb Lee McGhee of Bright Hill Road, Smithville is charged with theft of property under $500. His bond is $2,500 and he will be in court on August 11. Sheriff Ray said that on Monday, July 25 McGhee allegedly took a set of cornhole boards valued at $200. He was arrested on Wednesday, July 27.

Concerned Community Answers Call to Pray For Our Schools (VIEW VIDEO HERE)

July 31, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page
Concerned Community Answers Call to Pray For Our Schools

Members of the community concerned about our school system answered the call to pray Sunday afternoon during what has become an annual event prior to the start of school.

This year's prayer time called " Back 2 School Call 2 Prayer" was held at Northside Elementary School and drew the largest crowd ever. As in past years it featured several local ministers offering prayers for each school as well as the school transportation staff, athletic activities and band program, law enforcement agencies, and the school board.

"I had some ladies who came to me who were involved years ago just getting together to pray at the entrances of the schools. They told me that we cannot stop doing this. Since the beginning this has developed into a larger prayer gathering. But it all started with some mothers who went to the different schools having prayer, said Donnie Kelly, minister of the First Assembly of God who moderated the program.

"As ministers and educators as well as community leaders, we need to join together and pray for each of our teachers, principals, children, the schools, so many things. We need that covenant. We need to join together to do everything we can to help our children to be able to achieve the very best," said Kelly

Local ministers participating were Chris Moore, Pastor of the Smithville Church of God (who prayed for DeKalb County High School), Jordan Atnip, Youth Pastor at the Smithville First Baptist Church (who prayed for DeKalb Middle School), Bernard Houk, Pastor of the Smithville Free Will Baptist Church (who prayed for Smithville Elementary School), Trent Colwell, Pastor of the Smithville Nazarene Church (who prayed for Northside Elementary School), Mark Miller, Pastor of the Long Branch Community Church (who prayed for DeKalb West School), Jim Eddins, Pastor of The Gathering (who prayed for School Transportation Staff), Ryley Young, Youth Pastor of the Smithville Cumberland Presbyterian Church (who prayed for Athletic Activities/Band), Dwayne Cornelius, Pastor of the New Life United Pentecostal Church and Chaplain of the Smithville Police Department (who prayed for the local law enforcement agencies, and Graden Kirksey, Community Evangelist, who prayed for the School Board.

Kelly opened the program with a welcome followed by Director of Schools Patrick Cripps who made some remarks about academic plans for the new school year including an emphasis on reading initiatives

Before the prayers, Josh Isaac sang the National Anthem.

U.S. Senator Bob Corker to Visit DeKalb County

July 31, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page
U.S. Senator Bob Corker to Visit DeKalb County

U.S. Senator Bob Corker will be making a 31 county tour across Tennessee during the month of August and one of his stops will be in DeKalb County.

Corker will travel across the Volunteer State to hear from Tennesseans and share his perspective on how to address some of the major challenges facing our nation.

“One of the most enjoyable and valuable parts of my job is spending time with the people who have given me the great privilege of serving them in the United States Senate,” said Corker. “I am excited to travel across our state over the next four weeks and look forward to hearing from Tennesseans about the issues they care about most.”

Corker will visit DeKalb County on Wednesday, August 17 at noon at the courthouse.

In 2012, Tennesseans overwhelmingly re-elected Bob Corker to his second term in the U.S. Senate, where he serves as chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee and is an active member of the Banking Committee and the Budget Committee. Corker was Tennessee’s commissioner of finance and mayor of Chattanooga, but he spent most of his life in business. It’s that results-driven businessman’s perspective that allowed him to make a mark early in the Senate, where he is considered a pragmatic thought leader on the issues Tennesseans care about most.

1,050 Vote Early for Thursday Elections

July 31, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page

A total of 1,050 people cast ballots during the fourteen day period of early voting for the August 4 elections.

Saturday, July 30 was the last day of early voting and 143 cast ballots including 140 in person and 3 by absentee. A total of 69 voted in the Tennessee Republican Primary and 35 voted in the Democratic Primary. Thirty nine voted only in the DeKalb County General Election. Sixty people voted in the Smithville Municipal Election on Saturday.

For the fourteen days of early voting combined, 1,050 cast ballots including 993 in person and 57 by absentee.

The vote totals in each election are as follows:
Tennessee Democratic Primary: 378 (total)
Tennessee Republican Primary: 490 (total)
DeKalb County General Election Only: 182 (total)
Smithville Municipal Election: 397 plus 59 property rights voters for a total of 456
Dowelltown Municipal Election: 4 plus 2 property rights voters in Dowelltown
Liberty Municipal Election: 14

The voting by precinct during the fourteen days of early voting is as follows:

Alexandria: 36
Temperance Hall: 28
Edgar Evins State Park: 2
Liberty: 30
Dowelltown:18
Snow Hill:47
Church of God: 255
Rock Castle: 4
Courthouse:189
Johnson Chapel: 32
County Complex: 146
Belk: 4
Keltonburg: 38
Blue Springs: 38
Church of Christ Annex: 183

TOTAL: 1050

Five elections are set for August 4---the DeKalb County General Election, the Tennessee Republican and Democratic Primaries, and city elections in Smithville, Liberty and Dowelltown.

Voting at all fifteen precincts in the county on Thursday will be from 8 a.m. until 7 p.m. Listen LIVE for election return coverage on WJLE when the polls close Thursday night at 7 p.m.

DeKalb Students Return to School for Registration Wednesday (VIEW SCHOOL CALENDAR HERE)

July 30, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page
DeKalb Students Return to School for Registration Wednesday, August 3

DeKalb County Schools will re-open with registration for all students on Wednesday, August 3.

(CLICK LINK BELOW TO VIEW ACTUAL 2016-17 SCHOOL CALENDAR)

2016-17 SCHOOL CALENDAR.pdf (352.21 KB)

Thursday, August 4 will be an administrative day for teachers only

The first full day of school for all students will be Friday, August 5.

The first day of school education celebration (free school supplies) will be Friday, August 5 from 6:00 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. on the Smithville Public Square.

All teachers will report to their individual schools on Monday and Tuesday August 1 & 2

The 2016-17 school calendar is as follows

Students will not attend on Monday, Labor Day, September 5.

Schools will be closed for the fall break October 10-21

Students will be off for the Thanksgiving holiday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, November 23, 24, & 25 and for the Christmas break December 22 through January 3. Wednesday, December 21 will be the last day students attend before Christmas break and that will be an abbreviated school day. Wednesday, January 4 will be a stockpile day for teachers.

Students will return after the holidays on Thursday, January 5.

Schools will be closed for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on Monday, January 16; for President's Day, Monday, February 20; and Good Friday, April 14.

Spring break will be April 20-24.

Students will not attend on Thursday, May 25. That will be an administrative day and all teachers must attend. The last day of school will be Friday, May 26 and report cards will be sent home.

Parent-Teacher Conferences will be held on Tuesday, October 25 and Tuesday, March 14 at DeKalb County High School from 3:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m.

Parent-Teacher Conferences will also be held from 3:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. Thursday, October 27 and Thursday, March 16 at DeKalb Middle School, Northside Elementary, Smithville Elementary, and DeKalb West School.

Report cards will be sent home from all schools on Tuesday, October 25; Tuesday, January 10; Tuesday March 14; and Friday, May 26.

Smithville Police Make Arrest for Credit Card Fraud

July 30, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page

Smithville Police have charged a woman with three counts of fraudulent use of a credit card.

43 year old Regenia Kay Satterfield was arrested on Thursday, July 28. She is under a $7,500 bond and her court date is August 11.

Police report that on Thursday, July 21 the victim noticed that her debit card was missing from her residence and determined that Satterfield was a suspect as she had been staying at the home for a few days. Transactions provided by her bank revealed that the card had been used several times at the local Dollar Tree store. Upon a further investigation police learned that Satterfield had used the card without permission.

51 year old Rita Kaye Franklin was arrested on Monday, July 11 for driving under the influence. Police responded to a complaint of a reckless driver who had pulled into the Dairy Queen parking lot. Upon arrival the officer found Franklin to be the driver of the vehicle. She was unsteady on her feet. Her speech was slurred and she had slow motor skills and was slow to comprehend instructions. Franklin submitted to field sobriety tasks but performed poorly. The officer determined Franklin to be unfit to drive and she was arrested for DUI. Her bond is $2,500.

20 year old Daniel Lynn Johnson was cited on Monday, July 11 for shoplifting and contributing to the delinquency of minors. Johnson was observed taking and concealing items belonging to the store. He was stopped before leaving the business. With Johnson were two juveniles.

55 year old Robert John Sablich was recently cited for simple possession and drug paraphernalia. While conducting a probation search, police found in a kitchen drawer approximately 5 grams of a green leafy substance believed to be marijuana and a pipe with residue.

39 year old Kendra Faith Benson was arrested on Sunday, July 24 for driving under the influence. Police responded to a complaint of a suspicious vehicle parked at the County Garage. Upon arrival, an officer found Benson passed out at the steering wheel of her vehicle which was parked with the keys in the ignition. An open bottle of beer was in the cup holder of the middle console. Benson had an odor of a fermented beverage on her breath and person. She was then asked to exit the vehicle and submit to several field sobriety tasks. She refused to take the tests. She did submit to a blood withdrawal. Benson was placed in custody. Her bond is $1,500 and her court date is August 25.

20 year old Ray Franklin Vincent was cited for shoplifting on Sunday, July 24. A Wal-Mart loss prevention associate observed Vincent opening packages and concealing the contents on his person before leaving the store. His court date is August 11.

County Denied Tennessee Clean Energy Grant

July 30, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page

The county’s application for a grant to replace roofs at two area community centers has been denied.

County Mayor Tim Stribling informed the county commission Monday night that plans were for the county to use the Tennessee Clean Energy Grant to replace roofs at the Snow Hill and Silver Point area Community Centers.

“We did a resolution a few months ago for the roof at the Snow Hill Community Center and for the roof at the Silver Point Community Center,” said Stribling.

“We received the following letter. The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation’s office of sustainable practices has reviewed your Clean Energy Grant proposal. This year our funding request exceeded our budget by $6.2 million and we were not able to fund every proposal we received. The staff carefully evaluated each proposal and unfortunately we were not able to fund your project at this time.”

“We’ll put these two projects out for bid and get a price on what it will cost to replace the roofs at Snow Hill and Silver Point,” Stribling concluded.

Tennessee Sales Tax Holiday July 29-31

July 28, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page
Tennessee Sales Tax Holiday July 29-31

Before you start your back to school shopping, mark July 29-31 on your calendar.

That's this year's tax-free weekend in Tennessee, where shoppers won't have to pay sales tax on clothing, school and art supplies that cost $100 or less per item and computers that cost $1,500 or less.

During these three days Tennessee shoppers can save nearly 10 percent on certain purchases.

“I want to encourage Tennessee families to take advantage of the Sales Tax Holiday because it was created with them in mind,” Gov. Bill Haslam said. “The weekend provides savings for families, especially as students are starting the new school year, and the holiday can provide relief on clothing, school and art supplies and computer purchases.”

The holiday begins Friday, July 29 at 12:01 a.m. and ends Sunday, July 31 at 11:59 p.m. During the designated three-day weekend, consumers will not pay state or local sales tax on clothing with a price of $100 or less per item, school and art supplies with a price of $100 or less per item, and computers with a price of $1,500 or less.

Please visit the Sales Tax Holiday Web site at www.tntaxholiday.com to learn more about the items exempt from sales tax.

Examples of exempt items include:

•Clothing: Shirts, dresses, pants, coats, gloves and mittens, hats and caps, hosiery, neckties, belts, sneakers, shoes, uniforms whether athletic or non-athletic and scarves

•School Supplies: Binders, book bags, calculators, tape, chalk, crayons, erasers, folders, glue, pens, pencils, lunch boxes, notebooks, paper, rulers and scissors

•Art Supplies: Clay and glazes; acrylic, tempera and oil paints; paintbrushes for artwork; sketch and drawing pads; and watercolors

•Computers: Central processing unit (CPU), along with various other components including monitor, keyboard, mouse, cables to connect components and preloaded software (Note: While the CPU may be purchased separately, other items must be part of a bundled computer package in order to be eligible.) iPads and other tablet computers are eligible for tax exemption, while smart phones and video game consoles are not.

Riverwatch Trace Dropped from the County Road System

July 28, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page

The County Commission Monday night rescinded action taken a year ago to add Riverwatch Trace to the County Road list.

The vote was 9-2-2.

The Mountain Harbor Property Owners Association originally sought to have Riverwatch Trace added to the county road system last year. After a favorable recommendation by the DeKalb County Regional Planning Commission, the County Commission voted to make it official in July, 2015.

In the months since, members of the Mountain Harbor Property Owners Association have had a change of heart and recently petitioned the planning commission to ask the county commission to rescind the action taken last July and to make Riverwatch Trace a private road again.

After a May public hearing, in which there was no public opposition expressed, the planning commission voted in July to recommend to the county commission that action be taken to remove Riverwatch Trace from the county road system.

According to County Mayor Tim Stribling, the county has not spent any money on the road since it was added to the road system last July and that the county would no longer be responsible for its upkeep if removed from the list.

Sixth District County Commissioner Betty Atnip objected to the request. “Once its accepted as a county road, everybody in the county owns it. Legally we can’t give it back to them,” she said.

Atnip made a motion that Riverwatch Trace not be removed from the county road system but the motion died for the lack of a second.

The commission then voted to rescind its action from last July and to remove the road from the list. Commissioners Betty Atnip and Mason Carter voted against it. Commissioners Joe Johnson and Jerry Adcock passed.

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