Last week’s story about legislation introduced by state Rep. Rick Staples implied a problem with drinking water in public schools since Staples wants to require school systems to test it. His bill (HB0631) was scheduled to be heard by the House Education & Administrative Planning subcommittee on Tuesday, March 28.
Meanwhile, we checked with state and local agencies to clarify the current status of school water, especially in schools built before June 19, 1986, when the federal lead ban took effect.
Sherry Witt is a well-liked, respected county officeholder who will find herself out of work in late 2018. So the register of deeds for 10 years is seeking to become Knox County clerk. “There’s an opening in the clerk’s office and I’m applying,” she says.
Term limits will kick in next year for Mayor Tim Burchett, Sheriff Jimmy “J.J.” Jones, Witt and Clerk Foster Arnett. In addition, Cathy Quist Shanks has said she will not run for re-election as clerk of Circuit and Sessions courts.
Gary Koontz, along with wife Vicki, is a one-stop real estate shop. He buys, builds and sells; he partnered in development of Fountainhead on Tazewell Pike, Kinley’s Kanyon in Corryton and Urban Park in West Knox.
And he shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, he rarely leaves town, so you can imagine the stretch of his return visit to Vietnam after fighting there as a Marine some 50 years ago.
Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett and Sheriff Jimmy “J.J.” Jones want to divert nonviolent, misdemeanor offenders with mental health issues to a 24-bed urgent care center for psychiatric treatment rather than take them to jail.
Burchett has patched together a funding package through partnerships with Helen Ross McNabb Center, the state and the city of Knoxville. Officials, starting with then-Atty. Gen. Randy Nichols, have worked eight years on this, and now it’s at risk of blowing apart.
The annual banquet of the Union County Chamber of Commerce is a celebration of accomplishments and a look toward the future. It’s also a fundraiser for the group that promotes tourism as it recruits and supports local businesses.
Randy Boyd brought star power as the guest speaker. He recently resigned as commissioner of the state’s Economic and Community Development Department.
Tom Spangler is running for sheriff in the May 1, 2018, Republican Primary. The general election is Aug. 2.
Spangler formally announced his candidacy Feb. 23 with a noon rally on the lawn of the courthouse. “This is not a race against Sheriff (Jimmy) Jones. He is term-limited,” Spangler said. “This is an open seat.”