A Rutgers University report that grades states on how they fund public education shows Tennessee at the “bottom of the barrel” in fairness, reports The Commercial Appeal.

Besides being one of 16 states earning an F for percentage of state resources allocated to K-12 education, family incomes of children attending its public schools on average are half that of children in private schools or being home-schooled.

(link...)

I am a fan of Dr. Jeff Masters at Wunderground.com. He flew with the hurricane hunters and has maximum credibility as far as weather and climate is concerned. There is more info than you probably can stand at this link but you should check out the long term trends for a better understanding of why global warming has thoughtful people very concerned.

(link...)

Sun
Jun 7 2015
05:27 pm

Of the million or so visitors to the Great Smoky Mountain National Park, one gets attacked by a bear every few years. This says that bear attacks are very very rare and you are most likely safe if you aren't stupid. I suspect we'll find out that these campers violated one or more of the bear safety rules but for now we don;t know. The young man is safe and will recover.

I'm always excited and happy when I see bear sign in our yard. In all our years here we have only seen one and that from a distance. They really are secretive and don't much care for humans. But since things do happen, it might make sense to review what to do in a black bear encounter.

So...

If you see a bear:

Continued...

This is a huge scandal! Time to call for the resignation of Bob Martineau?

Nashville’s WTVF NewsChannel 5 asked Haslam-appointed TDEC Commissioner, Robert Martineau, if Holt was getting preferential treatment. Martineau said, “No,” although, as we’ve already pointed out…

smoking gun

Martineau told WTVF he didn’t know who discouraged further action against Holt, or why the memo was in the file, and there is no reason in the world not to believe him.

Because everybody knows that’s the kind of memo you’re supposed to shred,

That and the rest of the BUZZ

Mr. Rudy and his little dog, Freedom, have now completed 630 miles of their long walk to DC all to bring attention to the critical issue of Veteran Homelessness. He's following Rt 70 and heading into to Rockwood shortly. He and his pup were attacked by a large dog yesterday so if you see him ask him if he needs assistance. Or a meal. Or a vet.

I doubt if I have ever voted for the same candidates Mr Rudy has but he's walking for an issue that should be of concern to all of us. Let's cheer him on folks!

Fri
Jun 5 2015
07:21 am

I did not attend this meeting. Frankly I'm burned out on TVA nonsense and EPA duplicity, but in the end Swan Pond resident Don Simon tells the story.

Residents gave the project mixed reviews. The countryside, now with new parks, recreational areas and walking trails, “is better than when I came here,” Don Simon said, but added that TVA could have been more considerate during the cleanup.

TVA was not made to cover the entire financial losses of the community. People closest to the disaster received financial compensation but nothing for the upheaval the suffered in their lives. People outside of TVA's imaginary boundary line received about 25 cents on the dollar for their actual financial losses. TVA spent millions of dollars and 6 years in court to deny its obligation to make the community whole.

To pay for the calamity, TVA’s will add a 59 cent surcharge onto the bills of the nearly 9 million ratepayers until 2024. Another 6 cents would have made all of TVA's victims whole.

6 cents! The surcharge for cost overruns at the Watts Bar nuclear plant will be 30 times greater than what TVA paid to its victims.

In the end we are far better off environmentally than we have been since TVA entered our valley.

The Knoxville News Sentinel has a brief story on last night's meeting. The true story would be a book...a very thick book.

(link...)

Thu
Jun 4 2015
01:59 pm
Tue
Jun 2 2015
05:58 pm

Our team of magic elves has added a link to the Roane County Post over on the right under Local News Media. You can see some of the new stories that didn't make it by press time and some breaking news, from time to time. A digital subscription is only $2.99 per month. We subscribe to The Roane County News and the Roane County Post, as each one has it's strengths.

This is rather large! It could mean the end of Tennessee corporations if that statement is correct. I supsect we'll be seeing some corrections and additional info real quick like...

This safety net is gone. Signed into law by Gov. Bill Haslam in late March, Tennessee’s Public Chapter No. 60 now makes the directors of a corporation personally liable for the debts of a business in the event it fails.

(link...)

The EPA and TVA are hosting the final Kingston Recovery Project public meeting this coming Thursday, June 4, from 6:00 until 8:00 p.m. at the Roane County High School in Kingston.

Topics:
Tue
Jun 2 2015
06:46 am
By: WhitesCreek

This is long but balanced. There is a lot of information here. This is a national issue and the data we have i no where near adequate. Two things are clear: There are a number of law enforcement agencies that do a very good job of not shooting people; A real examination of procedures is not being conducted in the public arena with the goal of returning Law Enforcement to its rightful position of trust and respect in the public's eye.

It's a tough job and a job that should pay much better than it does. What do you think should be done to break down the barrier between Officers and civilians and restore trust? I think we need better training for officers AND civilians.

Read:

(link...)

The Crockett Buzz for 5-29-15

(link...)

This is a pretty sorry state of affairs at TDEC. It appears that powerful people don't have to obey our laws. In this case it's Republican State Rep Andy Holt. This is what happens when the Governor appoints a polluter's attorney as TDEC Commissioner...

NewsChannel 5 Investigates reported in February that Holt's hog farm polluted a nearby creek and operated for years without a permit.

We also reported that a state inspector wrote in his notes that "enforcement action was discouraged by upper management" at the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation.

(link...)

Wed
May 27 2015
06:17 am

Our Congressman Chuck Fleischmann is not exactly beloved in his own district. With the last election seemingly just over he is already seeing a primary opponent rustling the bushes. To combat this Chuck held a private fundraiser for the folks Chuck actually represents (not you nor me) and picked up a half a million quick ones. Problem is, Chuck hasn't declared his candidacy and starts out breaking campaign finance regulations.

Unfortunately for us, his primary opponent looks to be state Senator Bo Watson, who is not exactly know for representing "We the People" any more than Chuck is.

(link...)

Tue
May 26 2015
07:22 pm
Tue
May 26 2015
02:33 pm

Folks, Commissioner Steve Kelley is a good friend of mine. He's a bright person. What on earth is he doing making this statement regarding the fact that the 2015 property appraisal will reflect less than a 10% reduction in valuations?

“That means the 2010 reappraisal wasn’t that far off,” Commissioner Steve Kelley said.

I'd like to see Steve graph out a yearly property value chart that gets us to a 9% reduction in values after 6 years of recovery without the 2010 Roane County property valuations being outrageously overblown.

Even the State says properties were valued by at least 7% over the sales data used to determine values..Last Year!

“The 2014 ratio study provided by the State Division of Property Assessments showed that Roane County was at a 1.07, which means that Roane County’s assessed values were at least 7 percent higher than the actual sale prices that the state used for their study,”

RCN story

Tue
May 26 2015
02:25 pm

From NOAA:

Scattered showers and thunderstorms before 8am, then showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm between 8am and 2pm, then showers and thunderstorms likely after 2pm.

And then maybe a scattered shower and a thunderstorm before and after that?

Thu
May 21 2015
08:31 am
By: WhitesCreek
Thu
May 21 2015
07:18 am
By: WhitesCreek

I'm looking for confirmation on this. I've only found the story from Nashville Channel 4. If true this is as stupid and wasteful as it gets. And the logo is ugly, too!

tn logo

(link...)

old

old

Thu
May 21 2015
06:45 am

Watts Barr Lake property owners should brace for the effect this will have on their property values. I've spoken with two realtors who believe this will further kick lakefront property values in the teeth, at least in the short run.

The date is Saturday July 25 and all properties will be offered with no reserve. The file TVA sent out is attached.

Wed
May 20 2015
07:26 pm

You have been warned...Now behave!

(link...)

Judge Eugene Eblen will retire at the end of this year. This will leave 6 years in his unexpired term. What happens in cases like this is that the Governor appoints an interim judge until the next election when it will become an open contest. So someone will get appointed to begin serving Jan 1 (or whenever they can be sworn in) until an election is held in Summer 2016.

The major questions in the air...

Who will have the Governor's ear to get the interim Judge appointed? This would be a huge advantage in the election but not as much as in other elected positions.

Will this scramble the legal arrangement? Ordinarily there is a progression of judges, with the next higher level being drawn from lower courts. That could start an all out scramble in the General Sessions Court, for example, or a candidate could arise from one of the other prominent situations in the county.

Which County will the next Judge come from? The criminal court judge for the Ninth Judicial District Criminal Court in Tennessee presides over Loudon, Meigs, Morgan, and Roane counties.

In today's highly charged heavily partisan arena judicial positions are far more important than in past times. Let's hope we get a fair appointment from Gov. Haslam and good candidates to choose from in the election. Then let's hope we don;t have to listen to rude irrelevant political charges that have nothing to do with qualifications in this very important position.

Wed
May 20 2015
05:58 am

The next time you hear a Tennessee legislator pontificating about how he (or she) votes in accordance with what we constituents want, just go ahead and laugh out loud.

Slap your knees. Wipe the tears of laughter from your eyes. Write up a quick chain email about this uproarious joke.

Then look your Volunteer State lawmaker square in the eye and ask who those constituents are: the residents of Tennessee or his precious thousand-dollar suited, donor-currying lobbyists from the tea-party-leaning Beacon Center or Americans for Prosperity?

(link...)

Mon
May 18 2015
12:28 pm

How does someone who was smart enough to be President of UT, Governor, and our Senator make the stupidly obviously false statement that Nuclear Power has No Emissions? When did radiation quit being emitted? And does he realize that there is still, after 50 years of working on it, no solution to the spent fuel problem?

(link...)

Mon
May 18 2015
08:30 am

NIKE wants UT to keep it a big secret regarding the process of ending "Lady Vols" as the name for women's teams. As a result UT is doing everything it can to avoid complying with Freedom of Information requests. I have conflicting thoughts on this, since I hold with those who think referring to the men as "Vols" and women as "Lady Vols" somehow subjugates the women teams. I think it should be the Lady Vols and the Men Vols or something like that. That said, the process should serve the student athletes and not be subservient to financial interests of the University in a manner that sidesteps its main role of education.

Here you go:

“Because your brand has an emotional connection with your students, staff and alumni, it is critical to keep the development of the work confidential and on a need-to-know basis.”

There is also a good show of what happened at other schools and how their logos got really boring.

deadspin.com/nike-to-tennessee-dont-talk-about-what-were-doing-1704544586?

Mon
May 18 2015
08:16 am

"There is across-the-board support for Insure Tennessee," he said, "and even more support for letting the full legislature vote on the bill. Yet there does not seem to be much interest among our legislators to discuss and vote on this bill supported by Gov. Bill Haslam — who himself remains wildly popular."

In other words, Tennesseans are knocking on the door — wanting fairness and reason and good health care to come out — but our elected reps won't let us in.

That and more at Crockett:
(link...)

Sun
May 17 2015
06:39 pm
By: WhitesCreek

"There is a major disconnect between the thinking of Tennesseans and the action of our state legislature,”

Of course there is. Our legislators don't work for us, anymore.

(link...)

Fri
May 15 2015
01:46 pm
By: WhitesCreek

Found this at the other end of our yard this morning.

Lilyleaf Twayblade

Fri
May 15 2015
12:32 pm
By: WhitesCreek

“We’re becoming a party (where) what conservatism means is spending almost the same amount of money, in some cases more, but not paying for it.”

Bob Corker

(link...)

Lost Medicaid Funding

To date, the failure to expand Medicaid / TennCare has cost the State of Tennessee ? in lost federal funding.