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WMUF/WLZK News                                                               

From News Director Tim Alsobrooks         

Weekend News Director Nicki Marr

How will you vote on the Local Sales Tax Option?  TAKE OUR POLL

Tennessee Dept Of Agriculture Celebrates Weights And Measures Week

State of Tennessee - The Tennessee Department of Agriculture will celebrate Weights and Measures week, March 1st through the 7th. Weights and measures inspectors keep pace with rapidly advancing technologies to ensure fairness in the marketplace.

Commissioner Julius Johnson said, “You should get what you are paying for, and inspectors play an essential role in the health of the economy. We value our weights and measures system as a crucial service to the citizens and businesses of Tennessee.”

Weights and measures inspectors oversee approximately 94,000 fuel pumps and 16,000 scales in Tennessee. The Tennessee Weights and Measures laboratory maintains and houses the primary standards of mass, volume and length for the state.

Tennessee is a member of the National Conference on Weights and Measures, which was formed in 1905, to develop model standards for uniform enforcement from city to city and state to state.


Computer And Prescription Meds Stolen From Home

Paris, Tenn. - According to a report at the Henry County Sheriff’s Office, Sgt. Ricky Wade responded to a burglary at 114 Willow Oaks Drive.

The residents left the home to run a few errands and when they returned, the front door of the home was open. A Dell Venue 8 Pro Computer and two prescription medications were stolen. The value of the items stolen was listed at $655. No arrests have been made at this time.

Horseshoes For Hope Dinner On March 5th

Paris, Tenn. - Horseshoes for Hope will be on Thursday, March 5th, from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Christian Life Center at the First United Methodist Church in Paris.

The $10 ticket includes the open-faced horseshoe sandwich, dessert and drink. This dinner will raise funds for Hoof Beats of Hope and R.E.A.L. Hope Youth Center. For more information, call 731-333-1320.


UT Martin To Offer Aquafit Classes Beginning March 9th

Martin, Tenn. - The University of Tennessee at Martin Office of Extended Campus and Online studies will offer an Aquafit class from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., Mondays and Wednesdays, March 9th through April 22nd on the UT Martin main campus. The registration fee is $35 per person.

Aquafit is a low-impact fitness class to help build muscle, increase cardio fitness and improve flexibility. Students of all swimming levels are welcome. For more information, call the Office of Extended Campus and Online Studies at 731-881-7082.


Donors Needed For LIFELINE Blood Drive On March 5th

Paris, Tenn. - Supplies of all blood types are low and LIFELINE Blood Services is experiencing a critical need for blood types. O Negative, A Negative, B Negative and O Positive are desperately needed.

Recent weather conditions with ice and snow have forced multiple blood drive cancellations and LIFELINE Blood Services wasn’t able to collect the amount of blood needed during the last few weeks.

To prevent a significant shortage and possible delay in surgical procedures, they must collect enough blood this week to supply West Tennessee hospital patients. All eligible donors are urged to give blood this week when the LIFELINE Bloodmobile visits on Thursday, March 5th, from Noon to 6 p.m. at First United Methodist Church, located at 101 East Blythe Street in Paris.


Paris Fire Department Respond To Cooking Fire

Paris, Tenn. -Paris Fire Department responded to a call at 109 Oliver Street. The call came in at 1:23 p.m.  The fire was the result of a cooking fire and confined to a container and was extinguished. No major damage was reported.


Number Of Voters Increases For March 17th Special Election

Early voting for the March 17th Special Election on the Sales Tax Referendum will resume Saturday, February 28th from 9 a.m. to Noon at the Election Commission Office in the courthouse annex building on Washington Street. Total votes for Friday were 103. Since voting began on Wednesday, 301 have voted.


Drug, Theft and DUI Arrests Made

Springville, Tenn. - According to a report at the Henry County Sheriff’s Office, Angela Jones of 119 Hidden Pines Lane in Springville, was taken into custody and charged with DUI 1st offense, Implied Consent, and Leaving the Scene. Bond was set at $600.

Paris, Tenn. - A report at the Henry County Sheriff’s Office stated that Billie Joe Preston, age 26, of 46 Hilldale Drive, was charged with Delivery of a Schedule II drug. $780 in drug money was seized and bond was set at $75,000.

Paris, Tenn. - Henry County Sheriff’s Office reported that Gary L. Baker, age 32, was charged with Resisting Arrest, Simple Possession of a Schedule II drug, Simple Possession of a Schedule VI drug and drug paraphernalia. Bond was set at $125,000

Springville, Tenn. - According to a report at the Paris Police Department, Matthew Smith, age 19, of 40 French Road in Springville, was taken into custody after stealing $922 worth of items from a local department store. Smith is charged with 2 counts of theft, both Class E-Felonies. Bond was set at $2500.


Breaking News: Early Morning Snowfall Cancels Schools in the PSSD

Paris, Tenn.- Superintendent Mike Brown of the Paris Special School District has just decided to close school for Friday. A small swath of snow has entered the area and has been falling since about 5:30am Friday morning and sticking to the roads. With temperatures below 20 degrees, it could cause slick spots on the roads.


Light Turnout Again Thursday for Early Voting

Paris, Tenn.- Remember early voting for the March 17th Special Election on the Local Option Sales Tax Referendum continues this afternoon until 4:30pm and Saturday from 9am to noon at the Election Commission Office in the courthouse annex on Washington Street. On Thursday, it was another light turnout as 88 people voted at the Election Commission Office. That brings the total number of votes so far to 198.


Benefit for Jimmy Smaz Smother Set for Sunday Afternoon

Paris, Tenn.- There will be a benefit for Jimmy “Smaz” Smothers starting at 1pm this Sunday March 1st at the Let’er Buck Saloon, located at 11661 Hwy. 641 S. There will be an auction of items and BBQ plates will be sold. Five live bands will provide entertainment including Crowned Zero, Good Karma, Risky Business, Tommy Akers Band, and Storm Angels. Money raised will benefit go to Smothers to help with medical expenses.


HCMC Votes To Lease Land to Vanderbilt for Air Ambulance Base

Steven Russ discusses Vanderbilt's plan to but an air ambulance base at the HCMC campus as CEO Tom Gee and Administrative Assistant Nancy Moore look on. (Tim Alsobrooks photo)

Paris, Tenn.- After a lengthy presentation from Vanderbilt Life Flight and much discussion afterwards, the Henry County Medical Center Board of Trustees voted to offer land to Vanderbilt to lease and build and staff an air ambulance base in Paris on the campus of the medical center. The board had heard from Air Evac last month.

 

Steven Russ, MD, discussed the opportunity of Vanderbilt using HCMC as a base saying they have a great relationship already with the area and over 30 years of experience with Life Flight and Air Methods, which is the air

Iine where the EMS helicopters are used in Life Flight. Russ said Life Flights exemplifies how Vanderbilt cares for its communities.

 

Life Flight has a 65K sq. Ft. radius that it covers with bases in Nashville, Clarksville, and other communities in Middle Tennessee. Patrick Campbell and other representatives discussed the value and quality of the choppers used and the medical procedures commonly done on flights. The choppers and air ambulances are larger, allowing more accessibility to patients

 

The plan is a $10M investment in Henry County that will put a base and chopper here in the county. Vanderbilt would also offer two membership solutions for members of the community and surrounding counties and partner with HCMC to get the word out on the membership. Any citizen that has a membership with another air ambulance company, Vanderbilt would work to transition those over to Life Flight benefits program with prorated payments for the balance of the year.

 

Vanderbilt would be able to be operating the base within 90 days. They would provide clinicians at the base at first that would rotate teams and work overtime as they hire permanent clinicians after proper training is completed. Each flight would have at minimum a pilot, flight medic, and flight nurse.

 

Russ said Vanderbilt's strategy is to build capacity to care for patients here in Henry County. He said we will work collaboratively to help the HCMC grow their ability to take care of patients.

 

The board asked several questions with the representatives about the plan and logistics and discussed both Vanderbilt Life Flight vs. Air Evac. CEO and Administrator Tom Gee said both are great companies and have certain advantages. Gee said Air Evac has been the primary provider of air ambulance service in West Tennessee. He said he is concerned that going with Vanderbilt may mean more pushback from the community because a good number of Henry County citizens and citizens in surrounding counties are already members of Air Evac. In fact, numbers show that nearly 18K citizens in Henry and bordering counties have an Air Evac membership.

 

Gee said one of the intangibles with Air Evac is we know the director because he previously worked with HCMC. County Commissioner and trustee member James Travis said with the number of citizens who have already signed up with Air Evac they just make sense as the best partner for the medical center to team with and the better choice to put a base here.

 

Dr. Scott Whitby, member of the board, said he feels like Vanderbilt Life Flight would offer the best quality of care while Air Evac seems to have best insurance plans for its members. He said with his medical background Vanderbilt seems to fit the needs with larger helicopters and known quality of medical care. Dr. Minor agreed saying the larger air ambulance helps aid in quality of care.

 

The board finally, by a 3-2 margin, voted to offer Vanderbilt Life Flight land to lease to put a base station on. Board members Dr. Whitby, Troy Buttry, and Kreg Kyle voted for Vanderbilt and members Phil Wichlan and James Travis voted for Air Evac.

Patrick Campbell discuss the size of air ambulances Air Methods carries and Vandy uses.


Gee Tells Trustees Legislature Continues to Discuss Healthcare

The board listens as Gee goes over his administrative comments. (Alsobrooks photo)

Paris, Tenn.- During his administrative comments, Gee made reference to the legislature's failed attempt to get Insure Tennessee even out of the committee. Gee said there are some efforts to salvage some type of action on health care during the upcoming session but its unclear what is going on behind the scenes. Gee said the actions are very depressing as rural hospitals continue to struggle and five in west Tennessee and Southern Kentucky have closed in the last year. Gee said in his 40 years of healthcare he has never seen that many hospitals close in one year.

 

Gee told board members that general surgeons have informed the medical center they wish to negotiate a new contract for on call coverage in the emergency department. The current agreement ends in June so any new agreement must be finalized by then.

 

Gee also said it has been a great few months on physician recruitment. They have commitments from two hospitalists that will join them this summer. Other physicians showing commitments included a urologoist, podiatrist. OB, psychiatry, among others.


Henry County Schools Remain CLOSED Friday

Paris, Tenn - Henry County Schools are CLOSED Friday, February 27th, due to road conditions that are still dangerous for buses to drive on in the county, due to the lingering winter conditions.

Paris Police Search for Driver of Hit and Run

Paris, Tenn.- The Paris Police Department is still looking for a man who struck a woman on Brewer Street with a vehicle the other night. The report said Paris Police were dispatched to RJ’s, at 103 S. Brewer Street, in reference to a female that had been run over by a vehicle.

Ptl. Steven McClure made contact with the victim who said she was walking down the sidewalk when a Black Dodge Durango ran onto the sidewalk, striking her, and eventually pinning her between the bumper and the brick wall at RJ’s.

Witnesses say the driver of the vehicle was in the bar and become intoxicated and was cussing and causing a scene as people were trying to get him to leave.

He went to his vehicle and set in it for awhile. The victim had went outside and that’s when the vehicle struck her and pinned her against the wall. The driver then back up and fled the scene.


Witnesses say the driver yelled in the bar his name was Jason or Jeremey Lemmonds, from Dickson. A check thru dispatch didn’t reveal anyone in the state with that name. The victim was transported to the emergency room by EMS and was treated and later released with minor injuries. Paris Police continue to investigate the incident.


Man Arrested for Theft After Selling Items for Scrap

Paris, Tenn.- Deputy Wayne Fuqua of the Henry County Sheriff’s Office arrested Garron Crafton, 31, of 1600 Springhill Road, for theft over $500 after it was determined he stole some farm implements and sold them to Copeland Metals. The theft of the farm implements occurred from Mansfield Road and investigation took


Deputy Fuqua to Copeland, where a receipt signed by Crafton was found.

Another arrest from Wednesday was Nicholas Ryan Bradley, age 28, of 550 Lampkins Road in Cottage Grove for simple possession of schedule 6.


TVCC To Host Stand Strong Tour Friday, Saturday

Paris, Tenn.- Tennessee Valley Community Church will host the Stand Strong Tour, featuring noted speakers and authors Alex McFarland and Jason Jimenez, this Friday and Saturday February 27th-28th. Tickets are $5 in advance or at the door. The program will be held Friday from 6:30pm-9:30pm and Saturday from 9am to 11:30am at the church located at 2500 East Wood Street.

Alex McFarland, is a speaker, author, and advocate for Christian apologetics.

Alex is the founder and president of the national apologetic conference Truth for a New Generation. He serves as the director of the Center for Christian Worldview and Apologetics at North Greenville University. He has preached in more than 1300 churches. He is the author of 16 books including the best-selling 10 Most Common Objections to Christianity.

Jason Jimenez is a pastor, apologist and national speaker who has ministered to families for over 15 years. In his extensive ministry career, Jason has been a Children’s Student and College Pastor, and spent a great deal of time investing in marriages, famines, and helping churches have great impact in their communities.

Stand Strong weekend events are designed to equip believers, especially youth, to have a solid grasp on Christianity and how to defend the faith. Through relevant, relatable apologetics content and practical application of Biblical truth, attendees emerge reassured in the relationship with Jesus Christ and confident in their ability to represent the faith in any context.

For more information on the conference visit standstrongtour.com or call TVCC at 641-8822.


Reminder: Deadline to Enter Photo Showcase is Friday

Paris, Tenn.- Friday is the deadline to enter the Paris Henry County Arts Council’s 23rd annual Photo Showcase. Each photographer may enter up to three framed photographs which must include a hanging wire. Minimum size is 8 x 10 and maximum size is 24 x 24.

Entry forms must be turned into the Arts Council office inside Paris City Hall by the close of business Friday. Photographs must be received at the W.G. Rhea Public Library Saturday March 7th between 9am and 11am. An awards presentation will be held at 2pm on Sunday March 8th.


TDIC Warns of Price Gouging After Winter Storm

Nashville- The Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance (TDCI) is cautioning consumers to be alert to potential price gouging following February’s deadly winter ice storms that swept across Tennessee.

Tennessee’s price gouging laws make it unlawful for individuals and businesses to charge unreasonable prices for essential goods and services including gasoline, food, ice, fuel, generators, lodging, storage space, and other necessities in direct response to a disaster regardless of whether that emergency occurred in Tennessee or elsewhere.

The price gouging law also makes it unlawful to charge a price that is grossly in excess of the price charged prior to the emergency. This price gouging act is triggered when a disaster is declared by the state or by the federal government. The Tennessee Emergency Management Agency declared a State of Emergency at 9 p.m., CST, on Monday, Feb. 16, 2015.

Penalties for violations of the act are up to $1,000 per violation. Additionally, the Tennessee Attorney General in conjunction with TDCI’s Division of Consumer Affairs can request that a court issue injunctions and order civil penalties of up to $1,000 for each violation. The state can also seek refunds for consumers.

“During times of crisis, most Tennesseans and Tennessee businesses work together t help their neighbors and their communities,” said TDCI Commissioner Julie Mix McPeak. “Unfortunately, there may be some who seek to take advantage of others during this disaster. We urge consumers to make informed choices when buying goods and services during a disaster and report suspected price gouging.”

In addition to home repair services and building supplies, some may need gasoline and emergency supplies and services. These goods and services are also subject to the price-gouging laws. Problems that sometimes arise after a natural disaster include price gouging (in which a business unreasonably raises rates on essential goods and services during a state of emergency or in response to a disaster), as well as fraud or misrepresentations in the areas of home repair and debris removal. For example, a fraudulent operator may take upfront monies promising to do a home repair or to remove debris and vanish without completing the work. 

Consumers may also get shoddy repairs from unlicensed contractors, or they do not receive the goods and services at the promised price. 

Here are some tips for consumers to remember in the aftermath February’s winter storms:

  • Avoid high pressure sales tactics urging you to act quickly before signing a contact. Take time to make a good decision.

  • Do not pay money upfront. Wait until the job is finished.

  • Ask questions and get references from people you trust before hiring someone to do work for you.

  • Get the whole deal in writing. If a contractor promises you something, get it in writing.

  • Keep a record of your property damage and any repairs made to your property. Take photos during the repair work and afterward. You should also take photos of any repair work you believe was not done correctly.

If you have a problem with a business, you can file a complaint at www.tn.gov/consumer or call toll-free 1-800-342-8385. Consumer Affairs has a price gouging online complaint form at http://tn.gov/consumer/PriceGougeCmplnt.shtml.


74 Vote on First Day of Early Voting

Paris, Tenn.- 74 voters cast their ballot on Wednesday in the first day of Early Voting for the March 17th Special Election. The only item on the ballot is choosing whether or not to raise the local option sales tax from 2.25% to 2.75%. Henry County Administrator of Elections Darrin Thompson said the total vote so far is 110 which includes votes collected at nursing homes.


No School For Henry County On Thursday; PSSD Open

Paris, Tenn.- Henry County Schools will be closed again on Thursday because of icy roads that continue to remain impassable for buses throughout the county. The county has missed 8 straight days because of winter weather and icy roads. The Paris Special School District will be open again Thursday with bus driver's using discretion once again and not traveling down the list of roads that were mentioned Tuesday.


BPU Board Hears Financials

Paris, Tenn.- The board of directors for the Paris Board of Public Utilities met Wednesday morning and General Manager John Etheridge went over the financials for the Electric Department. He said cash position is good but not quite where auditors would like it to be. Net revenue is also good but Etheridge said even more net revenue will be realized when financials for January and February totals are finalized due to periods of cold weather.

 

In the water department, he said there was no big surprises and net income is ok. He said the expenditures have increased but they knew that would be the case with projects they are working on.

 

The waste water department showed a negative net income for January because of some sewer backup issues. Etheridge said we are looking at some ways to improve issues in the near future in regards to sewer backups.

In business the board updated the revisions to contributions to aid to construction policy. Jeff Thompson, director of engineering and metering, explained some of the changes in fee charges in the underground service connections and the board agreed with his recommendation to raise the fee $50. This allows the BPU to recoup some cost.

 

Fee increases for overhead services were also increased in the construction policy as well as some fee increases in other three phase line taps and more.

 

The BPU board also approved revisions to the rules and regulations from TVA after wording was changed. The BPU board approved the changes to thepolicy last month and was TVA looked things over they recommended some wording changes.


Sewer Evaluation, Warehouse, North Paris Substation Nearly Done

Paris, Tenn.- Supervisor of Water and Wastewater operations Terry Wimberley said they are 90% thru with sewer system evaluation in the Johnson Park basin. Once its complete they will develop a plan to look at the issues and begin working on how to fix them. A few small problems have already been addressed. The findings and a plan to address them will be brought back to the board soon.

Director of Electric Operations Cole Edwards explained to the board the Electric Warehouse opened as of Wednesday morning with employees reporting there. There are a few small issues that still need to be completed and should be in a few weeks.

The North Paris substation is about two weeks from being energized and Thompson said issues with wiring will be dealt with soon. He said the snow and ice have hindered them from working to finish it the last few days. After it is energized, rehab work can begin on the India Road substation.

Etheridge reported 79 people were signed up for the prepay system and all seems to be working well with that so far. He said they have not disconnected anyone in the last several days because of extremely cold temperatures. The policy is not to disconnect when the overnight temperatures is 25 or lower.


Early Voting For Sales Tax Referendum Underway

The first voter for Sales Tax Referendum (Photo By Nicki Marr)

Paris, Tenn. - Early voting for the March 17th special election began today and runs through March 12th at the Henry County Election Commission Office inside the courthouse annex on Washington Street. Between 8:30 and 9:00 a.m. there were 6 early voters. Henry County residents will be voting on whether or not to raise the local option sales tax from 2.25% to 2.75%.

Early voting times at the Election Commission office will be 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. each weekday and 9 a.m. to Noon on Saturday, February 28th and Saturday, March 7th.

Burglaries Still Apparent In The Area

Paris, Tenn. - A report at the Paris Police Department stated that Sgt. Josh Frey responded to 604 Dunlap Street, in regards to a vehicle break-in. Two cars that were on the premises had been gone through. A Garmin GPS valued at $120 was stolen from one of the vehicles. The break in took place between 5:15 and 7:55 p.m. No arrests have been made at this time.

Buchanan, Tenn. - According to a report at the Henry County Sheriff’s Office, at 1:17 a.m. Deputy Frankie Scott responded to a call at Little Eagle RV Park, 14652 Hwy 79 North in Buchanan. Witnesses stated that after hearing loud noises, they observed the subject attempting to steal a car dolly. A greenish, blue vehicle, possibly a Jeep, was by the highway and attempting to hook up the dolly. When the Manager went to check, the suspect fled and turned onto Hwy 119. The Manager then locked up the car dolly in the gate. No other items were taken. Police are still investigating.

Paris Man Charged With DUI After Hit And Run

Paris, Tenn. - A report at the Henry County Sheriff’s Office stated that witnesses reported a white van involved in a hit and run. Patrolman Jeff Smith of the Paris Police Department observed the van swerving into the opposite lane, then making a left turn onto Irvine Street from the right hand lane.

The driver, William H. Little, age 69, of 919 Caledonia Street, appeared to be severely intoxicated. Slurred speech, bloodshot eyes and a strong odor of alcohol prompted Smith to call EMS. Little was transferred to HCMC, treated and later released. Little was charged with violation of financial responsibility and DUI 1st offense. Bond was set at $1500.

Early Voting Begins Wed. for Sales Tax Referendum

Paris, Tenn.- Early voting for the March 17th special election begins Wednesday and runs thru March 12th at the Henry County Election Commission Office inside the courthouse annex on Washington Street. There is only one item on the ballot, as Henry County residents will be voting on whether or not to raise the local option sales tax from 2.25% to 2.75%. The estimated cost of this special election is around $18K.

Proponents of the sales tax increase have spent time making presentations to various boards, committees, and civic groups saying the loss of revenue, primarily from neighboring cities approving beer and liquor sales, is hindering projects and the ability to provide services. The Paris City Commission has passed a resolution supporting the sales tax increase with the promise to roll back the 8 cent property tax hike they passed last July when the time is appropriate.

Early voting times at the Election Commission office will be 8:30am to 4:30pm each weekday and 9am to Noon on Saturday February 28th and Saturday March 7th.


PSSD Board Approves 2015-16 Calendar

Paris, Tenn.- The Paris Special School District Board of Education met on Tuesday night and approved the 2015-16 School Calendar. The calendar approved has school starting for the PSSD on Friday August 7th, the day after many students are usually involved in Henry County Fair activities.

Students would be out on September 7th for Labor Day, October 15-16 Fall Break, November 25-27 for Thanksgiving Break, and after going an abbreviated day for December 18th, the system will let out until January 5th, 2016 for Christmas Break.

In the spring, breaks include January 18th for MLK day February 15th for President’s Day, March 21-25 for Spring Break, April 29th for Fish Fry day, and the last day of school would be an abbreviated day May 21st.


Hard Work by Staff Enables Schools in PSSD to Open

Paris, Tenn.- Superintendent Mike Brown also discussed the recent days missed for snow, reminding the board they will be in school on Wednesday. He said custodial staff and maintenance supervisor Richie Chilcutt had done a great job of cleaning sidewalks, parking lots, and other areas in order to open school back up on Wednesday.

Maintenance Supervisor Richie Chilcutt said there was damage at the Pre-K building when ice and snow built up and rains that fell caused the sheetrock and parts of the ceiling tile to fall and get water in the classroom. He said they have cleaned things up and put the classroom back together to be ready for students. Inman also had some leaks on the gym, but nothing major.

Board chairman Richard Edwards said several people have worked hard the last few days getting things cleaned up to get us to go back to school on Wednesday.

The board briefly discussed the possibility of making up days they’ve missed since last week’s snow and ice hit our area. Board Chairman Richard Edwards reminded the board that since the PSSD goes a 7 hour day, instead of the 6 hour day required by the state, they manage to stockpile days that allows them to miss for weather. As of now, they are no plans with the PSSD to make up missed snow days.


Summer STEM Camp to Be Offered for Some 3-7th Graders

Dr. Leah Watkins describes the first ever Summer STEM camp the PSSD will offer this summer. (Tim Alsobroks photo)

Paris, Tenn.- The PSSD board heard a presentation on Summer STEM Academy from Dr. Leah Watkins, Supervisor of Curriculum and Instruction. The system received a UTrust grant a few weeks ago and they plan on using the monies to fund this camp.

It will be a summer camp for top performing math and science students. The camp will be held at Inman this summer and the system plans to invite current 3rd thru 7th grade students who scored 90% or greater on the TCAP.

The Summer STEM camp will be free to students and include lunch. Parents will have to transport their students to and from the camp. Dr. Watkins said they plan to invite 30 students in the elementary school level and 30 students in the middle school level.

Dr. Watkins said this is a starting point and we hope to learn and grow this experience after this summer camp is over. Right now, they remain in the planning stages on this upcoming camp.  Many different topics will be covered in the weeklong camp and more information will be available closer to the summer on the camp.


PSSD Board Endorses LOST After Presenation

One of the slides in the presentation comparing sales tax to property tax. (Alsobrooks photo)

Paris, Tenn.- At the beginning of the meeting, Paris Mayor Carlton Gerrell gave a presentation to the board on the Local Option Sales Tax referendum in which voters will vote whether or not to raise the local option sales tax from 2.25% and 2.75%.

Early voting for the sales tax referendum begins Wednesday February 25th.

Mayor Gerrell discussed that $1.8M annually would be generated from the sales tax increase with over $900K going to the school systems. The presentation is the one Mayor Gerrell has made to other boards and civic groups across the county the last couple of months. The board voted to endorse the local option sales tax referendum.


PSSD Open For Wednesday; Buses Will Not Travel Certain Roads

Paris, Tenn.- Superintendent Mike Brown of the Paris Special School District said the system plans to open schools on Wednesday at regular time, but added bus driver's will not be able to travel down certain roads because they remain icy.

Roads that PSSD buses will not travel down include Hill Road, Palestine Road, Caledonia Extended, Old McKenzie Hwy, Hidden Acres Road, Muzzall Street, Cole Fairway Road, Terry Lane, Guthrie Road, Smith Heights Road, Tanglewood Lane, Logan Road, McClain Road, and Ross Sawmill Road.

Brown said parents of PSSD students living on those roads can call 644-6500 Tuesday afternoon after 4pm to see where the student can meet a bus at on Wednesday morning.


HCSO To Give Away More Wood Duck Boxes

Paris, Tenn.- Henry County Sheriff's Monte Belew said any citizen that wants a wood duck box can come by the Henry County Sheriff's Office starting Saturday morning to get one. Sheriff Belew said the last give away of wood duck boxes resulted in over 100 boxes given away. He said they will have several more to give away starting on Saturday and any citizen can stop by and get one.


Lions Club Chili Day Continues Until 7pm

Paris, Tenn.- Cold weather has citizens in Paris and Henry County chomping on Chili so far Tuesday. Good crowds have came thru so far at the Paris Lions Club annual Chili Day.

It is being held at its usualy location of the First United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall. It's $10 for all you can eat chili, drink, and dessert. The event is a big fundraiser for the Paris Lions Club and helps with sight conservation locally. Tickets can be bought at the door and Chili Day continues until 7pm. (Photos Tim Alsobrooks)

Henry County Schools Canceled School for Wednesday

Paris, Tenn.- Henry County School System have once again called school off for Wednesday February 25th, not much melting has occurred and some refreezing has actually occurred.

15 Inmates Graduate from Parenting Classes

Left to Right: Sgt. Camper, Lt. Dean, Kayla Odom

Catherine Herrera

Paris, Tenn.- The Henry County Sheriff's Office and Carl Perkins Center held parenting graduation on Monday at 6pm at the Henry County Courthouse. The parenting class is a 13 week class taught by the Carl Perkins Center that teaches inmates positive parenting techniques.

Upon graduation, each inmate is awarded one hour of contact visit in the courtroom where the graduation is held. 15 inmates graduated the program on Monday night. Sheriff Monte Belew said, "this is the fourth parenting class to graduate and the Carl Perkins Center employees do a great job on presentating a very helpful and positive parenting program.


Camden Woman Charged with DUI

Paris Tenn.- Ptl. Jamie James of the Paris Police charged Vicki C. Thomas, age 48 of Camden, with DUI 1st Offense, violation of implied consent, and speeding.

A theft of  a 6 x 12ft. trailer was reported from a home on Hwy. 77, according to the report at the Henry County's Sheriff's Office. The value of the trailer was $600 and there are no suspects in the theft.


Paris Police, GHSO Team Up for SAFE Campaign

Paris, Tenn.- The Paris Police Department and the Governor’s Highway Safety Office are teaming up for the 2015 Seatbelts are For Everyone (SAFE) campaign. The SAFE campaign is designed to increase seat belt and child passenger safety restraint usage in Tennessee. Law enforcement agencies are encouraged to participate in the campaign by planning and implementing occupant protection initiatives in their communities.

Last year, Tennessee reached its highest seat belt use rate in history at 87.71%.

“We are excited to see that more people are making the right choice to buckle their seat belt,” said Governor’s Highway Safety Office Director Kendell Poole. “However, historically we’ve seen that approximately 50% of our fatalities statewide are unrestrained. This shows us that we still have work to do.

Partnering with law enforcement to back up or educational messages is the best way for us to achieve additional increases in seat belt use.”

This is the 2nd year the GHSO has sponsored the campaign. Last year’s results were as follows: 1718 child restraint violations, over 30K seat belt citations, and over 770 other seat belt enforcement violations.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration statistics show that most fatal crashes happen within 25 miles from home and at speeds of less than 40 miles per hour.

The SAFE campaign will be ongoing now thru July 31st. Agencies participating in the voluntary campaign become eligible to win one of two fully-equipped police vehicles at the Tennessee Law Enforcement Challenge in August. Last year the Paris Police Department won one of these vehicles which saved Henry County taxpayers over $35K.  


UT Martin to Offer Courses Three Courses Starting in March

Martin, Tenn.- UT Martin’s Office of Extended Campus and Online Studies are rolling out some new courses in March that are available to the surrounding communities.

One of the classes is a three part digital photography class that will be offered on the main campus at UT Martin. Part I of the course will be held Tuesdays March 3, 10, and 17 from 6:30-9pm. Dr. Tom Gallien, photography instructor, will show participants on how to use their digital cameras features to improve their overall photography.

Part II of the class will be offered in April and Part III will be offered in May. Students should bring a personal camera and owners’ manual to class. Registration for each session is $99.

Another class that UT Martin Office of Extended Campus and Online Studies will be offering is a 50 hour training course for anyone interested in becoming a pharmacy technician.

The class will be offered Monday and Wednesday evenings from March 9th thru April 27th from 6-9:30pm on the UT Martin main campus.

The course fee will be $1199 and includes textbooks and supplies. Students will be introduced to dosage calculations, I.V. flow rates, drug compounding, dose conversions, dispensing of prescriptions, inventory control, billing and reimbursement.

Participants will also review medical terminology specific to the pharmacy, reading and interpreting prescriptions and defining drugs by generic and brand names. Students will take a graded final exam to help prepare for the official certification exam.

A 90 hour training course is also available thru UTM’s Extended Office and Online Studies for a Phlebotomy Technician. The course will meet from 6-9:30 p.m., Tuesdays and Thursdays, March 10-May 26, and from 9 a.m.-3 p.m., April 25 and May 9, on the main UT Martin campus. The course costs $1,799 per person, which includes all textbooks and supplies.

This course is designed to prepare professionals to collect blood specimen for laboratory analysis. Students will become familiar with all aspects of blood collection and develop the skills to perform venipunctures safely. Classroom and lab work includes specimen practice, terminology, anatomy and physiology.

The National Healthcare Association certification exam is given at the end of the course. The exam costs an additional $105 and is paid directly to the NHA. The course instructor will arrange exam registration and payment.


For more information on any of these courses or to register call 731-881-7082 or visit the website www.utm.edu and follow the appropriate links.


Lady Patriots' Season Ends with Region Tourney Loss

Paris, Tenn.- Henry County's basketball season came to a close on Monday night with a loss to Hendersonville 62-48 in the opening round of the Region 5-AAA Tournament. The Lady Patriots were lead in scoring by Celie Hudson, who had 18 points. The Lady Patriots finished the 2014-15 season with 21 wins.


Icy Roads Cause Propane Truck Roll Over

Photo Submitted by Ron Watkins

Paris, Tenn.- Henry County Emergency Management Officials, the Henry County Sheriff's Office, Tennessee Highway Patrol, Paris Fire Department and other agencies responded to wreck involving a United Propane Gas truck on Sherry Lane Monday afternoon.

Officials with United Propane Gas also responded to the scene where the icy roads caused the truck to slid and eventually roll over. The propane truck did not leak and there were no other issues according to EMA director Ron Watkins.


PSSD, HCSS Cancel School for Tuesday

Paris, Tenn.- Both the the Paris Special School District and Henry County School System have once again called school off for Tuesday February 24th. With temperatures not getting out of the 20s on Monday, not much melting has occurred and some refreezing has actually occurred.

PSSD Superintendent Mike Brown said although many streets inside the city limits of Paris are clear, some of the bus routes take bus drivers outside the city limits and those roads continue to remain icy just as roads out in the county remain icy as well.


Freeland Road Theft Under Investigation By Deputies

Buchanan, Tenn.- A report at the Henry County Sheriff’s Office stated that a home on Freeland Road was burglarized over the weekend with over $4K worth of items taken. There was no forced entry into the home and items taken included a washer and dryer, dressers, couch, fridge, microwave, chainsaw, china set, and more. The robbers also attempted to remove the central heat and air unit and removed a section of drywall and took some of the copper wire. Deputies have no suspects.

Another report at the sheriff’s office stated that a set of four tires mounted on rims were stolen from a home on VanDyke Road. The tires were setting outside and were taken recently according to the report. The value of the tires and rims is $400.


Black History Movie Scheduled at Library Cancelled Mon. Night

Paris, Tenn.- The W.G. Rhea Public Library is open Monday but the movie scheduled for Monday night commemorating Black History has been cancelled due to weather and road conditions.


Winter Weather Damages City Hall, Civic Center, Streets

Paris, Tenn.- Paris City Manager Carl Holder said snow and ice along with rains on Saturday have done some immediate damage and the long range effect probably won’t be seen until this summer.

Holder said there were serious leaks in the roofs at City Hall and the Paris Civic Center because of the snow and ice buildup and then huge amounts of rain that fell Saturday.

Holder said that there are already a number of potholes on city streets, but until the snow and ice clears up they won’t be able to assess the damage. In fact, Holder said it may be until the summer when hot weather hits before the total damage to city streets can be identified.

Team Mansfield Running Club Competes at UK

Javan Winders ( middle of the picture orange shirt) darts towards the finish line at Saturday's race in Lexington. (Lance Winders photos)

Lexington, Ky.- Team Mansfield Running Club competed this weekend in the UK High School Invitational in Lexington and came away with great results.

Javan Winders ran the two mile race in 9:28, good enough for 2nd overall in a race that featured high school athletes from 16 states competing. Javan was only behind the 1st place runner by 62 hundredths of a second. Javan’s time ranks 19th in the nation for the indoor two mile distance. He is ranked 6th for juniors.

Titus Winders did well in the race as well finishing 22nd overall with a  time of 10:11.

Both brothers will race in the Tennessee State Indoor High School Championships next weekend at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City.  

Titus Winders races towards the finish at the UK Indoor High School Meet.


UT Martin Civil Rights Conference Continues This Week

Martin, Tenn.- The University of Tennessee at Martin’s 15th annual Civil Rights Conference runs this week through Feb. 27 and will focus on the theme “LBJ and the Great Society at 50.” Mark Updegrove, director of the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library in Austin, Texas, will deliver the keynote address at 7 p.m., Feb. 26, in Watkins Auditorium of the Boling University Center.

In addition to his duties as library director, Updegrove is also an analyst for ABC News and a contributing editor for PARADE Magazine. He has authored three books relating to the American presidency and has conducted exclusive interviews with five U.S. presidents.

Updegrove has served as U.S. publisher of Newsweek, president of TIME Canada and manager of TIME Los Angeles, and has written for American Heritage, The Nation, National Geographic, Parade, Texas Monthly and TIME. A performance by Florence Roach, an actress and producer from Memphis, scheduled for 7 p.m., Monday, Feb. 23, is cancelled because of inclement weather. The remainder of the conference will continue as scheduled. 

A presentation titled “50 Years of Juvenile Literature – Focus on African American Civil Rights” is scheduled for 12:15 p.m., Feb. 24, in the Paul Meek Library Media Center. Dr. Julie Hill, associate professor of music, and her percussion students will present “Roots of Rhythm” at 7:30 p.m., Feb 24, and again at noon, Feb. 25, in the Harriet Fulton Theater of the Fine Arts Building. Also at noon, Feb. 25, there will be a black writers roundtable discussion in the Hortense Parrish Writing Center.

The final day of the conference will begin at 9:30 a.m. with a presentation by Dr. Rebecca Miller Davis, assistant teaching professor of history, University of Missouri, Kansas City, titled “Crossing the Bridge: Selma and Voting Rights.”

The day will continue with presentations by Dr. Henry Parker, professor, UT Martin Department of History and Philosophy, and Dr. Laurie Green, associate professor of history, University of Texas at Austin. Green is also an Organization of American Historians distinguished lecturer. Parker will speak on “One Man’s Fight for Equality” at 11 a.m., and Green will discuss “Hunger and Race in Memphis” at 1 p.m. Tammy Wade, Head Start program manager, will then present a history of Head Start and its importance in the lives of poor children at 2:30 p.m. Updegrove will speak at 7 p.m. All events will be held in Watkins Auditorium of the Boling University Center, unless otherwise noted. Events are free and open to the public.

For more information, contact Dr. Renee LaFleur, assistant professor, Department of History and Philosophy, at 731-881-7534 or by email at rlafleur@utm.edu.


Region 5 - AAA Tournament Game To Be Played As Scheduled
led

Paris, Tenn. - The Region 5-AAA tournament game between Henry County and Hendersonville is still scheduled as planned for Monday at 7 p.m. at Gamlin Gym at Henry County High School, even though the county schools are closed. Parking lots and sidewalks have been cleared. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. Our broadcast will air starting at 6:30 p.m. on WLZK 94.1 FM and streaming our website.


Traffic Stop For Speeding Leads To DUI Arrest

Paris, Tenn. - According to a report at the Henry County Sheriff’s Office, a vehicle was reported to be driving under the influence, leaving Benton County and traveling South on Hwy 641 into Henry County. K-9 Officer Jamie James of the Paris Police Department located the vehicle and performed a traffic stop, after he observed the vehicle traveling 59 mph in a 40 mph zone. The driver, Vicki C. Thomas, age 48, of 80 Thompson Drive in Camden, was taken into custody without incident and charged with DUI 1st offense, Implied Consent and Speeding. Bond was set at $500.


Thefts In The Area Continue

Buchanan, Tenn. - According to a report at the Henry County Sheriff’s Office, a theft was reported at 270 Patton Drive in Buchanan. The report stated that items were stolen from an unlocked vehicle parked on the premises. Items stolen included a wallet, including drivers license, social security card and credit card. 25 compact discs, valued at $250 were also stolen. Police are still investigating.

Paris, Tenn. - A report at the Henry County Sheriff’s Office reported an attempted theft of vehicle was reported at 117 Wynn Street. According to witnesses, the car had been started to allow it to warm up. Upon exiting the home, the witness noticed the car rolling in reverse and a male in the driver’s seat. The male exited the vehicle and fled on foot, toward Depot Street. Patrolman Steve McClure made contact with the suspect shortly thereafter on Wynn Street. Dennis R. Tharpe, age 19 of 107 Wynn Street was taken into custody without incident and charged with burglary. Bond was set at $500.

Paris, Tenn. - A report at the Paris Police Department states that a home was broken into at 305 West Washington Street. According to witnesses, between 7:30 and 8:00 p.m. a subject knocked both on the front and back door of the home, but the resident did not get to the door in time to see who was knocking. The resident reports hearing no other noises throughout the night, however, the next morning, at 8:18 a.m. called the PD to report that the back door of the home had been kicked in and a front window of the home had been opened. No items have been reported stolen at the time of the report. The police have no suspects at this time.


P
SSD Closed for Monday Because of Icy Streets, Parking Lots

Paris, Tenn.- Superintendent Mike Brown has made the call to close schools for the Paris Special School District on Monday. A few roads inside the city along with sidewalks and parking lots continue to remain icy and snow covered. The county announced being closed Monday earlier on Sunday.


Henry County School System Closed for Monday; PSSD to Make Decision Later Sunday

Paris, Tenn.- Henry County director of schools Sam Miles has decided to close schools on Monday because of several roads throughout the county that continue to be covered with snow and ice. Paris Special School District Superintendent Mike Brown has yet to make a decision for the PSSD on Monday but will do so later on Sunday.


Church Cancellations for Sunday February 22, 2015

The following is a list of Church Services that have cancelled their services for Sunday:

Maplewood Baptist Church in Paris

Birds Creek Baptist Church in Paris.

VanDyke Church of Christ

Bethlehem Baptist Church in Henry.

Mansfield Baptist Church in Mansfield.

Fairview Baptist Church in Paris.

Henry Baptist Church.

Central Point Baptist Church on Hwy 54,

Henry Methodist Church,

Palestine Methodist Church,

TVCC in Paris has also cancelled all services.

First United Methodist Church has cancelled 8:30 a.m. service, as well as the 9:45 a.m. service. The 11 a.m. service will continue as scheduled.

First Baptist Church in Paris will only have one service at 11 a.m. and will not have Sunday school

Burglaries Continue Throughout the Area

Paris, Tenn - Patrolman Amber Roaten of the Paris Police Department responded to a complaint of a burglary at 205 Wright Street. The home was entered through a window and the suspect left through the front door. A Reddy 40 Heater on wheels was taken and valued at $350. Police are still investigating.

A report at the Paris Police Department stated that an alarm call was received for 101 W. Blythe Street.  The door on the Northeast corner of the building was busted, causing severe damage to the door frame and door. No items were believed to have been taken at the time of the report. Police have no suspects at this time.

The Paris PD also reported a burglary at 206 Routon Street. A window on the North side of the home was broken. No items were believed to have been taken. Investigation is still ongoing.

 

Flooding Outside Of WMUF Studios

(Cheryl Allen photo)

Water Damage At Annex Building Saturday

Inside the Juvenile Courtroom at Henry County Annex (Cheryl Allen photo)

Paris, Tenn - With all the snow, ice and rain, reports of flooding are all across the county. The roof at the Henry County Annex Building on Washington Street suffered damage when the gutters at the top of the building were frozen solid with ice, then with the addition to the overnight rain, cause the roof to leak into the building. The maintenance supervisor told WMUF that with the gutters and drains being frozen, it cause the water to back up under the tin causing the water to leak into the Juvenile Courtroom as well as other areas of the building. No estimated damage was given at the time.

Water damage from local heavy rains, snow and ice at EW James on West Wood Street. (Dakotah Allen photo)

District 10- AAA Tournament Postponed

Paris, Tenn - The District 10-AAA tournament has been canceled due to flooding concerns. The Lady Patriots earn the #2 seed and will play Hendersonville in the first round of Region 5-AAA tournament at home at 7pm Monday night.


Chief Elizondo: Stay Off the Roads Friday Evening

Paris, Tenn.- Paris Police Chief Chuck Elizondo issued a media statement urging all motorists to stay off the roads if at all possible Friday evening. He said roads that were clear have and will continue to ice back over as freezing rain falls Friday evening and into the night. Driving will be extremely dangerous and motorists should stay home and off the roads if at all possible. Things should improve Saturday as temperatures warm up and rain moves in.


State Fire Marshall Gives Tips on Portable Heater Use

Nashville- As cold temperatures continue to linger across the region, the State Fire Marshal’s office would like to remind residents to stay safe when using portable heaters to keep warm. In the last several years, more than 3100 heating fires, caused by portable heaters have occurred.

Following a few fire safety steps can prevent tragedy this winter:

  • Turn heaters off when you go to bed or leave a room.
  • Keep anything that can burn – including bedding, clothing, curtains, pets and people, at least 3 feet away from portable heaters.
  • Only use portable heaters with an automatic shut-off, so if they tip over, they will automatically shut off.
  • Check the heater cord for fraying, cracking and look for broken wires and pay attention to signs of overheating.
  • Never run the heater cord (or any cord) under rugs or carpeting.

For the best protection from fire, use working smoke alarms on every level of your home, and especially outside or near sleeping areas.


UT Martin To Offer ACT Prep Course

Martin, Tenn.- The University of Tennessee at Martin Office of Extended Campus and Online Studies will offer an ACT preparation course from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Saturdays, February 28th – April 11th, on the UT Martin main campus. There will be no class on April 4th.

Students will participate in an intensive ACT preparation course taught by Ron Ramage, UT Martin adjunct instructor and teacher at Obion County High School.

The registration fee is $225 and includes two textbooks, two official ACT test and a diagnostic report. For more information about the course, or to register, you may call the Office of Extended Campus and Online Studies at 731-881-7082.


Court Offices May Close Early Friday if Winter Weather Starts

Paris, Tenn.- Circuit Court Clerk Mike Wilson and Chancery Court Clerk Mary Burns announce the court clerks’ offices may close early today due to the National Weather Service’s Winter Storm Warning for Henry and other neighboring counties for today and into the night. 

Forecasts include a range of rain, sleet, ice and snow – all of which could make driving very difficult and unsafe.  In order to allow employees time to make plans and travel home safely, the Court Clerks’ Offices in Henry County will close earlier today than normal.  “We do not want anyone to become stranded or travel in unsafe conditions if we can avoid it, Wilson said. 

Wilson urges, “Mary and I encourage those having business with the courts today to come early this morning.  You may even want to call us before you come to make sure we are still open.”

 “We do not know the exact time we will close but if the forecast we’re getting now are accurate, it appears between 10:00 a.m. – noon we may begin to see some type of precipitation fall.  We will close once precipitation begins, says Wilson.” “We thank you for your patience and indulgence.  We rarely close early but this impending bad weather condition makes it unavoidable,” said Burns. 

Should the predicted bad weather not occur during regular business hours, then no office will close early.


Retail Therapy Scavenger Hunt To Be Held March 3rd

Paris, Tenn. - Henry County Medical Center Women’s Health Advisory Council and the Downtown Paris Association will be hosting a scavenger hunt for health and wellness in downtown Paris. Add a little “sparkle” to your health with an afternoon of shopping, health education, food, fun and entertainment.

 On Tuesday, March 3rd from 4 to 5 p.m. visit local DPA retailers with your “X Marks the Spot” scavenger hunt card and you will be eligible for prizes including gifts from six of the local retailers and a $100 VISA gift card from Henry County Medical Center. Seek out medical advice of professionals at each location. Then, from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. The Johnson Agency will be the site of entertainment, a reception by Cindy’s Catering, goodie bags and prizes.

The event is free, but scavenger hunt cards are limited, so pick yours up in advance at the following locations: Boutique Mari Mac, Butler & Harbor, Jack’s Java, Maggies, My Favorite Things, Off the Square and Henry County Medical Center Pink Petal Gift Shop. For more information, you may contact Kathy Ray at 653 – 7274.

Lions Club Chili Day Set for Tues. Feb. 24th

Paris, Tenn.- Paris Lions Club will hold their annual Chili Day on Tuesday February 24th from 11am to 7pm at the First United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall. It’s all you can eat World Famous Lions Club Chili, Pie, and Drink. Tickets are $10 and are available from any Lions Club member.


Baseball Youth Sign Ups Feb. 28th, March 7th

Paris, Tenn.- Henry County Youth Baseball Sign-ups will be held February 28th and March 7th at the Paris Civic Center from 8am until Noon. The cost is $50 per player. Henry County Youth Baseball is an affiliate of Babe Ruth and Cal Ripken League. For more information or to sign-up online go to hcyba.baberuthonline.com or send an email to youthbaseballinhc@yahoo.com.


News from past weeks here.

 
     
     
 


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