From News Director Tim Alsobrooks, Assistant and Weekend News Director Alex AuBuchon
Paris Police Still Investigating Veterans Drive Wreck
Paris, Tenn.- Details have not been released in Tuesday afternoon’s wreck on Veterans Drive that caused traffic to rerouted for some time. The Paris Police Department and Tennessee Highway Patrol are still investigating the wreck and reports were not available as of 8pm Tuesday evening.
Henry Website, Facebook Working; Donations Now Accepted
City Seeks Help from Citizens to Help Pay down debt from sewer
Henry, Tenn.- At Tuesday night’s City of Henry Mayor and Board of Alderman meeting, Alderman Roger Graham told the board the city’s website and paypal accounts had been set up and could start taking donations.
Graham has spearheaded this idea where citizens of Henry, and anyone else, can make donations when they can, to help the city of Henry pay down its debt caused from issues and litigation with the sewer system dating back several years.
Citizens can donate on the city’s website, henrytennessee.com by credit or debit card or thru a paypal account. Citizens can also take money or mail a check to Henry City Hall. The city has also set up a Facebook page.
Henry Decides to Reduce Hours For Non Department Head Employees
Henry, Tenn.- In business on Tuesday night, the board approved a recommendation from the mayor and department heads to implement reduction of hours for non department head employees beginning January 1.
Mayor Joe Qualls said we definitely do not want to do this, but due to revenues and tax collections being down the department heads and I met and discussed getting ahead of the curve on this issue.
The mayor told board members by reducing the number of hours of three of the six employees in Henry, those not department heads, they could save over $10,800 over the next 6 months. Mayor Qualls said unfortunately citizens will suffer as well as services will not be as good because the city is forced to cut employee hours.
Mayor Qualls said all the collections and revenues should be close to 50% in the budget this time of year and they are way down. He said it’s not just Henry that is facing down revenue and tax collections, many small towns across the nation are seeing some issues with revenue decreases so far this fiscal year.
The board approved the mayor’s recommendation and decided to look at things again in three months. Mayor Qualls said if revenues continue to fall this sharply the city may be faced with layoffs of employees.
The board did approve earlier in the meeting to give all city employees a $50 Christmas bonus.
Henry Seeks Sewer Operator
Henry, Tenn.- More from the city of Henry meeting on Tuesday night saw Mayor Joe Qualls inform alderman the city’s sewer operator would be retiring December 15th and they would have to hire another one within 30 days according to state statute. Qualls said they do have a possible replacement lined up, but that person still has to check on some things to see if they need to take the state certification test for sewer or not.
Public Works Director Ed Bush asked board members to go ahead and give authorization to be able to put out ads for the position should the replacement not pan out. Bush said the next state certification tests wouldn’t be until April. Bush himself would have to take the test as well in order to sign off on things involving the sewer as required by the state. Bush advised that they needed to be ready to seek a person to serve as sewer operator by their January board meeting. The board authorized the city to put ads out for a sewer operator should their possible replacement not pan out.
Water Tower Cleaning Due By April for Henry
Bush also told the Henry board to make plans to put out bids to have the water tanks cleaned. He said the tanks must be cleaned every five years as determined the state’s water and wastewater board. Bush said April will be 5 years so putting bids out in January and selecting the company to clean the tanks in February would give them time to get it completed by April. Bush advised it cost about $5K per tank last time to have them cleaned. The board also agreed to go ahead and put bids out for having the water tanks cleaned.
Mayor Joe Qualls asked alderman Faye Lowry to organize a fundraiser to help replace some of the tables and chairs at the Henry Civic Center. Qualls said inventory of the civic center showed several tables and chairs were missing from over a long period of time and its something that needs to be done. Lowry said from the last fundraiser which they bought new stoves for the civic center they had just over $214 to go towards new tables and chairs. They will have the fundraiser sometime in the early spring.
Recycling Program a Big Hit In Cottage Grove
65 pounds per person enrolled being recycled
Cottage Grove, Tenn.- The Cottage Grove Legislative Council met in regular session on Tuesday night and Mayor Mike Waddey informed the council the city of Cottage Grove has placed 10th, unofficially, in Tennessee for the amount of recycling per person. The recycling program has recently been implemented and has really caught on.
Mayor Waddey said numbers show the city is recycling about 65 pounds per person enrolled in the program. Any Cottage Grove citizen that wants to enroll that has not should get in contact with the mayor or councilmen.
The November financial report included revenues of $4,239.66 and expenses of $30,252.99. The expenses included a yearly payment on the post office building principal. Melinda Thatcher made the motion to accept the report and Sue Call seconded the motion. The recycling program report included revenues of $367.50 and expenses of $55.00 for the year.
Breaking News: Bad Accident Causing Traffic to Be Rerouted on Veterans Drive
Paris,Tenn.- Paris Police are asking motorists to avoid Veterans Drive this evening as they continue to be on the scene of a bad wreck which occurred near Sonic earlier this afternoon. The Paris Police Department and other agencies continue to work the scene and Veterans Drive will remain closed for the next couple of hours at least. Reports from the wreck are unavailable at this time and WMUF/WLZK will have more when information is released.
FOP Cops and Kids Shopping Trip Set for Saturday
Icy Weather Caused Last Saturday's Trip to Be Rescheduled
Paris, Tenn.- Due to last weekend’s icy road conditions, the Cops and Kids Shopping trip was rescheduled and will be held this Saturday morning December 14th at 7am.
Paris Police Chief Chuck Elizondo advises that children who are participating in the Cops and Kids shopping trip need to bring their FOP Cops and Kids authorization letter and be at Henry County High School by 7am Saturday morning.
This year the Fraternal Order of Police Tennessee-Kentucky Lake Lodge 17 will carry 252 underprivileged children to go Christmas Shopping. Officers from the Paris Police Department, Henry County Sheriff’s Office, Henry County High School clubs, and Knights of Columbus helped in the cause.
The students will be bussed from the high school to Walmart where they each will be allowed to spend $75 on Christmas presents for themselves and when the get back to HCHS they will pick out a stuffed animal of their choice.
Festival of Trees Award Winners Announced
The WG Rhea Library's Tree was awarded Most Original
and was made of stacked books in the shape of
a tree. (Gary Benton Photo, yes Gary Benton)
Paris, Tenn.- The Festival of Trees opened up at the Paris Henry County Heritage Center Tuesday morning as the December Chamber Coffee was held.
The WG Rhea Public Library won the award for the most original tree as instead of a tree books were used and stacked up in a Christmas tree shape and decorations were put on it.
The Theme for this year’s Festival of Trees is just like the Holly Jolly Christmas Parade, “A Storybook Christmas.” The Best Themed trees at the Festival of Trees were 1st place First United Methodist for the Nativity; 2nd place County Official’s tree with the story of the Fish Fry; and 3rd place for best themed was the Henry County High School Tree that was decorated for the State Championship.
The Henry County HIgh School Tree is decked outin State
Championship Ornaments. (Benton Photo)
Henry Elementary To Hold Pancake Supper With Santa Friday Night
Event Rescheduled Because of Last Weekend's Icy Weather
Paris, Tenn.- Henry Elementary will have their Pancake Supper with Santa on Friday December 13th. This was scheduled to be held last Saturday morning but was moved because of the icy weather.
The pancake supper with Santa will be held at Henry School from 6-8pm and all school age children are admitted free of charge. Adult admission is $6. The fee includes pancake supper, crafts, games, Christmas carols, and more.
Christmas Carols will be sung by Pre-k thru 2nd grade students starting at 6:45pm. Santa will be available for pictures and the cost is only $3.
During the Pancake Supper with Santa the Henry Thrift Store will be located in the gym for a special Christmas Sale where you can fill a grocery bag for just $1. For more information call Henry Elementary.
Henry County Healthcare Center Celebrates 50 Years This Week
Paris, Tenn.- The Henry County Healthcare Center is celebrating their 50th anniversary this week and the public is invited to a free cookout on Wednesday December 11th from 11am to 1pm at Plumley Rehab, located on hospital circle behind the hospital. You can register for door prizes and receive a free gift.
Budget Committee Approves Transfers In Sheriff's Dept, School Fund
Paris, Tenn.- Members of the Henry County Budget Committee approved the only two items on their agenda Monday night including one resolution amending funds in the General Fund from the sale of items at the Henry County Sheriff’s Office Auction held last month.
The resolution called for increasing the revenue account by over $39K from the auction proceeds. The sheriff’s department will use the funds for law enforcement equipment, maintenance and repair of vehicles, and building improvements.
The other resolution approved by the budget committee was in the General Purpose School Fund. The school system had received a grant from the Tennessee Arts Commission in the amount of just under $2K.
WG Rhea Library Hosts Sugar and Spice Gingerbread House Event
Paris, Tenn.- The WG Rhea Public Library will have a Sugar and Spice Family Gingerbread House Workshop Tuesday December 10th from 5-7pm. There is no charge, but you must register at the circulation desk by calling 642-1702.
Kids must bring an adult to help construct and decorate a gingerbread house to take home. WG Rhea Library also asks at least one store bought edible embellishment needs to be brought to share with the group. Items to bring include M & M’s, peppermint sticks, gum drops, shredded wheat cereal, teddy grahams, pretzels, licorice, fruit roll ups, red hots, wafers, mini marshmallows, gum, and more.
Reminder: Festival Of Trees Begins at Heritage Center Tuesday
Chamber Coffee Kicks Off Event Tuesday Morning
Paris, Tenn.- The Festival of Trees will begin Tuesday at the Chamber Coffee which starts at 8am at the Paris Henry County Heritage Center. Several businesses and organizations have set up trees and they will be on display from now until December 23rd. Viewing of the Festival of Trees is Tuesday thru Saturday from Noon until 5:30pm and Sundays 1-4pm. Donations of $1 are asked for to view the trees. Tuesday morning at the Chamber Coffee awards for Most Original and Best Theme will be given.
Jaycees Raise $1500 At Jammin 4 the Kids
Paris, Tenn.- The Paris Henry County Jaycees held their Annual Jammin 4 the Kids event Saturday night at the Paris Moose Lodge. Despite the cold weather and icy conditions, a great crowd turned out and around $1500 was raised which will go towards the Jaycee’s Children’s Shopping tour this coming Saturday. The Jaycees thank everyone who came out to support this great cause.
A Pair of Basketball Games To Be Broadcast Tonight
Paris, Tenn.- Be sure and join us for the Henry County Sports Show at 5pm Monday evening on WLZK 94.1FM. We will look back at Friday night’s win over Knoxville West as the Patriots captured their 2nd 5A state title in three years. We will hear comments from Head Coach James Counce and wrap up the perfect 15-0 season for the Big Red.
The sports show will be broadcast from Gamlin Gym as Henry County will host Calloway County this evening for basketball action. The Lady Patriots will tip at 6pm, with men’s action to follow. Head on over to Gamlin Gym and support the teams if you can, or just listen to our broadcast on WLZK 94.1FM and online at wmufradio.com.
Inman will host Lakewood in county wide basketball tonight and we will have the broadcast of that at 5:45 on WMUF 104.7FM, with the tip off of the girls game at 6pm.
Winders Competes In Winchester Race
Henry County’s Lance Winders ran in the Deer Trail 6 Mile Run at Tim’s Ford State Park in Winchester this weekend. Winders finished 2nd overall out of 108 runners in this weekend’s race with a time of 35:15. Winders is currently in first place overall in the 50 to 59 division of this year’s Tennessee State Parks Running Tour.
Harrelson Closed Monday; All Other HCSS Schools Open
Paris, Tenn.- The Henry County School System announced Sunday evening that Harrelson School will be closed Monday due to a blown transformer causing a power outage at the school.
Henry and Lakewood Elementary Schools, E.W. Grove School, and Henry County High School will all be open in regular session on Monday.
Bus routes will run in the Harrelson area in order to serve E.W. Grove and Henry County High School students; please do not send Harrelson students on buses Monday morning.
Images from the 2013 Patriots State Championship Victory
R'Tario Perkins breaks away on his 63 yard touchdown run (Tim Pharr photo).
Colton Randolph looks for running room, evading a Knoxville West defender (Tim Pharr photo).
R'Tario Perkins muscles his way into the end zone for a Patriot touchdown (Tim Pharr photo).
Coach Paul Putman and several Henry County players charge the field in celebration, wearing their Blue Cross Bowl caps (Tim Pharr photo).
Henry County players and coaches hold their Blue Cross Bowl trophy aloft (Tim Pharr photo).
Jeremiah Godbott received offensive MVP honors for the State Championship game (Tim Pharr photo).
The Big Red Swarm sent an impressive contingent to Cookeville Friday night despite the rain and freezing weather (Tim Pharr photo).
Driver May Face Charges After Damaging Three Vehicles, Building
Paris, Tenn.- A Paris woman may be facing charges after a wreck she caused on Tyson Avenue left three other cars and a building damaged.
According to accident reports at the Paris Police Department, Nicole Beale, age 40 of Paris, was driving north on Tyson Avenue in a 1999 Mercedes station wagon at an extremely high rate of speed when she left the roadway and ran onto the curb near the Henry County Medical Center.
Beale continued to drive until leaving the roadway completely at 206 Tyson Avenue, striking a parked car in the rear quarterpanel and continuing forward, hitting the Family Cash Advance building and another parked car in the driver's side door.
At this point, a witness reports Beale's car went airborne, striking a third parked car upon landing.
Three of the four cars involved in the incident were unable to operate. Beale was transported to Henry County Medical Center with non-incapacitating injuries.
It is unknown at this time what charges Beale will potentially face.
Wreck Near Cottage Grove Sends Paris Man to Vanderbilt
Cottage Grove, Tenn.- A Paris man was airlifted to Vanderbilt Sunday after being trapped in his car for an hour following an accident in the Cottage Grove area.
Austin Satterfield, age 18 of Paris, was involved in a single-vehicle accident on Lamkins Road, approximately two miles off Highway 69 North, according to the Tennessee Highway Patrol dispatch.
He was airlifted to Vanderbilt with serious injuries, but as of 3 PM Sunday afternoon Vanderbilt reports Satterfield is in stable condition.
House Fire Leaves Puryear Family Homeless
Puryear, Tenn.- A fire in Puryear completely destroyed a home and left its residents with nothing on Saturday.
According to the Henry County Sheriff's Office dispatch, 911 received a call at approximately 11:30 Saturday morning reporting a home completely engulfed in flames on Rowe School Road in Puryear. The Puryear Fire Department responded and extinguished the fire. At the time of this article's publication, all attempts to contact the Puryear Fire Department have been unsuccessful.
Friends and family of the home's residents, Michael Roberts, his son Cody, and fiancee Brittany Kohler, are attempting to organize donations, which will be accepted at S&R Feed Store and Paris Veterinary Clinic.
Sheriff's Department, Police Department Investigate Thefts
Paris, Tenn.- Both the Sheriff's Department and Paris Police Department are investigating recent thefts, according to reports.
Several tractor-trailer tires, valued well over $3,000, were stolen recently from Henry Farmers' Co-op. A Co-op employee found a tire in a ditch near the building and took inventory of their stock, finding nine other tires missing. They believe that thieves accessed the building over the past few nights via a drainage ditch and culvert underneath Wood Street to steal the tires, which total $3652 in value.
The Paris Police Department is currently investigating this incident and has no suspects at this time.
According to Henry County Sheriff's Office reports, a hunting rifle was recently stolen from a vehicle in Paris. The complainant told officers that the rear driver's side window of his truck had been broken out and a hunting rifle he had put there the day before was missing.
The complainant found a railroad spike in the back seat of the truck, apparently used to break the window. He advised responding officers the rifle was completely hidden underneath a pile of clothes at the time of the theft.
Sheriff's Department investigators are looking in to the theft and have no suspects at this time.
Hazardous Road Conditions Lead to Over a Dozen Wrecks Friday
Paris, Tenn.- The impact of Friday’s severe winter weather was especially clear on Henry County’s roadways. The Henry County Sheriff’s Department, Paris Police Department, and Tennessee Highway Patrol responded to 16 motor vehicle incidents related to icy and hazardous conditions Friday afternoon and evening, three of which occurred within Paris city limits.
One accident handled by the Tennessee Highway Patrol involved three vehicles on Highway 69 South – an injured motorist was treated by EMS.
Several vehicles ran into ditches after hitting icy patches throughout the county, and at least two vehicles were found overturned.
Law enforcement themselves were not immune to the slippery conditions Friday – one of the first accidents reported that afternoon was a Sheriff’s deputy who collided with a guard rail on Highway 218 due to the slippery conditions, lightly damaging his patrol car.
Despite the extremely hazardous driving conditions, the impact of Friday’s ice accumulation was much less severe than it could have been. Reports indicate that much of Henry County maintained power throughout the entire winter weather event, with only six localized and temporary power outages reported. Also, the Henry County Sheriff’s Office reported tree-related incidents were extremely minimal despite the ice accumulation.
Winter Weather Causes Several Closures, Cancellations
Paris, Tenn.- Several businesses and services remain closed after Friday's severe winter weather and ice accumulations.
The Mineral Wells branch of Commercial Bank and Trust is closed Saturday.
PML, Incorporated will remain closed until 9 PM Sunday.
The Seventh Day Adventist Church in Paris has cancelled Saturday services and has also cancelled their Women's Tea scheduled for Sunday.
The Henry County Landfill is closed Saturday.
We will continue to provide updates on closures as Henry County may receive additional freezing rain and sleet Saturday night through Monday morning.
Patriots Win Second State Championship in Three Years
Cookeville, Tenn.- The 2013 Henry County Patriots football team braved freezing cold and rain Friday night to cap off an undefeated season with their second TSSAA 5A state championship in three years.
The Patriots defeated West High School in Knoxville in an incredibly close game by a final margin of 28 to 27.
West looked dominant early in the game, screaming out to a 14 to nothing lead in the first half and holding Henry County’s offense to one first down in the first quarter. West also forced an interception on the Patriots’ first real scoring opportunity near the end of the first half.
Henry County finally managed to get on the board with less than a minute left in the half, capitalizing on a West fumble; they quickly tied the game up in the third quarter on another Jeremiah Godbott TD.
The game turned into a slugfest at that point – R’Tario Perkins traded 60+ yard TD runs with Knoxville West before both teams settled in some on defense.
A missed extra point proved to spell the end for Knoxville West; Rammel missed a PAT for the Patriots but Perkins made up the difference with a 2 point conversion later in the game.
West missed a potentially game-tying extra point with 11:53 remaining in the contest; that one point margin held up until the end.
Make sure to tune in to the Henry County Sports Show Monday night on 94.1 FM WLZK for comments from head coach James Counce on Friday night’s Blue Cross Bowl game.
A replay of Friday night's Blue Cross Bowl radio broadcast on WLZK 94.1 FM is available here.
News from past weeks here.