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Tennessee's unemployment rate for December was 6.6 percent, two-tenths of one percentage point lower than the previous month. The national rate for December was 5.6 percent, also a two-tenths drop from the prior month. State figures show that nonfarm employment increased by 12,500 jobs from November to December. The largest increases occurred in trade/transportation/utilities, manufacturing, and mining/logging/construction.
The Cumberland County Board of Education, in regular session Thursday, failed to pass a revision to the dress code policy concerning leggings. The policy, which the board has been attempting to pass for almost 4 months, would allow leggings as long as a shirt, dress or skirt was worn over them a maximum of 4 inches above the knee. Current policy allows leggings as long as the buttocks are covered. A vote on the 1st reading of the policy met with a 4-4 tie, with board member Jim Blalock absent. Policy committee chairman Richard Janeway noted that calls from his constituency have indicated that they would prefer a return to policy that would require some type of uniform dress. Janeway further urged board members who voted against the policy to offer their suggestions on how to address the issue. In a similar policy, the board also voted down a stricter dress code for faculty that would require leggings to be a maximum of 3 inches above the knee.
Authorities were called to Mackie’s Wrecker Service on Hwy 70 East early Thursday morning (1/22/15) after the owner, Jimmy Mackie, reported a tow truck stolen. Numerous items that were inside the truck had been thrown on the ground. The 1997 white GMC 1-ton tow truck was valued at $10,000. The crooks may not get very far; according to Mr. Mackie the truck does not run well and was only used to move things around the business.
A resident of Cherokee Trail said he was warned that his property would be stolen. The man told the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Department that someone had broken the lock off his storage building Wednesday and numerous items were taken. The man also reported that on Tuesday afternoon a white female with dark brown hair, who appeared to be in her 30’s, had stopped in front of his house while he was outside and stated that “they were going to come and steal his lawn mower”. She was driving a white 4-door car, possibly a Chevy. The victim says he does not know who she is and the case remains under investigation.
Forbes Magazine says Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam is now the country's richest elected official, citing a rush to the pumps at the family-owned Pilot Flying J truck stop chain due to tumbling fuel prices. According to Forbes, Haslam's net worth has more than doubled since August from $980 million to $2 billion. Haslam has steadfastly refused to publicly disclose his earnings from Pilot, arguing that it would divulge the income of family members who aren't in public office. Gov. Haslam said Wednesday that he has no idea where Forbes gets its information. He said he has made a practice of not commenting on personal financial information. Meanwhile, Gov. Bill Haslam has kicked off a statewide tour to promote his proposal to extend health coverage to more than 200,000 low-income Tennesseans. The governor said he would make up to eight more stops around the state in advance of a Feb. 2 legislative session to take up his proposal called Insure Tennessee. While Haslam stresses the market-based nature of his plan, several fellow Republicans in the Legislature have balked over drawing down federal money available under President Barack Obama's health care law. Haslam argues the proposal differs from straight Medicaid expansion adopted in other states because it would require co-pays and offer vouchers to buy private insurance.