Local News

COVID-19—SULLIVAN HELP

THERE’S A NEW PROGRAM IN SULLIVAN COUNTY TO HELP THOSE WHO ARE CONSIDERED PART OF THE COVID-19 HIGH-RISK POPULATION.  STARTING MONDAY, BETWEEN THE HOURS OF 10 A.M. AND 5 P.M. THOSE WHO ARE CONSIDERED HIGH-RISK CAN CALL THE SULLIVAN COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE TO PICK UP ESSENTIAL ITEMS.  THE NUMBERS TO CALL FOR ASSISTANCE ARE 279-6064 OR 279-7506.

COVID-19—TN SATE PARK CLOSURES

ALL STATE PARKS IN TENNESSEE WILL CLOSE IN SUPPORT OF GOVERNOR BILL LEE’S STAY-AT-HOME MANDATE.  THE DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENT AND CONSERVATION SAYS THIS INCLUDES ALL FACILITIES AND ACCESS TO ALL STATE PARKS AND STATE NATURAL AREAS.  THE CLOSURE TAKES EFFECT SATURDAY APRIL 4TH AND RUNS THROUGH THE 14TH.

COVID-19—COMPLIANCE

JOHNSON CITY OFFICIALS SAY SO FAR, MOST ARE TAKING SERIOUSLY THE ORDER TO STAY AT HOME—UNLESS IT’S ESSENTIAL BUSINESS AND THAT NON-ESSENTIAL BUSINESSES ARE FOLLOWING ORDERS.  CITY MANAGER PETE PETERSON SAYS HE’S BEEN CHECKING AND, “VOLUNTARY COMPLIANCE HAS BEEN VERY, VERY GOOD.  WE’VE STILL GOT A LOT OF QUESTIONS  ABOUT WHAT’S ESSENTIAL, WHAT’S NON-ESSENTIAL.”  IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS, CHECK THE CITY’S WEBSITE.

COVID-19—WASH CO OFFICES

WASHINGTON COUNTY WILL TEMPORARILY SUSPEND SERVICES AT ITS JOHNSON CITY COUNTY CLERK AND TRUSTEE’S OFFICE EFFECTIVE APRIL 6TH.  THIS ONLY IMPACTS THE LOCATION AT 378 MARKETPLACE BOULEVARD AND STAFF FROM THAT LOCATION WILL WORK AT THE HISTORIC COURTHOUSE IN DOWNTOWN JONESBOROUGH.  EMPLOYEES AT THE COURTHOUSE ARE PROVIDING SERVICES BUT ASK THAT IF YOU HAVE BUSINESS, TO PLEASE CALL AHEAD.  YOU CAN ALSO CONDUCT SOME TRANSACTIONS ON LINE.

COVID-19—BALLAD STAFFING

BALLAD HEALTH OFFICIALS SAY THEY’RE HAVING TO ADJUST STAFFING LEVELS—BASED ON VOLUME.  CEO ALAN LEVINE SAYS BALLAD HASN’T DONE ANY FURLOUGHS BUT, MANY ARE WORKING REDUCED HOURS OR ARE USING PAID TIME OFF, “SOME OF THE STEPS WE’RE LOOKING AT ARE DESIGNED TO GET THEM HELP AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE.”    LEVINE SAYS HE EXPECTS TO HAVE MORE DETAILS ABOUT STAFFING LEVELS NEXT WEEK.

COVID-19—BLUE CROSS

BLUE CROSS BLUE SHIELD OF TENNESSEE IS COVERING THE FULL TREATMENT COST FOR COVID-19, INCLUDING TESTING, TREATMENT AND HOSPITALIZATION.  THE EXPENSES WILL BE COVERED THROUGH MAY 31ST AND MEMBERS WON’T BE RESPONSIBLE FOR OUT-OF-POCKET COSTS.  BLUE CROSS IS ALSO DONATING $3.25-MILLION DOLLARS TO FOOD BANKS ACROSS TENNESSEE.

COVID-19—TENNESSEE DISASTER

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP HAS ISSUED A DISASTER DECLARATION FOR TENNESSEE AMID THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC.  THE DECLARATION MAKES FUNDING AVAILABLE FOR STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS AND SOME NON-PROFITS THAT HAVE BEEN IMPACTED.  IT ALSO PROVIDES FEDERAL ASSISTANCE THROUGH THE FEDERAL EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY FOR RECOVERY EFFORTS.

COVID-19—WASH CO PAY

FULL TIME WASHINGTON COUNTY EMPLOYEES WILL RECEIVE UP TO TWO WEEKS PAID SICK TIME AT 100-PERCENT IF THEY HAVE TO QUARANTINE OR ISOLATE OR EXPERIENCE COVID-19 SYMPTOMS.  COUNTY COMMISSIONERS ADOPTED AN AMENDMENT THAT ALSO GIVES TWO WEEKS AT TWO-THIRDS PAY FOR SOMEONE UNDER SELF-QUARANTINE.

COVID-19—BLUE PLUM

JOHNSON CITY’S BLUE PLUM FESTIVAL SCHEDULED FOR JUNE 5TH AND 6TH HAS BEEN CANCELLED AMID THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC.  THE FESTIVAL BOARD IS LOOKING AT OPTIONS FOR A POSSIBLE SMALLER EVENT IN THE FALL.

COVID-19—ASSESSMENT SITE

THE TENNESSEE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH HAS OPENED FOUR NEW COVID-19 ASSESSMENT SITES FOR PRE-SCREENED AND REGISTERED PATIENTS IN NORTHEAST TENNESSEE.  THE SITES ARE IN CARTER, WASHINGTON, GREENE AND HAWKINS COUNTIES.  SITES ARE SET TO OPEN TODAY AND WILL REMAIN OPEN UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE.  PATIENTS MUST BE PRE-SCREENED AND PRE-REGISTERED TO BE TESTED AT THE SITES.  IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE SYMPTOMS OF COVID-19, CALL THE INFORMATION LINE AT 979-4689 TO GET PRE-SCREENED.

WASH CO FATAL—HELP

THE TENNESSEE HIGHWAY PATROL IS ASKING FOR HELP AFTER A 70-YEAR OLD WASHINGTON COUNTY WOMAN WAS KILLED IN A HIT AND RUN CRASH.  IT HAPPENED MONDAY IN THE 200 BLOCK OF SAND VALLEY ROAD.  THP SERGEANT NATHAN HALL IS ASKING RESIDENTS IN THE AREA TO CHECK DOORBELL AND SECURITY CAMERAS.    HELEN BRANCH OF JONESBOROUGH WAS WALKING HER DOG WHEN SHE WAS STRUCK BY AN UNKNOWN VEHICLE, WHICH THEN FLED THE SCENE.  BRANCH’S BODY WAS FOUND ON THE SCENE WHEN TROOPERS RESPONDED AT 4:49 P.M. IF YOU HAVE ANY INFORMATION, CALL 1-800-737-2682 EXTENSION 5521.