It’s Happening All Around Us

It’s Happening All Around Us

With gigabit fiber internet slowly proliferating around the country because of municipal fiber projects, Google Fiber, startup ISPs, and new investment from incumbents spurred by grants and competition, America is quickly dividing into two additional segments, no longer is it those that have internet and those that do not, now we are seeing further divide between those that have fast internet and those who do not. According to Jason Koebler, “Jobs—in any meaningful number, at least—will not continue to exist in towns and rural areas that lack fast, accessible internet access.” (https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/ezpk77/chattanooga-gigabit-fi...).

"For smaller towns, building a network becomes a question of economic survival—they're emptying out because kids grow up and there's no jobs for them," said Masha Zager, editor in chief of Broadband Communities magazine. "Sometimes, it's a question of keeping businesses and allowing them to grow, sometimes it's about enabling teleworking, sometimes it's about attracting businesses to come to town."

Look no further than Morristown, for an example of job creation facilitated by next generation fiber optic communications and workforce development thanks to the Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Morristown (https://tcatmorristown.edu/). The city took advantage of its local electrical utility, Morristown Utility Systems, to provide gigabit speeds, and businesses jumped at the opportunity.

The list is expansive; July 2018, Oshkosh Corp., 300 jobs, May 2018, Petoskey Plastics, Inc. investing $29.6 million/70 jobs; April 2018, Van Hool investing $47 million/600 jobs; Colortech, Inc., Rockline Industries, SkyMart Venture Place, Sykes Enterprises, etc.. In addition, Morristown was just ranked sixth among southern cities for employment growth and 14th in the nation. In a recent study, USA Today reported on the top 25 US cities where incomes are growing the fastest, Morristown made the list at number 5.

Morristown’s success has been enabled by a number of factors in addition to next generation fiber optic communications technology. The U.S. News & World Report’s list of America’s Best High Schools included Morristown-Hamblen High Schools West and East on America’s Best High School List. In 2016, the Tennessee College of Applied Technology – Morristown, received a second Labor and Education Alignment Program (LEAP) grant in the amount of $983,440 in addition to being the recipient of a $110,020 Rural Business Development grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) that same year. The USDA grant was used at the Morristown & Hawkins County campuses to assist with the purchase of state-of-the-art technology equipment to be used in advanced manufacturing programs.

“Receiving a second LEAP grant speaks of the dedication and hard work of our academic partners,” said LEAP project manager Chris Edmonds. Funds were distributed throughout six counties and seven school districts including the three LEAP 1.0 recipients (Hamblen, Hawkins and Grainger) and four additional school systems expanding into Cock, Greene and Sevier counties with the Tennessee College of Applied Technology of Morristown at the lead. According to Edmonds, “The teachers, counselors, CTE directors and school system directors in Grainger, Hamblen, Hawkins. Cocke, Greene and Sevier counties understand the pipeline of skilled workers begins in the middle and high schools”.

This region’s LEAP grant is a part of the $10 million annually budgeted for LEAP allocations by Gov. Bill Haslam in support of his Drive to 55 Initiative. Tennessee’s Drive to 55 Initiative, supported by Tennessee Promise and Tennessee Reconnect, which provide cost paid Associate Degrees or training certificates for High School Seniors and Adults, will meet its goal of having 55 percent of Tennesseans equipped with a college degree or certificates by 2023, two years ahead of schedule. For Union County to achieve the Governor’s goal, 412 degrees/certificates need to be awarded to Union County residents per year through 2025.

Approximately 30 miles separate Morristown and Newport, but the two are joining forces to better connect local businesses and residents as entrepreneurs take up residence in the region's newest high-tech work space. (https://muninetworks.org/content/eastern-tennessee-newport-smart-grid-mo...) Morristown was on the forefront of implementing city-wide Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) back in 2006. Today their gigabit network, MUS FiberNET, is fostering innovation in this thriving co-working space and helping neighboring communities bridge their connectivity gaps. Morristown Utility Commission (MUC) is partnering with Newport Utilities (NU) to expand Internet connectivity in the region. Newport recently received a $21 million loan from the USDA Rural Utilities Service (RUS) to expand their smart grid project, which will allow them to bring high-quality connectivity to their entire service area.

“Job opportunities are drying up in towns without broadband. Chattanooga, Tennessee turned around its fortunes by building the fastest internet in the United States”. https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/ezpk77/chattanooga-gigabit-fi...) “Chattanooga became one of the first gig cities almost by accident”, said Jason Koebler. The city-owned utility, Electric Power Board, started installing fiber-optic cable in 2009 to create a “smart” electric grid that could address power outages more quickly and better manage energy usage. By the end of 2010, despite fierce opposition from telecommunications companies, EPB began offering 1 gigabit internet service to its electric customers. Entrepreneurs and global companies, including Volkswagen and Amazon, are moving here, drawn in part by the city’s superfast gigabit internet, nicknamed “the Gig” by locals. The city is now one of the most connected places on earth, with one of the fastest internet speeds in the world.

Koebler noted that “At a time when small cities, towns, and rural areas are seeing an exodus of young people to large cities and a precipitous decline in solidly middle class jobs, the Gig has helped Chattanooga thrive and create a new identity for itself.”

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Agriculture Creates Opportunity

Agriculture Creates Opportunity

One of the most important ways to invest in the future of agriculture is to invest in the people who will become tomorrow’s agriculture industry leaders. Students pursuing the agriculture industry often look for careers in planning, implementation, production, management, processing, education, or marketing ag products and services. Tennessee Department of Education predicts that over 60,000 high-skilled agricultural jobs open annually in the United States with just around 35,400 graduates in the Ag, Food, and Natural Resources program studies to fill the openings.

Homer Johnson Stays Busy with Backyard Farm

Homer Johnson on his small farm in Halls

Who says you have to give up farm life if you move to a subdivision?

Not Homer Johnson. Born in Union County and now living in the Cedar Chase subdivision in Halls, Johnson has kept farming and selling his produce. Just this year, he sold 1,500 ears of peaches and cream corn, along with sweet potatoes, okra, tomatoes, peppers, watermelon and cantaloupe. All this is thanks to a lot of just over two acres he bought from Knox County. It sits in the floodplain and has a TVA easement running through it, so a vegetable garden is just about all he could do with it.

Start By Believing Pledge

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Did you know that every two minutes someone is sexually assaulted in the U.S.? Many survivors of this abuse do not say anything because they are afraid no one will believe them. Often times a survivor will tell a friend or family member and they are accused of lying or "asking" to be assaulted. As the Sexual Assault Advocate and SART Coordinator for the Union County area I am taking the 'Start By Believing" Pledge to show that I am fully committed to believing each and every person that comes to me as a current victim or survivor.

Winter Tree Pruning

Pruning

Winter is a good time to prune most trees because they are dormant and their leaves are off, making it easier to see how the branches are laid out. Here are some general guidelines to help keep your trees healthier and more attractive.

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Coming in the Clouds

COMING IN THE CLOUDS

Mark 13:26
“And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory.”

In Matthew 13:26, what did Jesus mean by the “coming in the clouds” part of His statement? Three of the four Gospel writers (Matthew, Mark and Luke) all record Jesus’ discussion with His disciples in what is commonly referred to by theologians as “The Olivet Discourse”. We are not going to keep you in suspense, “coming in the clouds” is a figure of speech, or metaphor for Judgement. More specifically the word, “clouds” in this context is a Biblical Metaphor for Judgement.

Baked Doughnuts

Baked Doughnuts

I have had this recipe for years. I love doughnuts, either cake or yeast. I don't eat them much any more. They quickly add pounds to this old frame. With no exercise and a healthy appetite, Anne limits my diet as best she can. However, sometimes we do splurge.

Krispy Creme is on my “do not even look that way” list as we drive by. I do sneak sweets at Revival Vision Church of God's Sunday morning coffee hour before Sunday School. Pat Hunt makes some tasty goodies.

Beach Dental Floss

Brooke Cox

My family and I have had many adventures in Ormond Beach. One is still burned into my memory.

Ormond Beach is like a home away from home for us. When we go down there to visit my step brother and sisters in October, we seem to hit Bike week. It is held in Daytona Beach, which is right below Ormond.

Marinated Vegetable Salad

Marinated Vegetable Salad

New Years 2019 is here ready to start us on another year long adventure. Black eyed peas are supposed to bring good luck. Maybe so, but they taste good anyway. Here is an easy recipe to make. You probably already have the ingredients in your pantry. No need to trudge out to Food City. Let's get marinating!

Events

Need A Ride To Church

Sunday, January 20, 2019 - 10:00
Need A Ride To Church

Fellowship Christian Church located at 746 Tazewell Pike Luttrell TN 37779 will pickup anyone in the local area needing a ride to church. Call Sam at 865-607-3741 to schedule a ride.

Worship Services

Sunday School 10:00 AM
Sunday Worship Service 11:00 A.M
Sunday Evening Service 6:30 P.M
Wednesday Service 7:00 P.M

Babies and Bagels Program at Luttrell Public Library

Monday, January 21, 2019 - 10:30

Every Tuesday at 10:30 am (unless closed due to holiday) Luttrell Public Library volunteer, Celeste Lanzon, teaches and inspires babies to Pre-K students (siblings are welcome) to learn and engage in fun activities including music and movement and always a story. Highly qualified, Mrs. Celeste has an education degree and professional teaching experience, so that your child is benefiting immensely during this program.

Wine and Canvas with Betty Bullen

Thursday, January 24, 2019 - 18:00

Betty is teaching another wonderful Wine and Canvas Class! This class we will be painting Red Breasted Blue Birds!

Sip on some wine and learn to paint from one of Union Counties best! Supplies are included.

Tickets are only $35 and must be purchased in advance by calling (865) 745-2902 or by coming into The Winery.

Seating is limited and fills up very fast so make sure you reserve your ticket today!

Area Worship Leaders, Pastors, and Faith community leaders

Thursday, January 31, 2019 - 07:30
Area Worship Leaders, Pastors, and Faith community leaders

"We invite all area Worship Leaders, Pastors, and Faith community leaders to come together on the last Thursday of each month at Hardee's at 7:30 am. This is to be a time of fellowship, prayer, and discussion about how we as a community of Faith can work together to have a positive impact on our county. All are welcome!" For more information please contact Kathy Chesney at 865-566-3289.

Wine and Design

Thursday, January 31, 2019 - 18:00

Join us at The Winery for a fun Wine and Design event.
During this class, get ready for Valentine's Day by painting
and crafting a wine bottle and wooden love sign. The class is only
$25 and includes all the materials needed as well as a glass
of wine or juice. Seating is limited and tickets must be purchased
in advance by calling The Winery at (865)745-2902.

Class starts at 6 so please come early to taste our wines and choose your favorite.

Obituary

Rosemary Gail (Wilkerson) Johnson Obituary

Rosemary Gail (Wilkerson) Johnson, of Halls/Plainview, went to be with our Lord & Savior Jesus Christ on Friday January 18, 2019. Rosemary spent 4 years fighting a rare mantle cell lymphoma. Rosemary loved her family, was a believer in Christ, an animal lover, and an all-around genuine person. She was preceded in death by her loving parents, Roy & Mary Lynn Wilkerson; father in law, Raymond Johnson; and brother in law Ray Johnson.

Obituary of Lloyd Russell Lee Sr.

Lloyd Russell Lee Sr., age 68, of Knoxville, Tn was born July 6, 1950 and departed this earthly life on January 17, 2019 to gain his new body in heaven. His life was filled with the love of Nascar, Semi-Trucks, and Family. Lloyd was a self employed over the road truck driver for his entire life to provide for his ever-growing family. Married to Sandra “Sandy” Lee on January 4th 1969, they shared their love of 50 years with their 3 sons Rusty (spouse Mary Duso), Jimmy (wife April), and Billy (spouse Becky Litton).

Ted George Jones

Ted Jones, age 67, of Knoxville passed away on January 17, 2019. He was a bus operator for Knoxville Area Transit for over 43 years, and a member of Amalgamated Transit Union. He was a member of West Side Baptist church. Preceded in death by parents George & Neoma Jones, grandparents William Ellis & Flora Shuemaker, father-in-law Jack Jones.

Nathan Samuel Davis

Nathan Samuel Davis – age 23 of Maynardville, passed away Sunday, January 13, 2019.

He is survived by his parents, Luther and Julia Davis; and sister, Gabriela Eby.

A celebration of life service is being planned for a later date. Trinity Funeral Home, LLC, Maynardville, has the honor to serve the family of Nathan Davis. 865-992-5002 www.trinityfuneralhome.net

Edward Robert Collette

Edward Robert Collette went to be with his Lord and Savior January 10th, 2019.
Ed was born September 19, 1964. Ed graduated the University of Florida with a degree in Environmental Engineering. He was elected and served as international president of the honor society Phi Theta Kappa. He loved the ocean and spent a better part of his life on the beaches in Florida. His hobbies included fishing, scuba diving, body building, hunting and wood working.

Jack Ray Bohanan

Jack Ray Bohanan, age 78 of Powell, passed away peacefully on January 16, 2019 surrounded by his family and close friends.
He was a longtime member and deacon of Smithwood Baptist Church.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Jack and Ruby Bohanan; father and mother-in-law, LeRoy and Nellene Buckner; and brother, Jerry Bohanan.

Jason Shane Hubbs Jr.

Jason Shane Hubbs Jr., age 31, went home to be with his heavenly father January 13, 2019 while surrounded by his family and friends at UT Hospital, due to an automobile accident. He is preceded in death by his papaw and grandmaw Marvin and Twila DeCost, papaw Joe T. Hubbs; uncles Jeff Humphrey, Tony Hubbs, and Steve Buckner. Jason was the son of Jason and Crystal Hubbs and was the most amazing brother to Dustin, Justin, and Autumn. He was also the most amazing, loving, and caring father. His whole world was his son Cason Shane Hubbs.

Barbara E. Acuff

Barbara E. (Hunter) Acuff-age 88 of Corryton passed away Monday, January 14, 2019 at North Knoxville Medical Center. She was a member of Clear Branch Baptist Church. Preceded in death by husband, Bill Acuff, parents, Clarence and Mossie (Wallace) Hunter; sisters, Geniva and Roy Burnett; Elise and Ken Beeler, Wanda and Don Beeler, Lois and Heral Kitts, Joyce Williams, brothers, Author, Earl, Ralph and Paul Hunter.

Survivors: sister, Carolyn (Leroy) Hensley of Luttrell; special sister-in-law, Lorene Hunter of Knoxville; several nieces and nephews along with a host of friends.

The opinions expressed by columnists and those providing comments are theirs alone, and may not reflect the opinions of Russell Computer Systems, Inc or any employee thereof.