Local News

ID Spoofing Fines May Increase

Thursday, 21 March 2019

State Representative Clark Boyd is cosponsoring an initiative to strengthen penalties against caller ID spoofing.
 
As introduced, House Bill 1245 increases the civil penalty amount from $10,000 to $25,000 per violation that the attorney general and reporter may recover in an action against a person who commits the offense of caller identification spoofing. The bill also clarifies that each call received by a subscriber wherein the caller identification information is misleading or inaccurate constitutes a separate violation for purposes of imposing the civil penalty.
 
According to Rep. Boyd, “Over the last year I have heard from countless people in the district about the amount of phone calls they are receiving on a daily basis often times from organizations who are using caller ID spoofing as a way to scam people. Tennessee is now taking steps to address this issue, and House Bill 1245 moves us in the right direction to deter spoofing. Although this is an issue that is primarily under the jurisdiction of the FCC at the federal level, I will continue to support this initiative and others that curb this growing issue, and I encourage Tennesseans to be mindful and alert when answering phone calls.”
 

Seat Belt Use On The Rise

Wednesday, 20 March 2019

The Tennessee Highway Safety Office (THSO) announced a significant increase in the state’s overall seat belt usage rate, compared to previous years. The usage rate rose from 88.5 percent in 2017 to 90.9 percent in 2018. This marks the first year Tennessee’s usage rate surpassed 90 percent. Tennessee’s 2018 usage rate also exceeded the national usage rate of 90.1 percent.
 
“Tennessee is the 24th state to achieve 90 percent seat belt usage,” said THSO Director Vic Donoho. “We appreciate the substantial efforts made by the legislature, law enforcement, and local communities to reach this milestone. Moving forward, we will continue striving to achieve 100 percent.”
 
Highlights from Tennessee’s 2018 seat belt survey are as follows.

  • Research data was collected at 190 pre-identified roadway locations across the State of Tennessee.

 

  • Researchers observed more than 27,000 front-seat vehicle occupants.

 

  • Vehicles observed included cars, pickup trucks, vans, and SUVs.

 

  • Overall, female occupants displayed a higher usage rate (94.8 percent) than males (88.3 percent).

 

  • Pickup trucks displayed the lowest usage rate (84.24 percent).

 
This data was collected through an annual roadside observational survey conducted by the University of Tennessee Knoxville’s Center for Transportation Research. Tennessee’s seat belt usage rate has been certified by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
 
 

Girls Go CyberStart!

Wednesday, 20 March 2019

Governor Bill Lee has announced that Tennessee will participate in the Girls Go CyberStart competition. In partnership with the SANS institute, this initiative will empower female high school students to explore opportunities in studying cybersecurity.  
 
“We are working toward propelling Tennessee to the top 25 states for job creation in the technology sector by 2022,” said Lee. “Tennessee is excited to partner with this program to encourage young women to develop their talents in high-skill STEM-related fields.”
 
Girls Go CyberStart is an innovative and interactive competition that guides participants through a variety of challenges and puzzles which test decision-making skills and introduces concepts such as open-source intelligence, cryptography, and web application and more to spark an interest in computer science and cybersecurity.
 
Participants are eligible for 400 scholarships of $500 each for the college of their choice. The three high schools in Tennessee that have the most participants will win awards ranging from $500 to $1,000.
 
"The nation desperately needs more highly-skilled cyber professionals," said SANS Director of Research, Alan Paller. "We have new evidence that CyberStart radically improves the quality and preparation of people entering the cybersecurity field. Women are woefully underrepresented in the technical side of cybersecurity, but by opening CyberStart to tens of thousands of high school girls, we may be able to help the nation identify the next generation of talented people who will excel in this critical field."
 
Almost 8 percent of Tennessee’s projected job openings from 2017-2022 are in STEM-related fields. Governor Lee is focused on developing Tennessee’s data-driven, technology-focused workforce, and is committed to providing these opportunities to all Tennessee students.
 
More information on Girls Go CyberStart: girlsgocyberstart.org. More information on Cyber FastTrack: cyber-fasttrack.org.
 

THP Announces Youth and Junior Academy

Tuesday, 19 March 2019

The Tennessee Highway Patrol (THP) is excited to offer youths who have an interest in pursuing a career in law enforcement the opportunity to attend THP’s Youth and Junior Academy this summer!
 
The Junior Academy, designed for middle school students grades 5-8 will take place June 24-28. The Youth Academy, designed for high school students grades 9-12 will take place July 7-12. Cadets will be provided educational and recreational experiences that involve respect, discipline, integrity, team building, physical fitness and much more.
 
In addition, cadets will be involved in a community service project supporting the Second Harvest Food Bank and the Nashville Rescue Mission. This will encompass a canned food drive where collected donations will directly support food banks in the cadets’ communities. Food donations can be dropped off at any one of our eight district headquarter locations.
 
Both academies are being held at the THP Training Center located at 283 Stewarts Ferry Pike in Nashville, Tennessee. The Youth Academy only will be in-residence, overnight stay at the Training Center.
 
The THP will provide transportation for the Junior Academy cadets in Cookeville, Murfreesboro, Lawrenceburg and Dickson. Academy instructors will contact cadets in those areas to arrange transportation.
 
Applications are being accepted now. To apply, please visit www.tn.gov/safety or visit your local THP District Headquarters. The deadline to apply is May 15 at 4:30 p.m. Acceptance letters will be mailed by May 20.
 
 

School Board Conducts March Meeting

Monday, 18 March 2019

A variety of topics faced members of the Cannon County Board of Education in their March meeting.  With only three members in attendance, one no vote would stop and of the items on the agenda.
 
Auburn School needs a upgrade of its septic system.  As board members discussed the bids, the number of guestions increased. The board agreed to have the project re-bid with more clarity as to what was and wasn’t included.
 
A portable classroom at Short Mountain School was declared surplus by the board.
 
The board normally conducts workshops each month to review topics and assist with clarity prior to the meeting.  However during budget reviews on three areas resulted in two of the amendments tabled as one member had questions.
 
The senior trip and the rules of conduct for students were approved by the board.
 
Next meeting is scheduled for a workshop session on Tuesday, April 9th and regular board meeting for Thursday April 11th.
 

Pesticide Certification Testing Now More Accessible

Saturday, 16 March 2019

Tennessee pesticide applicators will now have improved access to required certification testing thanks to new and streamlined services. Applicators will be able to pay for and schedule tests online and receive results immediately following their exam.
 
“We are serious about providing effective services while wisely using taxpayer dollars,” Agriculture Commissioner Charlie Hatcher, D.V.M. said. “This change will improve the registration process and make it more convenient for applicators to take certification exams without any additional burdens to the industry or taxpayers.”
 
The new pesticide certification, scheduling, and exam process is being administered for the Tennessee Department of Agriculture by PSI Services based out of Glendale, CA. The company has been doing business with Tennessee agencies since 2004.
 
State and federal law requires any person who commercially applies or supervises the use of pesticides to be certified. There are 12,623 commercial applicators, 1,464 chartered pest control companies, and 215 restricted use pesticide dealers licensed in Tennessee.
 
“We will continue to work closely with industry partners to ensure that they always have the testing access needed to responsibly, properly, and effectively apply pesticides,” Hatcher said.
 
Testing is administered at the following locations: Chattanooga, Clarksville, Dyersburg, Jackson, Johnson City, Knoxville, Memphis, and Nashville. Examinations are provided Monday through Saturday at various locations, and Tennessee certification exams may also be taken out of state where offered.
 
For more information on pesticide certification and licensing, click here.
 

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