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Seat Belts on School Buses Bill moves forward

A bill to require Tennessee school buses to be fitted with seat belts by July 2023 is advancing in the House.
The Chattanooga Times Free Press reports that the House Transportation Subcommittee advanced the measure on a voice vote on Wednesday.
The vote came after a pediatric surgeon testified about how three-point safety belts could have benefited children injured in a Chattanooga school bus crash that killed six children in November.
Democratic Rep. JoAnne Favors of Chattanooga said she was pleased to see her bill advance, but acknowledged that she will have to address the estimated $400 million it would take for school districts to buy new buses equipped with seat belts.
Investigators have said the driver was speeding and off of his route when the bus crashed.

Man who led Police on Deadly High Speed Pursuit headed to Court

Garieon Simmons… Photo provided

28-year old Garieon Simmons of Decherd, Tennessee will soon face the Rutherford County courts. Simmons was the driver of a stolen SUV from Coffee County who allegedly led authorities on a high speed pursuit, which began in Manchester. Simmons later crashed the SUV on South Church Street in Murfreesboro.
When Simmons crashed, he ran into the side of a vehicle being driven by Jennifer Campos. Campos was turning out of a parking lot on South Church when she was hit in the driver’s side door. Her seven-month-old daughter survived the collision, but Campos died at the scene.
Simmons, who will be arraigned in court on March 27th, will face charges of first-degree murder, aggravated vehicular homicide and felony evading charges. He is also charged with DUI, theft and aggravated vehicular homicide per DUI enhancement. (Story help from WGNS Radio)

Survey being taken for Bike Pedestrian Plan

The Coffee County Health Council is working on a Bike Pedestrian Plan for the county to improve opportunities to walk/run and bike safely. Manchester Parks and Recreation wants people to experience physical activity in a positive manner. A survey has been put together so the health council can find out what you think can be improved! Go to for a link to the survey. You can find it on our front page just to the right of our news stories.
Bonnie Gamble Director of Manchester Parks and Recreation told us this about the survey.

Tennessee Medical Marijuana Bill Fails

A Tennessee lawmaker says his bill that would legalize medical marijuana is dead for this year’s legislative session.
Republican Rep. Jeremy Faison says there’s currently not enough support in the Senate for the change.
Faison’s bill would have let people use prescribed marijuana to treat a variety of ailments, from cancer to post-traumatic stress disorder.
It also would have allowed 50 grow operations in Tennessee, with the first 15 in distressed areas.
On Tuesday, the Cosby lawmaker helped kill a separate resolution that he says would’ve pigeonholed Tennessee into waiting for additional U.S. Food and Drug Administration action.
Faison said some lawmakers feared their constituents would vote against them for supporting medical marijuana. He contended there will be a greater consequence for opponents because of positive polling for medical marijuana.

House Education Subcommittee passes bill Opposed by the Tennessee Education Association

A bill that would allow school systems to deduct up to 10 percent of teachers’ unions dues from payroll has passed in a House education subcommittee.
The proposal is opposed by the Tennessee Education Association, the state’s largest teacher union.
Rep. Bill Dunn, a Knoxville Republican who sponsored the proposal, said the measure is designed so that all groups who represent teachers would be treated equally. He told fellow lawmakers that some school systems were refusing to deduct dues for some teacher organizations other than TEA.
Some lawmakers expressed concern that school districts could punish teacher unions for speaking out by threatening to increase a bigger percentage from the dues deducted from payroll.
Dunn said he would amend the bill to cut the percentage of dues taken by using procedures.

All Night Stage will run at this year’s Bonnaroo

Music fans will have more options to dance the night away at the 16th annual Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival, which is unveiling an all-night stage focusing on dance, electronic and hip-hop artists.
The Other stage will run all night at this year’s festival, scheduled June 8-11 in Manchester.
This year’s lineup includes U2, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Weeknd and hundreds of others.

Storms Roar through Coffee County

Dugout damage at soccer field behind Raider Academy

Severe thunderstorms caused power outages and damage in Middle Tennessee on Tuesday afternoon and evening.
Electric crews responded in power outages throughout the Duck River Electric Membership Corporation and Tullahoma Utilities coverage areas. Several thousand people in Coffee County lost power at some point during the evening, with Manchester being one of the stronger hit areas.
Damage occurred in many locations, but heavy damage took place at the Coffee County 9th Grade Academy in Manchester. The roof on the school had a section near the gym was damaged. One of the dugouts at the soccer field was torn apart and the new tennis courts received significant damage.

Tennis court damage

Coffee County High School Athletic Director Ryan Sulkowski told WMSR News about the roof at the school, saying the damage was contained to the gym area. He also said he had been told of minor damage at Powers Field and a tree down near the Terry Floyd softball field.
School officials will continue to assess the damage and repair will begin as soon as possible.

Beechgrove Man Arrested for Allegedly Dislocating his Mother’s Arm

Rondal Ray Teroy… Photo provided by the CCSD.

A Beechgrove man was arrested March 18 after he allegedly dislocated his 91-year-old mother’s arm. Rondal Ray Teroy, 56, of Oak Drive Beechgrove was charged with aggravated assault and physical abuse or gross negligence.
According to warrants obtained by Coffee County Sheriff’s Deputy Antonio Frost, Teroy assaulted the woman after opening some mail. He became irate and grabbed the woman’s arm and twisted after opening his mail and finding that the state had issued him a learner’s permit instead of a regular driver license.
The warrant alleges that the woman’s arm was twisted and dislocated.
Unity Hospital Xrays showed that her elbow was dislocated.
Teroy was booked into the Coffee County Jail under a $30,000 bond. He is to appear in Coffee County General Sessions Court April 21.

Gas Prices down for now– Going up Later

Gas prices have declined 14 of the last 16 days. During that time, the national average price has declined 2 cents. Pump prices have drifted lower on increased inventories and declining oil prices.
AAA spokesman Mark Jenkins said gas prices are falling now, but gulf coast refineries are moving into their peak maintenance season, causing them to reduce gasoline production at a time when demand is slowly rising. This seasonal trend could push gas prices 25-50 cents higher by June, unless oil prices do not recover as expected.
The national average price for a gallon of regular unleaded is $2.29, a half-cent lower than last week.
Tennessee’s average is $2.04, one cent lower than last week, two cents lower than a month ago and 22 cents higher than a year ago.
This week’s low price in Manchester is $1.93 and in Tullahoma the low price per gallon is $1.92.

Drug known as “Pink” Not meant for Humans causing Overdoses

A drug developed in the 1970s and never approved for human use by the FDA is emerging as a street-level drug now linked to multiple deadly overdoses across the country.
The drug, U-47700, also called “Pink” due to its color, is an opioid more potent than heroin.
“The drug was manufactured in the 1970s by Upjohn Company,” Dr. Donna Seger, Executive Director of the Tennessee Poison Center said. “It decreases your respiration, it decreases your heart rate and it causes you to become unconscious.”
Dr. Seger said the drug is manufactured and used in other countries and it is usually purchased by people in the United States via the internet.
The DEA added U-47700 to its Schedule I narcotic list in 2016 after multiple drug overdoses.
Pink can be combined with heroin or any number of drugs. It can be inhaled, injected or pressed into pills that are almost indistinguishable from traditional medications, according to the Tennessee Poison Center question of the week on March 9.
Like Fentanyl, use of Pink on the street often means the dosage is unknown and the person taking the drug does not have access to medical instruments to help with breathing and heart function.
Drugs like this are also called designer drugs, and they hit the streets faster than legislators can outlaw them.
Dr. Seger said the Tennessee Poison Center has received one call about Pink, but the drug has been linked to overdoses in Kentucky. (WKRN-TV)

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