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November 5, 2012 www.jeffersoncountypost.com

HEAVY VOTING AT POLLS EXPECTED

Staff Photo / Night Of Patriots rehearsal / ...more on page 7
 
9618 Residents Vote Early in Jefferson County
 

Jefferson County early voting polls have closed for the November 6, 2012 election cycle and the numbers for early voting in the County are strong. Beyond the neck and neck Presidential contest, there are also two open seats on the Jefferson County Commission that are highly contested in Districts 7 and 3. The field is deep in the District 7 race, with five candidates qualifying for the seat. Voting in the satellite office in New Market reflects the increased interest in this election cycle. Strong numbers in the New Market and White Pine satellite offices are in line with early voting numbers across the County. District 3, which is located in White Pine, has three candidates that have qualified for the open seat. 2081 Jefferson County residents have voted early in the two satellite offices. 9618 residents voted early in Jefferson County. This number reflects both satellite locations and absentee voting. Absentee votes are still trickling in, however the Jefferson County Election Office does not anticipate any significant increase in absentee numbers. As of Friday afternoon, 421 absentee votes had been received in the Jefferson County Election Office. Beyond the two contested County Commission seats, Jefferson City also has a contested race for City Council seats. Two seats are available and four candidates have qualified for the election. Dandridge, White Pine and New Market are all represented on the ballot, however there are no contested races for municipalities’ positions in these locations. State Representative positions in Districts 17 and 11 are contested, with Faison and Ramsey facing off in District 11 and Farmer and Dockery seeking the District 17 seat. County wide, Jefferson County is on target to have a large Election Day turn out. The General Election is on November 6, 2012 and it will decide the direction of the Nation and State, as well as impacting local government.


Tennessee Successful Early Voting Period Concludes with Biggest Day

Over 1.4 Million Voters Have Cast Ballots for November 6 Election

 

Tennessee’s early voting period concluded on Thursday with the highest single-day turnout of the year. Over 134,000 voters cast their ballots across the state yesterday, the fourteenth and final day of in-person early voting for the November 6 election. The overall total of 1,456,824 voters represents the second-highest early voting turnout in Tennessee history, having exceeded the 2004 November election by more than a quarter million votes.

“I am extremely pleased with the success of early voting for this important election,” said Secretary of State Tre Hargett. “County election officials are now finalizing preparations for Election Day, and I encourage all eligible voters who have not cast their ballots yet to take advantage of the opportunity to exercise their right to vote on Tuesday.”

Out of the over 1.45 million votes cast, counties have reported only 188 provisional ballots cast as a result of voters appearing without photo ID, and 54 have already returned with a valid photo ID in order to ensure their ballots will be counted.

Voters with questions about Election Day polling places and hours are encouraged to contact their county election commissions.

 

Corker, Isakson Continue to Press State Department for Disclosure of Communications from Benghazi Attacks

 

In a letter to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton last week, U.S. Senators Bob Corker, R-Tenn., and Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., both members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, continued to press the State Department for disclosure of all communications regarding security in Benghazi, Libya leading up to the deadly September 11 attacks on the U.S. mission. 

“Over the past several weeks, cables, emails and other communications regarding the security situation in Benghazi prior to and since the attack on our consulate have been leaked to some Congressional offices and media outlets, resulting in conflicting reports in the press. We have also called for the official transmittal of these documents and are still awaiting your response,” Corker and Isakson wrote in their letter. “On September 25, 2012 and again on October 3, 2012, we sent you letters requesting that all communications between the diplomatic mission in Libya and the State Department related to the security situation be transmitted to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee without delay. We respectfully ask for an update on the status of our requests for these documents.”

 

Rebels Attack Syrian Military Airport

By Jake Depew, Jefferson County Post Staff Writer
 

Seeking to deny the government of its overwhelmingly powerful air support, rebel forces in Syria attacked the Taftanaz military airport on Saturday, November 3. According to SANA, the state-run news agency, many terrorists were killed in the attack, and all of the terrorists’ weapons and vehicles were destroyed, as well. In response, Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an activist group based out of London, stated that only a single rebel was killed in the assault. According to rebel reports, the freedom fighters intended to control the perimeter of the military airport, effectively cutting off the Syrian government from a large chunk of its airborne firepower. The military airport at Taftanaz is roughly the size of a small city, and its acquisition would greatly increase the strength of rebel forces in the area. As of this writing, it is impossible to verify which of the opposing sides has control of the base, due to strict Syrian laws that prohibit journalists from operating freely in the country.


Jefferson County High School receives Bobby Dodd Sportsmanship Award

Staff Photo / Principal Scott Walker, Head Football Coach Kenny Cobble
 

Jefferson County High School has received the prestigious Bobby Dodd Sportsmanship Award. The award was presented to Athletic Director Randy Rogers last week in Johnson City. Football Officials from across the East Tennessee region awarded the trophy to the Jefferson County Patriots Football Team for their conduct in games. Patriot Football Coach Cobble stated that he was very pleased with the Bobby Dodd Award and that it was a great tribute to the team that they were recognized for their sportsmanship in such a large area as the East Tennessee region. Cobble said that officials fill out tally sheets after every game and those sheets are used to determine which team receives the award. Cobble is in his second year at the helm of the Jefferson County Patriots. He said that this award is a reflection of the entire team and the players as a whole. Coach Cobble stated that the team, coaches and staff are committed to trying to do things the right way. Jefferson County Principal Dr. Scott Walker was complimentary of Cobble and his program. Dr. Walker stated that the award is very special and that Cobble and his staff and team have represented Jefferson County well. He said that the award is an example of the larger life lessons that Cobble is teaching his players and the positive way that the students are responding to them. Jefferson County was also awarded the Ralph Stout Sportsmanship Award for Region I TSSAA at Monday’s banquet. This is the first time that Jefferson County Patriots have been awarded the Bobby Dodd award. The award will be presented to the team at the annual sport’s banquet and will find its home in the trophy case located in the commons area of Jefferson County High School.

 

Department of Education Recognized for Bully Prevention

Jefferson County highlighted in National Webinar
 

Jefferson County Department of Education has been recognized for its program on Bully Prevention. Mandy Schneitman, Director of Student Support Services for the school system, stated that Jefferson County was invited to be one of the highlight schools for a Nationally viewed webinar on bully prevention. The subject of bully prevention has been on the forefront in Jefferson County and the Department of Education has been identified as one of the forerunners in preventive strategy. In response to legislation passed several years ago regarding teen suicide, Jefferson County took its focus to one of the contributing factors in teen suicide-bullying. The Department of Education looked for progressive bullying prevention programs and invested in the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program, which provides support and training for administrators, teachers and parents. An integral part of the program is educating adults on the parameters of appropriate peer behavior and learning to distinguish between typical conflict and bullying. Schneitman stated that the elements that comprise a healthy environment that is conducive to learning are much the same as those that prevalent in a happy and stable family environment. It is important for students to have the skills to deal with conflict and for administrators and teachers to be able to identify with behavior has

crossed the line into bullying. Administrators, teachers and parents have formed committees that take the anti bullying program into the schools. Jefferson County has been very successful in its efforts to curtail the bullying incidents. Students are engaged in discussions in classroom meetings. These meetings give students the opportunity to bring to light concerns and allow the staff the time to share techniques in handling bullying situations. Administrators and teachers are also more aware of the individual student’s needs and climate of the school and classroom. Student questionnaires support that Jefferson County students are more aware of bullying and that awareness transfers to peer support. They also provide valuable information for teachers and administrators, such as hot spots for bullying. Schneitman and the Department of Education are pleased that the hard work of staff and students is being recognized. The webinar will be used as a tool for other systems across the Nation. This year, the Tennessee Legislature is putting the focus State Wide on bullying and all schools are now required to have bully prevention training. Jefferson County Department of Education is a spotlight County for bully prevention and education and the County is already immersed in, and reaping the benefits from, a program that is a recognized leader in the field of bully prevention. The invitation to participate as a focus school in the National webinar is a nod to the success of the program and the dedication of the system to bully prevention.


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