NOVEMBER 30, 2011
MANY SCHOOL DISTRICTS ADDING SNOW DAYS TO CALENDAR
As the winter months are quickly approaching, many parents of school-aged children are wondering if school systems are better prepared with the number of snow days built into the school calendar. During the past two winters, Sumner County schools have canceled classes a total of 25 times due to inclement weather. The state of Tennessee allows schools to build up to 12 stockpile or snow days into their calendar each year. If the allotted days are not used for winter weather, schools can use them for teacher evaluations or in-service days. This school year Davidson County has five snow days built in, while Maury County has a total of seven snow days. Williamson County has 10 days set aside for winter weather and Rutherford County has 11 days.
GIANT I-65 POTHOLE DAMAGES CARS
As well as the usual morning rush hour accidents today....about half a dozen cars were damaged this morning when a huge pothole opened up on i-65N... at the Rivergate exit ramp ... News 2's Jerry Barlar tells us the first police call was from a woman with windshield damage... because as motorists drove over the pothole, it was throwing up football sized chunks of concrete. About six cars were damaged in all, no personal injuries reported... and TDOT is on the scene working on the hole. At last report it was about 6 feet long and 3 feet wide.
Lottery Cuts Number Of Scholarships
The Tennessee lottery is planning to cut its school scholarships by half to address a deficit. Students will have to meet testing and Grade Point Average requirements to get a full four-thousand dollar scholarship or teh 2 thousand dollar grant. Students hitting one of the two will get half the amount. Officials say it will eventually save the lottery fund 17-million a year.
HEALTH SAVINGS: Generic Lipitor Goes On Sale Today
Pfizer Inc. loses a cash cow today when generic forms of Lipitor go on sale. Pfizer's patent on the drug, designed to lower cholesterol levels, expired at midnight ending the company's monopoly on the largest selling prescription drug of all time. The result for people battling high cholesterol levels could be a significant saving. Insurance co-pays for Lipitor typically run 30 to 50 dollars per month. That cost using the generic version of the statin will immediately fall to ten dollars in most cases and could be as low as four-dollars at some pharmacies.
The mother of late pop star Michael Jackson is voicing approval for Dr. Conrad Murray's sentence of four years in prison. Katherine Jackson says the judge who sentenced Murray for the King of Pop's death was "fair." Murray was sentenced yesterday following his conviction earlier this month of involuntary manslaughter.
TRIAL UNDERWAY FOR LEBANON MOM CHARGED IN DAUGHTER'S DEATH
The trial is underway for Dr. Deborah Mark of Wilson County... for the murder of her four year-old daughter last July. The girl was beaten to death just a few months after she was adopted from China.
Cancer Society Needs Volunteers
The American Cancer Society is looking for volunteers in the Nashville area for a study to help beat cancer. They need people between 30 and 65 who have never had the disease. Researchers are trying to figure out how factors such as lifestyle, environment and genetics cause or prevent cancer. (Interested Nashville participants can enroll Saturday at the Mount Zion Baptist Church on Old Hickory Boulevard at Interstate 24, between 9 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. )
Landfill Experiment Produces Surprising Results
A Franklin County, Tennesse landfill experiment could revolutionize garbage disposal. A new process using microbes to decompose waste into usable soil is showing promising results, cutting the piles of debris, tires, construction refuse and sludge by a third or more.
HERMAN CAIN REASESSING RUN FOR PRESIDENCY
Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain says he's "reassessing" his run for the White House ... because of the ongoing sexual harassment allegations. He says he'll reach a decision over the next few days.
HERMAN CAIN TO SPEAK AT MTSU
Meanwhile he'll be in Murfreesboro tomorrow (on Thursday) to give a business lecture at Middle Tennessee State University. He'll be speaking about being an entrepreneur and his time as CEO of Godfather's Pizza... but NOT about his candidacy.
Sugarland, Jason Aldean Take Part in Grammy Nominations Show
We wanna give you a heads-up about a big music event tonight: the Grammy Nominations Concert. Lots of performances, and guests including Sugarland, the Band Perry, Jason Aldean, Lady Gaga, Taylor Lautner and Usher. LL Cool J hosts. The Grammy Nominations Concert airs tonight at 7 on CBS, the Grammy Awards are handed out in February.
ROCKEFELLER CENTER CHRISTMAS TREE LIGHTING
Final preparations are being made for tonight's annual lighting of the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree in New York City. The 74-foot tall Norway spruce will burst to life with 30-thousand multi-colored LED lights and a massive Swarovski crystal star on top. The lighting ceremony will feature live musical performances from Faith Hill, Cee Lo Green, Carole King as well as a taped number from teen heart throb Justin Bieber.
Nashville Firefighter Arrested After High-Speed Chase
A Nashville firefighter is facing felony charges after leading officers on a high-speed chase through two counties. Lebanon Police say Mario Martinez failed to pull over on Thanksgiving night, and instead tried to evade officers speeding over 110 miles-per-hour and dodging road spikes, driving on the wrong side of the road... he hit another driver during the pursuit. He faces evading arrest, reckless endangerment, DUI, and other violations.
RICK PERRY RECOVERS FROM FLUB
White House hopeful Rick Perry is recovering from yet another flub. The Texas governor addressed students at St. Anselm College in New Hampshire yesterday. The gaffe arose when Perry asked for those 21 and older to vote for him on November 12th, and for those younger than 21 to work hard on his behalf. The voting age in America is 18, and the presidential election next year is on November 6th.
Tea Party Deals With Gay-Bashing Tweet
The Tennessee Tea Party is in damage control mode after posting derogatory remarks about retiring congressman Barney Frank. Comments appeared on the party's Twitter feed calling Frank a pervert and other terms after the openly gay Democrat announced his retirement. The group's president offered somewhat of an apology in a Facebook post saying the individual responsible for the remarks has been dealt with.
Hundreds of police officers in riot gear moved in on Occupy L.A. protesters overnight, days after they were ordered to clear off City Hall lawn. The eviction came hours after the entire LAPD was placed on tactical alert. Police told protesters at 12:30 Pacific time that they had five minutes to either leave or face arrest.
TOP SHARED FACEBOOK STORIES OF THE YEAR
What news stories were we most fascinated with and shared the most on Facebook this past year? Number one was Satellite photos of Japan before and after this year's earthquake and tsunami... followed by CNN's "What Teachers Really Want To Tell Parents" and "No, Your Zodiac Sign Hasn't Changed."
WOMAN ARRESTED FOR ARMED ROBBERY AT OLD HICKORY PHARMACY
A woman was arrested for armed robbery after store employees stalled her long enough for police to arrive. The incident happened at the Rite Aid on Robinson Road and Martingale Drive in the Old Hickory/Lakewood area around 7 p.m. Tuesday. Officials said the woman walked into the store and back to the pharmacy counter where she brandished a loaded pistol and demanded Oxycontin. Employees complied with the woman's demands, but in the process – the hit the panic button and stalled getting the drug while police responded to the scene. By the time the woman was outside, police were in the parking lot and made the arrest. The suspect was arrested and taken to jail. No one was injured. The suspect's identity was not available.
DRUMMER FOR RICKY SKAGGS DIES BEFORE SC SHOW
A drummer for Grammy-winning bluegrass legend Ricky Skaggs was found dead in the band's tour bus before a planned performance at Clemson University. Thomas Roady, 62, of Kingston Springs, Tenn., was found dead at around 10:20 a.m. Monday. The band was pulling into a hotel parking lot in Clemson (South Carolina) before a show at the university after driving through the night from Nashville. Roady and Skaggs were on separate buses. Kelley says Roady died in his sleep from heart problems. Roady also had cancer, but Kelley says it did not contribute to his death.
DEER SMASHES THROUGH WINDOW OF HENDERSONVILLE HOME
A Hendersonville couple is still cleaning their house after a woodland intruder they never expected. Michael Gustafson and his wife Wendy say the deer was about 150 pounds, and came crashing through their kitchen window at about 7:30 a.m. November 9th. The family's theory was the buck could see his own reflection in the window and decided to charge. The couple tried to get the deer out the backdoor, but it had different plans - tearing up their home in the two minutes it was caught inside. Wendy quickly thought to pick-up a camera and capture her husband acting more like a lion trainer. The family said they were waiting on their insurance company to cover the $8,000 in damage done by the deer. They said there was no telling how bad the damage would have been if they weren't home.
STOLEN CASH RETURNED WITH INTEREST 60 YEARS LATER
A Washington man with a decades-old secret finally came clean and admitted he stole money from a Sears's cash register back in the 1940s. But now he's trying to make things right by paying the money back with interest. The elderly man hand-delivered the payment, in an envelope, to the customer service counter. Addressed to the manager was a note, "During the late 40s, I stole some money from the cash register in the amount of 20 to 30 dollars." With the note came a $100 bill, or the stolen money plus interest. Store security cameras caught the man on video, but they won't share the footage, and they don't know who he is. Customers didn't see the man, but they see his truth. "He made a restitution. He took the skeleton out of his closet. It doesn't have power over him anymore," shopper Linda Brill said. The atoning thief told the store in his note to put the money in its theft account. But, the store had a different idea. "We're going to probably donate it to help some families that we normally adopt during the holiday season that are disadvantaged," Lorentson said. Deep down, everyone wants to do the right thing to make amends, and sometimes there's no expiration on redemption.
MAGGIE GYLLENHAAL IS PREGNANT
Maggie Gyllenhaal is expecting her second child with husband Peter Sarsgaard, according to Life & Style. The couple, who married in 2009, are already parents to 5-year-old daughter Ramona. Gyllenhaal, 34, can be seen next in the film Hysteria.