• On Jan. 1, the city of Shelbyville’s tourism tax kicked in, meaning an extra 3 percent tax has been added to restaurants, lunch counters and certain items from grocery and convenient stores.

    Now that it is in place, we can stop the discussion about whether we want the new tax or if it is warranted, and instead focus on where the money can be spent.

  • Shelby County Public Schools’ strategic plan centers on personalized learning for students through a digital conversion. This simply means that we seek to accelerate student learning by tailoring the instructional environment – what, when, how and where students learn – to address the individual needs, skills and interests of each student.

    In this model, students take ownership of their own learning and develop deep relationships with other like-minded learners.

  • “The last of the Giants has fallen,” was my reaction when I heard that William Lee Shannon had died on Sunday, Dec. 20, 2015. Bill was the last of the men and women who were voted the most outstanding 25 individuals of the 20th century in a Shelby Sentinel poll in 1965.

  • Check the dietary guidelines

    The “Dietary Guidelines for Americans” released yesterday by U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services mark the ninth time in a row that the meat industry has successfully suppressed scientific findings recommending reduced meat consumption. The reduction was recommended by the government-appointed Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee in a 571-page report based on review of thousands of studies.

  • It took almost three more months than last winter, but we finally got our first snow of the season over the weekend.

    And while roads in other counties struggled, Interstate 64 and the roads around Shelby County appeared clear and easy to navigate.

    The same could be said for Monday’s short but impressive snow shower.

    For that we commend our city, county and state road crews for their long hours, preparation and commitment to our safety.

  • Controlling our factors with our fork

    Dear Editor,

    Must we really resolve to improve our diets or exercise routines in the New Year, in order to increase longevity or improve quality of life?

  • Having looked back at our successful 2015, it’s time to look forward to 2016 and how we want to see our community continue to grow and take its shape for the future.

    What do we want our county and our community to look like for 2016, where are our priorities?

    We want to be ambitious while remaining realistic. We want to address issues that have captivated the public and we want answers.

  • Thank you for support

    Dear Friends,

    Words cannot express our gratitude for the many kindnesses you have shown us during this sad time.

  • Iused to think that New Year’s resolutions were silly, a weak-minded way to make myself change.

    If I wanted to change during the year, I’d just do it.

    And in my younger years, I would. It was easy, I’d just implement whatever change I needed to make.

    More exercise – no problem. I’ll start running today and hit the gym tomorrow.

    Read more – check. I’ll just set aside an hour each day to devote to my newest book.

  • Every January since 2009 The Sentinel-News has established a blueprint for the coming year to help focus on ideas, concepts and circumstances that deserve – or require – our attention.

  • Throughout the country young people are staying at home on Election Day.  It is a problem everywhere and it is a problem that I have tried to rectify here locally to no success.  
    Through both of my campaigns in 2010 and 2014 I have reached out to young voters and have failed miserably to get them to the polls.

  • Just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse…


    Earlier this year, I submitted a letter to the paper expressing concern with our token Human Rights Commission (HRC). Shortly afterwards, the commission director, Gary Walls, and several other members resigned.

  • We’d like to say thank you to the Shelbyville City Council and Mayor for ensuring some improvements will come to our fine county seat.

    By passing the 3 percent restaurant tax during Thursday’s meeting, the city not only ensured an estimated $700,000 in funding for quality of life and community enhancement projects, but they also guaranteed that our tourism commission will be getting the word out on everything we have to offer.

  • After $3.2 million and a year in operation, the Shelby County Solid Waste and Recycling Center still seems to have as many questions as answers.

    Recycling is actually down about 25 percent at the center – from 516 tons last year to 389 tons this year – but that’s largely due to the City of Shelbyville’s franchise agreement with Republic Services that went into effect in early January, as well.

  • Thank you for book signing

    Dear Family and Friends,

    It is with a humble and grateful heart that I owe you the grandest THANKY YOU! All of you made my book signing events a huge success. The love and support you have shown me brought tears to my eyes (literally). This has been an amazing journey thus far and I truly appreciate each and every one of you. Without you, this would not have been possible. I am beyond grateful. Again, I love and thank all of you from the bottom of my happy heart! Many blessings to you all.

  • With the turkey, cranberries and pumpkin pie all washed down and leftovers dwindling, we can fully turn our attention to the Christmas season.

    However, those of you shopping for gifts have likely already gotten underway with your holiday favorites of Gray Thursday, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and, of course, Cyber Monday – if we are not careful, we’re going to run out of days.

    But let’s stop for a second and look back over those days of consumerism, and think about our one special day that is tucked there in the middle.

  • Last week Sam Eyle unceremoniously stepped down as the director of the Serenity Center, but we certainly think more should have been done.

    Mr. Eyle grew the Serenity Center from a somewhat unknown small counseling center at Shelby Christian Church to the area’s premier food bank, which still offers counseling.

    He oversaw the center’s move and revitalization of rundown building on Frankfort Road and then three years later to the former Emergency Management Building on 7th Street, where it really blossomed into the major player it is today.

  • It sounds like the Shelbyville City Council is ready to eat, much like the Simpsonville City Commission did not long ago.

    The council passed on first reading an ordinance that would create a 3 percent restaurant tax, but don’t assume it’s only at restaurants.

    The tax is an added line item on restaurant bills, so it doesn’t affect the prices. It also includes anything that isn’t prepackaged – so fountain drinks at gas stations, lunch counters, etc.

  • On a typical afternoon in 2013, I was sitting in my office as editor of The Sentinel-News when I was paged to the lobby, where I had “a visitor.” I arose and headed up front, expecting to be handed a photo of a large vegetable or prodigal grandchild or hear a scold from a would-be felon’s offspring.

    What I found was a face from my youth and a surge of warmth in my heart.

  • In 2011, federal agents launched a sting operation on an Amish farmer. Prof. Baylen J. Linnekin provides details of the raid:

    “Federal agents watched the home closely for a year, gathering evidence. Then, in a pre-dawn raid, armed members from three agencies swooped in.