› Ten­nessee’s top sto­ries of 2017,

Chattanooga Times Free Press - - FRONT PAGE -

Here is a look at the top 10 Ten­nessee sto­ries of 2017, ac­cord­ing to an As­so­ci­ated Press sur­vey of re­porters, ed­i­tors and broad­cast­ers.

1. Corker an­nounces re­tire­ment: Repub­li­can U.S. Sen. Bob Corker en­gages in a war of words with Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump be­fore and af­ter de­cid­ing against seek­ing a third term. Af­ter Gov. Bill Haslam de­clines to join the GOP race, U.S. Rep. Diane Black and for­mer Rep. Stephen Fincher do. For­mer Gov. Phil Bre­desen says he will make a Demo­cratic bid.

2. Gas tax: Law­mak­ers pass Haslam’s road fund­ing pro­gram called the IM­PROVE Act that in­cludes a 6-cent gas tax in­crease, the state’s first hike since 1989. The mea­sure also cuts taxes on in­vest­ment in­come, man­u­fac­tur­ers and gro­ceries.

3. Church shoot­ing: A man opens fire at a Nashville church, killing one woman and wound­ing six oth­ers.

4. UT foot­ball coach: Tur­moil en­velops the Univer­sity of Ten­nessee’s ath­let­ics pro­gram af­ter Butch Jones is fired as foot­ball coach.

5. Ten­nessee wild­fires: Pros­e­cu­tors drop ar­son charges against two ju­ve­niles in con­nec­tion with the Ten­nessee wild­fires that killed 14 peo­ple and tore through thou­sands of homes and busi­nesses in 2016.

6. Holly Bobo: A jury con­victs one of three men charged in the kid­nap­ping, rape and mur­der of Holly Bobo more than six years af­ter she van­ished.

7. Miss­ing stu­dent: A 15-year-old Ten­nessee girl is res­cued near a cabin in a re­mote part of north­ern Cal­i­for­nia more than a month af­ter her 50-year-old teacher kid­napped her and set off a na­tion­wide man­hunt.

8. Pi­lot trial: The fed­eral fraud trial gets un­der­way for for­mer ex­ec­u­tives and sales rep­re­sen­ta­tives at the truck stop chain con­trolled by Cleve­land Browns owner Jimmy Haslam and Gov. Bill Haslam.

9. Gov­er­nor’s race: Five Repub­li­cans and two Democrats join the 2018 gov­er­nor’s race.

10. Abor­tion laws: Ten­nessee’s at­tor­ney gen­eral agrees the state will drop two abor­tion lim­its sim­i­lar to Texas laws struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court. One re­quired abor­tion providers to have hos­pi­tal ad­mit­ting priv­i­leges. The other forced abor­tion clin­ics to meet hos­pi­tal-level sur­gi­cal stan­dards. State law­mak­ers also pass a bill to ban most abor­tions af­ter 20 weeks.


Tammy Sher­rod views the re­mains of her home in the Roar­ing Fork neigh­bor­hood of Gatlin­burg, Tenn., on Dec. 2, 2016. The wild­fires con­tin­ued to be one of the top news sto­ries in 2017.

The Univer­sity of Ten­nessee fired head foot­ball coach Butch Jones in Novem­ber.

U.S. Sen. Bob Corker an­nounced his re­tire­ment in Septem­ber.

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