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Editorial Results (free)

1. Memphis City Council Votes on One Beale Garage Financing -

The last Memphis City Council meeting before Thursday’s Memphis election day should be a short one given the campaign blitz underway by candidates in the 13 council races as well as the races for Memphis mayor and City Court clerk.

2. Sheehan: No Quick Fix for Health Care -

It’s becoming more commonplace to see health professionals in Memphis talking up not so much the high-tech advancements that dominate specialized practices around the city but rather the opposite end of the care spectrum.

3. Lipscomb & Pitts Retains Industry Honor -

Memphis-based Lipscomb & Pitts Insurance LLC has retained its status as part of an elite group of independent insurance agencies around the U.S. participating in the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America best practices study group.

4. Good Shepherd Health in Memphis Charts Different Pharmacy Path With New Model -

It quickly becomes apparent that Dr. Philip Baker, a pharmacist and founder of Good Shepherd Health in Memphis, runs a different kind of pharmacy operation out of his base in the Hickory Ridge Mall when he rattles off figures like this one.

5. Shelby County Commission Agrees to Budget Summit -

Shelby County commissioners will meet with Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell in October to hold a budget summit.

6. Lipscomb & Pitts Retains Industry Honor -

Memphis-based Lipscomb & Pitts Insurance LLC has retained its status as part of an elite group of independent insurance agencies around the U.S. participating in the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America best practices study group.

7. Study Shows Employers Shifting More Medical Costs to Workers -

Employers are leaving a bigger chunk of the bill for care to workers who use their health insurance, and benefits experts see few signs of this trend slowing.

Most companies now offer health coverage that requires employees to pay an annual deductible before insurance kicks in, and the size of that deductible has soared in the past decade, according to a survey released Tuesday by the Kaiser Family Foundation and Health Research & Educational Trust.

8. Clinton Adds Details to Plans on Prescription Drug Costs -

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Vowing to build upon President Barack Obama's signature health law, Hillary Rodham Clinton is unveiling a sweeping plan to hold down the rising cost of prescription drugs and target pharmaceutical companies that flood the airwaves with ads.

9. Novel Plan to Curb Drug Costs Seeks Candidates' Attention -

WASHINGTON (AP) — Consumer-friendly ratings of the benefits of new drugs. Limits on what patients pay. Requiring drug companies to disclose how much they actually spend on research.

With the public concerned about the high cost of new medications, these are some of the proposals offered Friday by a policy center often aligned with the Obama administration.

10. The Field -

The most competitive race for Memphis mayor in 24 years is in the hands of Memphis voters who will determine whether it will be as close as recent polls suggest it could be.

Early voting in advance of the Oct. 8 election day opened Friday, Sept. 18, with all 13 Memphis City Council seats on the ballot as well as the race for the City Court Clerk’s office.

11. Mayoral Contenders Break New Ground In Last TV Debate -

Even after numerous debates, including three on television, it turns out the four major candidates for Memphis mayor did have a few new things to say during the last televised debate of the 2015 election year.

12. Memphis City Council Approves Retirement Freeze, Debate on Impact Continues -

Memphis City Council members gave final approval Tuesday, Sept. 15, to a freeze on the city’s deferred retirement program in an effort to bolster police ranks and keep the force from dropping below 2,000 officers.

13. Council Approves DROP Freeze To Bolster Police Ranks -

Memphis City Council members gave final approval Tuesday, Sept. 15, to a freeze on the city’s deferred retirement program in an effort to bolster police ranks and keep the force from dropping below 2,000 officers.

14. Council Approves DROP Freeze To Bolster Police Ranks -

Memphis City Council members gave final approval Tuesday, Sept. 15, to a freeze on the city’s deferred retirement program in an effort to bolster police ranks and keep the force from dropping below 2,000 officers.

15. Council Voting on Retirement Freeze to Stem Memphis Police Exodus -

Memphis City Council members take a final vote Tuesday, Sept. 15, on a freeze of the city’s deferred retirement plan that is designed to keep the police force from dipping below 2,000 officers.

The council meets at 3:30 p.m. at City Hall, 125 N. Main St. Follow @tdnpols, www.twitter.com/tdnpols, for live coverage of the meeting and updates from committee sessions earlier in the day.

16. Health Care Suffers As Rural Hospitals Continue Slow Fade -

Fayette County is the latest victim of hospital closings in Tennessee as many rural health care facilities continue to struggle financially.

Methodist Healthcare-Fayette Hospital closed in late March, bringing to four the number of shuttered hospitals in West Tennessee after Gibson General, Humboldt General and Haywood Park Community called it quits in 2014.

17. Health Insurance Signups Near 10 Million in Midyear Report -

CHICAGO (AP) — About 9.9 million people have signed up and paid for health insurance under President Barack Obama's health care law, the administration said Tuesday, a slight dip from a previous count but on track toward the administration's year-end goal of 9.1 million.

18. Metabolic CrossFit Owner Combines Physician Services With Exercise -

Dr. Jeremy Draper’s patient waiting room is a gym. Draper is the co-owner of Metabolic CrossFit, the only CrossFit affiliate in the city to offer training and a physician practice under the same roof.

19. Judge Could Ruling This Week on Tennessee School Funding Lawsuit -

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) — A Davidson County judge says she plans to rule this week on whether to grant class-action certification on a lawsuit filed by several school boards alleging Tennessee's education funding shortchanges them and students.

20. Retirees Could Shore Up Memphis Police Ranks -

Memphis City Council members are exploring the idea of encouraging retired police officers to get back in uniform on a regular basis as reserve officers to keep the force from slipping to less than 2,000 officers.

21. Council Explores Retirees Return To Police Ranks -

Memphis City Council members are exploring the idea of encouraging already-retired police officers to get back in uniform as reserve officers to keep the police force from slipping to less than 2,000 officers.

22. Council Continues Talks on Deferred Retirement Freeze -

Two months into the city of Memphis’ new fiscal year and after a year of decisions on changes to pension and health insurance benefits for city employees and retirees, the Memphis City Council is still making adjustments.

23. Rocking for Love -

When Lahna Deering and Jason Freeman join the other musicians performing at the Rock for Love music festival next week, the gig will be a bit more meaningful for them than the shows they normally play.

24. Fred’s Reports Second-Quarter Loss -

The toughest part of guiding a ship, Fred’s Inc. CEO Jerry Shore told analysts Thursday, Aug. 27, is changing its direction.

25. Fred’s Reports Second-Quarter Loss -

The toughest part of guiding a ship, Fred’s Inc. CEO Jerry Shore told analysts Thursday, Aug. 27, is changing its direction.

26. Fred’s Reports Second-Quarter Loss -

The toughest part of guiding a ship, Fred’s Inc. CEO Jerry Shore told analysts Thursday, Aug. 27, is changing its direction.

27. ‘Punching Out’ for the Last Time -

Ray’s take: According to AARP, baby boomers are turning 65 at the rate of 10,000 per day. That means a lot of people are looking at the traditional retirement age coming up fast. Whenever you plan to not have to work anymore, there are some basic financial decisions you should make as you near that age.

28. Memphis Mayoral Endorsements Split -

The first wave of endorsements in the 2015 Memphis elections finds no mayoral contender with a sweep, one of the four major contenders without an endorsement so far and two of the big three municipal unions backing different mayoral candidates.

29. Tardy Tax Filers Risk Loss of Health Care Subsidies -

WASHINGTON (AP) — Sign-up season for President Barack Obama's health care law doesn't start for another couple of months, but the next few days are crucial for hundreds of thousands of customers at risk of losing financial aid when they renew coverage for 2016.

30. Connexion Point Plans Memphis Grand Opening -

Health care services company Connexion Point is preparing to open its Memphis contact center, which is slated to employ nearly 400 people.

The Salt Lake City-based company will cut the ribbon on its 38,000-square-foot office – located at 1769 Paragon Place, suite 100, in Nonconnah Corporate Center – Thursday, Aug. 20, at 11:30 a.m.

31. Haslam: No Discussion With AG About Supreme Court Vacancy -

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (AP) — As observers wait to see whether Attorney General Herbert Slatery has any interest in filling an upcoming vacancy on the Tennessee Supreme Court, Gov. Bill Haslam said he hasn't had any discussion about it with his close friend and former top legal adviser.

32. Mayoral Debate Clash Focuses on City Finances -

Memphis city government’s financial problems and how those problems happened was the flashpoint for the latest meeting of the top mayoral contenders on the Oct. 8 ballot.

The Wednesday, Aug. 19, forum sponsored by The Commercial Appeal at the University of Memphis saw incumbent Mayor A C Wharton Jr. clash with challengers and city council members Jim Strickland and Harold Collins. The fourth debate contender, Memphis Police Association president Mike Williams, argued for different city priorities and a slower move toward economic development goals.

33. Deferred Retirement Freeze Reflects Larger Police Problem -

In response to a police officer shortage, the Memphis City Council on Tuesday, Aug. 18, took its first step toward approving an ordinance that would allow city employees to freeze their retirement plans.

34. Council Gives Final Approval To Forrest Statue Removal -

Memphis City Council members gave final approval Tuesday, Aug. 18, to an ordinance setting the stage for removal of the Nathan Bedford Forrest statue in Health Sciences Park

35. Connexion Point Plans Memphis Grand Opening -

Health care services company Connexion Point is preparing to open its Memphis contact center, which is slated to employ nearly 400 people.

The Salt Lake City-based company will cut the ribbon on its 38,000-square-foot office – located at 1769 Paragon Place, suite 100, in Nonconnah Corporate Center – Thursday, Aug. 20, at 11:30 a.m.

36. Memphis City Council to Revisit Benefits Changes -

Memphis City Council members continue Tuesday, Aug. 18, to revisit decisions they made on retiree and employee benefits in the last year.

At its Tuesday session, council members vote on the first of three readings of an ordinance that would allow some city employees to “freeze” their decision to enter the city’s Deferred Retirement Option Program.

37. Health Law Sign-Ups Keep Growing; Uninsured Rate Declines -

WASHINGTON (AP) — Nearly a million people signed up for health insurance under President Barack Obama's law even after the official enrollment season ended, helping push the share of uninsured Americans below 10 percent and underscoring how hard it could be for Republicans to dismantle the program.

38. Emergency Fix -

Memphis is making non-emergency calls a top priority. The Mayor’s Innovation Delivery Team, Memphis Fire Department and area health care providers are working in conjunction with IBM consultants to streamline emergency services.

39. First Mayoral TV Debate Features Aggressive Contenders -

The first televised debate of the 2015 race of Memphis Mayor Monday, Aug. 10, saw incumbent Mayor A C Wharton Jr. and city council member Jim Strickland clash repeatedly while fellow council member and mayoral challenger Harold Collins said Strickland and Wharton were “acting like Tom and Jerry.”

40. Memphis Divorce Attorneys Prepare for Same-Sex Separations -

Memphis attorneys Miles Mason Sr. and Larry Rice have written the book on divorces.

Each is the author of authoritative guides to divorce law.

41. ADA Marks 25 Years With Accomplishments, Challenges -

America is a different place because of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which became the law of the land 25 years ago.

Older buildings without some kind of wheelchair ramp look out of place. Other accommodations for the disabled are an expected part of the landscape including curb cuts, lowered water fountains and restroom accommodations.

42. Strickland, Collins Clash on DROP Freeze -

Two political challengers to Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. clashed Tuesday, Aug. 4, over a plan by his administration to keep the city’s police ranks above the 2,000 mark.

City chief administrative officer Jack Sammons approached the council Tuesday in executive session about a plan to freeze the deferred retirement option plan (DROP) for city employees who have set their retirement date up to three years ahead of schedule.

43. Tax Filing Problems Could Jeopardize Health Law Aid for 1.8 Million -

WASHINGTON (AP) – About 1.8 million households that got financial help for health insurance under President Barack Obama's law now have issues with their tax returns that could jeopardize their subsidies next year. Administration officials say those taxpayers will have to act quickly.

44. Urge to Merge -

First it was big insurer Aetna, announcing it’s reached a deal to buy rival Humana for $34.1 billion. Only a few weeks later, another pair of insurers decided to get hitched, with Anthem announcing it would buy Cigna for $48.4 billion.

45. Same-Sex Marriage Ruling Means Changes for Benefits -

On June 26, 2015, in the case of Obergefell v. Hodges, the U.S. Supreme Court recognized that all couples, regardless of gender, have a fundamental right to marry. The court also directed states to issue marriage certificates to same-sex couples, and to recognize same-sex marriages performed in states that previously recognized this union. This decision will impact employee benefits in a number of ways.

46. New Daisy Renovation Signals New Era for Historic Building -

With a national partner found in Live Nation Entertainment, the New Daisy Theater is getting all dolled up to host nearly 200 musical acts annually.

The job doesn't just call for a new coat of paint to cover the decades of graffiti: the historic theater at 330 Beale is getting a complete overhaul.

47. Events -

The Farms at Bailey Station will host a free seminar titled “The 7 Things Every Senior Needs to Know About Estate Planning and Long-Term Care,” presented by J. Anthony Bradley of The Bradley Law Firm, Thursday, July 23, at 6 p.m. and Saturday, July 25, at 10 a.m. at the Farms at Bailey Station model, 10013 Grand Central Circle E. Email mmotes@farmsabs.com or call 901-328-4850.

48. Events -

Central Defense Staffing will host a recruitment event Wednesday, July 22, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at The Landers Center, 4560 Venture Drive in Southaven. CDS is hiring various positions for large accounts in Memphis and North Mississippi. Applicants should come prepared for an informational interview. For details on available positions, call 901-473-6385.

49. Charles Hughes to Head Rhodes’ Memphis Center -

Dr. Charles L. Hughes has been named director of Rhodes College’s Memphis Center, an academic hub focused on the human experience of the Memphis and Mid-South region. He will be teaching classes on Memphis history and culture, coordinating student projects and developing programs, and also will be continuing his own research on the area.

50. Families Face Tough Decisions as Elder-Care Cost Soars -

NEW YORK (AP) — Doris Ranzman had followed the expert advice, planning ahead in case she wound up unable to care for herself one day. But when a nursing-home bill tops $14,000 a month, the best-laid plans get tossed aside.

51. Events -

On Location: Memphis Shorts Festival will continue with screenings of short live-action films Tuesday, July 21, at 7 p.m. at Hard Rock Café, 126 Beale St. The audience will give on-the-spot reviews to determine which is screened in the OL:M International Film and Music Festival in September. Cost is free. Visit onlocationmemphis.org.

52. Resurrection Health Expands With Whitehaven Clinic -

A faith-based, evangelical health service organization that’s only halfway through its first year of existence has opened a second clinic to help support its mission of addressing health care disparities in Memphis.

53. Watchdog: Budget Cuts Lead to Poor Taxpayer Service at IRS -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The IRS provided poor customer service during this year's tax filing season as taxpayers struggled with a rise in identity theft and complications related to President Barack Obama's health law, a government watchdog said Wednesday.

54. Tennessee’s ‘Fighting 26’ Democrats Work to Stay Relevant -

Sometimes Tennessee Democrats must feel like a tree that falls in the forest: Does anyone hear them?

When Democratic legislative leaders called for a special session this summer on Insure Tennessee, Gov. Bill Haslam’s market-based plan to use federal dollars to catch 280,000 working people in a health care coverage gap, they found themselves alone.

55. Mayoral Contenders and a Campaign Cash Update -

The four most visible candidates for Memphis mayor spent nearly $130,000 from April through June laying the groundwork for the heart of summer campaigns, where they take their message to voters across the city.

56. Under Fire for Data Breach, Obama Personnel Chief Steps Down -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The embattled head of the government's personnel office abruptly stepped down Friday, bowing to mounting pressure following the unprecedented breach of private information her agency was entrusted to protect.

57. New Birth Control Rule for Employers With Religious Qualms -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Hoping to put to rest one of the most difficult disputes over its health care law, the Obama administration Friday unveiled its latest plan to address employers' religious objections to providing free birth control for their female workers.

58. It’s the Law -

THE LAW, AND I QUOTE. Oh, the outrage! Across the nation, people have reacted to the laws passed and validated by the courts, their liberty threatened, the Constitution violated, the republic at risk.

59. Back-to-School Fair Planned in Whitehaven Saturday -

The Academy for Youth Empowerment, along with business leaders and community organizations, are sponsoring the 15th annual Back to School Health Fair and Family Festival on Saturday, July 11.

The annual health fair is a public event where medical professionals offer various free services for both children and adults, including immunization shots, preschool physicals, dental screening, eye exams, blood pressure checks and HIV testing, among others.

60. Building Blocks of Estate Planning -

Ray’s take: Estate planning is one of the most important steps any person can take to ensure their final property and health care wishes are honored when the time comes. You may not be able to take it with you, but you can have a say about where it goes.

61. Special Action on Same-Sex Nuptials a Waste of Time -

With Republican lawmakers scrambling for a response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s gay-marriage ruling, Tennesseans on both sides of the issue say they are seeking "equality."

Immediately after the court’s decision on Obergefell v. Hodges, Democratic U.S. Rep. Jim Cooper of Nashville said, "Love and equality won. I’m glad the Supreme Court ruled on the right side of history."

62. Insure Tennessee Path Still Facing Many Turns -

There’s a move in Nashville for a special session of the Tennessee General Assembly, but it would have nothing to do with the February special session on Gov. Bill Haslam’s Insure Tennessee proposal.

63. Memphis' Cost for Non-Pension Benefits Still Controversial -

The amounts are roughly the same at about $1 billion, but there’s a difference between City Hall’s liability for pension and non-pension benefits, including health insurance, for city of Memphis employees.

64. Shelby County Commission Explores Hiring Own Attorney -

Shelby County Commissioners will tie up the loose ends of their budget season Monday, July 6, and are exploring some longer-term changes in the body’s relationship to the Shelby County mayor, including a possible move to hire its own attorney.

65. Projects, Issues Spill into Memphis' New Fiscal Year -

On Monday, June 29, two days before the new fiscal year, Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. was in the back of a house on Ridgewood Drive in Whitehaven.

Wharton was marking the start of a 90-day public works project spanning both fiscal years to build a retention pond for the Days Creek area. The $450,000 project includes removing trees and brush from the drainage area, in an effort to prevent flooding. In September 2014, some homes in the area were heavily damaged in a sudden and prolonged downpour.

66. Supporters Seek to Revive Tennessee Medicaid Expansion Plan -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Supporters of a failed plan to expand Medicaid in Tennessee are renewing an effort to try to pass it after a recent ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold health insurance subsidies.

67. Business in Politics -

One of the first things Shea Flinn noticed when he left the Memphis City Council this year was that benches for audience members in the council chamber are less comfortable than council members’ seats.

68. Supreme Court Upholds Nationwide Health Care Law Subsidies -

The Supreme Court on Thursday upheld the nationwide tax subsidies under President Barack Obama's health care overhaul, in a ruling that preserves health insurance for millions of Americans.

69. Memphis Ends Budget Season, But the Arguments Aren't Over -

The end of the budget season at City Hall can be a festive occasion.

Weeks of line-item detail and swapping one amount with another in the budget, as well as the pressure of revenue and other projections that amount to moving targets in the fiscal year, give way to approved operating and capital budgets as well as a property tax rate.

70. Memphis City Council Approves Pay Raises, Stable Property Tax Rate -

Memphis City Council members put City Hall’s budget season to rest Tuesday, June 23, with approval of a $656.5 million city operating budget that includes 2 percent pay raises for city police and firefighters and a 1 percent pay raise for all other city employees starting in January.

71. Council to Tackle Police, Fire Pay Raises Tuesday -

The Memphis Police Association is asking its attorneys if union police officers are forbidden from going on strike if the Memphis City Council ignores an impasse committee’s recommendation to raise officer pay 3 percent.

72. House Votes to Kill Health Care Law's Medical Device Tax -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The House defied a White House veto threat and voted Thursday to abolish a tax on medical device makers as a group of Democrats uncharacteristically joined Republicans in moving to kill part of President Barack Obama's health care law.

73. CVS Health Launches Health, Beauty Makeover for Drugstores -

CVS drugstores that quit tobacco sales last year are now getting health and beauty makeovers and a shot of ethnic diversity in some cases to attract customers who want more than a prescription refill.

74. Tennessee State Employees Slighted by 'Voluntary' Buyout -

More and more, Tennessee’s state employees are feeling the same harsh realities of those working – or formerly working – in corporate America.

On the heels of 1,500 buyouts under the Bredesen administration in 2008 and 850 layoffs in 2010, Gov. Bill Haslam’s administration is offering voluntary buyouts to more than 2,000 employees in the executive branch.

75. Memphis City Council’s Distrust of Wharton Boils to Surface -

If it wasn’t obvious in five previous budget seasons, Memphis City Council members made the point clearer Tuesday, June 16, just before they delayed final city budget votes for another week.

They don’t trust the numbers and explanations they are getting from Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. as they try to rearrange his $656.5 million budget that was proposed in April.

76. Memphis City Council Delays Budget Votes Until June 23 -

Memphis City Council members put off final budget votes Tuesday, June 16, after trying for several hours to rearrange Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr.'s budget proposal.

But council members, already skeptical about the administration’s line items and dollar figures, became increasingly frustrated as their calculations of available funding didn’t match the administration’s math.

77. Shelby County Schools Board Weighs Benefits Options -

The Shelby County Schools board didn’t take any votes Monday, June 15, as it got a look at more specific recommendations to change health insurance benefits for retirees and employees, including teachers.

78. Chism Opens Capital Advisors/Bellwether Enterprise's Memphis Office -

Jeremy Chism has joined Capital Advisors/Bellwether Enterprise as vice president to open the company’s Memphis commercial real estate loan production office. The firm provides financing solutions through a vast network of insurance companies, CMBS lenders and commercial lenders for commercial real estate.

79. Data Warehouse Raises HealthCare.Gov Privacy Concerns -

WASHINGTON (AP) – A government data warehouse that stores information indefinitely on millions of HealthCare.gov customers is raising privacy concerns at a time when major breaches have become distressingly common.

80. Memphis City Council Budget Agenda Full -

Memphis City Council members have a lot of budget decisions to make Tuesday, June 16, as they attempt to bring City Hall’s budget season to a close.

There are eight separate votes on pay raises approved by impasse committees for eight groups of city employees, including police and firefighters.

81. Memphis City Council Adds Health Benefits Extension to Budget To-Do List -

Memphis City Council members have another decision to make on their list of votes before the fiscal year ends June 30.

The council is weighing extending health insurance benefits through 2016 for city retirees younger than 65.

82. Walgreens, Insurers Push Expansion of Virtual Doctor Visits -

Millions of people will be able to see a doctor on their smartphones or laptops for everyday ailments once the nation's largest drugstore chain and two major insurers expand a budding push into virtual health care.

83. Overbey Has No Regrets for Sponsoring Insure Tennessee -

Republican Sen. Doug Overbey took the road less traveled this year when he sponsored Insure Tennessee at the request of Gov. Bill Haslam.

Despite the legislation’s failure in special and regular sessions, he has no regrets and looks forward to continuing the fight in 2016 for a market-based plan to obtain roughly $1 billion annually through the Affordable Care Act to provide coverage to some 280,000 Tennesseans who are caught in a gap between TennCare and the federal plan.

84. Haslam Calls on Locals to Influence 'Changing Legislature' -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Gov. Bill Haslam on Tuesday issued an appeal to officials from Tennessee cities and towns to help influence what he described as a "changing" state Legislature less concerned with the interests of traditional institutions.

85. Tennessee Attorney General: Lawmaker Insurance Info Covered By Open Records -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – State Attorney General Herbert Slatery has found that the cost of lawmakers' taxpayer-subsidized health insurance coverage falls under Tennessee's open records laws.

86. BCBST Proposes Higher Premium Raise Next Year -

BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee has proposed raising premiums next year by an average of more than 36 percent after losing $141 million during its first year of offering individual health plans through the federal Affordable Care Act.

87. Connexion Point to Hire Nearly 400 in Memphis -

A technology-driven health care services company is opening a Memphis office that will employ nearly 400 people over the next few months.

Connexion Point, a Salt Lake City, Utah-based company that represents large insurance companies, will open a contact center at Nonconnah Corporate Center in Southwest Memphis.

88. State Employment Policies Not Great for Recruiting -

If job security is your goal, working for the state might not be such a good idea.

Gov. Bill Haslam’s administration offered a voluntary buyout recently to more than 2,000 state employees, a proposal workers had known about since February.

89. Salomon Joins Harkavy Shainberg -

Jason D. Salomon, one of the 25 lawyers in Tennessee certified as an estate planning specialist, has joined Harkavy Shainberg Kaplan & Dunstan PLC as a member of the firm.
Salomon focuses his practice primarily in the areas of estate planning, trust implementation and probate administration. He also addresses issues regarding disability planning, elder law, nonprofits and small-business succession.

90. BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Proposes Higher Raise in Premiums -

BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee has proposed raising premiums next year by an average of more than 36 percent after losing $141 million during its first year of offering individual health plans through the federal Affordable Care Act.

91. Hopson, Barbic Look Ahead to New School Year -

Dorsey Hopson and Chris Barbic are comparing notes on the new school year that begins in August, the first in three years in which the structure of public education in Shelby County essentially will remain the same.

92. Study: 23 Percent of US Adults With Health Coverage Underinsured -

Nearly a quarter of U.S. adults who were insured all last year lacked adequate protection from big medical bills based on their income, according to Commonwealth Fund research.

The nonprofit foundation estimates that about 31 million people between the ages of 19 and 64 were underinsured due in part to the out-of-pocket expenses they have to pay for care. That includes deductibles, or payments a patient has to make before most coverage begins.

93. Records Show $8 Million Spent on Lawmaker Health Premiums Since '92 -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Newly released records show that Tennessee taxpayers have paid more than $8 million since 1992 for health insurance premiums for sitting lawmakers.

The Tennessean (http://tnne.ws/1Ba8V2j) reports those records show that the state has paid out the most for Johnson City Republican Sen. Rusty Crowe and his family. Records obtained by the newspaper through a public information request show the state paid out $200,000 for Crowe's premiums since he enrolled in the plan in 1992.

94. Haslam Signs $33.8 Billion State Spending Plan Into Law -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Republican Gov. Bill Haslam has signed Tennessee's $33.8 billion annual budget plan into law.

Haslam spokesman David Smith said the governor on Monday signed the appropriations legislation that establishes spending priorities for the spending year that starts July 1.

95. County Budget Session To Return To Schools -

Shelby County Commissioners meet again Monday, May 18, with Shelby County Schools officials in the ongoing county budget season.

Commission budget chairwoman Heidi Shafer called the 3 p.m. session to specifically look at the school system’s benefits liabilities as well as state funding of schools and what that means for the level of county funding.

96. Former Lawmakers Covered By State Insurance Plan -

Tennessee records show that there are more former lawmakers enrolled in the health insurance plan for state employees than current lawmakers.

The Knoxville News Sentinel cited records from the state office of benefits administration in reporting that 148 former lawmakers are enrolled compared to 116 current lawmakers.

97. Tennessee Senator Had Son on State Benefits -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Republican Sen. Todd Gardenhire of Chattanooga, who twice voted against Medicaid expansion in Tennessee, told a newspaper that his adult son had "never" been signed up for state benefits.

98. Feds Close Insurance Loopholes on Preventive Care -

WASHINGTON (AP) – From contraception to colonoscopies, the Obama administration Monday closed a series of insurance loopholes on coverage of preventive care.

The department of Health and Human Services said insurers must cover at least one birth control option under each of 18 methods approved by the FDA – without copays.

99. State Releases Details of Tennessee Lawmaker Health Benefit Cost -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A state agency has released detailed information about the nearly $6 million in taxpayer-subsidized health insurance benefits provided to Tennessee lawmakers.

The Tennessean (http://tnne.ws/1F9ZdDT) reports that Gov. Bill Haslam's administration handed over the public records, a day after an unexplained delay.

100. County Budget Season Reflects Priorities, Angst -

It’s that time of year in Downtown’s Civic Center Plaza.

In late April, May and into June, the budget committee sessions of the Memphis City Council and Shelby County Commission become the stage for the priorities – political and financial – of both bodies.