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Editorial Results (free)

1. Both Sides Dig In for Insure Tennessee Special Session -

Battle lines have been drawn for a Feb. 2 special session of the state Legislature to determine the fate of Gov. Bill Haslam’s Insure Tennessee proposal, which would use federal funds to catch some 280,000 working people falling through a health insurance coverage gap.

2. Student Debt, Rising Rents Take Bite Out of Real Estate Market -

Hefty student loans are a major stumbling block for young Americans as they try to buy their first home, a National Association of Realtors’ annual survey shows.

In spite of an improved job market and low interest rates in 2014, the number of first-time homebuyers dipped to 33 percent, down 5 percent from the previous year and the lowest since the National Association of Realtors began tracking the rate in 1981.

3. Both Sides Dig In For Insure Tennessee Special Session -

Battle lines have been drawn for a Feb. 2 special session of the state Legislature to determine the fate of Gov. Bill Haslam’s Insure Tennessee proposal, which would use federal funds to catch some 200,000 working people falling through a health insurance coverage gap.

4. Drowning in Student Loan Debt -

Three-and-a-half years after graduating from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, Yasameen Hoffman is still trying to land the kind of full-time job that will help her start paying off her student loan.

5. Campbell’s Gamble Finally Pays With Scholarship -

KNOXVILLE – Galen Campbell might get to play a minute here or there as the University of Tennessee men’s basketball team pursues its surprising run toward bubble status for the NCAA tournament.

6. Lasting Legacies -

A FedEx commercial that never made it past the storyboard stage portrayed company founder, chairman and CEO Fred Smith as a child filling out an order form in the back of a comic book for a batch of Sea-Monkeys, sending it off and waiting for the delivery.

7. 100 North Main Seeks Historic Designation -

An effort to redevelop a Downtown skyscraper may have received a boost this week. A state board is recommending that the tower at 100 N. Main St. be listed on the National Register of Historic Places, a move that could allow the owner to seek tax credits and grants to redevelop the building.

8. 100 N. Main Recommended for Historic Register, Pinch Decision Delayed -

A state board is recommending that the skyscraper at 100 N. Main St. Downtown be listed on the National Register of Historic Places, a move that could allow the owner to seek tax credits and grants to redevelop the building.

9. Revised Projections Say Insure Tennessee Would Cover 280,000 -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Projections for enrollment in Republican Gov. Bill Haslam's proposal to cover low-income Tennesseans have been revised upward to 280,000 people in the first year.

10. Settlement Could Fund I-Zone Schools -

With federal money about to run out for the Shelby County Schools Innovation Zone schools, the $8 million in cash due from the city of Memphis next month is most likely to land in the bank account for that effort.

11. Colleges Meet in Nashville in Effort to Fight Sex Assaults -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A two-day summit focused on fighting sexual assaults at college campuses is drawing about 400 officials from 76 schools across Tennessee.

Media report the meeting begins Tuesday at Tennessee State University and will feature national experts who will offer training on issues like defining consent, prevention and complying with changing federal laws.

12. Fairgrounds Plan Draws Different Opinions -

The first renderings of a recast Mid-South Fairgrounds offered years ago are just one misstep early on that continues to plague the project still in search of specific private partners.

The conceptual drawings were heavy on baseball diamonds when the idea of two mayoral administrations at City Hall was and remains more soccer fields, basketball courts and a multi-purpose sports facility along with baseball diamonds.

13. Shelby County Mortgage Market Sees Improvement -

The mortgage market in Shelby County ended 2014 in a slighter better position than where it stood in 2013.

Banks and mortgage lenders made 8,471 purchase mortgages in Shelby County during 2014, up 2 percent from the 8,301 mortgages during 2013, according to the latest data from real estate information company Chandler Reports,www.chandlerreports.com.

14. Anti-Medicaid Expansion Lawmaker Criticizes Radio Ads -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – State House Republican Caucus Chairman Glen Casada, a staunch opponent of Gov. Bill Haslam's proposal to extend health coverage to 200,000 low-income Tennesseans, on Friday decried what he called "dishonest scare tactics" by a conservative group running radio ads targeting GOP lawmakers.

15. Charter School Fair to be Held Jan. 31 -

Memphis-area charter schools will hold a school fair Saturday, Jan. 31, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Pipkin Building at the Mid-South Fairgrounds

The fair is organized by the Tennessee Charter School Center for the tuition-free schools that Memphis has more of than any other city in the state.

16. Home Services Keep Seniors Independent -

Sooner or later, most people end up caring for aging mothers and fathers or become seniors themselves, wondering who to turn to when independent daily living becomes impossible.

Both propositions are frightening and stressful.

17. Murfreesboro, Nashville Players Get Jump on UT Careers -

KNOXVILLE – Jack Jones didn’t want to waste any time getting started with his football career at the University of Tennessee, so he graduated in December from Murfreesboro Oakland High School.

18. Tennessee Sets Uniform Fee for 911 Services -

Tennesseans getting their first bills of 2015 will soon see new charges for 911 services.

Under a new law that took effect on Jan. 1, the surcharge for all landlines and mobile phones was set at $1.16 per month.

19. Taxing Question -

With gas prices in a historic plunge, the idea of hiking state and federal gas taxes and fees to pay for transportation infrastructure improvements is gaining traction.

Democratic and Republican leaders in both chambers of Congress in recent weeks have signaled a willingness to approve an increase in the federal gas tax to help fund improvements to the nation’s crumbling roads and bridges. Meanwhile, a new statewide coalition has launched to support an increase and reform in Tennessee’s transportation fees.

20. First Horizon Ends 2014 on Upswing -

The parent company of First Tennessee Bank wrapped up its 150th anniversary year by delivering $213 million in net income to shareholders, up from $24 million for 2013.

21. Family Dollar Shareholders Approve Dollar Tree Takeover -

NEW YORK (AP) – The battle over dollar stores is nearly over. Family Dollar shareholders voted on Thursday to approve a takeover bid by rival Dollar Tree, despite higher competing offers from Dollar General.

22. Tennessee Sets Uniform Fee for 911 Services -

Tennesseans getting their first bills of 2015 will soon see new charges for 911 services.

Under a new law that took effect on Jan. 1, the surcharge for all landlines and mobile phones was set at $1.16 per month.

23. Frogs And Toads -

OF FROGS AND TOADS. Years and years ago, I was served a couple of striking culinary metaphors that have not only proven to be unforgettable but seem to get better and better with age.

The first was on the wall of my dentist in the 100 North Main building, one of those focal points you stare at while somebody probes your molars with this and that. It was a photograph of a pyramid of frogs inscribed with this:

24. Haslam on Statewide Tour to Tout Insure Tennessee -

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam says he isn’t counting votes in the Tennessee legislature just yet for his Insure Tennessee Medicaid expansion proposal.

At least he’s not counting hard votes for the upcoming Feb. 2 special legislative session as he holds a series of nine public forums across the state.

25. Ford Jr. to Headline Dunavant Award Event -

Former U.S. Rep. Harold Ford Jr. will be the keynote speaker for the March 25 Dunavant Public Servants Awards luncheon hosted by the Rotary Club of Memphis East.

The awards, now in their 12th year, honor one elected official and one non-elected public official within Shelby County who demonstrate the qualities and characteristics of longtime Probate Court Clerk Bobby Dunavant.

26. EDGE Approves Ikea Incentives -

Swedish furniture retailer Ikea has been awarded an 11-year tax break to develop a $64 million store near Interstate 40 and Germantown Parkway that is expected to employ 175 people.

The board of the city-county Economic Development Growth Engine on Wednesday, Jan. 21, approved the controversial payment-in-lieu-of-taxes incentive on an 8-1 vote. Larry Jackson voted against the measure.

27. EDGE Approves Incentives for Memphis Ikea Store -

Swedish furniture retailer Ikea has been awarded an 11-year tax break to develop a $64 million store near Interstate 40 and Germantown Parkway that is expected to employ 175 people.

The board of the city-county Economic Development Growth Engine on Wednesday, Jan. 21, approved the controversial payment-in-lieu-of-taxes incentive on an 8-1 vote, with Larry Jackson voting against the measure.

28. Fighting Breast Cancer Requires Awareness -

To “fight like a girl,” as the slogan on so many pink T-shirts says, starts with knowing the enemy. Breast cancer is pervasive enough that one in eight women in the United States will be diagnosed with the disease in their lifetime.

29. Council Approves Schools Deal, Appoints Boyd -

Two weeks after they ignored a proposed $43.1 million settlement of the six-year old schools funding legal standoff, Memphis City Council members Tuesday, Jan. 20, approved a $41.8 million settlement with Shelby County Schools.

30. Cohen Calls Tennessee Promise ‘A Fraud’ -

U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen of Memphis calls the Tennessee Promise last dollar scholarship program for community college and state technical centers “a fraud.”

31. House, Senate at Odds Over Who Goes First on Medicaid Plan -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Republican leaders in the state House and Senate are at odds about who should go first on taking up Republican Gov. Bill Haslam's proposal to extend health coverage to more than 200,000 low-income Tennesseans.

32. Stonebridge Crossing Sells for $34.7 Million -

9300 U.S. 64
Lakeland, TN 38002
Sale Amount: $34.7 million

Sale Date: Jan. 5, 2015
Buyer: Lakeland Apartments TN Associates LLC
Seller: MRB Stonebridge LP
Loan Amount: $27.7 million
Loan Date: Dec. 15, 2014
Maturity Date: Feb. 1, 2025
Lender: Walker & Dunlop LLC
Details: An affiliate of a New York-based real estate investment firm has bought the Stonebridge Crossing Apartments in Lakeland for $34.7 million.

33. Community Building -

Almost three years ago, former elementary school art teacher Erin Harris saw a video about children in Memphis who were working with an artist to start a sculpture garden. She still recalls the happy sight of a few boys in the video throwing balloons filled with paint at an old fence, as well as the reaction the footage generated from her.

34. Tennessee Lawmakers Re-Elect Treasurer, Comptroller -

A joint session of the Tennessee House and Senate has approved new terms for two of the state's constitutional officers.

Comptroller Justin Wilson and Treasurer David Lillard were elected Wednesday to their fourth two-year terms. Wilson, Lillard and Secretary of State Tre Hargett were each first elected in 2009 after Republicans gained control of the Legislature.

35. Big Hit and Some Misses From Vols’ 2014 Early Enrollees -

KNOXVILLE – Recruiting is anything but an exact science. Experts are everywhere. Star ratings rise and fall. Player projections are widely varied.

One thing is certain: Only time will tell if coaches hit or miss on a recruit.

36. A Better Sports Village Than We Knew -

When the historic 2014 University of Memphis football season was just getting started, hope and doubt were still equally matched opponents.

The athletic department, as we all know now, had gone with a risky slogan: “Wait Til This Year.”

37. Ohio State Alters SEC-Dominated Landscape -

A year ago, Florida State put the chanting – “S-E-C! S-E-C! S-E-C! – on pause. Auburn, after all, came oh so close to winning the last BCS national championship game.

But now Urban Meyer and Ohio State have silenced SEC Country.

38. Plans Emerge for Universal Life Building -

In major Downtown news, the on-again, off-again redevelopment of the Universal Life Insurance Co. building Downtown appears to be on.

39. The Other Fellow -

Long before his death last year, former U.S. Sen. Howard Baker of Tennessee was aware that other Republicans, including those who worked in his groundbreaking campaigns of the 1960s and 1970s, believed it was no longer possible for a political moderate like him to get elected in Tennessee.

40. 2 PACs Fined by Tennessee Election Officials -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Two political action committees have been fined by Tennessee officials who say the organizations didn't properly disclose information including donors and expenditures before elections last year.

41. Plans for UT/West Institute for Cancer Research Unveiled -

With an initial $2.5 million donation from the Plough Foundation, the West Cancer Center formally announced Thursday, Jan. 15, the creation of the nonprofit University of Tennessee/West Institute for Cancer Research at the center’s Germantown location on Wolf River Boulevard.

42. Tennessee Lawmakers Re-Elect Treasurer, Comptroller -

A joint session of the Tennessee House and Senate has approved new terms for two of the state's constitutional officers.

Comptroller Justin Wilson and Treasurer David Lillard were elected Wednesday to their fourth two-year terms. Wilson, Lillard and Secretary of State Tre Hargett were each first elected in 2009 after Republicans gained control of the Legislature.

43. Morris: Public Transit Tops Downtown Goals -

A stronger and more vital public transportation presence in Downtown and a plan for development of land south of Central Station are two priorities of the Downtown Memphis Commission for the coming year.

44. County Commission Endorses Haslam Plan -

At the first Shelby County Commission meeting of 2015, all but one of the 13 commissioners voted for a resolution backing Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam’s Medicaid expansion plan, “Insure Tennessee.”

That included some vocal Republican opponents of the Affordable Care Act in general.

45. Brewery Developer Calls for ‘Leap of Faith’ -

Crews could begin transforming the long-vacant Tennessee Brewery property Downtown later this year and the first residents could move in during the fall of 2016, a veteran developer told a Downtown development board Tuesday, Jan. 13.

46. County Commission Endorses Haslam's Medicaid Expansion Plan -

Shelby County Commissioners, including some vocal Republican opponents of the Affordable Care Act in general, are calling on the Tennessee Legislature to approve Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam’s Insure Tennessee Medicaid expansion plan.

47. Executive Inn Demolition Long Time Coming -

The old Executive Inn hotel on Airways Boulevard where Brooks Road dead ends is the latest problem vacant property to be demolished and touted by Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. as another step in his administration’s anti-blight effort.

48. Rudd Defends Relay Partnership For Teachers -

The University of Memphis’ College of Education produced 19 teachers last year who are teaching in the 59 lowest performing schools in the Shelby County Schools system.

University of Memphis president David Rudd wants the number to be around 600 a year and he wants the school’s College of Education to partner with the nonprofit Relay Graduate School of Education to meet that goal.

49. I Choose Memphis: Gene Baker -

“I Choose Memphis” spotlights Memphians who are passionate about calling this community home. New Memphis Institute provides the profiles.

Name: Gene Baker

50. Haslam Eager to Defend Insure Tennessee Plan -

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam hopes that when the special session of the Tennessee Legislature begins Feb. 2 the ceremony of the start of a legislative session as well as his second inaugural will have passed.

51. Strings Come With Fairgrounds Zone -

Shelby County Commissioners could take up an endorsement Monday, Jan. 12, of the city’s proposed Tourism Development Zone for redevelopment of the Mid-South Fairgrounds.

But at this point, the backing has a lot of strings attached. And those strings involve two issues related to local schools funding.

52. Tennessee Named Top State for Economic Development -

A leading national publication focused on site selection and economic development has named Tennessee its 2014 State of the Year for a second consecutive year.

Tennessee becomes the first state to win the Business Facilities magazine award for economic development efforts in back-to-back years and the first state to win the designation three times.

53. Friday Night Parties a Good Start for Beginners -

Ballroom dancing, or social dancing as it’s also called these days, teaches people many different skills, and area studios also provide outlets so student dancers can use what they’ve learned.

Studios offer Friday night parties to give students a chance to practice and to have fun. Rhonda Becker, who owns Champion Ballroom Center of Knoxville with her husband, Mark, and son, J.W., says that people make friendships over time and look forward to getting together on Friday nights.

54. Shedding Stress, Pounds on the Dance Floor -

Learning how to ballroom dance may be a check mark off of someone’s to-do list, but the benefits of dancing, considered a sport by some, are far reaching.

Morgan Gist, a student at Let’s Dance Ballroom Dance Studio in Maryville, says she’s lost 15 pounds in the three months that she’s been taking lessons.

55. Fear of Trying -

The most complicated move in ballroom dancing is often the step that gets you through the dance studio’s front door.

Television shows like, “Dancing with the Stars’’ and “So You Think You Can Dance’’ are wildly popular and have contributed to a renewed interest in the glamourous art (skill? sport?) of ballroom dancing, but those high-energy, competitive programs or a movie like “Dirty Dancing’’ can also intimidate people and keep them glued to the couch.

56. Service Assurance Founder Giannini Arrested in Florida -

Memphis businessman Mark Giannini is in custody in Florida following his indictment this week on aggravated rape and rape charges.

57. The Production Company Behind Durham’s Ads -

Bart Durham is perhaps the best-known attorney among those who watch late-night TV when the commercial rates are lower.

And while the commercials may seem silly to some people, they dead-on connect with those people in Nashville or Middle Tennessee who’ve never had a lawyer and perhaps are a little timid to approach a “respectable” attorney.

58. Commercial Success -

If, as the saying goes, everyone gets 15 minutes of fame, Bart Durham’s has come in 15- and 30-second spurts – the length of the commercials that depict him as a lawyer everyman, ever-ready to tilt at windmills for the sake of justice for the working class.

59. Vols Take Plenty of Momentum Into Offseason -

KNOXVILLE – There’s nothing like going into the offseason on a high note. The Vols will be riding the momentum from the resounding 45-28 victory against Iowa in the Jan. 2 TaxSlayer Bowl through the end of recruiting season, winter workouts, spring practices and into the summer months.

60. Southwest Tennessee Grows With Demand -

For Nathan Essex, the president of Southwest Tennessee Community College, his tenure has been a series of changes.

It was Essex who presided over the merger of Shelby State Community College and State Technical Institute in the late 1990s, before he was appointed president of the resulting Southwest Tennessee Community College in 2000.

61. School and Chemo -

A child with cancer who comes to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital has a lot of concerns.

And if they are already in school, one of them is will they have to repeat a grade once they recover and then have to adjust to a new group of classmates.

62. Tennessee’s Health Problem -

For years, the concept of “wellness” or “preventive health” measures has been the “eat your vegetables” mantra of a growing national discussion on health care that has focused primarily on the cost of such care and who should pay for it or try to control it.

63. Sens. Corker, Alexander to Chair Committees -

Tennessee’s two Republican U.S. senators are committee chairmen in the Senate’s new GOP majority.

Junior Sen. Bob Corker was named chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Wednesday, Jan. 7.

64. Haslam Calls Special Session on Medicaid -

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam has set Feb. 2 as the date for a special session of the Tennessee Legislature on his Medicaid expansion proposal.

The proclamation issued Thursday, Jan. 8, includes more details that legislators have been awaiting since Haslam announced the general terms of his proposal in December.

65. Haslam's 2nd Inauguration Theme is 'Together for Tennessee' -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Republican Gov. Bill Haslam plans for his inauguration to a second term include an outdoor ceremony, a dinner and ball and tours of the state Capitol and governor's mansion.

66. Concerns Raised About Ikea Incentives -

Some city of Memphis officials are concerned that offering tax incentives to Swedish furniture retailer Ikea could set a dangerous precedent, one that could open the door for other retailers, including large mall owners, to seek the tax breaks.

67. County Commissioners to Discuss Medicaid Expansion -

In their first committee sessions of 2015, Shelby County Commissioners will discuss Wednesday, Jan. 7, the impact the proposed Insure Tennessee program will have on Regional One Health, Memphis’ public hospital.

68. Tennessee Named Top State for Economic Development -

A leading national publication focused on site selection and economic development has named Tennessee its 2014 State of the Year for a second consecutive year.

Tennessee becomes the first state to win the Business Facilities magazine award for economic development efforts in back-to-back years and the first state to win the designation three times.

69. UT’s Baulkman on Tyndall: ‘He’s a Cool Dude’ -

Devon Baulkman won’t forget his first impression of University of Tennessee basketball coach Donnie Tyndall a couple of years ago.

Baulkman was playing for Gulf Coast State College in Panama City, Fla. at the time. Tyndall was the head coach at Southern Miss.

70. UT’s Tyndall Winning Fans Despite NCAA Investigation -

KNOXVILLE – Donnie Tyndall has hardly slowed down since the former Southern Miss head coach took over Tennessee’s basketball program in April.

Of course, Tyndall had little choice.

71. Building the Base -

It was late September, and local officials were deeply engaged with retail giant Target as the company explored investing in an online fulfillment center in Memphis when the discussions turned toward a familiar subject.

72. NCAA Contenders Include the 'Little Guys' -

Every March they become the nation's darlings.

This year, a host of stalwarts aren't waiting nearly that long to establish themselves as contenders – either for their own, non-power conferences or possibly the Final Four after another round of realignment.

73. New Laws OK Wine Shipments, Ban Tiger Selfies -

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – New state laws taking effect Thursday give livestock in California more living room, approve direct-to-consumer wine shipments in Massachusetts and levy the ultimate punishment on wannabe teen drivers in Nevada by denying them licenses if they skip too much school.

74. A Cool Ending to 2014 -

As is so often the story, 2014 ended with others seeing more in us than we see in ourselves.

A story of tween and teen sisters from Switzerland via Germany, of Scandinavian design and meatballs from Sweden, of a 12-year-old made a superstar chef by a national television audience.

75. 20 Years Later, Titans Again at Rock Bottom -

The lockers have been cleaned out, the shoulder pads and helmets taken up to be cleaned and stored.

But the stench of the worst season for the Tennessee Titans franchise since 1994 still remained after the season wrapped up with a 2-14 mark.

76. Big Deals Highlight 2014 Real Estate -

In Inked, we like to highlight local real estate transactions and the often-interesting companies leasing or buying commercial real estate space in the Memphis market. We also like to keep you informed about major deals before they happen and track companies that are critical to the local economy. Here are some important items that appeared in Inked in 2014.

77. County Sees New Faces, New Directions -

There was a lot of moving around in Shelby County government in 2014, much of it the literal kind as the Vasco Smith County Administration Building was remodeled.

Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell got new offices in the renovation and the Shelby County Commission chambers got an upgrade as well with the commission offices and committee room moving from the fourth floor to the sixth floor.

78. Four Transformational Sales Resolutions -

Change is hard for most people, but only through change can we grow. The New Year is the perfect time to take a hard look at what worked in your sales approach and what didn’t deliver for you in 2014, to break ineffective sales habits, and to resolve to adjust your approach. 

79. Totty Joins Gateway Group Personnel -

Justin Totty has joined Gateway Group Personnel as a research associate in the company’s executive search division. In his new role, Totty focuses on sourcing the best candidates for clients across numerous fields and industries, specifically targeting accounting, finance and engineering.

80. Shelby County Homebuilding Activity Continues to Slow -

Homebuilding in Shelby County was off last year’s pace again in November, with builders pulling fewer permits and selling fewer homes than in November 2013.

Shelby County homebuilders filed 43 permits last month, down 29.5 percent from 61 permits in November 2013, according to real estate information company Chandler Reports, www.chandlerreports.com. The 43 permits filed in November is down 31.7 percent from the 63 permits filed in October.

81. Local Charities' Needs Visible During Holidays -

Local charities get a lot of attention during the holiday season. But those running the nonprofits are quick to point out that their work goes on year-round. And the holiday season can be a time of great stress for those who rely on their programs, despite the extra attention.

82. Vol Players See TaxSlayer Win as a Big Step for Program -

KNOXVILLE – Christmas break has come and gone for the University of Tennessee’s football team. Now it’s back to business.

The Vols return to campus for practice Saturday and, after a Sunday practice, fly to Jacksonville for the Jan. 2 game against Iowa in the TaxSlayer Bowl, formerly the Gator Bowl.

83. Morgan’s Best Season Might Be His Last as Titan -

For Derrick Morgan, Sunday’s season finale against the Indianapolis Colts could well be the end of his five-year run with the Tennessee Titans.

84. Gas Tax Increase Gaining Momentum in Tennessee -

Momentum is mounting for a possible proposal to raise the state's gas tax for the first time in 25 years.

Gov. Bill Haslam told The Tennessean he thinks a legislative proposal on the issue is close and could be introduced in the next General Assembly, which convenes in January.

85. Grizz Faith & Family Night to Feature Colton Dixon -

Fans who purchase tickets to the Jan. 24 Grizzlies game versus Philadelphia will also gain access to the Grizzlies’ annual Faith and Family Night at FedExForum, highlighted by a post-game performance by “American Idol” alumnus Colton Dixon.

86. St. Louis Fed Updates Memphis Board -

The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis has announced some changes to the board of directors of its Memphis branch, effective Jan. 1.

87. Grizzlies Faith & Family Night to Feature Colton Dixon -

Fans who purchase tickets to the Jan. 24 Grizzlies game versus Philadelphia will also gain access to the Grizzlies’ annual Faith and Family Night at FedExForum, highlighted by a post-game performance by “American Idol” alumnus Colton Dixon.

88. St. Louis Fed Updates Memphis Board -

The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis has announced some changes to the board of directors of its Memphis branch, effective Jan. 1.

89. City, County Catch Late-Year Economic Development Surge -

Through September, things were looking somewhat bleak for Memphis and Shelby County on the economic development front.

At that point in the year the city and county were on pace to tie a record low for the number of payments-in-lieu-of-taxes, or PILOT, agreements granted to companies in a year. While granting fewer tax incentives could be viewed as good news because companies were more fiscally sound or confident about operating in Memphis and Shelby County, the lower level of activity represented a dip in the level of economic investment in the area.

90. Tennessee Joins Multistate Lawsuit Over Immigration -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Tennessee is joining a multistate lawsuit seeking to halt President Barack Obama's executive action on immigration, state Attorney General Herbert Slatery announced Monday.

91. Gas Tax Increase Gaining Momentum in Tennessee -

Momentum is mounting for a possible proposal to raise the state’s gas tax for the first time in 25 years.

Gov. Bill Haslam told The Tennessean he thinks a legislative proposal on the issue is close and could be introduced in the next General Assembly, which convenes in January.

92. Wharton Defends Local Tax Incentives, Searches for New Methods to Compete -

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. is pursuing a new economic development strategy that would allow those parts of Tennessee bordering other states to mirror or match the incentives on the other side of the state line.

93. Immigrants Find Room to Grow in Nashville's Public Gardens -

With the growing season wrapped up for winter and the temperature hovering at 45 degrees on a recent Sunday, the community garden off Wedgewood Avenue looked to be draped in a brown afghan with just a few patches of green peeking through.

94. Vols’ Barnett Faces Nation’s Best in Iowa’s Scherff -

KNOXVILLE – Derek Barnett is spending most of the Christmas holidays away from his Nashville home, and he wouldn’t have it any other way.

95. Jake Locker: Nice Guy Who Deserved Better -

Jake Locker’s time with the Tennessee Titans has quietly come to an end. Sure, he’s officially a Titan until March, but Sunday’s shoulder injury vs. the Jets – and his upcoming surgery – ends a star-crossed four-year run.

96. This week in Memphis history: December 19-25 -

2009: On the front page of The Daily News, the Metro Charter Commission, drafting a proposed charter for a consolidated Memphis-Shelby County government made an early decision in its draft that their proposal would not include a consolidation of Memphis City Schools and Shelby County Schools.
It was the first decision on a charter issue by the group since it was formed that October. The reasoning was to sidestep what was judged to be the most controversial part of any consolidation. Nevertheless, the proposed charter was still crushed in the referendum that followed in the county outside Memphis and it only narrowly passed in the city of Memphis. The charter had to win approval in both to consolidate.

97. Evolving Identity -

Some of the most telling views of Memphis are the ones many of us see for only seconds at a time as we drive on viaducts that take us and our cars just above the treetops and rooftops of older neighborhoods interrupted by the roadways.

98. Troubled Youth Center Making Improvements -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A troubled Middle Tennessee youth detention center has increased security and is making changes to its behavior-modification program in hopes of preventing future rioting and escapes, officials said Thursday.

99. Conn’s Inc. to Open Second Store in Memphis -

Specialty retailer Conn’s Inc. will open a second store in Memphis, the second of possibly three stores the Texas-based home appliances and furnishings chain plans to open in Tennessee.

100. Target, Cummins Awarded Tax Breaks -

Two companies won approval Wednesday, Dec. 17, for tax incentives for projects that will create around 1,400 jobs.

The board of the city-county Economic Development Growth Engine approved 15-year payment-in-lieu-of-taxes, or PILOT, incentives for Target and Cummins Inc.