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Editorial Results (free)

1. 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.

2. EDGE Leader Faults 'Vague' Concerns About Incentives -

The president of the Economic Development Growth Engine wants Memphis City Council members and Shelby County commissioners to approve proposed changes to payment-in-lieu-of taxes incentives the EDGE board grants.

3. Insure Tennessee Fails to Win Sound Bite Test -

Fresh off a resounding November re-election victory, Gov. Bill Haslam ran smack dab into the reality of Tennessee politics: The Republican Party abhors anything connected to President Barack Obama.

4. GAO: Veterans' Health Care Costs a 'High Risk' for Taxpayers -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Veterans' health care is a "high risk" budget issue that threatens to cost taxpayers tens of billions of dollars unless longstanding problems are addressed, government auditors warned Wednesday.

5. IRS Apologizes for Seizing Bank Accounts of Small Businesses -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Pressured by Congress, the IRS said Wednesday it is changing its policies and apologizing for seizing banks accounts from otherwise law-abiding business owners simply because they structured bank transactions to avoid federal reporting requirements.

6. City Talking Debt Restructure Two Years After State Warning -

The Memphis City Council approved changes to city health insurance coverage in June and pension coverage in December.

But later amendments to both sets of benefits, the city’s debt service payments, a 2010 restructuring of city debt, and the city’s annual required pension contribution are all factors that will influence city finances for years, said city finance director Brian Collins.

7. Spokeswoman: Republican Rep. Nunnelee of Mississippi Dies -

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – U.S. Rep. Alan Nunnelee of Mississippi, a fiscal and social conservative elected to Congress in a Republican wave of 2010, has died. He was 56.

Elizabeth Parks, the spokeswoman in Nunnelee's congressional office, said he died Friday in his hometown of Tupelo, Mississippi.

8. 6 of 7 Who Killed Insure Tennessee are on State Health Plan -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Six of the seven Republican senators who voted to kill Gov. Bill Haslam's proposal to extend health coverage to 280,000 low-income Tennesseans are enrolled in the state government health plan.

9. Work Begins on Insure Tennessee Plan -

The first House session of the Tennessee legislature’s special session begins Wednesday, Feb. 4, after committee work on the only piece of business before the General Assembly – the Insure Tennessee Medicaid expansion proposal.

10. 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.

11. 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.

12. Commission Approves Center Point Terminal Lease -

Shelby County Commissioners approved Monday, Jan. 26, a new five-year lease between Center Point Terminal Co. LLC and the Memphis and Shelby County Port Commission for a dock, wharf and other facilities on Presidents Island in the barge business.

13. Trucking Industry in ‘Desperate’ Need of Drivers -

With demand on the upswing thanks to improving economic growth and lower fuel prices, a scarcity of truck drivers could put the brakes on the trucking industry and cripple a critical piece of global supply chains.

14. Raymond James Tower Fetches $20 Million -

How much is a 21-story skyscraper overlooking the Mississippi River worth? About $1 million a floor.

New York-based investor Jacob Sofer will pay Parkway Properties around $20 million for the Raymond James Tower at 50 N. Front St. Downtown, according to several people with knowledge of the transaction. The Shelby County Assessor of Property’s 2014 appraisal for the 340,000-square-foot building is $24 million.

15. 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.

16. 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.

17. 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.

18. 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.

19. The Preserve at Southwind Sells for $28 Million -

7991 Capilano Drive
Memphis, TN 38125
Sale Amount: $28 million

Sale Date: Dec. 22, 2014
Buyer: Southwind Apartments LP
Seller: G&I VII Preserve at Southwind Apartments LP
Loan Amount: $18 million
Loan Date: Dec. 18, 2014
Maturity Date: Oct. 31, 2020
Lender: Jackson National Life Insurance Co.
Details: A team that includes Memphis-based Foegelman Venture Partners has sold The Preserve at Southwind apartment community for $28 million.

20. 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.

21. Haslam Reaches Deal to Expand Medicaid -

Gov. Bill Haslam announced Monday, Dec. 15, that he has reached a deal with federal officials to expand Medicaid in Tennessee after months of discussions.

The Republican's administration is touting it as an alternative deal with federal officials. The program, dubbed Insure Tennessee, would provide coverage for the state's uninsured without creating new taxes for Tennesseans.

22. Health Leaders: Improvement Possible -

Tennessee’s place in the 2014 America’s Health Rankings makes one thing very clear: There’s a lot of room for improvement.

Tennessee ranked 42nd among all states in the annual analysis of the health of the nation conducted by UnitedHealth Foundation.

23. Haslam Reaches Agreement to Expand Medicaid in Tennessee -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Gov. Bill Haslam announced Monday that he has reached a deal to expand Medicaid in Tennessee after more than a year of discussions with federal officials.

The Republican's administration touted the plan as an alternative deal with federal officials. The two-year pilot program, dubbed Insure Tennessee, would provide coverage for the state's uninsured without creating new taxes for Tennesseans.

24. Yard Work Waiting? Hit Mowz App and Take a Nap -

It’s hard to decide what’s less fun, mowing the lawn or raking leaves. If you loathe both in equal measure, however, help may be just a few clicks away.

Mowz, an app-based service offering a mobile way to book multiple landscaping services, has made its way to Nashville. It’s the latest offshoot from Plowz, which began as a snowplowing-assistance app in upstate New York last winter and has since migrated to more than 20 cities.

25. Pension ‘Concept’ Flips Council Script -

For most of her seven years on the Memphis City Council, Wanda Halbert has been the most outspoken member when it comes to last-minute items added to the council’s agenda for a vote.

So, when Halbert rolled out a compromise plan on the city’s pension changes Tuesday, Dec. 2, she took some heat from other council members.

26. Medicare Paid for Meds After Patients Were Dead -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Call it drugs for the departed: A quirky bureaucratic rule led Medicare's prescription drug program to pay for costly medications even after the patients were dead.

That head-scratching policy is now getting a second look.

27. Commission Sets Votes on Health Insurance -

Shelby County Commissioners may not hear a whole lot new in the way of answers between now and a Thursday special meeting to settle the politically volatile issue of changes to health insurance coverage for county government employees.

28. Commission Moves Health Insurance Vote to Thursday -

Shelby County Commissioners moved a critical vote on changing health insurance benefits for county employees to a special Thursday, Oct. 30, meeting in a Monday session dominated by the proposed changes.

29. County Charts Quieter Course On Insurance -

With less than two weeks to the open enrollment period for county employees, Shelby County Commissioners take a look at changes to county employee health care benefits Wednesday, Oct. 22, in committee sessions.

30. Recruiter’s Career Twist -

Ask Janet Miller about her remarkable career at the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce and she’ll likely attribute it to good timing or pass credit onto others.

31. McManus Joins Patrick Accounting -

Michelle McManus, a Memphis native and certified public accountant, has joined Patrick Accounting and Tax Services PLLC as manager. In her new role, McManus will supervise and review the monthly accounting process for a section of clients. She will also prepare and review tax returns and work closely with clients, assisting them with ongoing tax planning.

32. Some Council Members Feel Dissed By Wharton -

It was a phrase guaranteed to put more diss in the dysfunction between the Memphis City Council and Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr.

And some on the council had plenty to say Tuesday, Oct. 7, about the weekend press release from Wharton announcing changes in the city’s health insurance plan starting next year.

33. Health Law Waivers: Too Complicated to Claim? -

WASHINGTON (AP) — Millions of Americans may qualify for waivers from the most unpopular part of President Barack Obama's health care overhaul. But getting that exemption could be an ordeal.

34. City Council Weighs Fluid Benefits Decisions -

Memphis City Council members have third and final votes scheduled Tuesday, Oct. 7, on a set of changes to the city’s pension benefits that are the second of two major sets of reforms in benefits for city employees and retirees.

35. Collins Forms Mayoral Exploratory Committee -

Memphis City Council member Harold Collins has formed an exploratory committee as he considers a run for Memphis mayor in 2015.

36. Haslam Checks In With Bond Rating Agencies -

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam was in New York City last week to talk with the major bond rating agencies.

Normally such trips come when a local or state government is about to issue new debt and wants a credit rating from the agencies. In this case, the Thursday, Sept. 25, visit was not for that. It was more of a status report on the state’s financial condition.

37. Searching for Doctors -

So here’s the offer: lower salary – meaning it will take longer to pay down your student loan debt – less prestige, and perhaps even a questioning of your intelligence and skill.

In 2014, that’s what comes with the decision to become a primary care physician. Recently, a fourth-year medical student at the University of Pennsylvania, Mara Gordon, wrote an article for The Atlantic explaining her decision to become a primary care doctor.

38. Marx-Bensdorf Expands in East Memphis -

A prominent Memphis realty company has expanded its presence in East Memphis. Marx-Bensdorf Realtors has grown in the office building at 5860 Ridgeway Loop Blvd. by 526 square feet, bringing its total to 4,653 square feet.

39. Council Could Close Door on Alternative Health Plans -

Memphis City Council members could put to rest alternatives to the health care insurance benefits cuts they approved in June when they meet Tuesday, Sept. 16.

The question is whether they would do that with some kind of vote or indication through discussion or whether they will simply let the June decision stand and take no further votes.

40. Coverage Gap Leaves Rural Tennessee Hospitals on Life Support -

Four rural hospitals have closed and dozens are at risk of shuttering: That’s the fallout, some say, from Gov. Bill Haslam’s decision not to join the Affordable Care Act in 2013 and tap into millions in promised federal funds for Tennessee’s financially-strapped health care institutions.

41. Democrats Choose State Senate Nominee -

When Shelby County Democratic Party leaders gather Monday, Sept. 8, to pick their party’s nominee in the November special general election for state Senate District 30, it will also be an indication of how deep the wounds run from the party’s disastrous August election outing.

42. Council Aims at Moving Insurance Targets -

At just about every turn of the debate at City Hall about changes in health insurance coverage, Memphis City Council members have seen crucial numbers shift about the impact of the changes and the city’s liability.

43. Gov. Haslam's Medicaid Talk Draws GOP Criticism -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam's suggestion this week that he may soon submit a proposal for Medicaid expansion in Tennessee received some blowback from a fellow Republican leader in the Legislature on Friday.

44. US Won't Reveal Records on Health Website Security -

WASHINGTON (AP) – After promising not to withhold government information over "speculative or abstract fears," the Obama administration has concluded it will not publicly disclose federal records that could shed light on the security of the government's health care website because doing so could "potentially" allow hackers to break in.

45. Consumers Driving Health Care Innovation -

Everyone in the U.S complains about health care – the rising costs of insurance premiums and co-pays, the lack of innovation, the poor experience at doctor’s offices and hospitals, and price of medications.

46. Kelsey Calls for Tennessee to Join Obamacare Suit -

State Sen. Brian Kelsey of Germantown called Tuesday, July 22, for Tennessee Attorney General Robert Cooper to join a lawsuit over federal subsidies in the form of tax breaks for those who buy health insurance on an exchange established in the Affordable Care Act.

47. US Economy, Though Sluggish, May Now Be Sturdier -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Out of a seemingly hollow recovery from the Great Recession, a more durable if still slow-growing U.S. economy has emerged.

That conclusion, one held by a growing number of economists, might surprise many people. After all, in the five years since the recession officially ended, Americans' pay has basically stagnated. Millions remain unemployed or have abandoned their job searches. Economic growth is merely plodding along.

48. Kelsey Calls for Tennessee to Join Affordable Care Act Lawsuit -

State Sen. Brian Kelsey of Germantown called Tuesday, July 22, for Tennessee Attorney General Robert Cooper to join a lawsuit over federal subsidies in the form of tax breaks for those who buy health insurance on an exchange established in the Affordable Care Act.

49. Biller Looks to Minority-Business Law Practice -

After 45 years practicing law in big firms, medium-sized firms and his own small practice in Memphis, Stephen Biller watched as the issue of minority business development and minority contracting surfaced again locally this spring.

50. Wharton Clarifies He Won't Propose Sales Tax Ballot Question -

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. clarified Thursday, July 17, that he has no intention of proposing a ballot question later this year asking city voters to approve a half cent increase in the city’s local option sales tax.

51. Green Mountain Consulting Finds Home Along Poplar -

Logistics vendor Green Mountain Consulting wasn’t necessarily looking to buy an office building when it began its search for more office space for expansion.

“We’re not getting into the commercial real estate business because we wanted to be in it; we got into it because we have a company to operate and needed the space,” said Jim Jacobs, one of Green Mountain’s co-founders.

52. Citigroup to Pay $7 Billion in Subprime Mortgages Probe -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Citigroup agreed Monday to pay $7 billion to settle a federal investigation into its handling of risky subprime mortgages, admitting to a pattern of deception that Attorney General Eric Holder said "shattered lives" and contributed to the worst financial crisis in decades.

53. City: Rideshare Services Need Permits for Airport Use -

The city of Memphis will ask popular ridesharing services such as Uber and Lyft to cease and desist operations until they acquire city permits.

“We know (Uber and Lyft) are doing business in Memphis without the required permit,” said Memphis spokeswoman Dewanna Smith. “We will send them a cease-and-desist notice along with an application and links to our ordinances. That letter has only recently been approved by counsel and will be going out soon.”

54. City to Issue Cease-and-Desist Notices to Rideshare Services -

The city of Memphis will ask popular ridesharing services such as Uber and Lyft to cease and desist operations until they acquire city permits.

“We know (Uber and Lyft) are doing business in Memphis without the required permit,” said Memphis spokeswoman Dewanna Smith. “We will send them a cease-and-desist notice along with an application and links to our ordinances. That letter has only recently been approved by counsel and will be going out soon.”

55. Blue Flu Tops 550 Cops Out -

As Memphis Police Director Toney Armstrong has watched the number of police officers on sick leave grow and top 550, so has much of the city.

Armstrong and the administration of Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. have gone public in not just talking about the impact but putting numbers to it.

56. Airport Authority Looking at Rideshare Policy -

The battle that has raged between ridesharing services like Lyft and Uber at airports across the country has finally landed at Memphis International Airport.

For now, Lyft and Uber are prohibited from picking up passengers at Memphis International Airport, but that could change as airport and city officials develop policies for dealing with the emerging services.

57. In Rare Move, Police Confirm ‘Blue Flu’ -

In the storied history of labor relations between City Hall and the rank and file of the Memphis Police Department, there is a standing rule about work slowdowns, sometimes referred to as “blue flu.”

58. Corporations are People? It's a Real Legal Concept -

WASHINGTON (AP) – There may be more to that "we the people" notion than you thought.

These are boom times for the concept of "corporate personhood."

Corporations are people?

59. Council Delays Action on Pension Plan Changes To October -

Memphis City Council members voted Tuesday, July 1, to delay final votes on a set of ordinances to change the city’s pension for new hires and employees on the job for less than 10 years.

The council had planned to vote on the pension changes at its July 15 meeting. But the council moved to delay it further after a council day briefing of several hours from Segal Consulting of Atlanta, the consulting firm hired by the council specifically to advise it on pension plan changes proposed by Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr.

60. Report: Health Law Sign-Ups Dogged by Data Flaws -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Many of the 8 million Americans signed up under the new health care law now have to clear up questions about their personal information that could affect their coverage.

61. GM Won't Limit Ignition Switch Crash Compensation -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The attorney overseeing General Motors' compensation to victims of small-car crashes says there's no limit to what the company will pay, provided the crashes were caused by faulty ignition switches. The tally could climb into billions of dollars.

62. Now Application 'Inconsistencies' Vex Health Law -

WASHINGTON (AP) – A huge new paperwork headache for the government could also be jeopardizing coverage for some of the millions of people who just got health insurance under President Barack Obama's law.

63. Redmont Joins HORNE as Tax Consulting Manager -

Richard Redmont has joined HORNE LLP as a tax consulting manager. Redmont, a certified public accountant, has more than 25 years of tax and consulting experience with international firms in the accounting and insurance industries, and has served clients in the manufacturing, retail, distribution, health care and financial services industries. He also served on a national Sarbanes-Oxley team for an international firm.

64. Kyocera Inks ProLogis Park Lease Renewal -

ProLogis has landed a major renewal at one of its industrial parks.

Kyocera Document Solutions America Inc., which manufactures and markets network-ready digital copiers and printers, laser printers, color copiers and printers, digital laser facsimiles and multifunctional, wide-format imaging products, has renewed its lease for 300,000 square feet at 5510 Getwell Road in Memphis.

65. Parkinson, White Compare Notes Across Aisle -

Two state representatives from Memphis say the 19-member Shelby County delegation in the Tennessee General Assembly isn’t as united as it should be.

“I have to be brutally honest. I have yet to see us come together and move as a block for Shelby County,” Democratic state Rep. Antonio Parkinson said on the WKNO-TV program “Behind the Headlines.” “There appears to be an alignment with some members of our delegation that align with other parts of Tennessee before they align with Shelby County. I’m optimistic that will shift.”

66. South Memphis Fence Grows Through Founder’s Experience -

Warren Price started South Memphis Fence Co. Inc. in the mid-1970s “out of need” – personal need.

He and his wife had just moved into their first home in 1974 and wanted to replace the 4-foot chain link fence with a wooden privacy fence. But they didn’t like the $2,700 to $3,000 price estimates they received. So Price and some friends got a good price on some lumber in Jackson, Tenn., rented a table saw from Dixie Rents and put up a wooden fence that came in at $800 to $900.

67. Democrats Bemoan Lack of Medicaid Expansion -

NASHVILLE (AP) – House Democratic leaders said Tuesday that Republican Gov. Bill Haslam's decision not to expand Medicaid in Tennessee eclipses his signature plan to cover tuition at two-year colleges.

68. 108th General Assembly Adjourns for Year -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — State lawmakers concluded a session Thursday in which they approved measures to allow folks to buy wine in grocery stores, fight methamphetamine production and give high school graduates free tuition at community colleges.

69. 108th General Assembly Adjourns for the Year -

NASHVILLE (AP) – State lawmakers concluded a session Thursday in which they approved measures to allow folks to buy wine in grocery stores, fight methamphetamine production and give high school graduates free tuition at community colleges.

70. Report Projects Health Care Costs to Dip Slightly -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Affordable Care Act's health insurance subsidies will cost a little less than previously thought, according to a new report released Monday.

The Congressional Budget Office predicts that health insurance subsidies under the so-called "Obamacare" plan will total a little more than $1 trillion over the next 10 years, instead of almost $1.2 trillion initially estimated.

71. Medicare Database Reveals Top-Paid Doctors -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Medicare paid a tiny group of doctors $3 million or more apiece in 2012. One got nearly $21 million.

Those are among the findings of an Associated Press analysis of physician data released Wednesday by the Obama administration, part of a move to open the books on health care financing.

72. Lebanon’s Pody Works for Amendment Passage -

Helping people with insurance requires the ability to plan for multiple scenarios.

That’s something Rep. Mark Pody, a Republican from Lebanon, Tenn., has taken with him to the Tennessee General Assembly, and he says it helps even when everyone is in agreement on a bill’s final outcome.

73. Appellate Judge Appointed to Tennessee Supreme Court -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Republican Gov. Bill Haslam on Thursday named Criminal Appeals Judge Jeff Bivins to fill an upcoming vacancy on the Tennessee Supreme Court bench.

Bivins, 53, will replace Justice Bill Koch, who is retiring in July to become dean of the Nashville School of Law.

74. Millions Could Get Health Sign-Up Extension -

Millions of Americans could get extra time to enroll for taxpayer-subsidized coverage this year under President Barack Obama’s health care law, allowing the administration to boost sign-ups and the political fortunes of Democrats under attack over the program’s troubles.

75. Millions Could Get Extra Time for Health Sign-Ups -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Millions of Americans could get extra time to enroll for taxpayer-subsidized coverage this year under President Barack Obama's health care law. That would let the administration boost sign-ups and aid Democrats under attack over the program's troubles.

76. Seminar Explores Complicated Details of Health Care Law -

The Affordable Care Act, more commonly known as Obamacare, became law in 2010.

But the law has grown and changed so much since then that its pages number more than 25,000, and if you stack them one on top of another they are more than 10 feet high, says Tim Finnell, founder and president of Group Benefits LLC.

77. High Court Seems Divided Over Birth Control Rule -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Supreme Court seemed divided Tuesday over whether employers' religious beliefs can free them from a part of the new health care law that requires that they provide coverage of birth control for employees at no extra charge.

78. Low-Wage Jobs Unexpectedly a Way of Life for Many -

WASHINGTON (AP) – For years, many Americans followed a simple career path: Land an entry-level job. Accept a modest wage. Gain skills. Leave eventually for a better-paying job.

The workers benefited, and so did lower-wage retailers such as Wal-Mart: When its staffers left for better-paying jobs, they could spend more at its stores. And the U.S. economy gained, too, because more consumer spending fueled growth.

79. Haslam Asks Feds for Medicaid Counterproposal -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Republican Gov. Bill Haslam said Monday he has asked U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to make a counterproposal to Tennessee's efforts to carve out a special deal for Medicaid expansion.

80. Democrats Push for Mississippi State Employee Pay Raise -

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – Democrats say they'll keep trying to give all Mississippi government employees at least a $1,000 pay raise in the coming year, even after several attempts were blocked Wednesday in the Republican-majority House.

81. Wyatt, Tarrant & Combs Adds Health Care Attorneys -

With the addition of two veteran health care attorneys, Wyatt, Tarrant & Combs LLP is expanding its health care practice to accommodate the growing legal needs of physicians, hospitals and health care systems.

82. FedExForum Area Targeted for Apartments -

Nashville-based Elmington Capital Partners apparently likes the apartment market in Downtown Memphis.

An Elmington-affiliated company plans on building a 64-unit apartment complex at 362 S. Second St., south of FedExForum.

83. CVS Caremark Plans to Stop Tobacco Products Sales -

CVS, the nation's second-largest drugstore chain, is kicking the habit of selling tobacco products as it continues to shift its focus toward being more of a health care provider.

The company said Wednesday that it will phase out cigarettes, cigars and chewing tobacco by Oct. 1 in its 7,600 stores nationwide, in a move that will help grow its business that works with doctors, hospitals and others to improve customers' health.

84. Mulroy Gets in County Mayor’s Race -

Shelby County Commissioner Steve Mulroy considered a bid for Shelby County mayor for the second time in a year and Monday, Feb. 3, pulled a qualifying petition to enter the Democratic primary just more than two weeks before the filing deadline for candidates in the May 6 county primaries.

85. Former Motel 6 Sells for $1.4 Million -

1321 Sycamore View Road
Memphis, TN 38134
Sale Amount: $1.4 million

Sale Date: Jan. 13, 2014
Buyer: P & S Hospitality LLC
Seller: G6 Hospitality Property LLC
Loan Amount: $1.1 million
Loan Date: Jan. 14, 2014
Maturity Date: N/A
Lender: Argent Bank
Details: The former Motel 6 at 1321 Sycamore View Road in Northeast Memphis has traded hands for $1.4 million.

86. Business Leaders Optimistic About Local Economy -

As they have for a few quarters now, Memphis-area business leaders continue to acknowledge an incremental sense of optimism about specific aspects of their companies and the economy, according to the results of the third Memphis Economic Indicator.

87. Government: Birth Control Mandate Should Not be Blocked -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Obama administration urged a Supreme Court justice Friday to stop blocking the new health care law's requirement that some religion-affiliated organizations provide health insurance that includes birth control.

88. This week in Memphis history: January 3-9 -

2013: On the front page of the Daily News, Club Crave, at Fourth and Beale streets, had been closed as a public nuisance under a General Sessions Environmental Court order. The order followed a Christmas Eve shooting at the club that killed one person and injured two more. Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. vowed the city would seek to demolish the building. The club still stands but has not reopened since.

89. Health Care Signups Pick Up but May Not Close Gap -

WASHINGTON (AP) – With time running short, the nation's health care rolls still aren't filling up fast enough.

New signup numbers Wednesday showed progress for President Barack Obama's health care law, but not enough to guarantee that Americans who want and need coverage by Jan. 1 will be able to get it. Crunch time is now, as people face a Dec. 23 deadline to sign up if they are to have coverage by New Year's.

90. Audit: Health Care Subsidies Vulnerable to Fraud -

WASHINGTON (AP) – More troubles for the health care overhaul. Subsidies to help people buy insurance under the law may be vulnerable to fraud, a Treasury Department watchdog said Tuesday in a report suggesting that concerns about the law are far from over.

91. Embassy Suites Memphis Sells for $24.8 Million -

1022 S. Shady Grove Road
Memphis, TN 38119
Sale Amount: $24.8 million

Sale Date: Nov. 15, 2013
Buyer: 1022 South Shady Grove LLC
Seller: 1022 Shady Grove LLC
Loan Amount: $22.6 million
Loan Date: Nov. 15, 2013
Maturity Date: N/A
Lender: Great American Life Insurance Co.
Details: An affiliate of Chicago-based hotel asset manager Lodging Capital Partners LLC has paid $24.8 million for the Embassy Suites Memphis hotel at 1022 S. Shady Grove Road in East Memphis.

92. Schools Agreements Involve Art of Settlement -

Technically, the suburban Shelby County governments that have reached tentative agreements with Shelby County Schools are not paying, in those agreements, for school buildings.

They are paying $10 each in quitclaims for the buildings and much larger amounts to settle all claims in general, notably the pending lawsuit in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Tennessee.

93. Embassy Suites Memphis Sells for $24.8 Million -

An affiliate of Chicago-based hotel asset manager Lodging Capital Partners LLC has paid $24.8 million for the Embassy Suites Memphis hotel at 1022 S. Shady Grove Road in East Memphis.

94. Rainey Kizer Law Firm Names New President -

Dale Thomas, a partner in the law firm of Rainey, Kizer, Reviere & Bell PLC, will succeed John Burleson to become the firm’s next president Jan. 1.

95. In Reversal, Obama to Allow Canceled Health Plans -

WASHINGTON (AP) – His personal and political credibility on the line, President Barack Obama reversed course Thursday and said millions of Americans should be allowed to renew individual coverage plans now ticketed for cancellation under the health care law that is likely to be at the heart of the 2014 elections.

96. Possible TennCare Expansion Still Work in Progress -

The Tennessee lieutenant governor says it is a waste of time. The Memphis representative in U.S. Congress says it is overdue.

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam is still negotiating with the White House on a possible $1.4 billion expansion of Medicaid in Tennessee that could cover 140,000 uninsured Tennesseans under TennCare, the state’s version of Medicaid.

97. Rainey Kizer Law Firm Names New President -

Dale Thomas, a partner in the law firm of Rainey, Kizer, Reviere & Bell PLC, will succeed John Burleson to become the firm’s next president Jan. 1.

98. Former Democratic Senator Facing Charges -

WINCHESTER, Tenn. (AP) – Former Democratic state Sen. Eric Stewart has been indicted on charges of theft and insurance fraud.

99. Contractors Warn of Bad Surety Bonds -

A rash of bad construction project surety bonds in three states and American Samoa landed at Memphis International Airport this summer with plans to demolish the Regency Hotel on the grounds of the airport.

100. Memphis Economic Indicator Shows Business Optimism -

The results of the second Memphis Economic Indicator, a new survey measuring general business sentiment jointly produced by The Daily News and Dixon Hughes Goodman LLP, reflect a modest overall improvement in optimism among business leaders compared to last quarter’s survey results.