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VOL. 127 | NO. 81 | Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Daily Digest

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Nelson-Kirby Site Sells for $2.6M

Gill Poplar GP has bought the 10-acre Germantown tract housing the historical Nelson-Kirby House for $2.6 million. The purchase from 6797 Poplar Avenue LLC closed Friday, April 20.

The property, which the sale deed lists at 6792 Poplar Ave. and the Shelby County Assessor of Property lists at 6792 Poplar Pike, is east of Kirby Parkway, bounded by Poplar to the north and Poplar Pike to the south. The assessor’s 2011 appraisal was $738,800.

The purchase was financed with a $2.1 million trust deed through Triumph Bank. Raymond Gill III signed the loan as managing partner of Gill Poplar GP.

The Nelson-Kirby House was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1986.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Daily News staff

450 Pinnacle Pilots Could Be Furloughed

Memphis-based Pinnacle Airlines Corp. could put up to 450 pilots on unpaid furlough leave in the next year and a half.

The head count is the regional air carrier’s first estimate of what Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization could look like for its work force of more than 7,000 people.

When Pinnacle filed for bankruptcy reorganization in New York state earlier this month, the company outlined a plan that would create a smaller business that keeps its reworked contract ties to Delta Air Lines but winds down its flying for two other global carriers – United Airlines and US Airways.

While those agreements have been worked out between Pinnacle and the carriers, still to be negotiated are contracts with three labor unions representing the bulk of Pinnacle’s work force. Before the bankruptcy reorganization filing, Pinnacle was seeking permanent wage concessions from the unions.

In a filing Tuesday, April 24, in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York, the court authorized Pinnacle to retain Seabury Advisors LLC as its financial adviser and consultant. The company was hired by CEO Sean Menke in late 2011 as Menke began the restructuring that led to this month’s bankruptcy filing.

Menke resigned as CEO last week effective June 1 in another phase of the reorganization in which chief operating officer John Spanjers took over for Menke.

– Bill Dries

Mueller Reports Lower Net Income in Q1

Mueller Industries Inc. reported $32.6 million in net income for the first three months of 2012.

The earnings for the 13-week quarter compared to $40.6 million in the 14-week first quarter of 2011.

The Memphis-based company, which makes copper tube and fittings, brass and copper parts, and valves and fittings used in home and commercial residential construction also reported net sales of $577.7 million compared to 687.7 million the year before.

Mueller executives attribute half of the drop in net sales to not having the extra week in the quarter that was there the year before. The rest was lower raw material costs, which meant reduced selling price to customers. The price of copper per pound was 61 cents lower than it was in the first quarter of 2011.

Mueller’s earning statements are also a reflection of the construction and new housing markets.

Mueller CEO Greg Christopher said Tuesday, April 24, the company is prepared to ramp up production in a recovery. And he cited a 30 percent increase in building permits for the first quarter for single-family homes and apartments compared to the first quarter of 2011.

– Bill Dries

Hardaway Partners With Methodist Univ. Hospital

Former University of Memphis and NBA star Anfernee “Penny” Hardaway is partnering with Methodist University Hospital to host a basketball court for kids.

Hardaway’s youth sports training program, Penny’s FastBreak Courts, is an operating entity of Gameday Healthy Kids Foundation. It’s needed a reliable location, and it now has found one. An intramural gym on the campus of Methodist University Hospital was used to serve nursing students whose dorms were in the same building, but now it will host skills training led by Hardaway.

Hardaway, meanwhile, still plans to break ground on Penny’s FastBreak Courts Sportsplex in the city later this year. That $20 million multi-sport facility will house seven basketball courts, including a 2,000-seat arena, as well as a rehabilitation clinic and classrooms to tutor kids. In addition to basketball, FastBreak Courts will welcome volleyball, wrestling, cheer and other indoor sports.

– Andy Meek

Muni School District Bill Goes To Conference

An amended bill that would permit suburban citizens to vote this year on forming municipal school districts is on its way to a Tennessee Legislature conference committee in the closing week of the legislative session.

Tennessee House leaders appointed three members to the joint House-Senate committee Monday, April 24, after again refusing to accept the Senate-approved amendment on the referendums that was added to a bill on school bullying.

Memphis Democrat Antonio Parkinson is one of the House appointees along with Republican House Education Committee chairman Richard Montgomery of Sevierville and Republican Gerald McCormick of Chattanooga.

Senate leaders had not named their appointees at press time Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Shelby County Commissioners Monday, April 24, approved a resolution urging the legislature to not approve the proposal.

Members of the schools consolidation planning commission, which is drafting the blueprint for the consolidated school system to begin in August 2013, debated a similar resolution this month but ultimately voted it down.

– Bill Dries

Pop-Up Shop beeTemps Opens Friday

New pop-up shop “beeTemps” will have its grand opening during the South Main Friday Night Art Trolley Tour April 27 at The Power House, 45 G.E. Patterson Ave.

The shop offers affordable home luxuries by Debra Connor.

The retail pop-up project was designed by the Downtown Memphis Commission to give Memphis-area entrepreneurs the opportunity to open a Downtown retail space in the Historic South Main Arts District rent free for up to three months. The selected retail concept will receive the keys to the historic Power House, located near Central Station and the Memphis Farmers Market.

BeeTemps will be open from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, with regular store hours starting Saturday, April 28, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Wednesdays through Fridays 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information, visit beetemps@wordpress.com or call 569-5729.

– Sarah Baker

Haslam: Parking Lot Guns Bill Likely Dead

Republican Gov. Bill Haslam said Tuesday that both chambers of the Legislature have taken “significant” steps toward defeating a bill to allow workers to store weapons in cars parked on company lots regardless of their employers’ wishes.

Haslam told The Associated Press after a meeting in Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey’s office that he doesn’t believe the measure backed by the National Rifle Association will pass this year.

The House Republican caucus on Monday evening voted against bringing the measure up for a floor vote this year, while the Senate decided against a Democratic effort to bring the companion bill to a vote.

“I think yesterday was a significant day for that, in the sense that both houses voted that they weren’t really willing to go forward with it,” Haslam said.

Haslam added that he would be willing to support a more narrow proposal that allowed exceptions for large employers, colleges and schools. The NRA has rejected a compromise along those lines.

“We don’t believe that these carve-outs are a good thing, because it treats certain employees as second-class citizens,” NRA lobbyist Darren LaSorte said.

The bill has passed out of committees in both chambers and is waiting to be scheduled for floor votes in both chambers.

But the measure has stalled at that point as Republican leaders have raised their objections to taking a final vote.

– The Associated Press

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RECORD TOTALS DAY WEEK YEAR
PROPERTY SALES 78 260 13,157
MORTGAGES 103 370 17,128
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 26 62 3,362
BUILDING PERMITS 0 366 30,930
BANKRUPTCIES 74 209 12,552
BUSINESS LICENSES 22 65 4,554
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 88 416 19,309
MARRIAGE LICENSES 27 94 4,003

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