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VOL. 129 | NO. 55 | Thursday, March 20, 2014

Daily Digest

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Greenbrier Files Loan on Cabinet Shop Lofts

The owner of the recently completed Cabinet Shop lofts at 436 S. Front St. has filed a $2.9 million loan on the property.

Greenbrier Partners LLC filed the leasehold deed of trust, assignment of rents, security agreement and fixture filing March 14 through Triumph Bank. Greenbrier principal Vincent D. Smith Jr. signed the deed as chief manager.

The property is under a 10-year payment-in-lieu-of-taxes (PILOT) agreement with the Memphis Center City Revenue Finance Corp., which is listed as the property owner on the Shelby County Assessor of Property’s site.

The 40,800-square-foot, nearly century-old multiuse property at the corner of South Front Street and East Nettleton Avenue was renovated in 2013, according to the assessor.

The development’s name, The Cabinet Shop, pays tribute to the former owner, Bill Scudder, and his business, S&S Custom Cabinets.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Daily News staff

Home Builders Break Ground for VESTA

The West Tennessee Home Builders Association is kicking off the 2014 Fall VESTA Home Show with a special groundbreaking ceremony.

The groundbreaking ceremony, which will include the introduction of the 2014 VESTA homebuilders, will be held Thursday, March 20, at 10 a.m. at Shaw’s Creek Reserve Piperton, at 100 Kilmory Drive in Rossville.

The fall VESTA show will feature five new homes from some of the Mid-South’s top homebuilders. Fayette Cares, an interdenominational, nonpartisan organization that brings churches, businesses, service agencies and individuals together to provide aid for Fayette County residents in need, will be this year’s charitable partner and receive a portion of the show’s total proceeds.

– Amos Maki

Urban Earth Opens in Midtown Thursday

Urban Earth, a Midtown retail garden center owned by Greg and Carla Touliatos, opens Thursday, March 20.

The store, at 80 Flicker Street, will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. It’s housed in a former credit union building the couple bought in 2012 and have been renovating.

Urban Earth includes a nursery, outdoor structures holding water features, and other landscape and gardening supplies.

– Andy Meek

Free Tuition Proposal Advancing in Tennessee Senate

Gov. Bill Haslam’s proposal to create a community college program for all high school graduates is advancing in the Senate. The “Tennessee Promise” legislation advanced out of the Senate Education Committee 8-1 on Wednesday. It’s similar to one moving in the House.

The proposal would cover a full ride at two-year schools for any high school graduate, at a cost of $34 million per year.

The measure was amended to change lottery scholarship amounts. Initially, the bill sought to lower the current $4,000 lottery scholarship amount at four-year colleges to $3,000 for freshmen and sophomores, but increase it to $5,000 for juniors and seniors.

The amended version makes the amount $3,500 for freshman and sophomores, and $4,500 for juniors and seniors.

The move is meant to encourage students to consider going to two-year colleges first.

– The Associated Press

Chris Christie to Keynote Tennessee GOP fundraiser

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is scheduled to headline the Tennessee Republican Party’s annual fundraiser on May 30.

State Republican Party Chairman Chris Devaney said the appearance will give voters a chance to form their own impressions about Christie as he considers a presidential bid.

Christie has been working to revive his image following a political retribution scandal in which his aides ordered the closing of lanes near New Jersey’s George Washington Bridge.

Wednesday’s announcement comes on the same day that former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, another potential Republican presidential candidate, was making an appearance in Nashville.

The Tennessee GOP event is chaired by U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn, who cited Christie’s electoral successes in a largely Democratic state and said the New Jersey governor “knows what it takes to lead.”

– The Associated Press

Current Account Deficit Falls to 14-Year Low

Big gains in exports and overseas investment income narrowed the U.S. current account deficit to the lowest level in 14 years in the October-December quarter.

The imbalance fell to $81.1 billion in the fourth quarter, down from $96.4 billion in the July-September quarter, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. That’s the smallest gap since the third quarter of 1999.

The current account is the country’s broadest measure of trade, covering not only goods and services but also investment flows. A smaller trade deficit usually means that U.S. companies are producing more to meet domestic and overseas demand.

Goods exports rose 1.9 percent to $405.4 billion, driven by higher overseas sales of petroleum and agricultural products.

Americans received $206.1 billion in overseas income, mostly from investments, a 4.3 percent increase from the previous quarter. Payments to overseas owners of U.S. assets rose 2.4 percent to $137.8 billion. That helped push the U.S. income surplus to $64.4 billion.

As a percentage of the U.S. economy, the current account deficit declined to 1.9 percent, the lowest since the third quarter of 1997.

– The Associated Press

Greenfield Products Expanding in Obion County

Tennessee officials say Greenfield Products, a manufacturer of heavy equipment attachments, is investing $6.3 million to expand its operations in Obion County, adding 100 jobs during the next two years.

The company says it is adding 80,000 square feet of manufacturing space in Union City to begin engineering and manufacturing large heavy equipment.

Greenfield Products makes custom fork mounted attachments such as masts and carriages. The company also manufactures intermodal attachments including handling spreaders, container chassis shipping units and bomb carts for the container handling industry.

Greenfield Products will be hiring certified welders, fabricators, machinists, production planners and painters.

– The Associated Press

GOP Leaders Meet in Tennessee

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and two top Tennessee Republicans were scheduled to meet at an upscale Nashville hotel Wednesday to discuss education policies that have caused divisions within the GOP around the country – including within the Tennessee General Assembly located across the street.

Bush, whose potential presidential aspirations have been the subject of intense speculation, is being joined by Sen. Lamar Alexander and Gov. Bill Haslam at the event, hosted by business groups that support Common Core standards spelling out what math and reading skills students should have in each grade.

An increasing chorus of critics sees the standards as a federal takeover of local classrooms. Republicans in the Tennessee House last week bucked the governor’s wishes by approving a two-year delay in the implementation of the curriculum and testing standards.

– The Associated Press

JPMorgan Selling Physical Commodities Business

JPMorgan said on Wednesday that it has made a deal to sell its physical commodities business for $3.5 billion, after new regulations crimped its ability to control power plants, warehouses, and oil refineries.

If it’s approved by regulators, the deal would put the commodities business in the hands of energy and commodities trading company Mercuria Energy Group Ltd.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. said Wednesday that after the sale it will still provide traditional banking activities in the commodities markets. It will also continue to make markets, provide liquidity and risk management and offer advice to global companies and institutions.

– The Associated Press

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RECORD TOTALS DAY WEEK YEAR
PROPERTY SALES 110 154 13,810
MORTGAGES 135 193 18,019
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 1 29 3,534
BUILDING PERMITS 430 430 32,733
BANKRUPTCIES 52 130 13,133
BUSINESS LICENSES 20 45 4,750
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 83 204 20,104
MARRIAGE LICENSES 0 33 4,230

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