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VOL. 129 | NO. 56 | Friday, March 21, 2014

Daily Digest

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Owner of New Getwell Facility Files $1.2M Loan

The owner of the 110,808-square-foot industrial facility at 4050 New Getwell Road in Oakhaven has filed a $1.2 million loan on the property.

Arkansas Air Inc. filed the deed of trust and fixture filing, assignment of rents and security agreement March 13 through Cadence Bank NA. Richard Atkins signed the deed as secretary/treasurer of the borrower.

The Class B warehouse storage building, which houses BPI Packaging, was built in 1967 and sits on 5.2 acres on the east side of New Getwell Road just north of its intersection with East Raines Road.

Arkansas Air bought the property in 2003 for $2 million from Plaza Partnership.

The Shelby County Assessor of Property’s 2013 appraisal was $1.9 million.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Daily News staff

East Buntyn Gearing Up for Artwalk Festival

Memphis’ East Buntyn neighborhood is gearing up for the fifth annual East Buntyn Artwalk, a celebration of art and community that happens April 27.

St. James Church at 461 S. Prescott St. will serve as the event’s hub, hosting live music, a silent auction, food trucks and more. For the event, homeowners will host regional artists in their front yards to create an open-air bazaar of galleries around the neighborhood. The galleries will display and sell work and will represent an expected pool of more than 60 artists.

St. James Church also will host a silent auction tent, live entertainment and food trucks.

– Andy Meek

Bill Changes Way Charter Schools Authorized

The state Senate has approved legislation that changes the way certain charter schools are authorized.

The measure sponsored by Republican Sen. Dolores Gresham of Somerville was approved 20-12 on Thursday. The House version was approved 62-30 last year. It must now approve technical changes made by the Senate before heading to the governor for his consideration.

Under the legislation, the State Board of Education would become an authorizer and be able to overrule local school board decisions on charter applications in five counties where there are failing schools.

Those counties include the state’s four largest cities: Davidson, Hamilton, Knox and Shelby. Hardeman County also would be affected.

Currently, local school boards decide whether to authorize a charter application, and opponents of the legislation say it should stay that way.

– The Associated Press

IRS Says Tennesseans Owed $12.8 Million for 2010

The Internal Revenue Service says more than 16,000 Tennesseans who didn’t file their tax returns in 2010 are due refunds totaling more than $12.8 million.

The IRS says those who are owed refunds have a deadline of April 15 to file their 2010 tax return in order to collect the money.

There is no penalty for filing late for a refund. However, in order to get the money, taxpayers have three years to file a return to claim a refund.

Nationwide, more than 900,000 people who did not file a tax return in 2010 are due almost $760 million in refunds.

If the refund is not claimed within the three-year window, the money becomes the property of the U.S. Treasury.

– The Associated Press

Attorney General Election Measure Fails in Senate

A proposed constitutional amendment calling for the popular election of the state’s attorney general has failed again in the Senate.

The measure sponsored by Republican Sen. Mae Beavers of Mt. Juliet was defeated 16-15 on Thursday after failing to get a majority of 17 votes. It failed to pass 15-14 last month.

Under the state’s constitution, the attorney general is appointed to an eight-year term by the state Supreme Court.

Senate Majority Leader Jim Kyle was the only Democrat to vote for the measure on Thursday.

Kyle has said the popular election of the attorney general could present the best opportunity for a Democrat to run a competitive statewide race. The only current positions elected by the entire state are the governor and the Tennessee’s two U.S. senators.

Under Senate rules, Beavers cannot bring the measure up again.

– The Associated Press

Sales of US Existing Homes Slip to 19-Month Low

Sales of U.S. existing homes slipped in February to their lowest level since July 2012 as severe winter weather, rising prices and a tight supply of homes discouraged buyers.

The National Association of Realtors said Thursday that sales declined 0.4 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.6 million. That was the sixth decline in the past seven months.

Freezing temperatures and snowstorms likely kept many buyers from visiting open houses. And higher mortgage rates have weighed on sales since last fall.

Still, there were some signs that the market could pick up in the coming months. Sales improved in the South and West, where weather was less of a factor. And more people decided to sell, boosting the supply of available homes 6.4 percent to 2 million.

Home prices are rising despite the sluggish sales, a sign that the number of homes for sale remains low. The median sales price has risen 9.1 percent in the past year, the Realtors said, to $189,000.

Investors are accounting for an increasing share of purchases, while first-time buyers remain historically low. All-cash sales, which are mostly by investors, rose to 35 percent of purchases in February, up from 32 percent a year ago.

First-time buyers accounted for only 28 percent of sales in February, slightly more than in January. That’s far below the 40 percent that’s typical of a healthy market. First-time buyers are being held back by tight credit standards and high levels of student loan debt, the Realtors said.

Sales of existing homes climbed steadily in the first half of last year, reaching an annual pace of 5.38 million in July. And sales totaled 5.1 million in all of 2013, the most in seven years. That’s still below the 5.5 million that is consistent with a healthy housing market.

– The Associated Press

Average 30-Year Mortgage Falls to 4.32 Percent

Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages declined last week, edging closer to historically low levels.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday that the average rate for the 30-year loan fell to 4.32 percent from 4.37 percent last week. The average for the 15-year mortgage eased to 3.32 percent from 3.38 percent.

Mortgage rates have risen about a full percentage point since hitting record lows roughly a year ago.

The increase was driven by speculation that the Federal Reserve would reduce its $85 billion-a-month bond purchases, which have helped keep long-term interest rates low.

Deeming the economy to be gaining strength, the Fed announced in December and January — and again on Wednesday — that it was reducing its monthly bond purchases.

The Fed said after its latest two-day policy meeting that even after it raises short-term interest rates, the job market strengthens and inflation rises, the central bank expects its benchmark short-term rate to stay unusually low.

To calculate average mortgage rates, Freddie Mac surveys lenders across the country between Monday and Wednesday each week. The average doesn’t include extra fees, known as points, which most borrowers must pay to get the lowest rates. One point equals 1 percent of the loan amount.

The average fee for a 30-year mortgage was unchanged at 0.6 point. The fee for a 15-year loan also held steady at 0.6 point.

The average rate on a one-year adjustable-rate mortgage edged up to 2.49 percent from 2.48 percent. The average fee remained at 0.4 point.

The average rate on a five-year adjustable mortgage fell to 3.02 percent from 3.09 percent. The fee was unchanged at 0.4 point.

– The Associated Press

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RECORD TOTALS DAY WEEK YEAR
PROPERTY SALES 89 242 14,959
MORTGAGES 111 255 19,585
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 21 43 3,838
BUILDING PERMITS 153 512 35,842
BANKRUPTCIES 61 182 14,216
BUSINESS LICENSES 18 104 5,095
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 76 246 21,679
MARRIAGE LICENSES 16 75 4,632

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