Editorial Results (free)
1. The Week Ahead: March 14-20, 2016
- Monday, March 14, 2016
How was your weekend, Memphis? Here’s our weekly roundup of local happenings you need to know about, from the first look at the Greater Memphis Chamber’s proposed diversity program to a truly Irish celebration of St. Paddy’s Day.
2. EDGE Still Explaining Itself To Memphis, Shelby County Elected Leaders
- Tuesday, October 20, 2015
Four years into its existence, Reid Dulberger is still explaining the basics of a group created by Memphis Mayor A C Wharton and Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell to streamline local economic development efforts.
3. Developers Officially Pull Out of Mall of Memphis Project
- Saturday, October 03, 2015
Developers of the former Mall of Memphis site said the fate of their proposed 1.1 million-square-foot industrial park couldn’t wait another month, and now they’re likely taking the property to sale.
4. Developers Pull Out of Mall of Memphis Project
- Wednesday, September 30, 2015
Developers of the former Mall of Memphis site said the fate of their proposed 1.1 million-square-foot industrial park couldn't wait another month, and now they're likely taking the property to sale.
5. Tax Incentive Changes Causing Headaches for Memphis Mayoral Candidates
- Wednesday, September 23, 2015
The four major candidates for Memphis mayor all have some version of the same basic answer to questions about tax incentives for economic development.
The answer: Tax incentives, and particularly payment-in-lieu-of-taxes incentives, are not the best way to grow the city’s economy and perhaps should be examined and changed. All four agree that they can’t be done away with entirely, even though the candidates’ opinions on potential changes differ.
6. Developers Threaten to Pull Out of Mall of Memphis Site
- Thursday, September 17, 2015
Developers of the former Mall of Memphis site were again delayed as the board of the Economic Development Growth Engine tabled a vote on a payment-in-lieu-of-taxes benefit for the speculative industrial site.
7. New Tax Incentive Aims to Boost Declining Memphis Neighborhoods
- Wednesday, September 16, 2015
Just north of Interstate 40, the commercially empty gateways to the Frayser neighborhood between North Hollywood Street and North Watkins Street are hardly fit to accommodate the thousands of vehicles that pass by every day.
8. Wanda Halbert to Run for City Court Clerk
- Tuesday, April 21, 2015
Memphis City Council member Wanda Halbert will not seek re-election in this year’s city elections and will instead run for City Court Clerk.
Halbert planned to pull a petition Monday, April 20, for the challenge of incumbent clerk Thomas Long.
9. Halbert Passes on Council Re-election Bid To Go For City Court Clerk
- Saturday, April 18, 2015
Memphis City Council member Wanda Halbert will not seek re-election in this year's city elections and will instead run for City Court Clerk.
Halbert plans to pull a petition Monday, April 20, for the challenge of incumbent clerk Thomas Long.
10. Farm & Gin
- Tuesday, March 03, 2015
Jacob Waters isn’t old enough to drive a car yet. But, by his own account, he has driven a tractor a few times.
11. EDGE Leader Faults 'Vague' Concerns About Incentives
- Tuesday, February 24, 2015
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.
12. Sen. Alexander Sheds Feel-Good Image in Tennessee Race
- Friday, October 10, 2014
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Forget the syrupy, feel-good message so common to Lamar Alexander's past political campaigns. This time, the Tennessee Republican is going into attack mode.
With early voting in the U.S. Senate race set to kick off next week, the two-term incumbent has unleashed two television ads hammering his previously little-known Democratic opponent, Gordon Ball, as a proxy for President Barack Obama and as a "slick-talking personal injury lawyer."
13. Pressure Builds to Grant More Tax Breaks
- Monday, August 11, 2014
The head of the Economic Development Growth Engine organization says there is another side to the controversy over granting property tax abatements through payments-in-lieu-of-taxes that isn’t heard in the current civic discussion about the incentives.
14. Debt and Liability
- Saturday, January 04, 2014
There is rarely a good answer to the question “How much?” in politics.
With issues including the unfunded pension liability, overall debt, and revenue estimates and their validity, City Hall’s overall money problem begins but hardly ends with the question. It won’t be that simple.
15. In Reversal, Obama to Allow Canceled Health Plans
- Friday, November 15, 2013
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.
16. New House GOP Plan as Debt-Limit Deadline Nears
- Wednesday, October 16, 2013
WASHINGTON (AP) – Time growing desperately short, House Republicans pushed for passage of legislation late Tuesday to prevent a threatened Treasury default, end a 15-day partial government shutdown and extricate divided government from its latest brush with a full political meltdown.
17. Cohen, Fincher Embody Washington Divide
- Wednesday, October 09, 2013
The two congressmen who represent Shelby County in Washington couldn’t disagree more on the cause of the government shutdown and its coming intersection with the national debt ceiling.
“It’s the Republicans that are the problem,” Democratic U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen said Monday, Oct. 7, before leaving Memphis to catch a flight for Washington. “It’s folly what they are talking about, and they know that now. … They wanted a government shutdown – yippee-ki-yay.”
18. Tricky Obstacles Ahead to Averting Shutdown
- Monday, July 29, 2013
WASHINGTON (AP) – Despite pressure from some liberal Democrats for a September showdown in hopes of ending huge automatic, government-shrinking spending cuts, Washington appears on track to avert what would be the first government shutdown in nearly two decades.
19. Changing Times
- Saturday, March 02, 2013
After a four-decade existence, the Morgan Keegan name has been retired.
The announcement Raymond James Financial Inc. is dropping the Morgan Keegan name was made during Raymond James’ first quarter earnings conference call last month. Raymond James CEO Paul Reilly was giving analysts listening to the call an update on the firm’s acquisition of the Memphis investment firm last year and its integration since then.
20. City Could Reconsider Sales Tax Hike
- Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Just days after voters in Memphis and unincorporated Shelby County voted down the idea of a half-cent countywide sales tax hike, there was renewed talk at Memphis City Hall about a citywide sales tax hike.
21. Council Delays Anti-Discrimination Ordinance
- Thursday, September 20, 2012
When the Memphis City Council got to the real intent this week of the latest version of an anti-discrimination ordinance it has been debating off and on for two years, it wasn’t just a decision about including “sexual orientation” in the wording.
22. Cohen Talks About Opponents, Schools, Race and His Political Past
- Monday, July 23, 2012
U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen is running for a fourth term in Congress starting with the Aug. 2 primary, in which he is being challenged by countywide school board member Tomeka Hart.
23. Building Blitz
- Wednesday, June 06, 2012
Some of the city’s prominent homebuilders huddled up at McDonald’s on Winchester and Tchulahoma roads around 4:30 a.m. on Monday, June 4, trying to decide what the weather had in store for the first morning of the Habitat for Humanity of Greater Memphis/Memphis Area Home Builders Association Home Builders Blitz.
- Monday, May 21, 2012
The Orphanos Foundation will hold its fifth annual golf fundraiser Monday, May 21, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Spring Creek Ranch, 149 Chinquapin Drive. Pilot Steve Scheibner will speak at the event. Cost is $350 per person. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 458-9500 for details and to register.
25. Habitat for Humanity Preps for Home Builders Blitz
- Thursday, May 10, 2012
Habitat for Humanity of Greater Memphis, the Memphis Area Home Builders Association and Emmy Award-winning television personality Steve Thomas will join forces Monday, June 4, to kickoff Habitat for Humanity International’s Home Builders Blitz 2012.
26. White House Threatens to Veto Boehner's House Plan
- Wednesday, July 27, 2011
WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House threatened on Tuesday to veto emergency House legislation that aims to avert a threatened national default, a pre-emptive strike issued as Republican Speaker John Boehner labored to line up enough votes in his own party to pass the measure.
27. Couple Of Firecrackers
- Friday, July 01, 2011
RUNNING FULL CIRCLE. This July Fourth weekend, I’ll be doing what many of you will be doing. Dealing with some part of a pig and some brand of beer, laughing with folks, and hopefully pausing to be hopeful, remembering those who made and make it possible for all of us to do all of that. I’ll also be doing what a couple hundred guys in our forces in Afghanistan will be doing – remembering two cute Memphis girls.
28. Time to Shine Lights on Tiger Lane
- Wednesday, September 08, 2010
The $15 million Tiger Lane project at the Mid-South Fairgrounds will get a “blue” opening Wednesday evening.
The blue isn’t from the University of Memphis Tigers’ opening loss of the football season. It is strings of blue lights from the East Parkway entrance to the western wall of the Liberty Bowl stadium.
29. Fairgrounds Work Continues Despite Flux
- Thursday, March 18, 2010
On his way home from church one Sunday last month, Kevin Kane and his family decided to go by the Mid-South Fairgrounds to see what was left of the Zippin Pippin.
30. Fairgrounds Jump Start on Council's Agenda
- Tuesday, March 09, 2010
Memphis City Council members will be called on today to jump start the stalled renovation of The Fairgrounds.
The push by the Liberty Bowl's three tenants is to get an immediate council vote on a plan to create a great lawn at the Fairgrounds and demolish seven buildings including the Pipkin Building.
An ad hoc committee including council members and representatives of the three tenants met Monday evening to talk about current demolition underway at the Fairgrounds.
The demolition of the old Libertyland amusement park caused some concern when it went into a parking area outside the park.
Southern Heritage Classic founder Fred Jones immediately began expressing concerns that the new activity as well as the digging of a temporary siltation pond would cut the number of parking spaces available for his annual Jackson State-Tennessee State football matchup.
The work was stopped several weeks ago as the council tried to sort out where the demolition ended and the creation of a “great lawn” during the brief tenure of Mayor Pro Tempore Myron Lowery began.
“There’s a whole lot of work still being done,” Jones told the committee Monday evening of what he had seen earlier that day.
City Housing and Community Development director Robert Lipscomb said it was only a “clean up” of the area.
At Monday’s meeting, the three tenants of the football stadium said they back going ahead with the great lawn project as long as the lawn, in some form, and a plan to demolish the seven buildings, most of which are livestock barns, can all be done by the time football resumes at the Liberty Bowl with the Sept. 11 Southern Heritage Classic.
Some of the demolition contracts run out next week.
Jones said he supports the concept of a great lawn from East Parkway to the stadium. But he questioned whether the plans would increase the number of parking spaces from the current 5,372 within the Fairgrounds property to 7,568.
“We need to know exactly what we have. I don’t mean conceptually,” Jones said. “You’re not creating new spaces.”
Architect Tom Marshall, the city’s consultant on the project, insisted new and more parking will be created with the demolition of the buildings and Libertyland.
Marshall offered to come up with a detailed map showing individual parking spaces for today’s council discussion expected to begin during executive session at 1pm.
“I’ll even put in big cars,” he told Jones at one point.
Jones was the only no vote in the seven member committee vote to ask the city council for immediate approval of the project.
“I’m not really satisfied with what I’ve seen,” he said after he and others said the work by some divisions of the city including the Park Services division didn’t mesh with what other parts of city government were saying. “It’s just too convenient that the park services people weren’t here. Every time we say there is additional parking, I have not seen it.”
Council member Reid Hedgepeth moderated the session, trying to keep all of those involved from discussing past mis-steps.
“From now on people are going to know what’s happening,” he said. “If we’re going to do it, let’s do it. If not … let’s send them home,” he said referring to demolition crews.
Liberty Bowl executive director Steve Ehrhart said pre bowl game events should have some kind of building on the grounds to host them. Lipscomb said a tent will serve the purpose even though Ehrhart would prefer one of the surviving Fairgrounds buildings.
“A tent would be better than those buildings,” Lipscomb said.
Marshall estimated what is known as phase one of The Fairgrounds overhaul could cost $6-million to $9-million. There are no plans for a second phase or anything else beyond the great lawn and the building demolition.
The phase one cost could vary depending on bids and design work still to be done. Construction would start in June. But the council could vote on a specific design in April or May.
“We’re supportive of it,” University of Memphis athletic director R.C. Johnson said near the end of the two hour session. “I’m more and more concerned about the land. But we want to move on it.”
The construction of the Salvation Army Kroc Center on a Fairgrounds lot along East Parkway next to Fairview Junior High School is independent of the city’s on again-off again plans for the rest of the Fairgrounds property including phase one....
31. UPDATE: Council To Be Asked To Jump Start Fairgrounds Project
- Monday, March 08, 2010
Memphis City Council members will be on the deciding end Tuesday of a push to get an immediate council vote on a plan to create a great lawn at the Fairgrounds and demolish seven buildings including the Pipkin Building.
32. Health Care Legislation Could Affect Local Medical Industry
- Wednesday, December 02, 2009
Medical device makers will pick up a $20 billion tab to help cover the cost of insuring more Americans under legislation pending in Congress to overhaul the health care system.
That’s half of what was originally proposed in the bill put forth by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. Even so, industry executives are keeping a close watch on the legislation. It could have an impact on the Memphis economy where thousands of people work for Medtronic Inc., Smith & Nephew, Wright Medical Group Inc. and several smaller companies that manufacture orthopedic products and other medical devices.
33. SPIN METER: ‘War and Peace’ In 209 Pages?
- Friday, November 27, 2009
WASHINGTON (AP) – Republicans are using everything short of forklifts to show Americans that Democratic health care legislation is an unwieldy mountain of paper.
They pile it high on desks, hoist it on a shoulder trussed in sturdy rope and tell people it’s longer than “War and Peace,” which it isn’t.
34. Chaotic Council Welcomes Wharton To ‘Land of Fire’
- Thursday, October 22, 2009
Memphis Mayor-elect A C Wharton Jr. got an early welcome to the ways of City Hall in the week before he took the oath of office.
It came from the City Council he will serve with for the next two years.
35. Greenville, S.C., Publisher Elected SNPA President
- Tuesday, October 20, 2009
NAPLES, Fla. (AP) - Steve Brandt, president and publisher of The Greenville (S.C.) News, was elected president of the Southern Newspaper Publishers Association during the SNPA's annual convention Monday.
36. Commission To Foster Ties Between Memphis, Berlin
- Monday, August 03, 2009
The Shelby County Commission is likely to give its support today to a resolution encouraging a budding film industry alliance between Memphis and Berlin spurred by Memphis Film Commissioner Linn Sitler.
37. Life After City Hall: The story behind Herenton’s Washington surprise
- Thursday, May 07, 2009
You would think that Mayor Willie Herenton’s “resignation” last spring as he thought about trying out for Memphis City Schools superintendent would be difficult to top.
38. Council Again Rejects Lee Legal Fees
- Tuesday, December 02, 2008
The Memphis City Council this evening affirmed its vote in Oct. to reject paying the legal fees of former Memphis Light Gas & Water Division president Joseph Lee.
The bill for Lee’s legal defense in a grand jury probe that led to his indictment as well as a hearing before the council came to $426,422. The corruption charges were later dropped by federal prosecutors.
The 7-6 vote came at the end of a day in which MLGW president Jerry Collins told council members talks between the utility and Lee’s attorney, Robert Spence, failed to reach any terms for a lesser amount.
Council members voting against the proposed settlement were: Bill Boyd, Kemp Conrad, Shea Flinn, Reid Hedgepeth, Myron Lowery, Bill Morrison and Jim Strickland. Those voting for it were: Joe Brown, Harold Collins, Edmund Ford Jr., Janis Fullilove, Wanda Halbert and Barbara Swearengen Ware.
Spence told The Daily News an announcement on a decision by Lee about pursuing the legal fees in a lawsuit against the city could be made as early as Tuesday.
The council has also given final approval this evening to an ordinance regulating the location of financial services, payday loan and title loan businesses.
The council vote was unanimous on third and final reading. Third and final vote before the Shelby County Commission is scheduled for Dec. 8.
The council passed an amended version that emerged as a compromise during today’s council session.
The ordinance bans the businesses from being with 1,000 feet of each other. The compromise worked out by council member Bill Morrison, with agreement from the payday loan industry, deals with a 90 day grace period for existing businesses to apply for a waiver.
Council member Barbara Swearengen Ware argued the location of the businesses isn’t the problem. It’s the high interest rates the companies charge – up to 264 percent annually.
“We need to deal with the root of the problem,” she said. “And if we could regulate how much (of an) interest rate is charged or how much the fees are, then we would be doing a service to the community,” Ware said. “I know we mean well here, but it’s supply and demand that is driving these businesses.”
But usery rates are regulated by the state and not the city council.
Morrison said the businesses cluster in his district which covers Frayser and Raleigh. Frayser is among the areas of the city hardest hit by home foreclosures.
Council member Harold Collins, whose district includes Hickory Hill – also hit hard by home foreclosures – said there is a connection. He counted at least 20 pay day lenders along one stretch of Winchester.
“Maybe they’re not contributing to the fact that many of the people in my district are losing their homes. But they are sure out there,” he said. “There needs to be some kind of line drawn that will keep the people in Hickory Hill from losing their homes.”
Steve Lockwood, head of the Frayser Community Development Corporation, said the close proximity of the lenders allows people in desperate financial straits to get around a limit of two loans totaling $500 from a particular lender by simply going to the payday lender next door.
He termed the location limits “an opening shot across the bow.” He said his organization’s financial counselors see a connection between the lenders and foreclosures.
“I think that the neighborhoods that are really going to benefit from this are in Cordova,” Lockwood said. “If you want Cordova to look like Winchester or Frayser, don’t pass this.”
In other action, a Fairgrounds development agreement is tentatively set to have the first of three Memphis City Council votes in two weeks.
The city picked Fair Ground LLC to develop a master plan for the property that includes the Mid-South Coliseum, The Liberty Bowl and The Children’s Museum of Memphis. What is still being worked out is a contract with the terms for drawing up that master plan.
There are still several formidable obstacles to putting a development agreement in writing.
Shelby County government owns some of the Fairgrounds land including some of the land under The Liberty Bowl.
City Housing & Community Development director Robert Lipscomb told City Council members he will again pursue an agreement in which the county would sell its share in The Fairgrounds as well as The Pyramid.
The Shelby County Commission rejected such a sell-off by the county during consideration of a development agreement for The Pyramid involving Bass Pro Shops.
The commission eventually approved the development agreement after the agreement won approval from the city council.
Without a sell-off, the Fairgrounds development agreement appears on its way to the same dual track debate and voting process.
Lipscomb also told The Daily News there are conflicting legal opinions on the amount of public infrastructure financing the city would have to put up to leverage private investment.
He said the amounts vary from $75 million to $200 million. The city is seeking legal opinions on the public amount required under terms of Tourism Development Zone (TDZ) financing. If the amount is $200 million or close to it, Lipscomb said it makes the Fairgrounds renovation much harder to accomplish.
Henry Turley, one of several developer partners in Fair Ground LLC, said he considers the city’s contribution to be $75 million. Turley was instrumental in drafting the state legislation that allowed for the Tourism Development Zones.
The TDZs allow for financing of bonds through sales tax revenue generated in the designated area or zone.
Turley wants to include a big box retail store on the site and possibly a hotel according to tentative plans that are fluid on the location of those and other parts of an overall plan. The sales tax revenue from the store would go to pay off the TDZ bonds. No local government general fund revenue would be used....
39. Drug Industry Spends $13 Million on Thank-You Ads
- Monday, October 27, 2008
WASHINGTON (AP) - The pharmaceutical industry is underwriting one of the biggest issue ad campaigns of the election season – a $13 million televised thank-you to 28 lawmakers, most of them Democrats, who supported legislation last year to expand a children's health insurance program.
40. Council Rejects Billboard Developer With Ford Trial Ties
- Tuesday, May 13, 2008
One of the potential witnesses in this week’s federal corruption trial of former Memphis City Council member Edmund Ford remains a lightning rod for criticism among current council members.
The council last week rejected plans for a 48-acre industrial warehouse development near Memphis International Airport from landowner and billboard developer William H. Thomas Jr. They did so because there is a prevailing mood among council members that he does not play by the rules in his dealings with the city.
41. York Elected President Of Memphis Tri-State Fence Association
- Wednesday, May 07, 2008
Bill York, vice president of sales and marketing for Dillard Door and Entrance Central, has been elected president of the Memphis Tri-State Fence Association, a chapter of the American Fence Association (AFA).
42. Senate Housing Deal Smiles On Builders, Mortgage Cos.
- Friday, April 04, 2008
WASHINGTON (AP) - Homebuilders and the mortgage industry are emerging as big victors in a bipartisan agreement reached by Senate leaders on legislation designed to limit the housing crisis.
The $15 billion measure, announced Wednesday by Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and GOP leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, contains a $6 billion emergency tax break that would let companies use losses from 2008 and 2009 to offset profits earned over the previous four years, instead of the usual two-year timeframe.
43. Ruling Expected In Police Association Injunction Request
- Monday, March 10, 2008
The Herenton administration and the Memphis Police Association already are in court and contract negotiations between the two are just getting started.
U.S. District Court Judge Hardy Mays soon could issue a ruling on a request by the union for an injunction permitting its president, Lt. Gene Hulley, to take part in the bargaining. Mays heard Thursday from both sides in the federal lawsuit.
44. Cohen Plans to Sponsor Bill to Aid Immigrant Families Seeking Lifesaving Care
- Tuesday, June 19, 2007
GIBSONIA, Pa. (AP) - After months of fundraising, a New Zealand family traveled 8,500 miles to Pittsburgh for a stomach, bowel and pancreas transplant that could save their 6-year-old daughter's life.
45. BBAC Slated to Buy Back Yard Burgers Chain For Almost $40M
- Tuesday, June 12, 2007
Back Yard Burgers Inc. will be acquired this year by the Atlanta-based private equity firm BBAC LLC and its wholly owned subsidiary BBAC Merger Sub Inc. for $38 million, the companies announced Monday.
46. U.S. Immigration Bill Hits Roadblock in Senate
- Monday, June 11, 2007
A broad immigration bill to legalize millions of people unlawfully in the U.S. suffered a stunning setback in the Senate Thursday, costing President Bush perhaps his best opportunity to win a top domestic priority.
47. Archived Article: Memos
- Wednesday, July 02, 2003
Memphis memos 07-02-03
Lisa Wright was given the Presidential Honors Award in BellSouths service leader program for exemplary service to business, residential or wholesale customers. The award is the highest given for customer service within the ...
48. Archived Article: Law Briefs
- Thursday, May 08, 2003
The Center for Managing Emerging Technology hosts its final Visions seminar for 2002-2003 beginning at 8:30 a
The Center for Managing Emerging Technology hosts its final Visions seminar for 2002-2003 beginning at 8:30 a.m. Friday at the Universit...
49. Archived Article: Memos
- Wednesday, January 30, 2002
American Freightways Inc Jonathan Steen and Steve Regenwether were made Armstrong Allen partners after having both served two years as firm associates. Steen was an associate with Armstrong Allen since 1999 in the Jackson, Tenn., office. His practic...
50. Archived Article: Memos
- Wednesday, June 24, 1998
Sheila Collins has been promoted to vice president at Arnoult & Associates Sheila Collins has been promoted to vice president at Arnoult & Associates. She formerly was project director and operations manager. Collins has an undergraduate deg...
51. Archived Article: Benchmark
- Thursday, May 22, 1997
Danny Silsbe vs Danny Silsbe vs. Steve M. Hansard, Jim Reid and First U.S. Management L.L.C. According to the suit, Commerce Ventures Inc. (CVI) was formed in early 1994 to engage in the principal business of promoting, developing, constructing and ...