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Editorial Results (free)

1. Gannett to Restructure Commercial Appeal -

The union that covers newsroom employees at The Commercial Appeal has begun the process of formally challenging a new series of cost-cutting and efficiency measures in the works at the paper, comparing the moves to “The Hunger Games.”

2. Gannett Plans Restructure of Commercial Appeal Newsroom -

The union that covers newsroom employees at The Commercial Appeal has begun the process of formally challenging a new series of cost-cutting and efficiency measures in the works at the paper, comparing the moves to “The Hunger Games.”

3. Last Word: Substation 68, Akbari's Convention Slot and Heartbreak Hotel -

Relief came on Sunday for Memphis Light Gas and Water customers in Arlington, Lakeland and a part of Bartlett who have been enduring the possibility of rolling blackouts and voluntary conservation measures in the worst heat of the summer for just shy of two weeks.

4. Dark Money Ads Surface in 8th District Primary -

As Republicans were either at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland or watching it on TV last week, “dark money” entered the crowded Republican primary for Tennessee’s 8th Congressional district.

5. White House: Budget Deficit to Rise to $600 Billion -

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House on Friday predicted that the government's budget deficit for the soon-to-end fiscal year will hit $600 billion, an increase of $162 billion over last year's tally and a reversal of a steady trend of large but improving deficits on President Barack Obama's watch.

6. After The Bridge -

Four and a half hours after it began Sunday, July 10, the city's most significant and largest Black Lives Matter protest ended with police in riot gear slowly walking a group of around 100 protesters off the Hernando DeSoto Bridge and south on Front Street.

7. Protest at Memphis Bridge Ends Peacefully -

Four and a half hours after it began Sunday, July 10, the city’s most significant and largest Black Lives Matter protest ended with police in riot gear slowly walking a group of around 100 protesters off the Hernando DeSoto Bridge to Front Street.

8. Black Lives Matter Protest Draws Thousands In Memphis Protest Milestone -

Four and a half hours after it began Sunday, July 10, the city's most significant and largest Black Lives Matter protest ended with police in riot gear slowly walking a group of around 100 protesters off the Hernando DeSoto Bridge and south on Front Street.

9. 3-Story Hotel Set to Rise In Southeast Shelby County -

7967 Lowrance Road
Shelby County, TN 38125

Permit Amount: $2.6 million

Issued Date: July 2016

10. Memphis Financial Pros Brace for More Brexit Fallout -

Markets are a little like patients going in for a medical checkup. Neither one likes big surprises.

Nevertheless, that’s what everyone got at week’s end after the United Kingdom voted to pull out of the European Union. And the first phone call that First Tennessee Bank chief investment officer Jerry Laurain got on the morning after the unexpected vote result was the kind investment professionals always brace for after market-moving shocks.

11. Last Word: Brexit, Grizz Picks in the NBA Draft and the Race for the 8th -

Brexit – British Exit – it is. The end of the European Union in the United Kingdom in Thursday’s referendum there began to make its presence known in financial markets even before the very close vote count was well established.

12. Yellen Says Uncertainties Justify Cautious Approach -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said Tuesday that the U.S. economy faces a number of uncertainties that require the Fed to proceed cautiously in raising interest rates.

13. The Week Ahead: June 20-26 -

Let’s get this week started, Memphis! Here’s our roundup of local happenings you need to know about, from a new headstone for one of the Beale Street Sheiks to an event to celebrate (and buy from) Memphis' maker community. 

14. Last Word: ServiceMaster Details, Loflin Yard Changes and Bridge Lighting -

The ServiceMaster local incentives for the new Peabody Place headquarters have cleared the first hurdle.

That was the Center City Revenue Finance Corporation’s Tuesday meeting. It’s on to the Center City Development Corporation Wednesday and then EDGE.

15. Tennessee A Namesake For New Periodic Element -

You'll soon see four new names on the periodic table of the elements, including three that honor Moscow, Japan and Tennessee.

The names are among four recommended Wednesday by an international scientific group. The fourth is named for a Russian scientist.

16. Last Word: Verdell Smith and Lifeline, Strickland's First 5 Months and Tennessine -

Lots of blue lights in Cordova Thursday evening as the Memphis Police Department remembers Officer Verdell Smith, who died in Saturday’s Downtown rampage in the line of duty. His funeral is Friday.

17. Periodic Table Elements Named for Moscow, Japan, Tennessee -

NEW YORK (AP) – You'll soon see four new names on the periodic table of the elements, including three that honor Moscow, Japan and Tennessee.

The names are among four recommended Wednesday by an international scientific group. The fourth is named for a Russian scientist.

18. Last Word: ServiceMaster's Choice, Democrats Regroup, Oprah Goes To Church -

The ServiceMaster headquarters search is over and the pick is a real surprise as office spaces goes – Peabody Place – not the office building but the shuttered mall south of the Peabody hotel.

19. Manning, Spurrier Debut on College Hall of Fame Ballot -

Peyton Manning and his old college football nemesis, Steve Spurrier, could enter the Hall of Fame at the same time.

Manning, who lost to Spurrier's Florida teams three times as starting quarterback for Tennessee, along with the retired Head Ball Coach are both making their first appearance on the College Football Hall of Fame ballot.

20. Snapshot: How Memphis-Based Public Companies are Faring -

Acquisitions have been a common theme among many Memphis-based public companies the past few quarters. Here is a roundup of those transactions and other business highlights from each of the companies.

21. West Cancer Doc Building Blood and Marrow Transplant Program -

As a measure of how far Dr. Yasser Khaled’s field has come, the medical director of the West Cancer Center’s recently formed Blood and Marrow Transplant Program still recalls some eye-opening statistics that date back to his early days in the field some 15 years ago.

22. A Graduation Speech to Inspire -

Graduation season comes with hundreds of commencement addresses meant to encourage and inspire. If you didn’t hear one this year, allow me to share an address I gave.

“Did you ever hear something that so captivated your thoughts that it eventually defined the process of your decision-making? I did. It was a quote attributed to Rev. Martin Niemoller, a Lutheran minister, about his experiences in Germany during World War II.

23. Last Word: The Airport and Hotels, Loans and Musicians and Underground in Town -

That didn’t take long. Fired one day, hired the next for Dave Joerger now formerly of the Grizz.

24. Tennessee Leads the Nation in Bankruptcies -

Tennessee has a model program for financial literacy in its public schools. All high school students must pass a personal finance course to graduate, and even kindergartners are learning about money under a new initiative to extend the curriculum to primary school.

25. Massacre: 1866 and the Battles Over How Memphis History is Told -

At the end of March with much secrecy, Rev. Keith Norman took delivery and responsibility for a large, heavy crate that stayed in his office for the next month.

“Don’t tell anybody, don’t let anybody get it, if they come in and say they work for the park commission or anybody, tell them to show identification,” were the instructions said Norman, who is president of the Memphis Branch NAACP.

26. 1866 Memphis Massacre Anniversary Draws Historians -

South Street is now named G.E Patterson Boulevard in one of two name changes since the thoroughfare was a dirt road trod by horses and the wagons they pulled.

The only reminder of the street’s status as an epicenter of the violence 150 years ago this month that killed 46 people and burned every black church and school in the city to the ground is a plaque unveiled Sunday, May 1, in Army Park.

27. Focusing on Financial Literacy -

Teaching Memphians how to manage money is of vital importance to helping our community members achieve their personal and financial goals. April is Financial Literacy Month – a national initiative offering an opportunity for individuals to learn how to adopt effective financial strategies.

28. 'Fight for 15' Campaign to Target McDonald's Stores April 14 -

NEW YORK (AP) – McDonald's customers stopping in for a Big Mac on the eve of Tax Day may be greeted by demonstrators calling for pay of $15 an hour and a union.

Labor organizers say they're planning another day of strikes and protests exclusively targeting McDonald's stores in dozens of cities on April 14, following similar demonstrations outside a variety of fast-food restaurants a year ago.

29. Over $20M in Construction Headed to Brewery District -

495 Tennessee St.
Memphis, TN 38103

Permit Amount: $18.8 million

Owner: 495 Tennessee LLC

Tenant: Brewery Master Tenant

30. Last Word: D-Day, Opera Festival Returns and Buying GMF After the Bond Default -

This is what you might call D-Day in Nashville. The “D’ in this case stands for deannexation.
The bill to permit deannexation by referendum has in the course of two weeks become the city’s dominant political issue.

31. Up, Up and Away -

The modern-day drone is both a high-tech military tool and a safer way to play humanitarian and deliver medicine and supplies to the suffering people of war-torn Syria.

The drone is everything from a stalking device to track poachers creeping through the South African bush hunting rhinos to the impetus for a potential commercial growth industry right here in Memphis.

32. Strickland Backs No-Gang Zones in Legal Challenge -

Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland says court-ordered zones that forbid alleged gang members from gathering or associating in public within the zone are working as a crime-fighting tactic.

33. March 4-10, 2016: This Week in Memphis History -

1966: On the front page of The Daily News, Memphis State University begins season ticket sales for the Tigers’ 1966 season with 5,000 more prime seats available.
The student section at Memphis Memorial Stadium is moved to the east side of the stadium from its former location on the same side as the season ticket holders.
Season tickets at a rate of $20 per ticket – $3 less than buying individual tickets to the five home games – can also be bought for the first time through Dixiemart and Corondolet stores, along with 200 other retailers, by using the charge accounts for those stores.
And there is the “Tiger Note” method through the big three local banks – First National, National Bank of Commerce and Union Planters – as well as Murdock Insurance Corp. Tickets can be ordered on credit through the four institutions and paid later with no interest or carrying charges.

34. Last Word: The Road To Memphis, Medical District Plans and A Greensward Update -

The Republican presidential field is coming this way in the gap between early voting, which ends Tuesday evening, and the March 1 election day
Donald Trump, John Kasich and Ben Carson are booked for this coming weekend.

35. This week in Memphis history: February 5-11 -

1996: Rod Stewart at The Pyramid performing in the round.

1976: The USSR gymnastics team is in Memphis for an exhibition at the Mid-South Coliseum, part of the first U.S. tour by the Soviet team. The team is honored at a reception at the home of Beale Street USA president Ronald P. Barassi in East Memphis that features paintings of Beale. The street itself is fenced off and boarded up.

36. New Brass -

Just days before Toney Armstrong was off the city payroll, his successor as interim director of the Memphis Police Department, Michael Rallings, was getting used to the attention and ring kissing that comes with being the city’s top cop.

37. Midtown Memphis Ready for Apartment Building Boom -

It’s been more than a decade since new apartments were built in Midtown, and that’s poised to change in a big way with a wave of new multifamily construction stretching from Binghampton to Crosstown.

38. Events -

Ballet Memphis and The Booksellers at Laurelwood will host An Evening with Ballet Memphis: “Places” on Thursday, Feb. 4, at 7 p.m. at the bookstore, 387 Perkins Road Extended. Enjoy a night of drinks, discussion and dance with the minds behind Ballet Memphis’ latest show. Visit thebooksellersatlaurelwood.com.

39. Events -

Staxtacular 2016, the Soulsville Foundation’s largest fundraiser, will be held Friday, Jan. 29, at 7 p.m. at the Stax Museum, 926 E. McLemore Ave. Hosted by Vince Carter and the Memphis Grizzlies, “The Baller’s Ball” brings together the world of sports, music and philanthropy to benefit the Soulsville Foundation’s youth programs. Tickets are $175. Visit staxtacular.com.

40. The Week Ahead: Jan. 18, 2016 -

How was your weekend Memphis? Here are some local events to keep on your radar this week, from a full slate of MLK activities to a David Bowie tribute to a Marco Rubio fundraiser…

41. Last Word: SOTU React, OPEB Comeback and NFL Nostalgia -

The day after the last State of the Union address by President Barack Obama here's a breakdown of the reaction from our delegation to Washington.
Democratic U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen emphasized Obama's references to criminal justice reform.
"I know he is also committed to criminal justice reform and I hope my colleagues will work together to put meaningful reform on his desk," Cohen said.
Republican U.S. Rep. Stephen Fincher tweeted, "We need a plan to keep America safe and make America strong. I did not hear that from the President tonight."
Republican U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander: "If Pres. Obama focuses on what he agrees on with Congress instead of what we disagree on, there's quite a bit we could get done in 2016."
Republican U.S. Senator Bob Corker urged the "swift release" of U.S sailors being held overnight by Iran in a border dispute just before the speech.

42. Last Word: Legislature's Return, Uber Pilot, Minivan Comeback and Bowie's Exit -

The gavel falls in Nashville.
The Tennessee legislature is back in session Tuesday. This is an election year session for the legislature. So it will be short – likely an early April adjournment. But that doesn’t mean the session is without expectations from outside Nashville.

43. Last Word: El Chapo and Memphis, First Filers for August and Origins in Graffiti -

The Mississippi River at Memphis crested and then it rained.
The weekend rain added about two-tenths of an inch by Saturday to Friday’s crest.
But by Sunday, the river had dropped to 39.12 feet, which is still more than five feet above flood stage.

44. Sutherland Named HR Manager At CDS -

Renee’ Sutherland has joined Central Defense Staffing as the human resource manager. In her role, she is responsible for conducting recruitment efforts, training and development of employees, employee relations, conflict resolution and workers’ compensation. She has a team that consists of recruiters, coordinators and administrative support workers.

45. Council’s First Meeting of 2016 Includes 2015 Leftovers -

Memphis City Council members begin their first council day of the year Tuesday, Jan. 5, with a slate of a dozen appointments by Mayor Jim Strickland.

46. Union Vote Certified at Volkswagen Plant in Tennessee -

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) — The National Labor Relations Board has certified the United Auto Workers win in a union vote among skilled workers at the Volkswagen plant in Tennessee.

The German automaker has said it will challenge a ruling that allowed the 162 workers who repair and maintain machinery and robots at the Chattanooga factory to seek to form their own bargaining unit.

47. Council Approves $4M Loan for Belz’s Midtown Market -

The mixed-use project at Union Avenue and McLean Boulevard got a $4 million federal boost with a proposal from developers Belz Enterprises and Harbor Retail Partners clearing the Memphis City Council Tuesday, Dec. 15.

48. Obama Signs 5-Year Infrastructure Spending Bill -

WASHINGTON (AP) – A 5-year, $305-billion bill to address the nation's aging and congested transportation systems was signed into law Friday by President Barack Obama, who said it will put Americans to work and provide states with the federal help they need to commit to long-term projects.

49. Memphis' Grocery Wars -

After Sprouts became one of the newest grocery chains to enter the Memphis market by opening stores in Lakeland and Germantown earlier this year, company spokesman Diego Romero described the chain’s arrival as practically a no-brainer.

50. Turbett Joins First Horizon as CRA Officer -

Keith D. Turbett has joined First Horizon National Corp., parent company of First Tennessee Bank, as corporate Community Reinvestment Act officer and community development manager. In that role, Turbett ensures First Tennessee is making credit and financial products available in all parts of the community, consistent with safe and sound banking practices.

51. City Council to Vote on Idlewild Gate, Water Rate Hike -

A gate across Idlewild Street between two competing supermarket projects in Midtown tops the Memphis City Council’s next-to-last meeting of the year.

The council is to vote Tuesday, Dec. 1, on a resolution that would close Idlewild south of Union Avenue to vehicular traffic and install a gate. The reason, according to the resolution, is to prevent motorists coming from Union Avenue and the two developments from cutting through the residential area.

52. The Week Ahead: Nov. 23, 2015 -

How was your weekend, Memphis? Here’s our weekly rundown of local happenings you need to know about, from The Peabody’s 36-foot dessert table to your potential (fingers-crossed, maybe not) last chance to see Paxton Lynch at the Liberty Bowl…

53. MIFA Takes Over Memphis’ Homeless Hotline, Will Staff 24/7 -

If there was any doubt that the city’s homeless hotline for families with children needed to be manned 24/7, that question was erased in the first two weeks the hotline was operated by the Metropolitan Inter-Faith Association.

54. Events -

Talk Shoppe will meet Wednesday, Oct. 7, from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. at the University of Phoenix, 65 Germantown Court, first floor. David Stolze with Got You Covered Roofing will present “What to Look for in Hiring a Quality Roofer.” Cost is free. Visit talkshoppe.com.

55. Events -

Touchdown Club of Memphis will meet Monday, Oct. 5, from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Chickasaw Country Club, 3395 Galloway Ave. University of Memphis head coach Justin Fuente is the guest speaker. Cost is $60. Visit tdcmemphis.com.

56. Shifting Memphis Media Market, Like Every Other, In Flux -

Lauren Lee never picks up a newspaper. Which isn’t much of a surprise because she’s 33 years old, works in marketing, and has the technological savvy and finger dexterity to operate a smartphone.

57. Methodist Healthcare Joins Mayo Clinic Care Network -

Methodist Healthcare has joined the Mayo Clinic Care Network, a partnership that’s been about a year in the making and adds the Memphis-based institution to a national network of health care providers.

58. Methodist Joins Mayo Clinic Care Network -

Methodist Healthcare has joined the Mayo Clinic Care Network, a partnership that’s been about a year in the making and adds the Memphis-based institution to a national network of health care providers.

59. With No Real Rival, Tennessee Republicans Attack Their Own -

Republicans are sitting in Tennessee’s political catbird seat, but that doesn’t keep them from flying off in different directions.

Elected political leaders of the same stripe found themselves at odds this year over the Bible as a state book, Common Core education standards and Insure Tennessee, Republican Gov. Bill Haslam’s plan to catch 280,000 people in a medical coverage gap.

60. This Week in Memphis History: July 10-16 -

1990: Janet Jackson plays the Mid-South Coliseum.

1973: Father Don Mowery makes an appearance on the “Today” show to talk about his Youth Service USA program, a Memphis-based initiative with a national reach that began at the Memphis Naval Air Station at Millington in the late 1960s.

61. New Hotel Planned for Downtown Memphis -

Two Ohio-based development firms plan to build a new hotel on a vacant site in Downtown Memphis.

The Orlean Co. of Beachwood, Ohio, and Ceres Development LLC of Westlake, Ohio, plan on building a Cambria Suites on a 3.3-acre lot on the south side of Union across from Fourth Street, just west of Danny Thomas Boulevard.

62. Southern Heritage Defined Differently Across Tennessee -

Tennessee’s loyalty was divided in the Civil War, and 150 years later, little is changed as the debate over Confederate symbols arises in the wake of the racist-fueled South Carolina church massacre.

63. Mark Mosteller Joins Evolve Bank & Trust -

Mark E. Mosteller Sr. recently joined Evolve Bank & Trust as executive vice president, accounting and finance.
The new role includes a variety of responsibilities, including management of the accounting and finance department team, accounting internal controls, internal and external financial reporting, budgeting and forecasting, taxes and treasury management. Mosteller also works with senior and executive management and the board on accounting, finance and operational issues.

64. Building Green in a Red-Hot Market -

Counting cranes has become a Nashville pastime, and the perks of all that development are clear – a robust economy, vibrant real estate market and more jobs.

Naturally, there is concern among some residents that all of the construction and increased population could harm the area’s environment, water and air quality and green space.

65. NTSB: Amtrak Engineer Wasn't Talking, Texting on Cellphone -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The engineer in last month's fatal Amtrak crash wasn't using his cellphone to talk, text or download anything just before the train sped off the tracks, investigators said Wednesday, addressing one big question about what might have caused the accident but only deepening the mystery of what did.

66. Events -

Central Defense Staffing will host a recruitment event Thursday, June 11, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 6084 Apple Tree Drive, suite 10. CDS is seeking to fill specific warehouse positions in Memphis and North Mississippi. Visit centraldefensestaffing.com or call 901-473-6385.

67. Events -

The Booksellers at Laurelwood will host the Boldly Bookish YA Tour Wednesday, June 10, at 6:30 p.m. at the bookstore, 387 Perkins Road Extended. Meet four of Bloomsbury Publishing’s breakout YA authors Visit thebooksellersatlaurelwood.com.

68. David Lusk Gallery Relocates to Flicker Street for Now -

Change, milestones, new beginnings – they’re all on the mind of David Lusk at the moment, now that he’s wound things down at his gallery’s longtime home in the Laurelwood Shopping Center to undertake a relocation.

69. AutoZone Park Ranked No. 2 in Minor Leagues -

When AutoZone Park opened in 2000, with an exhibition game against the St. Louis Cardinals, it was the undisputed best ballpark below the major leagues. Before the first pitch was ever thrown, everyone from then-Cardinals manager Tony La Russa to then-beloved slugger Mark McGwire raved about the gorgeous new ballpark at Third Street and Union Avenue.

70. AutoZone Park Ranked No. 2 Among Minor League Parks -

When AutoZone Park opened in 2000, with an exhibition game against the St. Louis Cardinals, it was the undisputed best ballpark below the major leagues. Before the first pitch was ever thrown, everyone from then-Cardinals manager Tony La Russa to then-beloved slugger Mark McGwire raved about the gorgeous new ballpark at Third Street and Union Avenue.

71. Creative Class Boosting Downtown Memphis Office Market -

With the clock on its Downtown office sublease running, officials at Sullivan Branding began looking for a new home.

The Memphis-based marketing, advertising and public relations firm needed a dynamic environment, one that would appeal not just to clients but to existing and prospective employees.

72. May 8-14, 2015: This week in Memphis history -

2014: Republican presidential contenders Marco Rubio and Rand Paul visit Memphis for the Republican National Committee spring meeting at The Peabody. Rubio speaks at a closed gathering at Rendezvous restaurant. Paul meets privately with African-American pastors, then, in a public speech to RNC members, criticizes efforts by Republicans in state legislatures across the country to impose voter ID standards.

73. UAW Reports 55 Percent Membership at VW Plant in Tennessee -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The United Auto Workers union has 816 members at the Volkswagen plant in Tennessee, or about 55 percent of the total blue collar work force, according the union's latest disclosure with the U.S. Department of Labor.

74. This Week in Memphis History: April 24-30 -

2014: The Memphis Grizzlies lose to the Oklahoma City Thunder 92-89 in overtime at FedExForum before a sold-out crowd. The loss evened the NBA Playoffs series to 2-2. Meanwhile, in Chicago, Michael Heisley, the team’s former owner who moved the franchise from Vancouver to Memphis, dies.

75. US Home Sales Bounced Back in March, But Can the Gain Last? -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. home sales bloomed in March after a brutal winter, a sign of possible newfound momentum for housing.

Sales of existing homes jumped 6.1 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.19 million, the National Association of Realtors said Wednesday. The gains were solid enough to suggest that housing might be returning to stable footing after enduring a boom, a bust and a stubbornly tepid recovery over the past dozen years.

76. Biblical Lessons Lost in Lack of Health Care Debate -

Tennessee’s legislators spent hours this session arguing over guns and whether to pass a law making the Bible the state book of Tennessee.

In fact, the Bible bill took two days of debate in the House, where it passed, and thorough discussion in the Senate, before it died – at least until next year.

77. I Choose Memphis: Rodney J. Rowan -

“I Choose Memphis” spotlights Memphians who are passionate about calling this community home. New Memphis Institute provides the profiles.

Name: Rodney J. Rowan

Job title and company: Principal, Cherokee Elementary School, SCS I-Zone School

78. Bill Would Make Bible Official State Book of Tennessee -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Despite concerns that giving the holy Bible the same status as a salamander is a little tawdry and could be unconstitutional, Tennessee lawmakers are forging ahead with plans to make it the official state book – something at least two other states have failed to do.

79. Events -

Germantown Community Theatre and All Children’s Theatre will present “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” Thursday, April 9, through April 26 at GCT, 3037 Forest Hill-Irene Road. Buy tickets at gctcomeplay.org or 901-937-3023.

80. This Week in Memphis History: April 3-9 -

2014: The National Civil Rights Museum reopens following a $27 million renovation and expansion. The ceremony featured a wide swath of veterans from the civil rights movement, ranging from Bernard Lafayette to Black Panthers co-founder Bobby Seale.

81. Labor Issues to Pressure McDonald's Despite Pay Bump -

NEW YORK (AP) – A pay bump for workers at some McDonald's restaurants isn't likely to ease the pressures the chain is facing over labor issues.

McDonald's said Wednesday it would raise wages for workers at its company-owned U.S. restaurants, which represent only about 10 percent of more than 14,300 locations. It also said it would offer paid time off for some workers.

82. Harahan Bridge Could Get Brighter -

Memphis civic and business leaders are in the early stages of talking with an anonymous donor about lighting the Harahan Bridge while a Memphis-based movie theater titan is exploring building a new theater Downtown.

83. Group Benefits Aids Employers Navigating Health Care Reform -

Tim Finnell admits that the ins and outs of the Affordable Care Act are convoluted, and employers trying to navigate group plans for their companies are easily overwhelmed.

That’s where Finnell and his team at Group Benefits LLC step in. They help companies fund strategies and compliance support as well as find insurance packages to fit employees’ medical, vision, dental and disability needs.

84. McDonald's Workers Detail Burns, Job Hazards -

NEW YORK (AP) – McDonald's workers in 19 cities have filed complaints over burns from popping grease, a lack of protective equipment and other workplace hazards, according to labor organizers.

85. Real Estate Pros Upbeat -

After finally latching on to the broader national economic recovery in 2013, the Memphis-area commercial real estate market shook of the last vestiges of the Great Recession and roared back to life in 2014 with the office, retail, industrial and apartment sectors all producing solid gains.

86. Wal-Mart Raises Could Help Lift Pay in Lower-Wage Industries -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The modest raises that Wal-Mart has said it will give its lowest-paid workers provide a glimmer of hope for lower-wage workers in other companies and industries.

Other retailers and some fast food restaurants may now feel compelled to follow suit to retain their workers and attract others to fill openings, economists said.

87. Events -

The Memphis Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America will honor Loeb Properties president Bob Loeb, the chapter’s 2014 Communicator of the Year, at its monthly luncheon Thursday, Feb. 12, at 11:45 at the University Club, 1346 Central Ave. Cost is free for members and $25 for nonmembers. Visit prsamemphis.org.

88. Student Debt, Rising Rents Take Bite Out of Real Estate Market -

Hefty student loans are a major stumbling block for young Americans as they try to buy their first home, a National Association of Realtors’ annual survey shows.

In spite of an improved job market and low interest rates in 2014, the number of first-time homebuyers dipped to 33 percent, down 5 percent from the previous year and the lowest since the National Association of Realtors began tracking the rate in 1981.

89. Plans Emerge for Universal Life Building -

In major Downtown news, the on-again, off-again redevelopment of the Universal Life Insurance Co. building Downtown appears to be on.

90. Obama Renews Push for Paid Leave for Working Parents -

BALTIMORE (AP) – President Barack Obama on Thursday renewed his push for paid leave for parents and other workers, saying he's astonished that so many people don't get paid sick leave.

91. Haslam Eager to Defend Insure Tennessee Plan -

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam hopes that when the special session of the Tennessee Legislature begins Feb. 2 the ceremony of the start of a legislative session as well as his second inaugural will have passed.

92. Tigers Lineman Bond to Play in NFLPA Bowl -

The NFL Players Association has announced University of Memphis offensive lineman Al Bond has committed to play in the 2015 NFLPA Collegiate Bowl.

At 6-foot-4 and 305 pounds, Bond was an American Athletic Conference First-Team selection in 2014. He started all 13 games of his senior season at right tackle, playing 895 of 1,012 offensive snaps for the Tigers during the year, including every snap in 10 of 13 games.

93. Tigers Lineman to Play in NFLPA Bowl -

The NFL Players Association has announced University of Memphis offensive lineman Al Bond has committed to play in the 2015 NFLPA Collegiate Bowl.

At 6-foot-4 and 305 pounds, Bond was an American Athletic Conference First-Team selection in 2014. He started all 13 games of his senior season at right tackle, playing 895 of 1,012 offensive snaps for the Tigers during the year, including every snap in 10 of 13 games.

94. Armstrong’s Comments Overshadow Attorney General’s Visit -

Memphis Police Director Toney Armstrong had some concerns Tuesday about speaking before U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder addressed a group of 100 local leaders at Hattiloo Theatre in Overton Square.

95. Music City Christmas -

In years past, Carl Haley has offered his Grand Avenue transportation passengers the customary Christmas lights tour packages – about the same as other tours in Nashville – with a cruise by Opryland and a trip to a few choice, heavily decorated neighborhoods.

96. Head of NEA Supports Higher Tennessee Teacher Pay -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The head of the National Education Association said Wednesday that she supports increased pay for Tennessee teachers because it's necessary to take care of their families, as well as pay off college loans they used to get into the profession.

97. West Coast Port Slowdown Won't Halt Holiday Goods -

LOS ANGELES (AP) – Labor strife on the West Coast waterfront isn't going to steal Christmas.

With few exceptions, gifts and other holiday products made in Asia and shipped through U.S. sea ports already have made it to shelves – or are at distribution centers and ready to roll. Still, cargo is struggling to get through the nation's largest ports, which handle billions of dollars of goods on an average day.

98. Rogero Talks ‘Smart Growth,’ Democratic Politics -

Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero became the first woman to hold that office when she won the election in 2011.

She’s been actively involved in a number of local issues since her election, from urban-core revitalization and business recruitment to broader social issues such as marriage equality.

99. Southwest, Pilots Far Apart in Contract Talks -

DALLAS (AP) – The union representing pilots at Southwest Airlines has asked federal mediators to help break a two-year stalemate in contract negotiations.

Southwest said that it had been optimistic about an agreement, but that the union ended negotiations and filed for mediation.

100. Education Commissioner Leaving for Private Sector -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Education Department Commissioner Kevin Huffman said Thursday that the scrutiny he received during his nearly four turbulent years at the helm of the state's schools didn't influence his decision to leave for the private sector.