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Editorial Results (free)

1. Tennessee Open Records Advocates Push for Policy Change -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Open records advocates are pushing for Tennessee agencies to allow citizens to take cellphone photographs of public records.

In January, The Tennessee Office of Open Records Counsel issued a model policy that forbade requestors from making copies of records with personal equipment, following the adoption of a state law requiring government offices to establish written public records policies.

2. Last Word: The Amazon Offer, Mario Chalmers, The New Symphony Conductor -

If you want to figure out the rhythm of Downtown there are a couple of time-honored indicators. One of my favorites is the church bells. The bell at Calvary Episcopal Church rang 60 times Tuesday for all of the lives lost in the Las Vegas massacre including that of the shooter. Old tones for new mourning as the seasons change in our city by the river.

3. Tennessee Lawmakers Want Agencies to Allow Photos of Records -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Tennessee lawmakers are asking three state agencies to ensure that their policies allow residents to take cell phone photos of public records.

The Tennessean reports that Joint Government Operations Committee members questioned the Office of the Comptroller of the Treasury, the Department of Transportation and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency about their policies Wednesday.

4. Henry Better Than Murray ... For the Moment -

Some Titans fans have been eager for a running back controversy ever since the Tennessee Titans chose Derrick Henry in the second round of the 2016 NFL Draft.

5. Vols, Jackets Each Eager to Make Statement -

Enough of the talk. Enough of the speculation. Let’s play some football.

Tennessee starts its fifth season of the Butch Jones coaching era on Monday night against Georgia Tech at the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta. Kickoff is 8 p.m. (TV: ESPN).

6. Vols Roster Gets Little Respect from SEC Media -

It was no surprise last week when Tennessee’s football team was picked to finish third by the media in the East Division at 2017 SEC Media Days.

Almost every national publication is picking the Vols third in the East behind Georgia and Florida, although not necessarily in that order.

7. Legislature Losing Some Powerful, Familiar Members -

A shakeup in leadership is looming for the state Legislature, though it may portend more of a change in personalities than party strength.

In the House, longtime Rep. Craig Fitzhugh, the affable Democrat from Ripley in West Tennessee, is preparing for a 2018 gubernatorial run, a move that would knock him out of his House seat, at least temporarily, and the position as Democratic Caucus leader.

8. Last Word: BSMF, Budget Books and Milli Vanilli -

Three days of sun and mild temperatures for the Beale Street Music Festival. Not to be all “Dawn Lazarus” about the weather. Of course, it wasn’t just that way over Tom Lee Park. And many of us continue to find there is life outside after you have determined your festival days may be behind you. We were all over the place this weekend including Tom Lee Park and Shelby Farms Park and backyards and trails and on a rising river. Can you still claim you were at BSMF if you were within earshot of it?

9. Resolution Targets California’s Proposed Travel Ban, Discourages Similar ‘Blackmail’ -

Despite a Memphis lawmaker's concerns about a “knee-jerk” reaction, the House passed legislation Monday, May 1, aimed at a California travel ban against states passing anti-gay laws.

Rep. Raumesh Akbari raised questions about the resolution brought by Rep. Tilman Goins, asking him if it would make Tennessee look as “petty” as California if California enacts a prohibition on state-funded travel to Tennessee and several other states that passed laws in 2016 considered unfair to the LGBT community.

10. Last Word: Rain, Rain... Cooper-Young Holding Pattern and Haslam on IMPROVE -

Trees down, power out, Redbirds' Saturday game called early with no fireworks, flooding in some parts of the Mid-South region. So this means Beale Street Music Festival weekend will be clear as a bell, right? Ponchos and boots ready just in case, as well as light sabres.

11. Spring Lessons: Here’s Who Vols Will Start -

Tennessee football coach Butch Jones isn’t big on naming starters and divulging depth charts. Not until he has to. So it comes as no surprise the Vols enter summer workouts and fall camp with junior Quinten Dormady and redshirt freshman Jarrett Guarantano still competing for the starting quarterback’s job.

12. Tennessee Senate OKs Gun Background Check Exemption Bill -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The Tennessee Senate has passed a bill eliminating background check requirements when gun dealers occasionally sell from their personal firearm collections.

Senators voted 24-3 Thursday on the legislation by Republican Sen. Mae Beavers of Mt. Juliet. The House passed it Monday. Gov. Bill Haslam will decide to sign or veto the bill.

13. Senate Passes Less Speedy Rural Broadband Bill -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The Senate on Monday passed a bill that could make it easier for rural areas in Tennessee to get access to high-speed internet. However, a last-minute amendment tacked on to the bill would not require the internet to be so speedy.

14. Last Word: Veep Visit, Women and Baseball and Civil Rights Cold Cases -

Game time at FedExForum for the NCAA South semifinals and Vice President Mike Pence is expected to be here to cheer on the Butler Bulldogs. The Butler mascot – a live bulldog – was already in town Thursday making the rounds. I think March Madness requires that all involved up their mascot game if they get this far. So UCLA, we expect to see a live bear roaming Beale Street. You might be able to work a deal with the zoo on this. But if there’s a cost split make sure you nail down those percentages.

15. Tennessee Senate Passes Bill to Punish Protesters Who Block Streets -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The Tennessee Senate has passed a bill that would punish protesters who block traffic and obstruct emergency vehicles from responding to an emergency.

Under the bill, protesters who block emergency responders would be charged with a misdemeanor and fined $200. The measure was sponsored by Sen. Mike Bell, a Republican from Riceville.

16. Vols Need a Good Spring With So Many No. 1 Players Gone -

Butch Jones is about to embark on his most crucial of five seasons as Tennessee’s football coach, and it begins with spring practices starting Tuesday, March 21.

Jones is coming off back-to-back 9-4 seasons capped by bowl wins, but has fallen short of the SEC East Division title both years. He was the preseason favorite to win the East in 2016, and the previous year had a team with potential to win the division.

17. View From the Hill: Outsourcing Win More About Turf Than Trends -

As Fall Creek Falls folks celebrate a state decision to postpone park privatization, the question is whether public opposition or failure to follow long-standing state protocol led to the plug-pulling.

18. Some in GOP Chafe at New Building Named After Cordell Hull -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Tennessee lawmakers are nearing a move into freshly overhauled offices at the state Capitol complex, but some Republicans are chafing at the building being named after Democrat Cordell Hull.

19. Sexual Harassment Takes Stage in State Capitol Again -

NASHVILLE – Saying she was a victim of sexual harassment when she entered the Legislature, state Rep. Barbara Cooper is calling on tougher rules to stop inappropriate behavior toward women.

“When I first got here I was violated and disrespected by one or two of the legislators. And of course I did get an apology, but that’s all that was done. And I feel like if we have some strong measures in place, these kinds of things will not continue,” Cooper says.

20. Flurry of Bills Affecting LGBT Community Filed in State Legislature Before Deadline -

NASHVILLE – Tennessee lawmakers met last Thursday’s legislation-filing deadline with a host of social measures one Memphis representative describes as “wedge bills” because they drive people apart.

21. Bills Affecting LGBT Community Filed Before Deadline -

NASHVILLE – Tennessee lawmakers met last Thursday’s legislation-filing deadline with a host of social measures one Memphis representative describes as “wedge bills” because they drive people apart.

22. Tennessee Lawmakers Act on Balanced Budget Convention to Curb ‘Crippling’ National Debt -

Saying they can avoid a “runaway” convention for “crazy or radical ideas,” Republican state legislators are filing legislation calling for a convention of states in Nashville to adopt a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

23. Tennessee Acts on Balanced Budget Convention to Curb ‘Crippling’ National Debt -

Saying they can avoid a “runaway” convention for “crazy or radical ideas,” Republican state legislators are filing legislation calling for a convention of states in Nashville to adopt a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

24. Cleveland Indians, ‘Major League’ Come to World Series -

The Chicago Cubs have the charm and the brand. Lovable losers. The Friendly Confines of Wrigley Field.

And they are fighting 108 years of history. The Goat Curse. The Gatorade on Leon Durham’s glove. Steve Bartman.

25. Vols Get Midterm B Despite Back-to-Back Losses -

Tennessee’s football team is spending this week’s open date trying to get healthy after a rugged four-game stretch of SEC football in which they defeated Florida and Georgia and lost to Texas A&M and Alabama.

26. DeAngelo Made in Memphis, Outlasting Them All in NFL -

He has belonged to the NFL for a long time now, if you want to think of DeAngelo Williams that way, and truth is you’re probably divided on that. For he’ll always belong to the University of Memphis first, on that much we can agree.

27. Vols Offensive Line Rushing Into Much-Anticipated Season -

Jalen Hurd knows right where he stands among Tennessee’s running backs of the past and wants to be No. 1 in career rushing yards at the end of the 2016 season.

The junior from Hendersonville Beech High School needs 892 yards to surpass Travis Henry as UT’s career rushing leader.

28. Collierville, Millington Mayoral Races Top Suburban Ballots in November -

The mayors of Collierville and Millington are running for re-election on the November ballot and as the noon Thursday, Aug. 18, filing deadline approaches for the Bartlett, Germantown, Collierville and Millington municipal ballots the two mayors have challengers.

29. Do Titans Finally Have Their Offensive Line? -

New Tennessee Titans coach Mike Mularkey’s stated desire to play “exotic smashmouth” football – especially on offense – requires a good offensive line. But if there’s one thing the Titans have not had in recent years it’s a good offensive line.

30. Happier Meal? McDonald's Nixing Some Unpalatable Ingredients -

NEW YORK (AP) – McDonald's, which is trying to shake its image for serving processed junk food, said Monday it's eliminating some unpalatable ingredients from its most popular menu items.

31. How safe is our food? -

It’s not easy being a food inspector in Tennessee, dealing with an updated statewide food code to protect the public from foodborne illnesses and educating restaurateurs, many with their own ideas about their cuisine, on following the rules.

32. Last Word: Democrats Settle, Scotty Moore and the Top Cop Search -

Tennessee Democratic Party Chairman Mary Mancini ordered the Shelby County Democratic Party to settle its differences with former local party chairman Bryan Carson Tuesday and accept his offer to repay the party $6,000 at $100 a month..

33. Tennessee Campus Carry Becomes Law Without Haslam Signature -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A bill allowing staff and faculty at Tennessee's public colleges and universities to be armed on campus became law Monday without the Republican governor's signature.

34. Legislature Votes to Strip Funding From UT Diversity Office -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — State lawmakers voted to send a message that they don't agree with the sexually open and progressive views of the Office for Diversity and Inclusion on the University of Tennessee campus. So the Legislature on Thursday passed a bill stripping it of state funds — a total of nearly $337,000. The money will be used to fund minority scholarships instead.

35. Transgender Bathroom Bill Delayed Amid Financial Questions -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The sponsor of a Tennessee transgender bathroom bill told a Senate committee Tuesday that he has to consider a state attorney general's opinion before going forward. The White House called the proposal "mean-spirited."

36. Transgender Restroom Bill Advancing in Tennessee Senate -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The Tennessee Senate is advancing a bill to require transgender students to use bathrooms that match their sex at birth, while House members are seeking to revive the measure that was defeated earlier in the week.

37. Transgender Bathroom Bill Dies in Subcommittee -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A bill that would require transgender students to use bathrooms that match their sex at birth has failed.

The bill died in a House Education Administration and Planning Committee meeting Tuesday that was packed with transgender youth who opposed the measure.

38. Bill Would Require Students to Use Bathroom of Birth Sex -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A bill that would require transgender students to use bathrooms that match their sex at birth is gaining momentum in the Tennessee legislature after passing in a House subcommittee.

39. Tennessee Lawmakers Vote to Ban Religious Indoctrination -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Tennessee lawmakers have passed legislation aimed at banning religious "indoctrination" at schools.

The bill would require each school board to establish guidelines on how religion is taught in school, and to make teaching plans available to the public.

40. ‘Fearless’ Stewart Embraces Battles With Supermajority -

Democratic state Rep. Mike Stewart lives on the front lines of the Tennessee General Assembly. As chairman of the House Democratic Caucus with 26 members, Stewart could employ a bunker mentality, but instead has chosen to take the fight to the other side of the aisle.

41. Let’s Not Forget -

BELL. BOWLING. CROWE. GARDENHIRE. KELSEY. NICELY. ROBERTS. AND NORRIS. As the Tennessee General Assembly gets going in 2016, let’s remember how they started 2015 – with the abandonment of common sense and decency and hundreds of thousands of Tennesseans.
The story of what they did bears repeating as a cautionary tale. If we let them do it again, we all bear responsibility.

42. Civil Asset Forfeiture: 'It's a State License to Steal' -

The drugs in Kathy Stiltner’s car were over-the-counter antacids. The $12,000 in cash was from an inheritance. Still, police took the money – quite legally – and are still fighting to keep it, even after the drug charge was dropped.

43. Tenn. Lawmaker Considering Bill to Allow Faculty to Be Armed -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Republican state lawmaker says he might offer legislation authorizing faculty and employees at Tennessee's public higher education institutions to carry firearms and have "the best chance possible to defend themselves" if there's a campus shooting.

44. Panthers OT Michael Oher Not a Big Fan of 'The Blind Side' -

SPARTANBURG, S.C. (AP) – When people first meet Michael Oher naturally they want to ask him about the 2009 hit movie "The Blind Side," which is based on his life as an underprivileged youth growing up in Memphis, Tennessee.

45. No Stanley Cup Delusions for Knoxville’s Ice Bears -

As the NHL playoffs heat up, the Southern Professional Hockey League is done for another season.

All is quiet inside Civic Coliseum, home of the Knoxville Ice Bears. They ended their 2014-15 season by claiming Knoxville’s fourth President’s Cup as champions of the SPHL.

46. Will Tennessee Republicans Ever Be Truly Happy? -

Why aren’t Tennessee Republicans happier?

With the GOP so dominate in the Tennessee General Assembly and losses so rare – on the Hill or in elections – the party’s lawmakers should be jubilant with this year’s session. But it’s never enough.

47. Senate OKs Ending Motorcycle Helmet Requirement for Parades -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The Senate has voted to allow Tennessee motorcyclists to ride without helmets in parades or funerals.

The chamber voted 22-8 in favor of the bill sponsored by Republican Sen. Mike Bell of Riceville. Riders would have to be at least 21 years old and traveling at speeds of less than 30 mph.

48. Vols’ Dobbs Embraces the Role of ‘CEO Quarterback’ -

Joshua Dobbs enters his junior season as Tennessee’s undisputed No. 1 quarterback and team leader, the player most responsible for the Vols’ relevance again in SEC football.

49. Done Unto -

BELL. BOWLING. CROWE. GARDENHIRE. KELSEY. NICELY. ROBERTS. AND NORRIS. Since last week’s debacle in the state Legislature – the abandonment of common sense and decency and hundreds of thousands of Tennesseans by their elected representatives – the ether and printed pages here and elsewhere have been full of various explanations and finger pointing. Let’s keep it simple. Let’s simply point that finger at those who raised their hands.

50. 6 of 7 Who Killed Insure Tennessee are on State Health Plan -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Six of the seven Republican senators who voted to kill Gov. Bill Haslam's proposal to extend health coverage to 280,000 low-income Tennesseans are enrolled in the state government health plan.

51. Staxtacular to Feature Grizzlies Players -

The Soulsville Foundation and the Memphis Grizzlies are bringing the worlds of basketball, music and mentoring together at the foundation’s largest annual fundraiser, Staxtacular 2015.

Presented by SunTrust, Staxtacular will be held Feb. 7 from 7 p.m. until midnight at the Stax Museum of American Soul Music.

52. McDonald's New CEO Faces Onslaught of Competition -

NEW YORK (AP) – McDonald's new boss must feel like a freshly crowned king under siege.

The world's biggest hamburger chain is facing an onslaught of competition, from better-burger chains like Five Guys to brands like Chipotle that tout the superior quality of their ingredients.

53. Staxtacular to Feature Grizzlies Players -

The Soulsville Foundation and the Memphis Grizzlies are bringing the worlds of basketball, music and mentoring together at the foundation’s largest annual fundraiser, Staxtacular 2015.

Presented by SunTrust, Staxtacular will be held Feb. 7 from 7 p.m. until midnight at the Stax Museum of American Soul Music.

54. Co-Sponsor Changes Stance on Common Core Repeal -

A co-sponsor of legislation to repeal Tennessee's Common Core standards says the measure is likely to change.

Senate Education Committee Chairwoman Dolores Gresham and Senate Government Operations Committee Chairman Mike Bell filed the proposal in November.

55. Co-Sponsor Changes Stance on Tennessee Common Core Repeal -

A co-sponsor of legislation to repeal Tennessee’s Common Core standards says the measure is likely to change.

Senate Education Committee Chairwoman Dolores Gresham and Senate Government Operations Committee Chairman Mike Bell filed the proposal in November.

56. Fast-Food Resolution: Transform Junk Food Image -

NEW YORK (AP) – Fast-food chains have a New Year's resolution: Drop the junk.

As people express distaste for food they think is overly processed, McDonald's, Taco Bell and other chains are trying to shed their reputation for serving reheated meals that are loaded with chemicals. That includes rethinking the use of artificial preservatives and other ingredients customers find objectionable.

57. After-School Programs Give Youth Educational Boost -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – As Tennessee strives to stay at the forefront of student academic improvement, some education advocates say the hours after the last bell rings could be crucial to maintaining that edge.

58. Bill Would Repeal Common Core in Tenn. -

Two Republican state senators filed legislation Monday to repeal the state's Common Core standards even though Gov. Bill Haslam has called for a public review of the higher benchmarks in English and math.

59. Bill Would Repeal Common Core in Tennessee -

Two Republican state senators filed legislation Monday to repeal the state's Common Core standards even though Gov. Bill Haslam has called for a public review of the higher benchmarks in English and math.

60. Recruiter’s Career Twist -

Ask Janet Miller about her remarkable career at the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce and she’ll likely attribute it to good timing or pass credit onto others.

61. Vols: Looks Like 6-6 Season -

Pull out your 2014 schedules, UT fans.

Fall camp is done, and it’s time to get in game-week mode with the season opener against Utah State fast approaching.

So go to the little box next to each of UT’s opponents on the 2014 schedule and pick the winner.

62. Bell Holds Hearing Over Chief Justice Complaint -

NASHVILLE (AP) – A Republican panel has spent four hours questioning top judicial officials in an inquiry over the handling of a complaint against the chief justice of the Tennessee Supreme Court.

63. Bell Plans Hearing Over Chief Justice Complaint -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Two state senators say they plan an inquiry over the handling of a complaint against the chief justice of the Tennessee Supreme Court.

The Tennessean reports Sens. Mike Bell and Randy McNally said on Tuesday that the Senate Government Operations Committee will hold a formal hearing this month into the dismissal of Bell's ethics complaint against Chief Justice Gary Wade.

64. Bell Blasts Judicial Conduct Board for Dropping Complaint -

NASHVILLE (AP) – A powerful state senator has written a letter excoriating the board that disciplines judges for dismissing an ethics complaint against the chief justice of the Tennessee Supreme Court.

65. Schools Merger ‘Closeout’ Underway -

The first and only year of a single public school system in Shelby County comes to an end May 23 with the last day of school.

And the legal details of the demerger are quickly taking shape.

Leaders of Shelby County’s seven public school systems met Tuesday, May 13, to discuss the closeout procedures starting June 2 that will begin the actual demerger of public education in Shelby County.

66. Bill to Repeal Tennessee Motorcycle Helmet Law Fails -

NASHVILLE (AP) – The latest effort to get rid of Tennessee's motorcycle helmet requirement has failed in a Senate committee.

The Senate Finance Committee on Tuesday voted 6-5 against the measure sponsored by Republican Sen. Mike Bell of Riceville.

67. Bill Makes Changes to State Textbook Commission -

NASHVILLE (AP) – A proposal that makes changes to the process for selecting books for state schools has been approved by the Senate.

The measure sponsored by Republican Sen. Mike Bell of Riceville was approved 29-2 on Monday evening.

68. Senate Decries ‘Radical Agenda' of UT's Sex Week -

NASHVILLE (AP) – The state Senate has passed a resolution directing the University of Tennessee to require parents to opt in to allowing student fees to go toward events deemed "controversial or objectionable."

69. Talking Sex -

ALL OF OUR COLLEGE PRESIDENTS SHOULD GET SEXY. The Tennessee General Assembly has long been afraid of sex.

When I was a UT student in the late sixties, the Tennessee legislature proposed a law making it illegal for anyone under the age of 18 to view nude art. On the humanities complex plaza, stood and still stands a huge statue of Europa and the Bull – both starkers and anatomically and quite dramatically correct. The morning after the news of the proposed law broke, Europa was wearing a huge bra and the bull a jock strap, fashioned from sheets – lots of them – and placed on the statue by enterprising students in the night.

70. UT President Says School Can't Ban Sex Week Event -

NASHVILLE (AP) – University of Tennessee President Joe DiPietro is urging lawmakers not to pursue legislation that would penalize the school over its student-run Sex Week.

In a letter this week to Senate Education Chairwoman Dolores Gresham and Senate Government Operations Chairman Mike Bell, DiPietro argued that First Amendment protections prevent the school from ending the event that has raised the hackles of GOP leaders in the Legislature.

71. Senate Leaders Threaten UT Funding Over Sex Week -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Republican leaders in the state Senate are warning that new funding for the University of Tennessee could be threatened over the use of student fees for a weeklong program about sex.

72. Tennessee Senate Passes Switchblade Knife Bill -

The state Senate has passed a bill to legalize switchblades and other knives with blades longer than 4 inches in Tennessee.

The chamber voted 24-1 on Monday to approve the bill sponsored by Republican Sen. Mike Bell of Riceville.

73. Tenn. Bill to Protect Outdoorsmen From Drones -

A proposal that would prohibit the use of drones to conduct video surveillance of outdoorsmen in Tennessee without their permission has passed the Senate.

The measure, sponsored by Republican Sen. Mike Bell of Riceville, was unanimously approved 31-0 on Thursday.

74. Tennessee Bill to Protect Outdoorsmen From Drones -

A proposal that would prohibit the use of drones to conduct video surveillance of outdoorsmen in Tennessee without their permission has passed the Senate.

The measure, sponsored by Republican Sen. Mike Bell of Riceville, was unanimously approved 31-0 on Thursday.

75. Wedding Services Bill Sparks Opposition -

Two Tennessee lawmakers have proposed a bill that would protect wedding-related businesses from lawsuits if they refuse to provide services based on religious beliefs.

Republican Sen. Mike Bell of Riceville and Knoxville Rep. Bill Dunn are sponsoring the proposal.

76. Wedding Services Bill Dead This Session -

NASHVILLE (AP) – A proposal to protect wedding-related businesses from lawsuits if they refuse to provide services to same-sex couples is dead for the session after being withdrawn from a Senate committee on Tuesday.

77. Wedding Services Bill Sparks Opposition -

Two Tennessee lawmakers have proposed a bill that would protect wedding-related businesses from lawsuits if they refuse to provide services based on religious beliefs.

Republican Sen. Mike Bell of Riceville and Knoxville Rep. Bill Dunn are sponsoring the proposal.

78. Lawmakers Want Review of Book Selection Process -

The heads of two legislative committees say the process for selecting books for state schools is flawed and needs to be fixed.

Tennessee Senate Education Committee Chairwoman Dolores Gresham and Senate Government Operations Committee Chairman Mike Bell have sent a letter to the State Board of Education asking the panel to re-examine the list of books recommended to it by the Tennessee Textbook Commission.

79. State Rules Get Tighter Scrutiny -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Gov. Bill Haslam took office with a 45-day freeze on implementing any new government rules.

Since that time, the administration is using less dramatic and less direct ways of affecting the bureaucratic regulatory process.

80. Leaders at Table in Separate Talks -

The elected officials on all sides of the schools merger lost one item on their plates last week as the school year ended for Memphis City Schools and Shelby County Schools students and parents.

Those in the systems working on the terms of the schools merger had also been running the two separate school systems as well until last week’s final bell.

81. New Common Core Standards Raise Questions in Tennessee -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Proponents of a new set of uniform benchmarks for math and reading say they're needed to better prepare students for college and the workforce, but critics of the measures contend they don't know enough about them and are concerned about the federal government's involvement.

82. Watered Down Switchblade Bill Goes to Governor -

A watered down version of a proposal that originally sought to lift a ban on switchblades and knives with blades longer than 4 inches is headed to the governor for his consideration.

The Senate voted 27-4 last week to concur with the House version, which does away with those two provisions, but it still removes the power of local governments to make their own knife regulations.

83. Tennessee House Passes Watered Down Switchblade Bill -

NASHVILLE (AP) – The state House has passed a watered down version of a bill that originally would have lifted a ban on switchblades and knives with blades longer than 4 inches.

As amended under a bill passed 77-18 on Tuesday, the measure does away with those two provisions, but it still removes the power of local governments to make their own knife regulations.

84. School Security Bill Advancing in Legislature -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Proponents of a measure that allows school districts to hire individuals with prior law enforcement experience say it's a needed option for financially strapped schools.

85. Bill to OK Riding Without Helmet Advances -

NASHVILLE (AP) – A proposal to do away with the state's motorcycle helmet law passed a Senate panel on Wednesday despite Gov. Bill Haslam's opposition.

The proposal sponsored by Republican Sen. Mike Bell of Riceville was approved 6-3 in the Senate Transportation Committee.

86. Bill to Lift Switchblade Ban Passes Senate -

NASHVILLE (AP) – The Senate has approved legislation that seeks to lift Tennessee's ban on switchblades.

The proposal sponsored by Republican Sen. Mike Bell of Riceville was approved 27-3 on Thursday. The companion bill is scheduled to be heard next week in the House Criminal Justice Subcommittee.

87. Sandy Hook Lives to Be Remembered -

The 26 children and adults who died at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut will be remembered locally Friday, Dec. 21, with several ceremonies.

88. Sandy Hook Lives to Be Remembered -

The 26 children and adults who died at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut last week will be remembered locally Friday, Dec. 21, with several ceremonies.

89. Gen X Inks State’s First Location on Austin Peay -

A trendy Vernon, Calif.-based retailer has inked its first Tennessee location in Austin Peay Plaza.

Gen X Clothing Inc. signed a 35,000-square-foot lease at 3252 Austin Peay Highway. The space was formerly occupied by Big Lots.

90. New Identity -

Every great person, every great organization and every great city is trying to be better today than they were yesterday.

That’s how Nancy Coffee puts it in describing the motivation behind the new name that’s been chosen for the nonprofit group she’s the president and CEO of – the New Memphis Institute, which used to be known as the Leadership Academy.

91. Archer-Malmo Division Adds To Portfolio -

The new division that ad firm archer-malmo launched last year to invest money and creative capital into digital startups is continuing to expand its portfolio of companies.

That division is a-m ventures, and the newest addition to its portfolio is Paytopia, a startup that’s seeking to add more safety and data security to e-commerce transactions.

92. Bell Ringer -

Bricks are not normally seen as a sign of age. But walk past Downtown’s Calvary Episcopal Church and the weathered bricks on the church’s north side begin to tell the story of the oldest public building in Memphis still in continuous use.

93. Millington Candidates File for August Election -

The field for Millington mayor in that city’s Aug. 2 nonpartisan general election is three candidates following last week’s filing deadline.

It includes former Mayor Terry Jones, who lost a re-election bid four years ago to Richard Hodges; Kenneth Uselton and Debra Sigee.

94. Cohen-Hart in Congressional Race at Filing Deadline -

The chairman of the countywide school board, Billy Orgel, was effectively elected to his District 7 school board seat without opposition at the Thursday, April 5, filing deadline for candidates on the Aug. 2 primary and general election ballot in Shelby County.

95. Teacher Ratings Vary Widely by District -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Under the state's new teacher evaluation system, observations by principals make up half of their scores, but a first glimpse at those observation scores shows they are all over the map.

96. Events -

The Memphis Bar Association will present a continuing legal education seminar titled “Insurance Errors & Omissions” Wednesday, Dec. 21, from 1:30 p.m. to 4:45 p.m. at International Paper, 6400 Poplar Ave., Tower III, ponderosa pine room. For more information or to register, visit www.memphisbar.org.

97. Bid to Eliminate Tenn. Motorcycle Helmet Law Fails -

NASHVILLE (AP) – The latest effort to rescind Tennessee's motorcycle helmet law for adult riders has failed for the year.

Republican Sen. Mike Bell of Riceville asked the Senate Transportation Committee on Wednesday to place his measure on the panel's first calendar of next year's legislative session.

98. Tenn. Bill to Protect Employers Allowing Guns -

NASHVILLE (AP) – Republican Sen. Mike Bell says he's optimistic about the passage of a proposal that would provide liability protection for employers who choose to allow guns to be carried in their work place.

99. EMHC Moving to Appling Farms, Doubling in Size -

Emergency Mobile Health Care is more than doubling the size of its Memphis corporate headquarters.

EMHC has signed a 14,200-square-foot lease at 6972 Appling Farms Parkway. EMHC currently occupies 6,900 square feet at 5071 Wilfong Road, and also has an office in Jackson, Tenn.

100. Petty Joins Phoenix Power Group -

Doug Petty has joined Phoenix Power Group as the new vice president of sales and marketing.

Hometown: Memphis
Education:
I hold B.S. degrees in chemistry and industrial hygiene from the University of North Alabama
Work Experience:
I worked for 10 years as a specialty hospital sales representative for Merck Pharmaceuticals. For nine years I was a senior industrial hygienist for EnSafe Inc.
Activities you enjoy outside of work:
You can usually find me on a golf course, but I also spend time singing and playing guitar in the Memphis area. I enjoy watching Tigers football and basketball games and cooking out with friends.
Who has had the greatest influence on you?
My parents are my greatest influences. I obviously chose wisely.
What drew you to Phoenix Power Group?
I was drawn to the opportunity to become involved on the ground floor of such an innovative, revolutionary system. In addition, this was a chance to be associated with a talented and experienced group of professionals and investors. Based on my years of professional experience, I know a good thing when I see it.
What does your job as VP of sales and marketing entail?
Our company utilizes breakthrough technology to convert used oil into electricity in an environmentally responsible manner. My position utilizes my background in environmental science, regulation, and high-performance marketing and sales. My specific responsibilities include managing regulatory affairs, developing marketing materials, training and distributor support.
What do you consider your greatest professional accomplishments?
It would have to be the relationships that I’ve built with co-workers, clients and customers over the years. Those are things that can’t be measured on a spreadsheets or sales reports. Winning the Regional Medical Center’s 2007 Pharmaceutical Representative of the Year Award certainly comes to mind.
What do you most enjoy about your work?
The level of excitement and energy around the PPG organization is remarkable. I’ve been looking for the opportunity to help launch a potential “Next Big Thing” for quite a long time. It is hard not to be excited when your field of work is always pushing the edge and creating new challenges and opportunities. No one has done what we are doing, so we really are a “new” idea. That comes with challenges and benefits; but there is something unique about “creating” a product, something that a cubicle just can’t offer.