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Editorial Results (free)

1. Diane Black, Husband Lobbying Against Medical Marijuana -

Medical marijuana legislation sponsored by state Rep. Jeremy Faison is hitting a hurdle with gubernatorial candidate U.S. Rep. Diane Black opposing it and her husband trying to kill the measure.

2. Harwell Plans to Back Faison’s Medical Marijuana Legislation -

House Speaker Beth Harwell is supporting medical marijuana legislation, saying she believes Tennesseans “deserve” an option to dangerous opioids.

3. Rotating Forrest Bust Out of Capitol Gains Momentum -

Confederate Lt. Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest’s days in the State Capitol could be numbered. Lt. Gov. Randy McNally, an Oak Ridge Republican, says he could support a move to rotate Forrest’s bust out of the Capitol and make sure Capitol displays are “more reflective of the entire history of Tennessee.”

4. Legislators Can’t Get Past Threat of Medical Weed -

Heading into the 2018 legislative session, Rep. Jeremy Faison is looking to send a message about his medical marijuana bill: Tennessee won’t open the door to recreational pot without General Assembly action.

5. Democrats Look to Cooperate on Key Issues -

With the state’s budget projected to be tight and lawmakers lining up to run for re-election in 2018, the coming legislative session isn’t expected to yield many surprises.

But the 110th General Assembly still has a long row to hoe as the session starts Jan. 9 with new legislative offices and committee rooms in the renovated Cordell Hull Building in downtown Nashville.

6. Medical Marijuana Might Finally Get Past Objections -

Medical marijuana legislation is evolving, not to ease people’s debilitating pain but to help it pass the General Assembly, where it’s giving some lawmakers heartburn.

State Rep. Jeremy Faison, an East Tennessee Republican ferrying the bill through the House, is offering several changes to a bill he is sponsoring with Sen. Steve Dickerson, a Nashville Republican, to soothe the nerves of state bureaucrats and lawmakers who get shaky when the word marijuana is mentioned.

7. Opioid Committee on Right Track, Obstacles Remain -

Smyrna Police Chief Kevin Arnold can remember the first time his detectives brought a heroin case to him three or four years ago.

“Of course, my reaction immediately was, ‘I thought that went away in the late 70s.’ But we’re seeing it. In fact, we are averaging approximately five heroin overdoses a month just in the town of Smyrna,” adds Arnold, whose city about 10 miles southeast of Nashville has a population of nearly 48,600.

8. Memphis Marks International Overdose Awareness Day -

As opioid painkiller abuse rises across the nation, Memphians are preparing to mark International Overdose Awareness Day Thursday, Aug. 31.

A ceremony is set for 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in Martyr’s Park Downtown, followed by a lighting of the Harahan Bridge and a candlelight procession to Big River Crossing. Guest speakers include Shelby County District Attorney General Amy Weirich and Memphis Police Department chief of special operations Michael Hardy, and names of individuals who have died as a result of addiction will be read.

9. Special Panel to Weigh Medical Marijuana in Tennessee -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Legislative leaders are setting up a special committee to examine whether medical marijuana should be legalized in Tennessee.

WKRN-TV reports that the panel appointed by House Speaker Beth Harwell of Nashville and Senate Speaker Randy McNally of Oak Ridge includes eight Republicans and two Democrats. The panel is co-chaired by Rep. Jeremy Faison of Cosby and Sen. Steve Dickerson of Nashville, two Republicans who this year sponsored unsuccessful medical marijuana legislation.

10. Stronger Penalties Alone Won’t Solve State’s Opioid Crisis -

Rep. Bryan Terry deals with patients from every demographic caught up in the web of opiates.

Patients have an array of tolerance to opioids, as well, from those currently addicted to those who are recovering addicts. As a result, each patient requires an “individualized” anesthetic based on their background and the procedure or surgery they’re to have, says Terry, a Murfreesboro anesthesiologist.

11. Unwilling Private Sector Gives Park Workers a Victory -

Two state parks are celebrating victories in an atmosphere of uncertainty created by the governor’s penchant for privatizing state functions.

Fall Creek Falls drew no bidders for a $20 million plan to hire a vendor who would tear down its inn, construct a new one and take over operations for 10 years. Henry Horton State Park, meanwhile, is set for $10 million in improvements this coming fiscal year, including upgrades to its hospitality facilities, plus a new visitors center, rather than a proposal to raze its inn and not rebuild.

12. House Committee Postpones Action on Short-Term Rentals -

A day after the House targeted Nashville with a tough bill on short-term rentals, the Senate deferred action on legislation blocking the Metro Council from enacting any prohibitions.

The Senate Finance, Ways and Means Committee postponed a bill by Sen. John Stevens until January 2018, ending the debate this year on a measure singling out Davidson County efforts to restrict short-term rentals such as Airbnb.

13. Criminal Records Bill Passes In Legislature -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The Legislature has passed a bill that will make it easier for people convicted of lower-level offenses to get their criminal records wiped clean.

The measure allows a person who has no more than two convictions to be able to request that the crimes get expunged from their record. The two convictions would be wiped clean at the same time and at the same cost as it would be to expunge one conviction.

14. University of Memphis, UTHSC May Soon Face Outsourcing Decisions -

Forty-one state lawmakers signed a letter requesting the state put a hold on its outsourcing plans until the General Assembly can scrutinize its effect on state workers and services.

The state is set to sign a contract April 28 with Chicago-based JLL for facilities management work that could be used by universities and departments statewide. Even local government jobs could be doled out to the contractor.

15. View From the Hill: A Disjointed Stash of Marijuana Bills -

This year’s marijuana bills are a mixed bag.

Rep. Jeremy Faison is sending his medical marijuana legislation to a task force, as opposed to “summer study,” typically considered the trash heap for unwanted bills.

16. Senate Douses Memphis and Nashville Pot Ordinances -

State senators are intent on striking down Memphis and Nashville marijuana laws giving police discretion to hand out citations for possessing small amounts of pot.

Despite opposition from Shelby County and Davidson County legislators, the Senate voted 26-5 Monday to clarify that state law overrides local government regulations involving drugs and similar substances.

17. Survey of Tennessee Conservatives Finds Support for Medical Marijuana -

Conservative voters are more likely to support legalizing medical marijuana than raising gas taxes, at least ahead of using a $1 billion surplus to pay for transportation projects.

Fifty-two percent of Republicans surveyed recently by Tennesseans for Conservative Action say they support allowing people to manage their pain with medical cannabis, in contrast to 31 percent in opposition. Thirteen percent needed more information and 4 percent were unsure.

18. Reactionaries, Evidence Vie on Medicinal Pot -

Three-year-old Josie Mae Mathis of Greene County used to suffer hundreds of seizures daily from epilepsy and infantile spasms. Aden Vogus, a pre-teen from Brentwood, has seen his seizures all but disappear.

19. New Year, New Resolutions for Legislators -

Some Tennesseans recall the days when the state Legislature met every other year and wonder if it should revert to that schedule. Considering the General Assembly pushes most of its work into 3 1/2 months, it might be worth a try.

20. GOP Lawmakers Introduce Bill Seeking to Legalize Medical Pot -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Republican lawmakers are introducing legislation that would allow the use of marijuana for a variety of medical conditions in Tennessee.

The Tennessean reports (http://tnne.ws/2huB6cR) that the measure sponsored by Rep. Jeremy Faison of Cosby and Steve Dickerson of Nashville would allow 50 growing operations around the state, including 15 in economically distressed areas.

21. Faison’s Folly? Pushing Pot as a Conservative -

By just about any measure, state Rep. Jeremy Faison is a hardcore conservative. But when it comes to the cannabis plant, the East Tennessee legislator is ready to fire up the General Assembly with a move to liberalize the state’s pot law.

22. Broke and Broken: Democrats Lose More Ground in State Legislature -

Tennessee House Democrats will have to start calling themselves the “Fighting 25,” down from the “Fighting 26,” after dropping a district in the battle to regain relevance statewide.

23. Tenn. Legislative Candidates Pull in More Than $16M -

More than $16 million in political contributions has flowed to candidates running for seats in the Tennessee General Assembly this year.

That total includes $1.5 million given to candidates in the final reporting period before next week’s general election.

24. More Than $16M Flows To Tenn. Legislative Candidates -

More than $16 million in political contributions has flowed to candidates running for seats in the Tennessee General Assembly this year.

That total includes $1.5 million given to candidates in the final reporting period before next week’s general election.

25. More Than $16M Flows to Tennessee Legislative Candidates -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – More than $16 million in political contributions has flowed to candidates running for seats in the Tennessee General Assembly this year.

That total includes $1.5 million given to candidates in the final reporting period before next week's general election.

26. Haslam Campaigns for GOP Members in Tennessee House, Senate -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Gov. Bill Haslam is hitting the campaign trail on behalf of fellow Republicans in closely divided districts.

The governor went door knocking with state Sen. Steve Dickerson ion Tuesday, and told reporters he has also been appearing on behalf of House Speaker Beth Harwell.

27. Haslam Drops $150K Into PAC for Tennessee Legislative Races -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Republican Gov. Bill Haslam has opened his wallet for state legislative campaigns throughout the state.

According to the final campaign finance reports to be filed before the Aug. 4 primary, Haslam gave $150,000 to his political action committee, Jobs4TN. The committee then contributed all but $4,000 of that amount to the campaigns of 44 lawmakers.

28. Bipartisan Skeptics Doubt Haslam’s Outsourcing Plan -

Poor timing and questionable numbers: That’s how legislators are viewing a business justification plan for outsourcing facilities management across Tennessee.

The Office of Customer Focused Government tells state senators, if all departments opt in, the state could save $35.8 million by the second year of a contract under study for building operations and services – without laying off state workers or cutting pay and benefits.

29. ‘I’m the Steak’ Norris Carries Haslam’s Agenda, Except... -

Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris refers to himself as a “meat and potatoes” legislator. The four-term Republican senator from Collierville, a self-described policy wonk, is considering a run for governor in 2018. But if the race boils down to charisma, he says the media will have to determine if he has enough to win the top office.

30. State Senate: OK to Deny Counseling Due to Religious Beliefs -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Therapists and counselors in Tennessee could decline to treat patients on the basis of "sincerely held religious beliefs" under a bill passed by the state Senate on Wednesday.

31. Tennessee Senate to Vote on Directing AG to Challenge Refugee Program -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A resolution directing Tennessee's attorney general to mount a legal challenge to the federal refugee resettlement program is headed for a vote in the state Senate.

32. Candidate Filing List -- The Final Version -

Shelby County Sheriff Mark Luttrell appeared on his way to the Republican nomination for Shelby County mayor at Thursday’s noon filing deadline for candidates on the May 4 primary ballot.

33. UPDATE: Mayor's Race Grows At Filing Deadline -

Shelby County Sheriff Mark Luttrell appeared on his way to the Republican nomination for Shelby County mayor at Thursday’s noon filing deadline for candidates on the May 4 primary ballot.

Luttrell faces only token opposition from perennial candidate Ernie Lunati.

Meanwhile, the Democratic primary for mayor grew to three contenders as General Sessions Court Clerk Otis Jackson filed his qualifying petition just before the deadline. He joins interim County Mayor Joe Ford and Shelby County Commissioner Deidre Malone.

Luttrell ruled out a bid for Shelby County mayor last year (2009). But when Harold Byrd decided not to run in the Democratic primary, some local GOP leaders asked Luttrell to reconsider.

The result touched off a scramble of candidates from both parties for the open sheriff’s office. But before the noon deadline, the initial field of over a dozen possible contenders was narrowed to ten – six Democrats and four Republicans.

The other surprise at the filing deadline was the return of attorney Walter Bailey to the District 2 Position 1 seat he gave up in the 2006 elections. Bailey sought re-election then to another term despite a two term limit on commissioners. Bailey lost to J.W. Gibson who decided not to seek re-election. He also lost a court fight to overturn the term limits.

Bailey was the only candidate who had filed for the seat at the Thursday deadline.

Only one incumbent county commissioner – Republican Mike Ritz -- was effectively re-elected at the deadline because he had no opposition.

All but one of the eleven contested County Commission races will be decided with the May 4 primaries. The only general election battle for the August ballot is the district 5 contest between GOP challenger Dr. Rolando Toyos and whoever wins the May Democratic primary between incumbent Steve Mulroy and Jennings Bernard.

Former County Commissioner John Willingham also returned to the ballot among a field of Republican contenders in the primary for Shelby County Trustee.

And former Criminal Court Clerk Minerva Johnican joined the Democratic primary field for her old job. Incumbent Republican Bill Key pulled petition to seek re-election but did not file at the deadline.

Here is the list of races and contenders from The Shelby County Election Commission. All candidate have until noon Feb. 25 to withdraw from the ballot if they wish.

D-Democrat

R- Republican

I- Independent

Shelby County Mayor:

Deidre Malone (D)

Joe Ford (D)

Otis Jackson (D)

Mark Luttrell (R)

Ernest Lunati (R)

Leo Awgowhat (I)

Shelby County Sheriff:

James Coleman (R)

Bobby Simmons (R)

Bill Oldham (R)

Dale Lane (R)

Larry Hill (D)

Bennie Cobb (D)

Randy Wade (D)

James Bolden (D)

Elton Hymon (D)

Reginald French (D)

County Commission Dist 1 Pos 1

Mike Ritz (R) (incumbent)

County Commission Dist 1 Pos 2

Albert Maduska (R)

Heidi Shafer (R)

County Commission Dist 1 Pos 3

Mike Carpenter (R) (incumbent)

Joe Baire (R)

County Commission Dist 2 Pos 1

Walter Bailey (D)

County Commission Dist 2 Pos 2

Henri Brooks (D) (incumbent)

David Vinciarelli (D)

County Commission Dist 2 Pos 3

Eric Dunn (D)

Norma Lester (D)

Tina Dickerson (D)

Melvin Burgess (D)

Reginald Milton (D)

Freddie Thomas (D)

County Commission Dist 3 Pos 1

James Harvey (D) (incumbent)

James Catchings (D)

County Commission Dist. 3 Pos 2

Sidney Chism (D) (incumbent)

Andrew "Rome" Withers (D)

County Commission Dist. 3 Pos 3

Edith Moore  (D) (incumbent)

Justin Ford (D)

County Commission Dist 4 Pos 1

Chris Thomas (R)

John Pellicciotti (R)

Jim Bomprezzi (R)

County Commission Dist 4 Pos 2

Wyatt Bunker (R) (incumbent)

John Wilkerson (R)

Ron Fittes (R)

County Commission Dist 4 Pos 3

Terry Roland (R)

George Chism (R)

Edgar Babian (R)

County Commission Dist 5

Steve Mulroy (D) (incumbent)

Jennings Bernard (D)

Rolando Toyos (R)

Shelby County Clerk

Charlotte Draper (D)

Corey Maclin (D)

LaKeith Miller (D)

Wayne Mashburn (R)

Steve Moore (R)

Criminal Court Clerk

Vernon Johnson (D)

Minerva Johnican (D)

Ralph White (D)

Michael Porter (R)

Kevin Key (R)

Jerry Stamson (I)

Circuit Court Clerk

Jimmy Moore (R) (incumbent)

Steven Webster (D)

Carmichael Johnson (D)

Ricky W. Dixon (D)

Juvenile Court Clerk

Joy Touliatos (R)

Charles Marshall (D)

Sylvester Bradley (D)

Shep Wilbun (D)

Julia Roberson Wiseman (I)

Probate Court Clerk

Paul Boyd (R)

Sondra Becton (D)

Danny Kail (D)

Annita Sawyer Hamilton (D)

Peggy Dobbins (D)

Clay Perry (D)

Karen Tyler (D)

Shelby County Register

Tom Leatherwood (R) (incumbent)

Coleman Thompson (D)

Lady J. Swift (D)

Carlton Orange (D)

Shelby County Trustee

Regina Newman (D) (incumbent)

M. LaTroy Williams (D)

John Willingham (R)

Jeff Jacobs (R)

David Lenoir (R)

...

34. Stephens Named Executive Director Of Exceptional Foundation of West Tenn. -

Jeni Stephens has been named the executive director of the Exceptional Foundation of West Tennessee.

Stephens was appointed following a national search conducted by the EFWT.

She joins the EFWT with a 14-year background in nonprofit administration. She most recently served as deputy director of development for the Pink Palace Family of Museums. She also has served as director of marketing and development for the Memphis Bioworks Foundation and the Memphis Academy of Science in Engineering.

35. Stallworth Named Board President At Association of Fundraising Professionals -

Virginia Stallworth is the new president of the board of directors for the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

Stallworth has served on the board since 2005. She is the associate director at the Memphis Child Advocacy Center, where she has worked for nine years. Stallworth also serves on the board of directors for the Memphis Area Women's Council.

36. Archived Article: Real Review Lj - Real Review 2-22-00 Building supply firm buys Lamar Avenue property Builders FirstSource Inc. has purchased a 157,000-square-foot facility on 13 acres in Southeast Memphis designed to accommodate the companys expansion plans. The Dallas-based nation...