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Editorial Results (free)

1. County Primary Ballot Includes Partisan Match-Ups, Automatic Wins -

Two Democratic county commissioners effectively won re-election to new terms of office at the Thursday, Feb. 15, filing deadline for candidates on the May 1 county primary ballot. And a third faces independent opposition in the August county general election.

2. Comptroller: City Obeyed Most Rules in Sale of Parks -

The state Comptroller’s Office has determined the city of Memphis’ Dec. 20, 2017, sale of Health Sciences Park and the easement to Memphis Park to Memphis Greenspace Inc. appropriately followed related laws with the exception of requiring Memphis Greenspace to submit an application so it could gauge the nonprofit’s financial stability.

3. Two County Commissioners Re-elected At May Ballot Filing Deadline -

Two Democratic county commissioners effectively won re-election to new terms of office at the Thursday, Feb. 15, filing deadline for candidates on the May 1 county primary ballot. And a third faces independent opposition in the August county general election.

4. Comptroller: City Obeyed Most Rules in Sale of Parks -

The state Comptroller’s Office has determined the city of Memphis’ Dec. 20, 2017, sale of Health Sciences Park and the easement to Memphis Park to Memphis Greenspace Inc. appropriately followed related laws with the exception of requiring Memphis Greenspace to submit an application so it could gauge the nonprofit’s financial stability.

5. Four County Commissioners Unopposed As May Ballot Filing Deadline Approaches -

With a noon deadline Thursday, Feb. 15, to make the May 1 Shelby County primary ballot, four incumbent county commissioners had no opposition filed in their re-election bids.

Five Republican primary races on the ballot for 23 county offices, including the 13 commission seats, were one-candidate affairs with two or more Democrats running in the competing primaries as of Tuesday. Two Democratic primary races were also one-candidate races against a field of multiple Republican contenders in the companion primary.

6. Comptroller: City of Memphis Followed Most Rules in Sale of Parks -

The state Comptroller’s Office has determined the city of Memphis’ Dec. 20, 2017, sale of Health Sciences Park and the easement to Memphis Park to Memphis Greenspace Inc. appropriately followed related laws with the exception of requiring Memphis Greenspace to submit an application so it could gauge the nonprofit’s financial stability.

7. Nashville Court Orders Second Attempt at Mediation on Monuments -

The Nashville chancellor who Monday ordered a hold on selling or transferring ownership of Confederate monuments removed from two Memphis parks followed up the next day with an order that all sides in the dispute enter mediation.

8. Court Holds Up Sale or Transfer Of Confederate Monuments -

UPDATE: Chancellor Ellen Hobbs Lyle issued a second court order Tuesday, Jan. 30, that orders all sides in the litigation to enter into mediation on possible new locations for the removed monuments.

9. Memphis Greenspace Plans Upgrades to City Parks -

Memphis Greenspace Inc. has announced a spring activation strategy for its current park portfolio of Memphis Park and Health Sciences Park.

10. Memphis Greenspace Announces Spring Activation of Parks -

Memphis Greenspace Inc. has plans for Health Sciences and Memphis Park with a “spring activation strategy” announced Thursday, Jan. 25, for the two parks that until last month included the city’s two most iconic Confederate monuments.

11. Shelby County Joins Memphis in Landfill Moratorium -

Shelby County commissioners approved a six-month moratorium on any new construction landfills in unincorporated Shelby County on Monday, Jan. 22.

The resolution is the companion to a Memphis City Council resolution passed earlier this month that imposed a six-month moratorium on such landfills within the city of Memphis.

12. Commission Adds County Landfill Moratorium to City Ban -

Shelby County commissioners approved a six month moratorium Monday, Jan. 22, on any new construction landfills in unincorporated Shelby County. The resolution is the companion to a Memphis City Council resolution passed earlier this month that imposed a six-month moratorium on such landfills within the city of Memphis.

13. Some Express Interest in Monuments Removed From City Parks -

The private nonprofit that had the city’s two most visible Confederate monuments removed from city parks in December says it has fielded numerous offers to take the statues of Nathan Bedford Forrest, Jefferson Davis and a bust of Confederate Capt. Harvey Mathes in Memphis Park where the Davis statue stood.

14. County Commission Moves Toward Minority Business Fixes, Landfill Moratorium -

Shelby County commissioners vote Monday, Jan. 22, on a first step toward amending the minority and locally owned business program they approved more than a year ago with great fanfare.

The first step is hiring attorney Ricky E. Wilkins to review proposed fixes that are to follow. Wilkins would be paid up to $50,000 from the commission’s contingency fund.

15. Last Word: The Snow Split, Amazon Post-Mortem and Intermodal Comeback -

A split verdict on Snow Day 4. Some school systems and colleges and universities are out again Friday, others are not and still others are opening later in the day. Shelby County Schools, which is out, says it has 13 extra days built into its schedule for just such an event or events – that is 13 days extra beyond the 180 days the state requires as the bare minimum for a school year.

16. Greenspace Nonprofit Details Offers For Confederate Monuments -

The private nonprofit group that had the city’s two most visible Confederate monuments removed from city parks in December says it has had numerous offers to take the statues of Nathan Bedford Forrest and Jefferson Davis as well as a bust of Confederate Captain Harvey Mathes in the same park where the Davis statue stood.

17. County Commission Wants to Firm Up Minority Contract Rules -

Shelby County commissioners approved a $1.6 million contract Monday, Jan. 8, for mobile data terminals, tablets and wireless routers for the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office.

The contract with Tate Computer Systems Inc. is an entry into a system of body cameras for sheriff’s deputies. Capital funding for the hardware came from a line item for a delayed health clinic that will be built in the next fiscal year, according to county chief administrative officer Harvey Kennedy.

18. McMullen: Legislative Session Influenced Timing in Monuments Removal -

Several nonprofits approached the city administration about buying Health Sciences and Memphis parks before the Memphis City Council approved the sale of each to Memphis Greenspace last month for $1,000 each. And some of them said no.

19. County Commission Moves Toward More Fixes in Minority Business Rules -

Shelby County commissioners meet Monday, Jan. 8, for the first time in 2018 and have a fairly simple agenda along with some longer-range issues to discuss.

Among the more immediate items on Monday’s agenda is a $1.5 million contract for mobile data terminals, tablets and vehicle wireless routers that Tate Computer Systems Inc. of Memphis would provide to the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office.

20. Weekend Monuments Protests, Response Suggest Shift -

Memphis Branch NAACP president Deidre Malone may have had the most concise description of what has changed since the city’s two most visible Confederate monuments came down Dec. 20.

“What we want happened. The monuments are down,” Malone said Friday, Jan. 5, as the NAACP and other groups called on Memphians to ignore plans for protests in the city the next day by groups opposed to the removal of the monuments.

21. Battling Opioids -

Later this month, Shelby County government will roll out a public health effort led by the Shelby County Health Department to battle opioid addiction. “We’re taking a very long view of this. It’s not going to be a quick fix,” Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell told Shelby County Commission members Wednesday, Jan. 3, during committee sessions.

22. Mayor Says Memphis 'Will Be Prepared' for Statue Protests -

If opponents of the removal of the city’s two most visible Civil War monuments follow through on plans for a Memphis protest Jan. 6, Mayor Jim Strickland said city government will be ready.

23. Strickland Touts 'Solidarity' Around Confederate Monuments Removal -

Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland marked the halfway point in his four-year term of office Monday, Jan. 1, by calling on citizens to make use of the “spirit of solidarity” shown in the removal of the city’s two most visible Civil War monuments just before Christmas.

24. Editorial: Though Statues are Down, Work is Just Beginning -

They may be the most famous pedestals in Memphis – the ones where the horseback image of Nathan Bedford Forrest stood for 113 years and the relatively slender pinnacle where Jefferson Davis stood for a mere 53 years.

25. Monuments Moment Spans Generational Lines -

Van Turner Sr. celebrated his 73rd birthday Wednesday, Dec. 20, as his son, county commissioner Van Turner Jr., was somewhere near the epicenter of the most significant chapter of the city’s long-running controversy over Confederate monuments.

26. Last Word: The Day After, Frayser Bauhaus and Gasol & Fizdale -

Less than 24 hours after the Forrest statue in Health Sciences Park was taken down and away, Memphians were taking selfies with what’s left of the very considerable base in the background. And this is only going to become more prevalent when the weather improves and you will probably see folks out there who have some very different views on the removal of the statues.

27. Forrest Down -

It’s hard to know where the equestrian statue of Nathan Bedford Forrest is when there aren’t lights on it.

That was the case Wednesday, Dec. 20, as the spotlights normally illuminating the likeness of the Confederate general, slave trader and Ku Klux Klan grand wizard were doused.

28. Nonprofit Leader: Removal of 2 Memphis Confederate Monuments 'Only the Beginning' -

The morning after the city’s two best-known Confederate memorials came down in a pair of city parks, the attorney and Shelby County commissioner who leads the private nonprofit to whom the city sold the parks said the organization has plans to “liberate” other parks.

29. Forrest and Davis Statues Removed As City Sells Parks -

With a quick vote without debate on a last-minute substitute ordinance, the Memphis City Council set in motion Wednesday, Dec. 20, the removal of Confederate monuments in two city parks.

And four hours later the equestrian statue of Confederate General, slave trader and Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard that has stood for more than 100 years was removed from its base by a crane and taken to an undisclosed location. An hour after that another crane moved into Memphis Park to remove the statue of Confederacy president Jefferson Davis.

30. Commission’s Last Meeting of 2018 Features Pay Raise for Sheriff -

At the last Shelby County Commission meeting of 2017, commissioners have an agenda heavy with grants and a return to the issue of how much to pay the next sheriff.

The commission meets Monday, Sept. 18, at 3 p.m. at the Vasco Smith Administration Building, 160 N. Main. Follow the meeting @tdnpols, www.twitter.com/tdnpols, for live coverage.

31. County Primary Filing Opens With Paperwork Flurry -

A total of 37 prospective candidates in the May 2018 county primaries pulled qualifying petitions last week on the first day of the filing period Friday, Nov. 17.

And the first contenders through the doors at the Shelby County Election Commission in a period that extends to a February deadline confirms a few trends.

32. Opioid Lawsuit Filed as County Dispute on Legal Action Goes to Court -

UPDATE: Shelby County Chancellor Jim Kyle ruled Tuesday, Nov. 14, that the Shelby County Commission overstepped its role and powers within county government when the commission hired a law firm and had its own attorney file a lawsuit in Circuit Court against pharmaceutical companies over opioid abuse.

33. The Week Ahead: Nov. 13-19 -

Good morning, Memphis. Just like the fall season, basketball is showing its full colors this week as the Grizzlies, Tigers and Hustle will all be playing home games. But there is plenty more to take in, including the culmination of Royal Studios’ 60-year celebration. Enjoy!

34. Commission Takes Final Votes on Pay Raises, Resolution Backing SCS -

All 13 Shelby County commissioners are now defendants in a lawsuit filed late last week by Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell after the commission met in special session and voted to ratify a decision by chairwoman Heidi Shafer to hire counsel for possible litigation over the opioid epidemic.

35. County Commission Ratifies Opioid Lawsuit Decision -

Shelby County Commissioners ratified Wednesday, Nov. 8, the decision of commission chairwoman Heidi Shafer to hire a law firm for a possible county lawsuit against pharmaceutical companies over the nation’s opioid addiction problem.

36. County Commission Ratifies Opioid Lawsuit Decision -

Shelby County Commissioners ratified Wednesday, Nov. 8, the decision of commission chairwoman Heidi Shafer to hire a law firm for a possible county lawsuit against pharmaceutical companies over the nation’s opioid addiction problem.

37. County Commission OKs Emissions Fee Hike -

Shelby County commissioners advanced on the first of three readings Monday, Oct. 30, an ordinance that would increase the county’s air pollution emission fee and the major and minimum source permit fees for non-automobile emissions.

38. Last Word: Changes Behind Highland Row, Lee Harris Opens and Ron Olson Moves -

Shelby County Commission chairwoman Heidi Shafer says the commission, through its attorneys, is in ‘the final stages of launching litigation” against big pharma over the opioid problem locally. And in a written statement Thursday she said she believes the litigation “will result in significant recovery for hundreds of millions of dollars that Shelby County has spent trying to heal, save, nurse and otherwise deal with the opioid crisis.” Shafer specifically announced the hiring on a contingency basis of a national law firm.

39. County Commission OKs Emissions Fee Hike -

Shelby County commissioners advanced on the first of three readings Monday, Oct. 30, an ordinance that would increase the county’s air pollution emission fee and the major and minimum source permit fees for non-automobile emissions.

40. Shelby County Commission Short of Votes for Pay Raises -

Proposed pay raises for 19 of Shelby County government’s top elected positions don’t appear to have the nine votes necessary to pass on third and final reading in two weeks.

So Shelby County commissioner Van Turner is looking for a compromise that might put the double-digit percentage raises to voters in a 2018 referendum or tie future raises to any pay increases other county government employees get.

41. County Pay Raises Short of Votes, In Search of Compromise -

Proposed pay raises for 19 of Shelby County government’s top elected positions don’t appear to have the nine votes necessary to pass on third and final reading in two weeks.

So Shelby County commissioner Van Turner is looking for a compromise that might put the double-digit percentage pay raises to voters in a 2018 referendum or tie future pay raises to any raises that county government rank and file employees get.

42. Mickell Lowery Uses Lessons From Council Race in Commission Bid -

Two years to the month after he conceded defeat in his first political outing, Mickell Lowery is returning to the local political arena – albeit a different part of the arena.

Lowery is running in the May Democratic primary for Shelby County Commission District 8, the seat held by Democrat Walter Bailey, who is term-limited and cannot seek re-election in 2018.

43. Last Word: Paying the Piper, Sewer Regrets and The New Incumbent's Strategy -

Grizzlies over the Rockets 98-90 after being down 12 on the road in Houston. There is just something in the Memphis sports ethos that happens at halftime or between quarters. The Grizz are 3-0 in this young season. And for the second consecutive game some extracurricular action on the court. Mario Chalmers of the Grizz and James Harden of the Rockets scuffled after Chalmers got floored by Harden after Harden got swarmed by him and James Ennis. Harden got the foul and he and Chalmers each got a technical for what followed.

44. County Commission Votes on Big Pay Raises -

The pay of 19 Shelby County government elected officials would go up in September 2018 for those elected in the August 2018 county general elections under proposals the county commission considers Monday, Oct. 16, on the first of three readings.

45. County Delays Convention Center Funds -

Shelby County commissioners again delayed passage Monday, Sept. 25, of a resolution that would allow the city of Memphis to use surplus hotel-motel tax revenue for Memphis Cook Convention Center renovations.

46. Commission Again Delays Convention Center Hotel-Motel Tax Flow To City -

Shelby County Commissioners again delayed passage Monday, Sept. 25, of a resolution that allows the city of Memphis to use surplus hotel-motel tax revenue to go toward Memphis Cook Convention Center renovations.

47. Last Word: The Brooks Question, Boyd's Answer and Tigers In the Polls -

Art as a real estate consideration. One of the more unusual of many considerations as the Brooks search for a new site – a possible new site, I should add, becomes the city’s favorite topic. So from the CRE vantage point – here are two more possible sites to think about if you haven’t already – Cossitt Library and the Fairgrounds, as well as right where it has been for the last century.

48. Last Word: Midtown Moves, A Spike in Chandler Numbers and Old School Expo -

The Brooks looking for a place outside of Overton Park is a huge story that broke Tuesday evening. And it is one of those stories that has a lot of dominoes you might say. Our story looks at some earlier options the museum developed mid recession, which is what delayed fuller consideration of this whole question.

49. Monuments Controversy May Mean Long Haul of Lawsuits, Negotiations -

When the Tennessee Historical Commission votes Oct. 13 on a waiver that would permit the city of Memphis to remove Confederate monuments from two city parks, it won’t be anywhere near the last word on the matter.

50. County Commission Joins City Call to Remove Confederate Monuments -

Shelby County Commissioners approved a resolution Monday, Sept. 11, backing the city’s efforts to remove Confederate monuments with a waiver from the Tennessee Historical Commission. The resolution by commissioner Walter Bailey also backs the Memphis City Council’s move to an ordinance that could take down the monuments after the Oct. 13 decision if the historical commission does not grant the waiver.

51. Commission Votes Down Health Coverage Change -

Shelby County Commissioners voted down a switch Monday, Aug, 28, of the county’s health insurance administration contract from Cigna to an $11 million, two-year contract with two one-year renewal options with Aetna.

52. County Commission Votes Down Health Coverage Change -

Shelby County Commissioners voted down a switch Monday, Aug, 28, of the county’s health insurance administration contract from Cigna to Aetna in an $11 million two-year contract with two renewals of one year each.

53. Commission Tries to Stop Charter School Plan -

Shelby County commissioners called on a charter school that planned to open in Memphis but instead wants to set up shop in Bartlett to stick by its original plan or put off opening Gateway University Charter School next week.

54. County Commission Calls For Halt to Gateway Charter Plans in Bartlett -

Shelby County Commissioners called on a charter school that planned to open in Memphis but instead is setting up shop in Bartlett to stick by its original plan or put off the opening of the Gateway University Charter School next week.

55. Political Differences Endure After $4.11 Shelby County Tax Rate Compromise -

Shelby County commissioners were still calculating Monday, July 17, after they passed a compromised, $4.11 county property tax rate that appears will stay put long enough for the commission to take a final vote Wednesday at a special meeting.

56. County Commission Leans Back to $4.13 Tax Rate -

Shelby County Commissioners took a step Wednesday, July 12, toward taking back a 3-cent cut in the county property tax rate.

And in the budget committee session, commissioners favoring the tax cut to a $4.10 tax rate said they would reopen this week’s contentious budget debate if the $4.13 tax rate appears to have traction when the full commission meets Monday, July 17.

57. Commission Goes Back to $4.13 County Property Tax Rate -

Shelby County Commissioners took a step Wednesday, July 12, toward taking back a three-cent cut in the county property tax rate.

And in the budget committee session, commissioners favoring the tax cut to a $4.10 tax rate said they would reopen this week’s contentious budget debate if the $4.13 tax rate appears to have traction when the full commission meets Monday, July 17.

58. Sessions Gets More Opposition to Ending DOJ Memorandum -

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has been getting a lot of mail from Memphis lately about Juvenile Court.

59. Last Word: A Second Juvenile Court Letter, Fred Smith's Tax Plan and Memphis Hops -

A group of 19 organizations including the Memphis Branch NAACP and 28 citizens sent a letter Tuesday to U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions urging him to keep in place Justice Department oversight of Juvenile Court. The 12-page letter is a point-by-point detailed response to the June 9 letter from County Mayor Mark Luttrell, Juvenile Court Judge Dan Michael and Sheriff Bill Oldham asking Sessions to end the memorandum of agreement between county government and the Justice Department.

60. County Budget Vote Delayed But Government Continues To Operate -

Shelby County government’s fiscal year begins Saturday, July 1, but the county won’t have a new operating budget at least until July 10.

That’s when the Shelby County Commission meets in special session to take up an estimated $13 million in amendments various commissioners are proposing to the budget proposal of county mayor Mark Luttrell.

61. County Commission Opposes End To Juvenile Court Oversight, Delays Budget Vote -

Shelby County Commissioners approved a resolution Monday, June 26, opposing an end to the Justice Department memorandum governing conditions at Memphis-Shelby County Juvenile Court. And Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell said he will veto it.

62. Budget Amendments, Tax Rate and Juvenile Court Top County Commission Agenda -

Shelby County Commissioners will have lots of amendments to the county’s proposed operating budget Monday, June 26, and at least one bid to change the proposed county property tax rate of $4.10 approved on first reading earlier this month.

63. Shelby County Commissioners Question Ending DOJ Agreement -

The first reviews from Shelby County Commissioners Wednesday, June 21, of the idea of dropping Justice Department oversight of Memphis-Shelby County Juvenile Court were highly critical.

In committee sessions Wednesday afternoon, June 21, commissioners complained of not being consulted before county Mayor Mark Luttrell, Juvenile Court Judge Dan Michael and Sheriff Bill Oldham made the request to U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

64. Last Word: Cyber Attacks, Second Farmers Market Downtown and The Council Way -

It’s on. Shelby County commissioners coming out Wednesday in committee against the idea of ending Justice Department oversight of Juvenile Court. And the discussion was, as always, an interesting one including not only critics like commissioner Van Turner but commissioner Terry Roland and County Mayor Mark Luttrell.

65. Juvenile Court Settlement Meets Resistance on County Commission -

The first reviews from Shelby County Commissioners Wednesday, June 21, of the idea of dropping Justice Department oversight of Memphis-Shelby County Juvenile Court were highly critical.

In committee sessions Wednesday afternoon, commissioners complained of not being consulted before County Mayor Mark Luttrell, Juvenile Court Judge Dan Michael and Sheriff Bill Oldham made the request to U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

66. Juvenile Court Settlement Meets Resistance on County Commission -

The first reviews from Shelby County Commissioners Wednesday, June 21, of the idea of dropping Justice Department oversight of Memphis-Shelby County Juvenile Court were highly critical.

In committee sessions Wednesday afternoon, commissioners complained of not being consulted before County Mayor Mark Luttrell, Juvenile Court Judge Dan Michael and Sheriff Bill Oldham made the request to U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

67. County Commission Debates 3-Cent Tax Rate Cut -

Shelby County Commissioners approved a 3-cent reduction in the county property tax rate Monday, June 12, on the first of three readings but delayed a vote on the operating budget resolution for more discussion about how to account for the tax-rate cut.

68. County Commission Continues Tax Cut Calculations -

Shelby County Commissioners approved a three-cent reduction in the county property tax rate Monday, June 12, on the first of three readings but delayed a vote on the operating budget resolution for more discussion about how to account for a cut in the tax rate.

69. Local Democratic Reorganization Starts to Come Into Focus -

Shelby County Democrats should have a framework for a reorganized local party soon.

Discussions at town hall meetings around the county in the last month show it will probably be a party with a less complex structure and a more stable size from election to election. And a draft of the bylaws will probably include a larger policy council of sorts that meets on a quarterly basis to talk over larger issues than winning the next elections.

70. Commission Wades Into TIFs, Minority Businesses -

Shelby County Commissioners took a dive into the technical Monday, May 22, on several fronts in county government.

The commission approved a tweak in an economic impact plan for the Lake District development in Lakeland. The mixed-use development is to include hotels, retail, office uses, assisted living and restaurants. The public improvements or infrastructure are financed with a tax increment finance, or TIF, district that amounts to an increment of the property taxes – Lakeland and Shelby County – paid by the owners of the district.

71. Commission Wades Into TIFs, Minority Businesses -

Shelby County Commissioners took a dive into the technical Monday, May 22, on several fronts in county government.

The commission approved a tweak in an economic impact plan for the Lake District development in Lakeland. The mixed-use development is to include hotels, retail, office uses, assisted living and restaurants. The public improvements or infrastructure are financed with a tax increment finance, or TIF, district that amounts to an increment of the property taxes – Lakeland and Shelby County – paid by the owners of the district.

72. County Certified Property Tax Rate Comes In At $4.13 -

Shelby County Commissioners set the certified county property tax rate at $4.13 Monday, May 22, a 24-cent drop from the current tax rate of $4.37.

The resolution approved reflects the state-approved estimate of a tax rate that will produce the same amount of revenue for county government as the current tax rate once new property values from the 2017 countywide property reappraisal are factored in.

73. County Commission to Pick Up Budget Deliberations Monday -

Shelby County Commissioners meet Monday, May 22, and take up some budget and tax items on their way to a later final approval of all budget season matters at future meetings.

Among the items on the agenda is a resolution setting a recertified Shelby County property tax rate of $4.13. The new rate would be 24 cents below the current county rate of $4.37, reflecting changes in value from the Shelby County Assessor’s 2017 countywide property reappraisal.

74. Luttrell: Mend Issues That Divide Region -

Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell says his hope for a more civil national political discourse may be “a little Alice in Wonderland.” And there are times when he sees local discussions veering in the direction of “Nashville and Washington,” he told the Memphis Rotary Club Tuesday, May 16.

75. Shelby County Commissioners Pledge to ‘Push It’ on Minority Business Contracts -

Shelby County commissioners took a hard line Monday, April 17, on increasing the share of county government contracts for minority and locally owned businesses now that it has a plan for tackling a documented disparity for such contracts.

76. First Budget Moves, Minority Business Measures Top Commission Session -

Shelby County Commissioners set the tone for the upcoming county government budget season Monday, April 17, with approval of a refinancing of county debt with up to $120 million in bonds over time.

77. First Budget Moves, Minority Business Measures Top Commission Session -

Shelby County Commissioners set the tone for the upcoming county government budget season Monday, April 17, with approval of a refinancing of county debt with up to $120 million in bonds over time.

78. Commission Debates Interim Appointment to State House -

Shelby County commissioners have to decide Monday, March 20, whether or not to appoint someone to the vacant state House District 95 seat until special primary and general elections are decided in three months.

79. Last Word: There Goes the Off-Election Year, Pinch Plans Move and No Permit -

Here we go again. When the new year began, 2017 looked to be an off-election year in most of Shelby County. Some Arlington aldermen and school board races were the only elections on tap for the year. But the months leading up to the September elections in Arlington are filling up.

80. Planned Parenthood Vote Draws On Political Divide -

Shelby County Commissioner Steve Basar looked out at the audience in the commission’s chambers Monday, Feb. 6, and saw something the commission only sees once or twice a year – a standing room-only crowd with every seat taken and most there for a single issue.

81. County Commission Approves Planned Parenthood Grant -

Shelby County Commissioners approved a $115,000 grant Monday, Feb. 6, to Planned Parenthood Greater Memphis Region on a 7-5 party line vote.

The vote on funding for a free condom distribution program that is a federal grant passed through the state drew a capacity crowd in commission chambers Downtown. Some of the partisans in the audience saw the controversy as a reflection of the country’s post-election political divide.

82. Planned Parenthood Condom Grant Issue Returns to County Commission -

Shelby County Commissioners consider their options Monday, Feb. 6, on a stalled Planned Parenthood grant for a free condom distribution program.

The options include going to court and a clash with state government over the $115,000 pass through of state money.

83. Burgess Suggests Fewer Deputies In Courtroom -

Shelby County Commission chairman Melvin Burgess wants to see a broader use of Shelby County Sheriff’s deputies within the city working with Memphis Police.

84. Minority Contract Percentages Get Approval -

Shelby County Commissioners gave final approval Monday, Dec. 19, to a resolution that sets specific percentages for specific minority and other groups for getting a share of county government contracts.

85. Last Word: Last Council Session of 2016, Minority Business and Frugal Growth -

Winter's first day is behind us and has taken down another Monday at the same time. For some of us, this week before Christmas means Tuesday is time for a bowl game, the Boca Raton Bowl where the University of Memphis Tigers are playing far from the cold winds that blow at home. Ah, but they still think of home even if its only when the ice cubes clink against the sides of the glass of whatever they are having poolside. Never think you are beyond the reach of home.

86. County Commission Approves Specific Minority Contract Percentages -

Shelby County Commissioners gave final approval Monday, Dec. 19, to a resolution that sets specific percentages for specific minority and other groups for getting a share of county government contracts.

87. County Commission Tries Again on Minority Business Ordinance -

Shelby County Commissioners hold their third meeting of the month Monday, Dec. 19 – and there could be a fourth, depending on what happens on one of two ordinances that would establish new programs for a larger share of county government contracts for locally owned, minority-owned and women-owned businesses.

88. Last Word: Turner Dairy Plans, Fred's HQ and Fred Smith's Remarks About Trump -

Lots of traffic at FedExForum this weekend with two graduation ceremonies for the University of Memphis – morning and afternoon shifts. Another double-header at the Forum Saturday. The Grizz beat the Warriors 110-89 and the Tigers beat UAB 62-55.

89. Commission Sets Meeting On Minority Business -

Shelby County Commissioners have set a special meeting for Dec. 14 to vote on the second reading of two ordinances that would change county purchasing procedures to both enhance the amount of locally owned small businesses that get county contracts and establish a minority and women business enterprise (MWBE) program.

90. Commission Sets Meeting On Minority Business -

Shelby County Commissioners have set a special meeting for Dec. 14 to vote on the second read-ing of two ordinances that would change county purchasing procedures to both enhance the amount of locally owned small businesses that get county contracts and establish a minority and women business enterprise program.

91. Shelby County Commission Votes Down Pot Ordinance -

The Shelby County Commission voted down Monday, Dec. 5, an ordinance that would have matched a city of Memphis ordinance allowing police the option of writing a civil summons or ticket with a $50 fine for possession of half an ounce or less of marijuana.

92. Commission Votes Down Pot Ordinance -

Shelby County Commissioners voted down Monday, Dec. 5, an ordinance that would have matched the city of Memphis ordinance allowing police the option of writing a civil summons or ticket with a $50 fine for possession of half an ounce or less or marijuana.

93. Pot Ordinance, County Ambulance Service Top County Commission Agenda -

There are seven no votes on the Shelby County Commission against an ordinance allowing Shelby County Sheriff’s deputies to write a civil summons with a $50 fine for possession of a half ounce or less of marijuana.

94. Commissioners Clash on Pot and PILOT -

A pot ordinance for unincorporated areas of Shelby County got only four votes Monday, Oct. 31, from the county commission but still advanced to second reading, and commissioners could not agree on a resolution opposing a Nov. 8 ballot question that would shift MLGW funds to the city of Memphis.

95. Pot Vote Seen as Foothold in Memphis Criminal Justice Changes -

There were two gateway debates in Memphis City Council chambers Tuesday, Oct. 4, as it debated and then approved an ordinance that gives Memphis Police the discretion to write a ticket with a $50 fine for possession of a half ounce or less of marijuana.

96. Council Passes Pot Ordinance 7-6 -

The Memphis City Council gave final approval Tuesday, Oct. 4, to an ordinance that gives Memphis Police the discretion to write a ticket with a $50 fine for possession of a half ounce or less of marijuana.

97. Pot Decriminalization Nears Final Vote -

One of the state’s two largest cities has decriminalized possession of less than a half ounce of marijuana. And the other city set the stage for a final vote on a similar measure next month.

The final vote Tuesday, Sept. 20, by the Metro Nashville Council could be one of several factors influencing the final vote Oct. 4 by the Memphis City Council.

98. Study Leads to Broader Call for Business Ties -

Rodney Strong, CEO of the Atlanta law and public policy firm Griffin and Strong that authored city government’s latest disparity study on minority contracting, didn’t come to talk about the study last week when he spoke to a room of 40 African-American civic and business leaders.

99. Burgess New Chairman Of County Commission -

Melvin Burgess is the new chairman of the Shelby County Commission.

The second-term Democratic commissioner ran unopposed for the leadership post and was elected by the body at its Monday, Aug. 15, session.

100. Shelby County Schools Budgets – Past and Present – Amended -

The final numbers are in for Shelby County Schools and the quest for funding of the county’s largest public school system.

The SCS board approved Tuesday, July 26, the revised operating and capital budgets for the school system for the fiscal year that began 26 days earlier.