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VOL. 122 | NO. 219 | Friday, November 16, 2007

Daily Digest

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Studsvik to Open New Facility in February

     Studsvik, a Sweden-based supplier of services to the international nuclear industry, has started construction on its new Presidents Island facility. The company recently applied to the city-county Department of Construction Code Enforcement for a $1.8 million permit for the project, which is at 2550 Channel Ave. at Pier Street.
     The old processing facility at the site has been torn down and the new one is being built on its footprint, a company spokesman said. Work began in early November and is targeted to wrap Feb.28.
     The facility handles volume reduction of low-level radioactive waste and other waste, the spokesman said.
     The Channel Avenue site formerly was home to Radiological Assistance, Consulting & Engineering (RACE). Studsvik, which has operations in seven countries, acquired all shares of RACE Holdings LLC in April 2006 for $27.5 million plus an $8.5 million transfer of operating credit.
     The architect for the new Presidents Island facility is Granville Taylor and the contractor is Inman Construction Corp.

Foreclosures Filed Against Mark Matthews Properties

     Five first-run foreclosures have been filed against properties owned by Mark Matthews Development LLC, according to The Daily News Online, www.memphisdailynews.com. The notices begin on Page 37 of today's issue of The Daily News.
     Trustmark National Bank is planning to foreclose on four lots in St. Andrews Place Planned Development and one lot in Sunset Lake Subdivision, each lot filed as a separate foreclosure. The St. Andrews lots were purchased in December and the Sunset Lake lot was purchased in July 2005.
     The total amount in default is $924,800. The lots are scheduled for sale Dec. 12 outside the Adams Avenue entrance of the Shelby County Courthouse.
     The addresses are 9967, 9971 and 9976 Chariden Drive, 3868 W. Sundale Way and 9976 Brantley Oak Drive.
     Companies related to the Matthews brothers, once among the most prolific builders in Shelby County, recently began facing a flurry of foreclosures, liens and lawsuits.
     For more information on earlier developments with the Matthews brothers' businesses, see the Oct. 29 issue of The Daily News.

Minority-Owned Projects To Go Before CCDC Today

     Development loan applications for two minority-owned projects will go before the Center City Development Corp. today.
     Stone Investment Group LLC is seeking approval for a $47,000 loan to cover project costs for repairs and renovations to 831 Danny Thomas Ave. And Dwaine Quarrells is seeking a nearly $9,000 increase to an already approved loan for repairs and renovations on the Greenlaw Street Apartments at 267 Greenlaw Ave.
     For more information on the projects, see the Daily Digest in Thursday's edition of The Daily News.
     The CCDC meeting begins at 9:30 a.m. at the Center City Commission, 114 N. Main St.

Roebuck to Auction 40 Midtown Properties

     Roebuck Auctions will auction more than 40 properties Dec. 4 at 11:07 a.m. at the Memphis-based company's auction gallery, 4932 Park Ave.
     Most of the homes are in the Midtown and Cooper-Young areas. Many will be selling absolute, and the auction will include single-family homes, duplexes, four-plexes, commercial buildings and vacant lots.
     The total value of the real estate is estimated to be worth more than $5 million.
     Interested bidders should visit www.roebuckauctions.com or call 763-2825 for more information.

Davidson Hotel Co. Lands Florida Property

     Memphis-based Davidson Hotel Co. has signed a management agreement to operate the 256-room, 10-story Hilton Pompano Beach Resort, set to break ground in January, the company announced Thursday.
     Davidson also has executed a technical services agreement to provide pre-construction and design services, including assisting and advising owners with the selection of all furniture, fixtures and equipment, operating equipment, supplies and information technology systems.
     The three-phase, six-acre project in Pompano Beach, Fla., comprises two new-build properties, including the Hilton and a second currently unnamed 317-room hotel with an accompanying marina. The project, which is owned by Ocean Land Investments, is expected to be finished by 2010.
     Davidson currently owns or manages 31 hotels with 9,100 rooms across the United States.

Memphis-Based API To Distribute SEM Products

     Memphis-based Aerospace Products International Inc. has signed an agreement with Charlotte, N.C.-based SEM Aerospace Inc., naming API as the exclusive worldwide distributor of SEM Aerospace products.
     SEM manufactures specialty aerosols, adhesives and coatings for the automotive, aerospace, marine and industrial markets. The company was founded in 1948 by George Sneckner and William Elliot, the "S" and "E" in SEM. The "M" is for manufacturing.
     API's global reach, supply chain management solutions and reputation in the industry fit well into SEM's aerospace distribution channel strategy, SEM Aerospace manager Brad Chana said in a statement.

FedEx Ground Facility Relocates to Humboldt

     FedEx Ground will move its Trenton, Tenn., distribution center to a larger facility in Humboldt, about 11 miles to the south, next year.
     The company said all 62 Trenton employees will have the option of transferring to the new facility and FedEx Ground will hire additional part-time package handlers when the move is complete in the summer.
     The company is leaving its current 15,000-square-foot building for a 56,000-square-foot facility it plans to begin building in December, spokeswoman Allison Sobczak said. The new facility is expected to cost around $4.4 million.
     In Humboldt, the company will be closer to several customers and to Interstate 40, she said.
     The relocation is part of a multi-billion dollar expansion plan.
     "We are opening nine new hubs and expanding or relocating 300 local facilities," she said.
     Trenton Mayor Tony Burriss said he had hoped to keep the company in his town.
     "Obviously, we are devastated that they are going to leave," he said.
     FedEx Ground is a Pittsburgh-based division of Memphis-based FedEx Corp.

Fixed-Rate Loans Favored When Refinancing

     Fixed-rate mortgages continue to dominate the refinance market, as 85 percent of borrowers who refinanced a one-year adjustable-rate mortgage in the third quarter chose a fixed-rate mortgage, said Freddie Mac in a quarterly report.
     Of those borrowers who refinanced a hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage, 82 percent chose a fixed-rate loan, the government-sponsored homeownership and rental-housing corporation said.
     Those numbers compare with 86 percent and 85 percent refinancing into fixed-rate mortgages in the second quarter, respectively, reflecting a continued trend toward refinancing into fixed-rate mortgages.
     Investors have shied away from riskier loans as loan defaults continue to surge, especially among subprime borrowers, and the market for mortgage-backed securities has plunged.
     The report indicated that 58 percent of borrowers who originally had a 15-year fixed-rate loan switched to a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage when they refinanced in the third quarter, the highest percentage since the start of the quarterly series in 2002. The rate was 53 percent in the second quarter, and just 8 percent in the third quarter of 2002.
     The estimates come from a sample of properties on which Freddie Mac has funded at least two successive loans.

Employers Must Pay For Safety Equipment, OSHA Says

     Employers will have to pay the full cost for almost all personal safety equipment used by their workers, the Labor Department said this week, a move advocates say will prevent thousands of on-the-job injuries.
     The Occupational Safety and Health Administration rule, proposed in 1999 but never adopted in final form until now, would require employers to pay for personal protective equipment, or PPE, such as protective clothing and other gear.
     The rule takes effect in six months.
     "When employers pay for PPE, they are more likely to select the right PPE for the hazards present in their workplaces," said Edwin G. Foulke Jr., assistant labor secretary for occupational safety and health. "When employers pay for PPE, we have found that they also make sure that the equipment is maintained and replaced as necessary, and generally take more responsibility for PPE selection and use."
     Employers already pay for approximately 95 percent of the cost of personal protective equipment, Foulke said. Paying the rest will cost $85 million, he said.
     OSHA estimated the rule will result in at least 21,000 fewer occupational injuries per year, he said. It also will save more than $200 million per year in costs including medical and insurance bills, he said.
     Employers will not have to pay for ordinary safety-toed footwear, ordinary prescription safety eyewear, logging boots, and ordinary clothing and weather-related gear that can be worn off the job, the agency said.
     The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported more than 4 million worker injuries and more than 5,700 deaths in the private sector in 2006.
PROPERTY SALES 21 82 6,474
MORTGAGES 7 53 4,088
BUILDING PERMITS 240 353 15,714
BANKRUPTCIES 38 58 3,328