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VOL. 124 | NO. 33 | Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Daily Digest

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$1.3M Construction Loan Filed for Collierville Land

R.S. Harris LLC has filed a $1.3 million construction loan through First Citizens National Bank for about two-and-a-half acres of vacant land along Winchester Road in Collierville. The company, whose principal is R.S. Harris, bought the land in January from Bumpus Brothers No. 3 LP for $420,000.

The transaction included three parcels, all of which are connected. The property, part of the Harley Plaza Subdivision, is southeast of the intersection of Winchester and South Byhalia roads. One parcel is 1.58 acres; the Shelby County Assessor of Property’s 2008 appraisal was $73,600. Another parcel is 0.78 acres; its appraised value is $600. The last parcel is part of a 1.25-acre lot; its appraised value is $65,900.

The selling entity is related to Bumpus-Harley Davidson dealership at nearby 325 S. Byhalia Road. That company’s president, Timothy Bumpus, signed the warranty deed transferring the property to Harris, who is president of Aqua Construction Inc.

Calls to Bumpus and Harris were not immediately returned.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports



Ten Candidates Vie For Vacant Commission Seat

Members of the Shelby County Board of Commissioners will interview at least 10 candidates today for the District 4 commission seat vacated when David Lillard became state treasurer.

Ten people had applied for the vacancy as of late Monday. They are:

  • John C. Bogan, a real estate appraiser and business owner from Eads who ran unsuccessfully in the 2008 GOP primary for property assessor
  • James Bolden, former Memphis police director
  • James P. Bomprezzi, former mayor of Lakeland and a retired Memphis police officer
  • Rudolph Daniels, business owner and former school teacher
  • Tommy Hart, former Shelby County commissioner
  • Linda Kerley, former Collierville mayor
  • Matt Kuhn, political consultant and former chairman of the Shelby County Democratic party
  • Adrienne Pakis-Gillon, member of the local Democratic party’s executive committee
  • Chris Price, Millington car dealer
  • Terry Roland, Millington business owner who has run twice as the Republican nominee for state Senate District 29

The full commission is scheduled to fill the seat at Monday’s meeting.

Lillard, a Republican, said he will not be making an endorsement for the appointment. Whoever wins will serve the remainder of Lillard’s four-year term of office, which runs through August 2010.

With the seat vacant, the remaining commissioners are evenly split – six Republicans and six Democrats. The district, which is entirely outside the city limits of Memphis, is considered Republican territory politically. It takes in all six of Shelby County’s suburban municipalities. But some Democrats on the commission have said that does not mean they will cede the appointment to a Republican.



Homebuilder Sentiment Index Makes Small Rebound

The National Association of Home Builders has reported its housing market index climbed one point off an all-time low this month as improved traffic by prospective buyers helped lift some builders’ confidence in their sales outlook.

The Washington-based trade association reported Tuesday the index rose to nine in February.

Index readings lower than 50 indicate negative sentiment about the market.

The report reflects a survey of 421 residential developers nationwide, tracking builders’ perceptions of market conditions.

Builders’ gauge of current sales conditions and buyer traffic climbed from January. But expectations for sales over the next six months hit a record low.



Open Records Counsel Says It’s Received 600 Calls

The state Office of Open Records Counsel reported it’s received about 600 calls so far on issues related to open meetings and public records.

Director Ann Butterworth and open records specialist Elisha Hodge addressed members of the Tennessee Senate State and Local Government Committee on Tuesday.

Hodge said the questions range from what’s considered adequate public notice for a meeting to how to deal with someone making a records request.

State law requires governments to conduct business in open meetings and post adequate notice of meetings. It also makes most state, county and municipal records available to any Tennessee citizen.



International Paper To Shut Scotland Mill

International Paper Co. reported Tuesday it will close a mill in Scotland by the end of next month.

Shutting the Inverurie, Scotland, mill will leave 371 workers jobless, a spokeswoman said, and removes 250,000 tons of uncoated freesheet capacity from International Paper’s European output, the Memphis-based company reported.

Mary Laschinger, president of International Paper Europe, Middle East, Africa and Russia, said in a statement that the company has failed to find alternatives to the shutdown.

International Paper shut the mill to match reduced demand, Laschinger said.

The company reported a fourth-quarter loss last month as a deepening recession forced it to shut mills that are struggling with reduced demand for paper and packaging. The nation’s biggest paper and forest products company has closed mills and facilities from Louisiana to Canada, joining industry rivals in reducing capacity.



Financial Services Forum Exec To Speak at U of M Symposium

John Dearie, executive vice president for policy for the Financial Services Forum, will deliver the keynote speech at the University of Memphis Law Review 2009 Spring Symposium Friday.

Dearie’s speech is titled “Rethinking the U.S. Regulatory Structure Governing Financial Institutions: 21st Century Solutions for a 21st Century Marketplace.” Dearie will discuss the need for supervisory reform, the objectives of meaningful reform, the Paulson Treasury Blueprint for reform and the outlines of another potential reform option.

The speech will be delivered Friday at 1 p.m. at the FedEx Institute of Technology on the University of Memphis campus.

The Financial Services Forum is a nonpartisan financial and economic policy organization comprised of the chief executive officers of 17 of the largest and most diversified financial services institutions in the United States.



Office Suites PLUS Opens Memphis Location

Office Suites PLUS has opened its first location in Memphis in Suite 250 at 6000 Poplar Ave.

The 15,538 square feet of space includes individually furnished offices, meeting rooms, high-speed Internet access and administrative support services.

Office Suites PLUS currently operates 35 locations in nine states. Typical clients are corporations that may require one or two employees in a market, the company said.



Hollywood Casino Raises Money for St. Jude

Hollywood Casino’s eighth annual Red Carpet Bash raised $103,000 for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

John Osborne, the casino’s general manager, and Jeff Strang, the casino’s vice president of marketing, recently presented a check for that amount to Clark Sweat, senior vice president of corporate alliances with ALSAC/St. Jude.

The fundraiser was held in November.



U of M Named To Honor Roll

The University of Memphis has been named to the 2008 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll by the Corporation for National and Community Service.

U of M was one of 635 colleges to receive the honor. The award recognizes the school’s commitment to service-learning and civic engagement.

An estimated 9,445 University of Memphis students participated in community service projects in 2008 totaling close to 155,818 hours of service.



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RECORD TOTALS DAY WEEK YEAR
PROPERTY SALES 89 344 19,573
MORTGAGES 110 422 22,914
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 2 8,305 8,305
BUILDING PERMITS 207 838 40,029
BANKRUPTCIES 60 356 13,104
BUSINESS LICENSES 21 194 6,137
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 30 147 12,996
MARRIAGE LICENSES 15 65 4,842

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