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VOL. 124 | NO. 99 | Thursday, May 21, 2009

Daily Digest

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U of M-Area Nursing Facility Sells for $7.3 Million

The Wesley Highland Manor senior nursing facility at 3549 Norriswood Ave. near the University of Memphis has sold for $7.3 million to FC Highlands LLC, a single-purpose entity related to Alpharetta, Ga.-based Formation Capital. The sale closed May 11; the seller was Wesley Highland Nursing Homes Inc.

The 56,913-square-foot facility sits on 1.37 acres at the southeast corner of South Highland Street and Norriswood Avenue, just west of the University of Memphis campus. The Shelby County Assessor of Property’s 2009 appraisal is $3.6 million.

The transaction also included a pair of vacant lots on nearby Watauga Avenue. The properties back up to Wesley Highland Manor.

Michael Jones signed the trust deed as manager of FC Highlands. Jones, chief operating officer for Formation Capital, said the facility provided a “very nice physical plant, a very nice location and a good opportunity for us to serve the community.”

The transaction included an assignment of rents and leases, and FC Highlands also took out a $9.4 million loan on the property through First Bank.

Jones said the 30-year-old building, which underwent some renovations in 2005, is in good shape, although some improvements are planned.

“We will spend some money at the property to upgrade aesthetically,” Jones said. “I know our operating partner is talking about short-term stay rehab facility or facilities within the building. We’re still evaluating our options but we do plan on spending some capex (capital expenditure) dollars at the property.

“We’re excited to have closed on the property. We think it’s a wonderful building and it’s a nice addition to our portfolio.”

Health Services Management Group LLC, based in Cleveland, Tenn., will operate the facility. The company also operates Ashton Place Health & Rehab Center and Mid-South Health and Rehabilitation Center in town.

As for other acquisitions in Memphis, Jones said Formation Capital continually keeps an eye on senior housing facilities that would make valuable assets.

“We are actively in the market,” Jones said. “Whether we can find something in Memphis or not is to be determined.”

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

TVA Rep to Update MLGW On Sludge Disaster

Gary Harris, general manager of customer service for the Tennessee Valley Authority for West Tennessee, is scheduled to give Memphis Light, Gas and Water Division officials an update today related to an environmental accident that happened in East Tennessee in December.

Harris will brief MLGW officials on the aftermath of the collapse of a retention pond wall at the TVA’s Kingston Fossil Plant in East Tennessee west of Knoxville. The accident released 1.1 billion gallons of sludge into the surrounding area, according to press accounts.

The presentation is relevant to MLGW because it is the TVA’s largest distributor and purchases about 11 percent of TVA’s power, according to information from Shelby County.

Harris will make his presentation today during the President’s Briefing at 1:30 p.m. in the boardroom of the MLGW Administration Building, 220 S. Main St. The MLGW board meeting will follow at 3 p.m. in the same location.

Airport Authority To Meet Today

The Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority (MSCAA) will hold its May board of commissioners meeting today at 8 a.m. in the Airport Authority board room, inside the terminal building at Memphis International Airport.

An agenda for this month’s meeting was not available by press time, although the board meeting will be immediately followed by a planning and development committee meeting.

The next MSCAA board meeting is set for June 18.

Divided SEC Proposes Investor Access Plan

Federal regulators on Wednesday proposed making it easier for shareholders to nominate directors for ballots of public companies, a change that could give shareholders more say over compensation packages for executives and risk controls.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, split 3-2 along party lines, opened the proposal to public comment. The plan would allow groups who own a certain percentage of a company’s stock to put their nominees for director on the annual proxy ballot that is sent to all company shareholders. The change has been pushed by investors and governance advocates.

The proposal would require different minimum levels of stock ownership according to the size of the company: 1 percent for the 700 biggest companies, and 3 or 5 percent for smaller ones. The shareholders would need to have held the stock for at least a year.

The crisis gripping the U.S. and global economies “has led many to question whether boards of directors are truly being held accountable for the decisions that they make,” SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro said. “The time has come to resolve this debate.”

The SEC commissioners could formally approve a rule change at sometime in the future. Schapiro has said the proxy access issue will be one of the most contentious addressed by the agency.

Commissioner Kathleen Casey, a Republican who voted against a similar proposal in 2007, raised objections to the current one at the public meeting, as did GOP Commissioner Troy Paredes.

In a stinging rebuke, Casey said the proposal would impose a “federal proxy regime” on state laws and represents “paternalism,” with the SEC substituting its judgment for that of shareholders. The plan could have the effect of suppressing innovation and growth at companies outside the financial industry that played no role in the economic crisis, she said.

Shelby County, State Receive Violent Crimes Grant

The state of Tennessee has been awarded a more than $2.75 million grant to hire and retain personnel that responds to violent crimes against women.

Shelby County will receive $301,000 of that grant. The grant is provided by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office on Violence Against Women. The STOP (Services, Training, Officers, Prosecutors) Violence Against Women Formula Grant Program is funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

The program supports communities in their efforts to develop and strengthen effective law enforcement, prosecution strategies and victim services in cases involving violent crimes against women.

Tenn. Senate Delays ‘Cap and Trade’ Measure

The state Senate has delayed voting on a resolution declaring that Tennessee won’t participate in a federal system for limiting greenhouse gas emissions.

Republican Sen. Jack Johnson of Brentwood, the resolution’s main sponsor, has said the cap-and-trade system being debated in Congress would serve as a “hidden tax” on energy consumers.

Johnson on Wednesday asked for a delay to give his colleagues a chance to review discussions about the issue in Washington.

The congressional bill would create a system that sets a ceiling on greenhouse gas emissions and then allows companies to reduce their pollution or buy credits from firms that have met the targets.

Over the weekend, The Climate Project founder Al Gore urged volunteers in Nashville to advocate for passage of the bill.

HeartLife Opens Freestanding Office

HeartLife Professional Soul Care, a Christian-based counseling service under the direction of clinical psychologist Chuck Hannaford, is now operating out of a freestanding office at 9045 Forest Centre Drive in Germantown.

Hannaford, who has 27 years of experience counseling families in the Mid-South, started HeartLife in 2007. Until now the service has operated from Germantown Baptist Church. He started the service after realizing there was a void in Christian-based counseling. Hannaford is also the author of “Picking Up the Pieces Handbooks: Creating a Dynamic Soul-Care Ministry in Your Church.”

The hours of operation for HeartLife are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays.

Fingerprinting Proposal Delayed in Nashville

The Tennessee Senate sponsor of a proposal to let police take electronic fingerprints of traffic violators in the state asked Wednesday for the measure to be deferred a week so that his colleagues can study it.

Democratic Sen. Joe Haynes of Goodlettsville said senators on both sides of the aisle have raised questions about the proposal.

Under current law, a law enforcement official can take a person’s inked fingerprint when issuing a traffic citation. Haynes said his bill would give officials a choice of getting a signature or taking a fingerprint using an electronic device.

He said the proposal is necessary because law enforcement agencies in larger cities, such as Nashville, are moving to electronic systems.

However, opponents are concerned the electronic fingerprinting device could infringe on a person’s privacy rights.

Nashville Police spokesman Don Aaron said his agency supports the legislation because it’s implementing an advanced records management system that will require more files to be kept electronically. He said no database of fingerprints will be compiled from the citations, which appeases the American Civil Liberties Union of Tennessee.

“This new technology requires specific safeguards to prevent the creation of databases and other government intrusions into our private lives,” said Hedy Weinberg, the group’s executive director.

Some cities have passed ordinances allowing traffic offenders to be fingerprinted, but no state has passed such a law, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

PROPERTY SALES 106 318 6,336
MORTGAGES 131 363 7,084
BUILDING PERMITS 178 482 13,795
BANKRUPTCIES 40 208 4,301