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VOL. 126 | NO. 240 | Friday, December 9, 2011

Daily Digest

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Bankrupt Shyona Sells Cordova Quality Suites

Minesh Patel has bought the 102-unit Quality Suites hotel at 8166 Varnavas Drive in Cordova from Shyona Inc. for $2.5 million after Shyona filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Patel and spouse Jagruti Patel financed the purchase with a $2.8 million loan through Liberty Bank of Arkansas.

The three-story, 66,050-square-foot hotel, which includes an indoor pool, was built in 1996. It is on 2.2 acres on the north side of Varnavas Drive east of North Germantown Parkway. Varnavas is between U.S. 40 to the north and Bellevue Parkway to the south.

The Shelby County Assessor of Property’s 2011 appraisal is $4.7 million.

Shyona bought the property in 2008 for $5.2 million, financing it with a $4.7 million loan.

The company, doing business as Quality Suites of Cordova, filed for Chapter 11 in December 2010. Shyona listed 19 creditors with claims totaling more than $328,000. Shelby County and the city of Memphis were the top two creditors, both for 2009-2010 property taxes. The county’s claim was $150,061; the city’s claim was $121,998. Shyona is disputing both, according to a document filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Western District of Tennessee.

The No. 3 creditor was Choice Hotels International for trade debt totaling $21,925. Choice is the parent company and franchisor of 10 hotel brands, including Quality.

The court on Nov. 9 gave Shyona the green light to sell the Cordova hotel. The transaction closed Nov. 29.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Daily News staff

MAAR: Nov. Home Sales Jump 28.4 Percent

Memphis-area home sales for November jumped 28.4 percent from a year ago, with 1,076 total sales recorded in the Memphis Area Association of Realtors MAARdata property records database, which includes records of all property transactions in Shelby, Fayette and Tipton counties.

Total sales rose 2.1 percent from October, when there were 1,054 sales.

The average sales price for November was $119,287 down 15.2 percent from November 2010; the year-to-date price was $125,504, down 2.6 percent from 2010. YTD total sales declined 8.3 percent, and YTD sales volume fell 10.8 percent to $1.49 billion.

November inventory was down 4.7 percent compared with October, with 7,673 units listed for sale.

– Sarah Baker

County Commission Meets on Redistricting

Shelby County commissioners meet in special session Friday, Dec. 9, to vote on a redistricting plan.

The ordinance that sets the new district lines to reflect population shifts in the 2010 U.S. Census is up for third and final reading at the meeting, which begins at 8 a.m. at the Vasco Smith County Administration Building, 160 N. Main St.

The plan that passed on the first two readings is to create six districts represented by two commissioners each, plus a seventh single-member district.

An alternate plan emerged at the Monday, Dec. 5, commission session that would leave the commission with its current setup of four districts represented by three commissioners each, plus a fifth single-member district. The plan would tweak the existing district lines to account for population shifts.

The alternate failed as an amendment Monday. But its emergence meant the plan that passed on second reading did so with seven votes.

To pass on third and final reading, any plan must have nine votes, a two-thirds majority.

The commission has until Thursday, Dec. 15, to approve a plan. After that, it could be open to a legal challenge in Shelby County Chancery Court.

Should an amended plan be approved Friday, the commission would have to take one more vote with a special meeting Wednesday, Dec. 14, the day the commission holds committee sessions.

– Bill Dries

Millstone Med. Expands Memphis Services

Millstone Medical Outsourcing, a provider of customized outsourcing solutions to the medical device industry, said it will provide freezer storage and cold chain distribution services for customers’ biologic products from the company’s Memphis facility.

The company operates state-of-the-art facilities in Memphis and Fall River, Mass. Its operation is already a Federal Drug Administration-registered and state-licensed human-tissue bank, authorized to store and distribute human tissue and bone products.

Starting next year, Millstone Medical will offer cold chain product management services to answer a growing need for customers to be able to document validated cold chain integrity and compliance for their biologic product shipments.

– Aisling Maki

Sen. Kelsey Introduces Bill Targeting Local Gov. Debt

Tennessee state Sen. Brian Kelsey, R-Germantown, has introduced a bill aimed at helping reduce local government debt.

It requires counties and cities that carry debt of more than 10 percent of their taxable assessed value to submit all future debt issuances to the Tennessee State Funding Board for approval. Current members of the funding board are Gov. Bill Haslam, Comptroller Justin Wilson, Secretary of State Tre Hargett, Treasurer David Lillard and Commissioner of Finance and Administration Mark Emkes.

Local governments in Tennessee don’t have any limit on the amount of debt they can carry. Kelsey apparently had Shelby County in mind when drawing up the bill; a release from his office about the legislation states Shelby County’s debt load of $1.6 billion rivals that of the entire state, which owes $1.7 billion.

– Andy Meek

MAA Promotes Grimes to EVP, COO

Thomas L. Grimes Jr. has been appointed executive vice president and chief operating officer of Memphis-based MAA – formerly Mid-America Apartment Communities – the company announced Wednesday, Dec. 7. Grimes will oversee the company’s asset management and human resources functions.

Grimes joined the company in 1994 shortly after MAA’s initial public offering and has served as executive vice president and director of property management operations since 2008.

Grimes is a member of the Urban Land Institute and serves on boards for the Leadership Academy of Memphis, the Shelby Farms Park Conservancy and Innova Memphis.

MAA is a self-administered, self-managed apartment-only real estate investment trust that owns or has ownership interest in 49,175 apartment units throughout the Sunbelt region of the U.S.

– Sarah Baker

Haslam Opposes Weakening Tenn. Open Meetings Law

Gov. Bill Haslam opposes efforts to water down Tennessee’s open meetings law that says no more than two city or county officials can deliberate in private.

The Republican governor told reporters after a speech in Nashville Thursday morning that he sees little reason to overhaul the current rules. But Haslam acknowledged that it’s difficult to explain why local governments fall under the open meetings act while the state Legislature does not.

Commissioners in Obion, Lewis and Williamson counties have passed resolutions urging state lawmakers to get rid of the current rules and to allow officials to meet privately as long as a majority of the government panel is not present.

Similar resolutions have failed in Anderson and Rhea counties.

Tennessee’s open government laws were enacted in 1974.

– The Associated Press

Orpheum Offers Specials for Remaining Season

The Orpheum Theatre is offering special holiday prices on season ticket packages for the remaining shows of its 2011-2012 Broadway season.

Two packages are available: one for all four remaining shows, the other for three shows.

The remaining performances are “Million Dollar Quartet,” Feb. 14 to Feb. 19; “La Cage Aux Folles,” March 20 to March 25; “The Addams Family,” April 24 to April 29; and “Mamma Mia!” June 5 to June 10.

Gift certificates in any denomination are also available.

– Taylor Shoptaw

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