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VOL. 126 | NO. 62 | Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Daily Digest

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MSN of Memphis Files $1 Million Loan

MSN of Memphis LLC has filed a $1 million loan through First Tennessee Bank NA for its 2,018-square-foot convenience store at 6970 E. Shelby Drive.

Built in 1989, the convenience store sits on 0.94 acres at the northeast corner of Riverdale Road and East Shelby Drive.

The BP-branded combination food market and gas station is an outparcel of the Walmart Neighborhood Market Store at 6990 E. Shelby Drive. It is in phase two of the Shelby Shopping Center Plan.

Nizar Lalani Sr. and Nizar Lalani Jr. signed the trust deed as members of MSN of Memphis, which bought the property in 2007 for $1.4 million.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Daily News staff

ServiceMaster Revenue Improves 3.9 Pct. in 2010

ServiceMaster reported a 3.9 percent increase in revenue for 2010 compared to 2009 with the release of its annual report this week.

The company, whose headquarters is in Memphis, reported revenue of $3.3 billion for the year or $125.8 million more than in 2009.

The TruGreen LawnCare and TruGreen LandCare divisions accounted for $1.2 billion of the operating revenue. Terminix accounted for $1.1 billion.

The TruGreen LawnCare and Terminix numbers were an increase from 2009. The Terminix revenues were down slightly from 2009.

ServiceMaster executives also forecast its fuel costs in 2011 will likely increase by $15 million to $20 million compared to 2010.

– Bill Dries

Int’l Paper to Buy Stake in Company in India

International Paper Co. said Tuesday that it is buying a majority stake of Andhra Pradesh Paper Mills Ltd. for about $257 million in cash in a deal that will help it expand in India.

The Memphis-based paper and packaging company is purchasing approximately 53.5 percent of Andhra’s outstanding stock from L.N. Bangur and related family members and affiliates. It will also make a $62 million non-compete payment. Bangur is executive chairman of the Bangur Group.

As part of the deal, International Paper will start a public tender offer to buy up to an additional 21.5 percent of Andhra’s outstanding stock for about $104 million in cash.

The stock purchase and tender offer and expected to close as early as the third quarter.

International Paper also said on Tuesday that it is raising its quarterly dividend to 26.25 cents per share from 18.75 cents per share. The paper and packaging company said this is its third dividend increase in the past year.

Last month International Paper reported a fourth-quarter profit that topped Wall Street’s expectations.

– The Associated Press

Mayors to Kick Off Walking Day at Shelby Farms

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton and Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell will kick off National Start! Walking Day with an April 6 at Shelby Farms Park.

The pair will lace up their sneakers at 1 p.m. and lead a walk at Patriot Lake to help spread the message that just 30 minutes of exercise a day can help prevent heart disease.

National Start! Walking Day asks people across the nation to incorporate 30 minutes of walking into their day. The American Heart Association is calling on Shelby County employers and residents to start walking.

“It’s important for people around the Mid-South to incorporate walking into their day, and companies to support their efforts,” said Mayor Luttrell, an avid walker. “Even having a walking meeting, like this one between Mayor Wharton and myself, can help employees improve their overall health.”

The public is invited to join the mayors and Heart Walk chair William Kenley, CEO of Methodist Le Bonheur Germantown Hospital, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Shelby Farms Park, where a team from Methodist Healthcare will provide blood pressure checks.

The event will also be the first chance to register for the October 8 Heart Walk at AutoZone Park, and residents can nominate their choices for the 2011 Lifestyle Change Award. Sponsored by Cigna, the award recognizes people who’ve made positive changes to improve their quality of life and health.

Visit www.startwalkingnow.org for more information.

– Aisling Maki

Huey’s Midtown Earns PGF Certification

Huey’s Restaurant at 1927 Madison Ave. in Midtown Memphis has earned the Project Green Fork designation for implementing environmentally friendly management practices.

Project Green Fork is a local organization that contributes to a sustainable Mid-South by helping restaurants reduce environmental impact. Requirements for the designation include eliminating polystyrene packaging, establishing a composting program, utilizing non-toxic cleaners, and taking steps to reduce pollution and energy and water consumption.

“We knew going green was the right thing to do for our customers, our children and the environment,” co-owner and vice-president of operations for Huey’s Ashley Boggs Williams said in a statement. “We also knew our employees in Midtown would really buy into the idea. Project Green Fork provided guidelines to help us reach our goal.”

Huey’s Midtown is open for lunch and dinner seven days a week.

– Sarah Baker

Petties Sentencing Moved From Friday Until Summer

A sentencing hearing for alleged drug kingpin Craig Petties scheduled for Friday has been delayed until June.

Petties pleaded guilty to 19 counts of drug-racketeering, murder-for-hire and money-laundering charges in December 2009 in the largest drug case ever brought in Memphis federal court.

The drug case has been so secretive that the guilty plea was taken in a closed courtroom and sealed until February.

Some of the charges Petties pleaded guilty to carry a mandatory life sentence including the charges connected to the murders of four of the six people prosecutors allege were killed either because they ran afoul of the drug organization or because they were suspected of cooperating with federal agents.

Petties fled to Mexico in 2002 and ran the multi-state drug operation with direct ties to the Sinaloa Mexican drug cartel until his capture in January of 2008.

Meanwhile, four codefendants in the case charged with Petties on the murder for hire allegations have a tentative trial date of January 2012.

– Bill Dries

New Scooters at Library Help With Mobility Issues

A new service for customers with mobility issues called, “Scooting Through the Stacks,” has been implemented at the Benjamin L. Hooks Central Library, 3030 Poplar Ave., as a way to help the disabled navigate the library more easily.

This service is the result of a grant from the H.W. Durham Foundation, a program started by H.W. Durham, founder of the Cosmopolitan Life Insurance Co., and his wife, Roberta, in 1988, in an effort to fulfill the Durhams’ wishes to give back to the community and honor what Durham called “God’s older children.”

Two scooters will be available for checkout at the circulation desk and are similar to the motor carts offered to customers in big-box stores.

“I (am) now able to explore and enjoy the Library with much greater ease,” said library user, Robert Burns, in a statement.

Burns is disabled and before the scooters were available, was unable to explore the 330,000 square foot facility to the fullest.

More information is available at memphislibrary.org.

– Allison Buckley

Court Limits Lawsuits Over Drug Prices

The Supreme Court says hospitals and clinics that serve the poor cannot sue prescription drug manufacturers over allegations that the companies charged too much for their medicines.

In an 8-0 opinion Tuesday, the court says that under federal law only the Secretary of Health and Human Services has the authority to bring the lawsuits.

The opinion by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg reversed a ruling by the federal appeals court in San Francisco that the drug makers could be sued.

Justice Elena Kagan did not take part in the case.

– The Associated Press

PROPERTY SALES 120 120 16,027
MORTGAGES 64 64 9,986
BUILDING PERMITS 203 206 38,142
BANKRUPTCIES 21 28 7,500