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VOL. 127 | NO. 188 | Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Daily Digest

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Three Star Leasing Files Loans on Two Properties

The owner of a pair of neighboring industrial facilities on Chelsea Avenue has filed two loans – a $1.7 million deed of trust and a $1 million line of credit – through IberiaBank on the properties.

Three Star Leasing filed the loans on 2909 Chelsea Ave. and 2863 Chelsea Ave., both of which sit on the south side of Chelsea between Warford Street and the Canadian National Railway Co. rail line.

Fred Edmaiston signed both loans as general partner of Three Star Leasing. That entity is affiliated with Aircon Corp., a company that manufactures “airlocks, filter units, baghouses, cyclones, fans, blowers, ductwork and steel fabrication” at that locale, according to its website.

The 2909 Chelsea Ave. property includes 14,543 square feet of space in an office building and warehouse that were built in 1977 and sit on 5.01 acres. The Shelby County Assessor of Property’s 2012 appraisal is $309,800.

The 2863 Chelsea Ave. property includes 49,736 square feet of space in an office building and warehouse that were built in 1994 and sit on 7.87 acres. Its 2012 appraisal is $1.1 million.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Daily News staff

MAA Enters New Market With Kansas City Acquisition

Memphis-based MAA has entered the Kansas City, Mo., market with the acquisition of Market Station, an upscale, urban mid-rise apartment community.

The 323-unit Market Station property was developed in 2010 and is in the River Market area, a riverfront neighborhood located immediately north of the Central Business District in Downtown Kansas City.

Al Campbell, executive vice president and chief financial officer, said the company believes the Kansas City market is a strong addition to its secondary market portfolio.

MAA currently owns or has ownership interest in 49,687 apartment units throughout the Sunbelt region of the U.S.

– Sarah Baker

Appeals Court Rules on Employee Lawsuit

A federal appeals court has reversed part of a decision to dismiss a wrongful termination lawsuit filed against the city of Memphis by the city’s former public records coordinator.

Bridgett Handy-Clay sued the city for being fired in August 2010 after she filed an open records request for the payroll, leave and personnel files of employees in the city attorney’s office, including then-City Attorney Herman Morris.

She claimed that her attempts to comply with public records requests were often thwarted by city officials. Handy-Clay alleged that an entrenched culture at City Hall led to the concealment of information from the public.

Handy-Clay also alleged that some employees in the city attorney’s office failed to report work absences, resulting in abuse of city leave and payment policies.

Handy-Clay said she reported her concerns to city officials, and that she was fired in retaliation. City officials said she was fired for a failure to follow city policies and procedures, and a poor attendance record.

Handy-Clay’s wrongful termination lawsuit was dismissed in April 2011 by U.S. District Court Judge Thomas Anderson, who said she could not prove retaliation or disparate treatment.

In a ruling released Tuesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit said the district court erred in dismissing Handy-Clay’s retaliation claim and reversed that part of the decision. However, the appeals court did agree with the lower court that Handy-Clay did not present enough facts showing that she was denied due process.

The appeals court remanded further proceedings on the retaliation claim back to the district court.

– The Associated Press

Commission Delays Vote on Air Monitoring Station

The Shelby County Commission deferred for two weeks Monday, Sept. 24, a vote on accepting a $200,000 federal grant for the construction of a new air monitoring station. Some commissioners want to negotiate for a new site for a station that monitors “near roadside air pollutants.” The site proposed is near interstate traffic.

In other action, the commission approved a $238,609 contract with ACS Government Systems Inc. for an updated computer system program in Probate Court.

The commission also approved accepting two federal grants totaling $146,627 for the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office. Commissioner Henry Brooks voted against the items because of the name of the grants, which are awarded as Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grants.

Byrne was a rookie New York City police officer shot in the head five times in 1988 while guarding the Jamaica Queens home of a drug case witness. His murder was ordered by a drug dealer, according to New York police, because the drug dealer had been convicted in a weapons case.

Brooks linked Byrne to “the Reagan-era war on drugs.”

“I just don’t believe we need to be engaged in a nonexistent war on drugs,” Brooks added saying the grants “incentivize” local police departments to go after “little guys” in the drug trade to “get the numbers up.”

– Bill Dries

Central Defense Security Hosting Job Fairs

Central Defense Security, a leading provider of business, retail and warehouse security, is in the midst of hosting a series of job fairs at participating community centers in and around Memphis.

CDS is looking for candidates to fill onsite security positions responsible for protecting client assets, employees, customers and visitors at assigned locations. CDS is hosting job fairs Sept. 28 from noon to 3 p.m. at Charles Powell Community Center, 810 Western Park; Oct. 2 from noon to 3 p.m. at Raleigh Community Center, 3678 Powers; and Oct. 5 from noon to 3 p.m. at Bert Ferguson Community Center, 8505 Trinity Road.

Applicants should be at least 18, be prepared to complete an employment application and participate in an interview with a CDS representative.

– Andy Meek

Mississippi Casino Revenues Fall in August

Hurricane Isaac’s drenching rains dampened August casino revenues in Mississippi, with closings and bad weather keeping gamblers from losing as much as in August 2011.

Statewide casino revenue fell 3.4 percent from last year, to $178.4 million, according to Mississippi Department of Revenue figures.

In August, the 12 coastal casinos won a total of $86.3 million from gamblers, down 5.1 percent from the $90.9 million they won in August 2011. Most coast casinos were closed from Tuesday, Aug. 28, until Thursday evening or Friday morning after Isaac’s landfall.

The 17 river casinos from Tunica to Natchez won $92.1 million, down 2 percent from the $93.8 million they won in August of last year.

The numbers exclude Choctaw Indian casinos, which aren’t required to report winnings to the state.

– The Associated Press

US Consumer Confidence Jumps to 7-Month High

U.S. consumer confidence jumped this month to the highest level since February, bolstered by a brighter hiring outlook.

The Conference Board said Tuesday that its Consumer Confidence Index rose to 70.3. That’s up from 61.3 in August, which was revised higher. And it’s the highest reading since February, when the economy added 259,000 jobs.

The indicator is watched closely because consumer spending drives nearly 70 percent of economic activity. The reading is still below 90, a level that indicates a healthy economy. Since the beginning of the year, the index has fluctuated sharply.

The survey was conducted from Sept. 1 through Sept. 13. It showed consumers were more optimistic about the current availability of jobs and their outlook over the next six months.

Their confidence in the job market is higher, even though employers added just 96,000 jobs in August. That’s down from 141,000 in July and too few to keep up with population growth.

The unemployment rate fell to 8.1 percent from 8.3 percent, but only because many people gave up their job search, so they were no longer counted as unemployed.

A measure of how consumers feel now about the economy rose to 50.2, up from 46.5 last month. And they are even more optimistic about the next six months.

– The Associated Press

PROPERTY SALES 23 23 1,365
MORTGAGES 21 21 1,068
BUILDING PERMITS 117 117 3,173