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VOL. 128 | NO. 166 | Monday, August 26, 2013

Daily Digest

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Henry Turley Co. Files Permits for South Junction

A development group led by Henry Turley Co. has filed a series of building permits totaling $10.4 million for the 197-unit South Junction apartments Downtown.

Henry Turley Co. filed seven multifamily permits with the city-county Office of Construction Code Enforcement for the vacant northwest and southeast corners of Carolina Avenue and Florida Street, in the South Main Historic Arts District.

The permits call for “three-story wood framed apartment buildings” at the following addresses: 727 E. Mann Circle, 726. E. Mann Circle, 725 W. Mann Circle, 35 W. Georgia Ave., 649 Florida St., 18 W. Carolina Ave. and 9 E. Carolina Ave.

The first six addresses show permit amounts of $1.5 million each, and the last shows a permit amount of $1.4 million.

The project’s owner, South Junction Partners, was granted a payment-in-lieu-of-taxes (PILOT) incentive through the Memphis Center City Revenue Finance Corp. that will save the company $4.1 million in taxes over 15 years.

Plans filed with the CCRFC call for an “urban infill multifamily residential development,” according to the application for 178,678 square feet of space.

Henry Turley Co. submitted the plans and application to the Design Review Board and Turley is one of the partners in South Junction along with Billy Orgel.

Montgomery Martin Contractors LLC is the general contractor for the project.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Daily News staff

Chamber Holds Twitter Chat on Immigration Reform

The Greater Memphis Chamber hosts its first Twitter chat Monday, Aug. 26, from 1:15 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.

The topic is immigration reform, and people can send tweets to @JohnMoore2.

The chamber has hosted several roundtables recently on the topic, including a meeting between Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr., business leaders and Latino and Hispanic community groups.

Wharton has said the issues in the national immigration reform debate that have centered on border security are different for the Memphis area and involve workforce training and similar issues.

– Bill Dries

Strickland Presents Vision for Manchester Bidwell

The Greater Memphis Chamber’s latest “A Conversation with …” event featured Bill Strickland, president and CEO of Pittsburgh-based Manchester Bidwell Corp., a training facility for children and adults in Pittsburgh.

More than 400 people gathered for the event last week to hear Strickland talk about Manchester Bidwell, located in one of the poorest and most crime-ridden sections of Pittsburgh in order to reach people who need their help the most.

Strickland showed slides of beautiful decor, state-of-the-art computer labs and music auditoriums, and kitchens where gourmet food is created and served.

He mixed straight talk with humor and some details about the training facility, which works as a partner with each city’s school system, coordinating curricula and working with teachers and schools to identify kids who need the training the most.

“The only thing wrong with poor people is they don’t have any money, and that’s a curable condition,” he said.

When talking about why their facility has so much natural light, why they teach and why they serve gourmet food, he said: “Sunlight, food and hope is the cure for spiritual cancer.”

His goal is to build 100 centers in the nation and 100 centers around the world.

– Andy Meek

PepsiCo Executive Shares Rags-to-Riches Story

When Richard Montanez started working for PepsiCo, he was a janitor.

Today, he’s 56, he heads multicultural sales and community promotions across PepsiCo’s North America divisions, and he is the company’s top Latino executive.

Montanez was this month’s featured speaker of the Lipscomb Pitts Breakfast Club.

He spoke to a crowd Thursday, Aug. 22, at the BRIDGES facility Downtown about how he achieved success after inventing the idea and recipe for “Flamin’ Hot Cheetos” – one of the company’s top-selling snacks – and how that success had roots early in his childhood.

“Let me tell you about everything that came my way when I was your age,” Montanez told the young people in the crowd at BRIDGES. “Nothing came my way when I was your age!”

Instead, his was a classic rags-to-riches story. “Why can’t I fit in like everyone else?” he asked his mom at one point during his grade school years. It was at a time when other children shot him quizzical looks when he’d do “strange” things like take out his packed lunch and unwrap – a burrito.

“This is who you are,” his mother told him. One day, she packed him an extra burrito to give to a friend. Soon, he was sharing his food.

And after that, he was selling burritos for 25 cents. It was an anecdote that displayed his early affinity for seizing opportunity.

“Young people, be who God created you to be,” Montanez said. “Once you fall in love with yourself, you’re free.”

Once he got a foot in the door at PepsiCo mopping floors, he made up his mind: “I’m going to mop this floor where everybody who walks on it is going to look twice.”

– Andy Meek

Literacy Initiative Provides Books for MATA Riders

The city of Memphis, the Memphis Public Library & Information Center and Friends of the Library have teamed up for Books on Buses, an initiative to encourage Memphians to read.

Memphis Area Transit Authority riders waiting at the North End Terminal can now borrow a book and take it along with them for the ride. Riders can return the books later and also can add to the mini-library.

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr. helped kick off the new Books on Buses initiative last week, along with Keenon McCloy, director of libraries; Sherman Dixon, a Friends of the Library volunteer; and representatives from MATA.

– Jennifer Johnson Backer

New-Home Sales Plunge as Mortgage Rates Rise

Americans cut back sharply in July on their purchases of new homes, a sign that higher mortgage rates may weigh on the housing recovery.

The Commerce Department said Friday that U.S. sales of newly built home dropped 13.4 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 394,000. That’s the lowest pace in nine months. And it is down from a rate of 455,000 in June, which was revised sharply lower from a previously reported 497,000.

New-home sales have risen 7 percent in the 12 months ending in July.

The annual pace remains well below the 700,000 that is consistent with a healthy market.

The housing market has been one of the strongest performers this year in an otherwise sluggish economy, helped by steady job gains and low mortgage rates. But mortgage rates have risen a full percentage point since May and have started to steal some of the market’s momentum.

– The Associated Press

Pilot Settlement Plaintiff Denies Conflict

The head of a group formed for the purpose of filing a lawsuit against a truck stop chain run by the family of Tennessee’s governor and the owner of the Cleveland Browns said Thursday it is not a shell corporation established to ensure the company reached a favorable settlement.

Pilot Flying J, the nation’s largest diesel retailer, last month agreed to settle the class-action lawsuit, filed in Arkansas by National Trucking Financial Reclamation Services LLC. The suit was filed in response to FBI allegations that members of the company’s sales force preyed on smaller trucking companies by reducing the amount of rebates they were owed.

Under the settlement, the company has offered to reimburse with interest all the money trucking companies were cheated out of since 2005.

Attorneys for trucking companies that have not joined in the settlement but are also suing Pilot called the agreement rushed and inadequate, and said it contained little more than what the company offered in the first place.

They also questioned the involvement of National Trucking, which itself isn’t eligible for the settlement because it is not a Pilot customer. In legal filings, they called it a “shell company.”

The Tennessean newspaper this week reported that National Trucking is run by Lane Kidd, the president of the Arkansas Trucking Association. Pilot is a member of the association and in the past has sponsored group events.

– The Associated Press

PROPERTY SALES 21 82 6,474
MORTGAGES 7 53 4,088
BUILDING PERMITS 240 353 15,714
BANKRUPTCIES 38 58 3,328