York Properties Files Loans on Whitehaven Facility

York Properties LLC has filed $3.9 million and $2.1 million loans on its property at 3100 Bellbrook Drive in Whitehaven.

The company, which is affiliated with St. Clair Foods at that same address, filed the Tennessee deed of trust and security agreements Feb. 4 through Triumph Bank.

Oscar H. Edmonds III signed the deeds as managing partner of York Properties. Edmonds is president and CEO of St. Clair Foods, a company he launched in 1976 that makes dozens of food products.

The company’s main property at 3100 Bellbrook in Whitehaven’s Bellbrook Industrial Park is a 112,718-square-foot facility built in 1965.

The Class B warehouse sits on 9.85 acres at the northeast corner of Bellbrook and Brooks Road and had a 2012 appraisal of $1.7 million, according to the Shelby County Assessor of Property.

York Properties also owns an adjacent parcel to the main facility.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Daily News staff

Memphis Area Association of Realtors Reports January Home Sales

Memphis-area home sales for January increased 46.1 percent from a year ago, with 1,259 total sales recorded in the Memphis Area Association of Realtors MAARdata property records database.

Total sales rose 8.9 percent from December. Average sales price was up 7.3 percent at $123,696.

Inventory declined 6.3 percent, with 6,070 units listed for sale. Sales volume for the month year over year increased 56.6 percent to $155.7 million.

The MAARdata system includes records of all property transactions in Shelby, Fayette and Tipton counties.

– Sarah Baker

Evolve Bank Opening Branch in Marion

Evolve Bank & Trust is opening a full-service branch in Marion, Ark., in March.

Evolve bought and is currently renovating a 7,000-square-foot SunTrust Banks Inc. building in Marion, and once completed it will be Evolve’s fifth branch in eastern Arkansas.

Evolve currently operates branches in Arkansas and Tennessee and mortgage production offices around the U.S.

– Andy Meek

Peterson Joins Local Office of Jackson Lewis LLP

Vandana Peterson has joined the Memphis office of Jackson Lewis LLP as an associate.

Jackson Lewis is one of the country’s largest and fastest-growing workplace law firms.

Peterson has served as an assistant dean and adjunct professor at the University of Alabama School of Law. She’s also worked as an associate in Clifford Chance LLP’s corporate finance and restructuring groups, in addition to being a summer associate for McDermott Will & Emery LLP’s antitrust and government regulatory practice.

– Andy Meek

Government: $4.25 Billion Recovered in Probing Health Care Fraud

The government says it recovered almost $8 for each dollar it spent investigating health care fraud over the past three years, including a record $4.2 billion last year.

The $7.90 average return on investment is the highest in the 16-year history of the Health Care Fraud and Abuse Program. Since 1997, the program — a joint effort of the departments of Justice and Health and Human Services — has returned more than $23 billion to the Medicare trust funds.

Overall, the Justice Department opened more than 1,100 criminal health care fraud investigations last year involving 2,148 potential defendants. More than 800 defendants were convicted of health care fraud-related crimes during the year and the department opened nearly 900 new civil investigations.

– The Associated Press

Source: AMR, US Airways Delay Meeting on Merger

The boards of American Airlines parent AMR Corp. and US Airways have pushed back meetings to consider final plans for their merger, Associated Press sources say.

A source close to the matter said Sunday that the AMR board wants to meet in person, and that the US Airways board would only meet after the AMR board approves a deal.

The source requested anonymity because the talks are private.

It is not clear when the two boards would finally meet. People familiar with the matter said negotiations are continuing, on issues that include AMR CEO Tom Horton’s exact title and role in the combined company.

Discussions were centered on Horton being a non-executive chairman of the board while US Airways management, led by CEO Doug Parker, would run the day-to-day operations of the new carrier, which would keep the American Airlines name.

The negotiations could still fall apart. United Airlines and Continental Airlines were within days of announcing a merger in 2008 when that deal fell apart, although they later resumed talks and completed a deal in 2010.

If American and US Airways combine, it would create the world’s biggest airline as measured by passenger traffic, although United Continental Holdings Inc. would still be slightly bigger if regional operations such as United Express and American Eagle are counted.

On Friday, US Airways pilots ratified an agreement covering their pay and working terms if there is a merger.

That was the last major piece to fall into place on the labor side for a merger to occur.

American Airlines pilots approved a similar agreement in December. All three of American’s unions support a merger that would result in US Airways management running the new company.

The committee representing unsecured creditors in AMR’s bankruptcy case had planned to meet Monday.

– The Associated Press

UT Will Update Decade-Old Agritourism Survey

With agritourism taking root at farms across the state, the University of Tennessee Extension’s Center for Profitable Agriculture is updating a decade-old survey on the industry.

The 2003 survey included responses from 48 percent of Tennessee’s agriculture operations.

The Center for Profitable Agriculture’s Megan Bruch told the Chattanooga Times Free Press (http://bit.ly/12FYzd0) that 68 percent of respondents included agritourism in their operations.

Common attractions included retail markets, farm tours, pick-your-own farms and petting zoos.

Many farmers earned $25,000 or less a year from their agritourism operations, but 15 percent made more than $100,000. At the time, total projected revenue from agritourism was more than $21 million.

Bruch said updating the survey will help quantify agritourism’s standing in Tennessee. She expects to see larger numbers for visitors and sales.

Farmer Andrew Dixon said he’s already filled out his survey and sent it in.

His family’s Grandaddy’s Farm in Estill Springs opened to the public seven years ago.

“Agritourism, basically, is another crop for us,” Dixon said. “We’ve got corn, wheat and soybeans as our main row-crop operation, and agritourism is another way for us to diversify and to help spread out our risk.”

Each fall, people come to the farm for tours, a produce market, a nature trail, hay rides, mazes, tractor-tire swings and a farm-oriented playground, he said. The contact with the public brings in funds and also helps to market the farm’s products.

– The Associated Press

Oil Dips Slightly as Asia Observes Lunar New Year

The price of oil dipped slightly toward $95 a barrel on Monday as investors cut back on speculative positions and most Asian markets were closed for a holiday.

By early afternoon in Europe, the benchmark oil contract for March delivery was down 30 cents to $95.42 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell 11 cents on Friday.

Trading was expected to be light for much of the week with several Asian markets shut for the Lunar New Year.

Analysts noted that for the first time in eight weeks there was a net reduction in investors’ positions betting that the Nymex contract will continue to advance.

– The Associated Press