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VOL. 128 | NO. 33 | Monday, February 18, 2013

Daily Digest


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Owner of Germantown Medical Office Files $9.4 Million Loan

The owner of the 13,458-square-foot medical office at 1310 Wolf Park Drive in Germantown has filed a $9.4 million loan on the property.

G.I Diagnostic and Therapeutic Rental Co. LLC filed the deed of trust, assignment of rents and leases, security agreement and fixture filing Feb. 12 through First Tennessee Bank NA.

David Harano signed the trust deed as an authorized agent of G.I Diagnostic and Therapeutic Rental, which bought the Class A property for $824,986 in 2000 and developed the facility the following year.

The medical office, which houses Gastro One’s GI diagnostics and therapeutic endoscopy center, sits on 1.5 acres on Wolf Park Drive, just south of Wolf River Boulevard.

The Shelby County Assessor of Property’s 2012 appraisal was $2.3 million.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Daily News staff

School Board Takes Up Merger Personnel Issues

The countywide school board meets Monday, Feb. 18, for a work session that will include a special voting meeting.

The voting meeting involves merger recommendations from the steering committee of top administrators from both school systems.

The merger recommendations on the agenda Monday evening have to do with personnel issues and the integration of employees from two different pay and benefits systems into a single system.

The board usually meets on Tuesday but is holding its monthly work session on Monday because school board members will be in Nashville on Tuesday to talk with legislators from Shelby County and across the state about education issues.

The annual “day on the hill” is a day when educators and school system leaders from across the state come to Capital Hill in Nashville to lobby for and against bills on education issues.

– Bill Dries

Komen Race for the Cure Moving to Carriage Crossing

Starting this October, the Memphis-Mid-South Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure will be held at the Carriage Crossing lifestyle center in Collierville.

Held for the past 20 years at The Shops of Saddle Creek in Germantown, the organization this year opted for a larger venue with room to grow the local event.

“We have simply outgrown the space,” Elaine Hare, executive director of Memphis-Mid-South Susan G. Komen said in a statement. “We needed a new, larger venue.”

In 2011, the Mid-South Race for the Cure was one of the largest in the country – No. 26 out of 120 races.

The local Race for the Cure event is the largest fundraiser for Susan G. Komen, and raises approximately $1 million per year to fund breast cancer research and treatment, 75 percent of which stays in the Mid-South in the form of grants and financial support for local health care organizations. With the move, the organization set a goal of 25,000 participants and $1.5 million raised.

Carriage Crossing, which had approached the organization before about relocating the event to the lifestyle center, will enter as a presenting sponsor of the race. The Town of Collierville has agreed to provide police and fire support as needed.

Founded in 2005, the open-air Carriage Crossing center has nearly 75 stores and restaurants. Formerly known as The Avenue Collierville, Carriage Crossing returned to its roots after being acquired by a division of Memphis-based Poag Shopping Centers LLC in 2012.

– Sarah Baker

Philanthropic Black Women Taking Grant Applications

Philanthropic Black Women of Memphis is accepting applications for grants that will be awarded in April.

The organization, which supports projects geared toward economic self-sufficiency, is accepting applications for programs focusing on, but not limited to, career development, education, entrepreneurship, scholarship and health.

PBWM was founded in January 2005. The nine-woman group has previously granted funds to the Booker T. Washington High School girls basketball team, New Ballet Ensemble, College Bound of Memphis, Memphis Black Arts Alliance, Memphis Cultural Arts Enrichment Center, Amateur Athletic Union and Watoto De Afrika.

The deadline for submissions is March 31. Guidelines and application forms can be downloaded at pbwmemphis.org.

– Daily News staff

AMR CEO Horton in Line for $20 Million Severance

Tom Horton won't get to lead the new American Airlines after it merges with US Airways, but he'll get a going-away prize of nearly $20 million.

Horton will get $9.94 million in cash and an equal amount in stock in the new company after the merger. He'll also get an office and office help for two years, and lifetime flight and travel benefits.

American's parent company, AMR Corp., disclosed the CEO's severance package in a regulatory filing late Thursday, shortly after announcing plans for an $11 billion merger with US Airways Group Inc. The companies hope to win regulatory approval and complete the deal by the end of September.

US Airways CEO Doug Parker will be CEO of the new company, which will be called American Airlines Group Inc. Horton will serve as chairman for about a year before stepping down.

Horton, 51, joined American in 1985, jumped to AT&T for four years in the 2000s, then returned to the airline and became CEO the day before it filed for bankruptcy protection in November 2011.

AMR said in the filing that its board — of which Horton is chairman — approved the severance package as "reasonable and appropriate" because of his long service at the company, the success of the restructuring "and the value created for the company's financial stakeholders."

– The Associated Press

US Factory Output Falls on Weak Auto Production

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. factories slowed production in January after two solid months of cranking out goods. The weakness mainly reflected a big drop in output at auto factories that is likely temporary.

Manufacturing output fell 0.4 percent in January from December, the Federal Reserve said Friday. The decline followed increases of 1.1 percent in December and 1.7 percent in November.

Overall industrial production edged down 0.1 percent in January compared with December. Output In mining, the category that covers oil and gas drilling, fell 1 percent. Utility output jumped 3.5 percent, as a cold snap led more households to turn up their heat.

Factory output, the most important component of industrial production, was dragged lower by a steep 3.2 percent decline in auto and auto parts production. The auto industry is coming off its best year for sales in five years, one of the few bright spots in an otherwise bleak manufacturing sector. Sales continue to rise, so production will likely rebound in February.

Still, many factories outside the auto industry have been hurt by a slowdown in consumer spending and weaker global growth that has dampened demand for U.S. exports.

Economists expect healthier output in 2013, partly because U.S. companies are sitting on large amounts of cash and appear poised to invest some of it in equipment and machinery. Economies in Europe are also healing, and growth in Asia is expected to improve.

"Global growth will still be fairly weak this year, which will prevent industry from firing on all cylinders. But there's no denying that industrial conditions have recently improved," said Paul Dales, senior U.S. economist at Capital Economics.

While manufacturing output was down in January, analysts noted there were big revisions that made November and December look even better than first reported. For the fourth quarter as a whole, manufacturing output rose at an annual rate of 1.9 percent, a significant improvement from the earlier estimate of a slight 0.2 percent rate.

A second report Friday showed that manufacturing activity in the New York area posted a big gain in February. The New York Federal Reserve's Empire State survey rose to 10.04 in February, compared with a negative 7.78 in January. It was the biggest one-month improvement in this index in more than two years.

And a closely watched survey released earlier this month suggests overall manufacturing conditions are improving. Manufacturing activity grew last month at the fastest pace since April, according to the Institute for Supply Management. Factories saw growth in new orders, hired more workers and boosted their stockpiles after two months of declines, the survey noted.

Slower growth in stockpiles was a key reason the economy shrank at an annual rate of 0.1 percent in the October-December quarter, the first contraction in 3 ½ years. Deep cuts in defense spending and fewer exports also contributed to the decline.

Still, economists expect that figure will be revised in the coming months to show a small increase. That's because December trade data, which wasn't available when the government calculated its first estimate for fourth-quarter growth, showed solid growth in exports.

Economists at Barclays Capital estimate the economy expanded at a 0.5 percent rate in the fourth quarter. And growth will likely pick up in the January-March quarter to an annual rate of 1.5 percent, analysts forecast.

A better job market could boost consumer spending, leading to faster U.S. growth. Employers added 157,000 jobs in January and an average of 200,000 jobs a month since November. U.S. factories have added jobs for the past four months.

Still, unemployment remains high at 7.9 percent. And Americans are seeing smaller paychecks this year because of an increase in Social Security taxes, which could offset any benefits from stronger hiring.

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