VOL. 128 | NO. 97 | Friday, May 17, 2013
Raleigh Car Wash Buyer Files Construction Loan
The new owner of a car wash at 2515 Covington Pike in Raleigh has filed a $1.3 million construction loan on the property.
Baha Hajjeh filed the construction deed of trust May 3 through First Citizens National Bank.
Hajjeh is founder and president of Hajjeh Oil Co., a Memphis-based company that “supplies wholesale petroleum products to business and individuals (consumer, commercial, aviation, farming, trucking, construction etc. ...),” according to its website.
Hajjeh bought the 32-year-old car wash May 3 for $245,000 from James Wesley Bevels, who had acquired the property for $375,000 in 1999.
Built in 1981, the 600-square-foot car wash sits on 0.5 acres at the northwest corner of Covington Pike and Raleigh-LaGrange Road. The Shelby County Assessor of Property’s 2013 appraisal is $153,400.
Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports
– Daily News staff
Governor Signs School Security Bill
Gov. Bill Haslam has signed a bill that allows school districts to let people with police training be armed in schools.
The measure passed the House 82-15 and was approved 27-6 in the Senate.
It allows schools to hire retired law enforcement officers after they meet certain requirements, such as completing a 40-hour school security course.
The measure makes information about which teachers are armed or which schools allow the guns confidential to anyone but law enforcement.
Haslam included $34 million in his budget for local government officials to use on their priorities, which could include security measures.
– The Associated Press
Local Barbecue World Loses Two Icons
On the opening day of the Memphis In May World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest, the Memphis barbecue community was mourning the loss of two icons in the business of barbecue.
John Willingham, a past winner of the contests, restaurant owner and former Shelby County Commissioner died Wednesday.
Willingham tested his turbo cooker as well as seasonings and sauces at the 1982 barbecue contest and his team placed first for ribs and as the overall champion of the contest. The recognition boosted Willingham’s profile in the restaurant business.
Don Pelts, founder and owner of Corky’s Ribs & BBQ, also died Wednesday. Pelts founded Corky’s in 1984 after 13 years operating another barbecue restaurant that he didn’t own.
For Pelts, his business plan includes a 1950s decor and slow-cooked ribs that were hand pulled.
The original Memphis location in the Poplar corridor has since expanded to include other locations.
– Bill Dries
Fisher Tapped for Economic Development Post
The Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development has tapped Gwyn Fisher to be the Greater Memphis regional director of economic and community development.
She’ll be responsible for leading Gov. Bill Haslam’s economic developments in the Memphis area and will be a key point of contact for issues related to job creation. She’ll oversee efforts to attract businesses, help businesses expand and support other regional economic development efforts.
Her regional area encompasses Lauderdale, Tipton, Shelby and Fayette counties.
– Andy Meek
Southern Airways Express Announces Flight Plans
A new Memphis-based air carrier, Southern Airways Express, announced non-stop flight service to Destin and Panama City Beach, Fla., Gulf Shores, Ala., and New Orleans earlier this week.
Southern is the only airline that will offer non-stop flights from Memphis to the Gulf Coast between New Orleans and Tampa, Fla.
Southern Airways is not yet offering tickets for sale, but the company expects its website, www.iFlySouthern.com, to be online shortly. The first flights will take off on May 29, and fares on all flights will range from $129 to $249 one-way.
“All of us at Southern are very excited to call Memphis our home and to offer these new destinations to the people of the Mid-South,” said Southern Airways Express CEO and Chairman Stan Little. “Rather than having an air carrier that needed another city, we have a city that needs another air carrier.”
Little says the airline won’t charge baggage or parking fees and that passengers will be able to arrive for flights from Olive Branch Airport and General Dewitt-Spain 15 minutes prior to departure. The airline will operate nine-seat aircraft.
– Jennifer Johnson Backer
Beale Street Caravan Blowout to be Held at A. Schwab June 13
The annual Beale Street Caravan Blowout party will be June 13 at A. Schwab Dry Goods Store, at 163 Beale St.
This year’s party will feature live music by Reba Russell and catering by Mac Edwards of the Elegant Farmer. Tickets are $75 per person, and the party will last from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
The party, which also will feature a silent auction, comes against the backdrop of sad news for the organization, which lost its co-founder recently. Beale Street Caravan co-founder Sid Selvidge lost his battle with cancer earlier this month.
The Beale Street Caravan radio show has more than 400 radio stations.
– Andy Meek
Governor Signs Ignition Interlock Bill
Tennessee’s ignition interlock law will apply to more drunken drivers under legislation signed by Gov. Bill Haslam.
Currently, ignition-locking devices, which force drivers to pass breath tests to start vehicles and keep them running, are required for DUI offenders whose blood alcohol level topped 0.15 percent.
This bill drops the level to the intoxication threshold of 0.08 percent and would require first-time offenders to get the devices.
In turn, those convicted of DUI won’t get a restricted driver’s license and will be allowed to drive anywhere.
The measure was unanimously approved 95-0 in the House and 31-0 in the Senate.
It was sponsored by Republican Sen. Mae Beavers of Mt. Juliet and Republican Rep. Tony Shipley of Kingsport.
– The Associated Press
30-Year Mortgage Rate Rises to 3.51 Percent
Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages rose this week but stayed near their historic lows.
Cheaper mortgages have helped the economy by spurring more home buying and refinancing.
Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the average rate for the 30-year loan increased to 3.51 percent from 3.42 percent last week. That’s still near the average of 3.31 percent reached in November, the lowest on records dating to 1971.
The average on the 15-year loan rose to 2.69 percent. That’s up from 2.61 percent last week, which was the lowest on records going back to 1991.
Low mortgage rates have helped sustain the housing recovery that began last year. Home sales and construction are up from a year ago, and prices are rising in most U.S. markets.
– The Associated Press
US Consumer Prices Fall 0.4 Percent
A plunge in the cost of gas drove down a measure of U.S. consumer prices last month by the most since December 2008. Excluding the drop in fuel costs, prices were largely unchanged.
The consumer price index fell 0.4 percent in April from March, the Labor Department said Thursday. The main reason the index fell was that gas prices plunged 8.1 percent.
For the 12 months that ended in April, overall prices rose 1.1 percent – the smallest year-over-year increase in 2 1/2 years.
Excluding volatile energy and food costs, “core” prices ticked up 0.1 percent last month. Core prices have risen only 1.7 percent in the past 12 months. That’s just below the Federal Reserve’s 2 percent inflation target.
Scant inflation is allowing the Fed to continue its extraordinary efforts to stimulate the economy. Worries about lower inflation or even deflation might push the Fed to step up its low interest-rate policies to stimulate more borrowing and spending and push prices higher.
Deflation is a destabilizing cycle in which prices and wages fall steadily. It can slow economic growth.
– The Associated Press