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VOL. 129 | NO. 163 | Thursday, August 21, 2014

Daily Digest

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Circle K Files Permit for Winchester Store

Circle K Stores has filed a $1.1 million permit with the city-county Office of Construction Code Enforcement for a store at 9113 Winchester Road in Germantown.

The permit, which shows Great Western Builders of Collierville as general contractor but doesn’t list an architect, is for construction of a “new convenience store.”

The specific land on which the new store will be built is unclear

Circle K, an international chain of more than 3,300 convenience stores in the U.S. and 4,000 worldwide, was founded in 1951, in El Paso, Texas.

Now owned and operated by Canadian-based Alimentation Couche-Tard, the company has eight Memphis-area locations.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Daily News staff

Chick-fil-A Testing New Breakfast Menu in Memphis

Soon, Chick-fil-A might be serving new breakfast items like chicken & waffles nationwide.

The chain is asking customers in Memphis to help take its new breakfast menu, which includes a handful of new items, for a spin. Customers have told the chain they want a bigger breakfast menu, and as a result Chick-fil-A is testing five new entrees: egg white chicken grill, Greek yogurt parfait, multigrain oatmeal, chicken and waffles, and cinnamon swirls.

On a related note, Chick-fil-A also just started brewing THRIVE Farmers Coffee, hot and iced, at all of its restaurants.

– Andy Meek

Council Rejects Utility Construction Contract

The Memphis City Council approved on the first of three readings Tuesday, Aug. 19, an ordinance that adjusts the city’s policy on the investment of the city’s pension fund. The change would up the percentage of investments in real estate from 5 percent to 10 percent.

In other action Tuesday, council members approved the transfer of $3.5 million in construction period rent on The Pyramid from Bass Pro Shops to the city’s Housing and Community Development Division.

The council also voted down an $8.8 million contract between Memphis Light, Gas and Water Division and David H. Elliot Construction Co. of Lexington, Ky., for electric construction.

The contract is for meeting federal NERC – North American Electric Reliability Corp. – standards for the reliability of the power grid.

Council members and the union representing utility employees didn’t like that the contract went to an out-of-town contractor.

The council approved $26.8 million in actuarial funding to the Memphis Light, Gas and Water Division retirement and pension system for the 2014 plan year. They also approved a $13.3 million transfer from the utility common fund to pay MLGW’s annual OPEB – other post-employment benefits – cost.

Third and final reading of council member Wanda Halbert’s ordinance creating community advisory councils to set priorities for a $14 million pool of capital funding among the seven council districts was delayed to Sept. 16.

– Bill Dries

New University of Memphis Graduates Eligible for Football Tickets

The University of Memphis Athletic Department has announced it will continue the free football season tickets promotion for first-year graduates and has added a new discount ticket program for anyone who graduated from the university in the last four years.

Any person who graduated from the University of Memphis in December 2013, May 2014 or August 2014 with an undergraduate, graduate, doctoral or professional degree is eligible to receive two free football season tickets.

Those who graduated between December 2010 and August 2013 are eligible for the Young Alumni discount ticket program and can purchase up to two season tickets for $45 each. Tickets are located in sections 126, 127 and 128 of Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium, near the student section. The ticket office will also work to fulfill any requests to sit near friends or family who are also participating in the Young Alumni program.

The Tigers are also extending a Young Alumni promotion for men’s basketball. Anyone who graduated from the University of Memphis in the past four years is eligible to purchase discounted season tickets for 2014-15.

– Don Wade

Labor Secretary Visits Job Corps Center

U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez visited the Dr. Benjamin L. Hooks Job Corps Center in Whitehaven Wednesday, Aug. 20, to recognize the 50th anniversary of the Congressional act that created the job training and employment programs that include Job Corps.

Perez addressed the student body at the center and toured the facility at 1555 McAlister Drive.

– Bill Dries

Tennessee Unemployment Rate Rises to 7.1 Percent

The state unemployment rate inched higher in July.

Tennessee’s preliminary unemployment rate for July was 7.1 percent, up from the revised 6.6 percent rate in June, according to Tennessee Labor & Workforce Development Commissioner Burns Phillips.

Nationally, the preliminary rate for July was 6.2 percent, up from 6.1 percent in June.

While the unemployment rate increased in July, it is down through the first seven months of the year. Year to date, Tennessee's unemployment rate has decreased from 8.4 percent to 7.1 percent, mirroring the nationwide drop from 7.5 percent to 6.2 percent.

The biggest job losses were in the public sector. Government employment in Tennessee is down 4.9 percent in July when compared to July 2013. The only other sector of the economy which posted job losses over that same period of time was in the Information sector, which was down 0.9 percent.

Year to date, nonfarm employment increased by 51,900 jobs. The largest increases occurred in professional/business services, leisure/hospitality and trade/transportation/utilities industries.

– Amos Maki

Some Fed Officials Favor Reduced Help for Economy

Some Federal Reserve officials think the economy is improving fast enough that the Fed will soon need to signal a change in the extraordinary support it's been providing the economy in the form of ultra-low interest rates.

Minutes of the Fed's discussion at its July 29-30 meeting show that some officials thought the economy was improving enough that the Fed would need "to call for a relatively prompt move" toward reducing the support it has been providing. Otherwise, they felt the Fed risked overshooting its targets for unemployment and inflation.

In the end, the Fed made no changes at the July meeting. It approved on a 9-1 vote keeping its current stance on interest rates. But the minutes indicated rising support for a change.

– The Associated Press

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