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VOL. 129 | NO. 62 | Monday, March 31, 2014

Daily Digest

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Mill Creek Apartments Owner Files $7 Million Loan

The owner of the 448-unit Mill Creek Apartments at 4461 Millbranch Road in Whitehaven has filed a $6.8 million loan on the property.

Millcreek Development Partnership LP – an affiliate of Memphis-based LEDIC Management Group – filed the multifamily deed of trust, absolute assignment of leases and rents and security agreement March 25 through Magna Bank.

LEDIC president Scott P. Ledbetter signed the trust deed on behalf of The Century Corp., general partner of the borrowing entity.

Built in 1968, the Class D multifamily property contains 413,567 square feet in multiple buildings on 25 acres along the west side of Millbranch Road north of East Shelby Drive.

The Shelby County Assessor of Property’s 2013 appraisal was $4.5 million.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Daily News staff

Redbirds, AutoZone Park Sales Finalized

The city of Memphis, the St. Louis Cardinals and the Memphis Redbirds Baseball Foundation have completed the ownership transactions of the Redbirds and AutoZone Park.

Per the agreement, the Cardinals have acquired the Redbirds (their Triple-A farm club), while the city of Memphis has acquired AutoZone Park. The city will lease the ballpark to the Redbirds through a long-term agreement. Included is a substantial, multiseason capital investment in the ballpark.

At closing, Fundamental Advisors LP, the Redbirds Foundation’s sole bondholder, retired the original bonds issued by the Memphis Center City Revenue Finance Corp.

“Finalizing this deal represents a positive move toward stability of professional baseball in Memphis,” William DeWitt Jr., chairman and CEO of the Cardinals, said in a statement.

“This is a great day for the people of Memphis,” said John Pontius, treasurer for the Redbirds Foundation.

– Don Wade

ULI Memphis Hosting Event in Innovation District

The Urban Land Institute Memphis chapter is hosting its first Innovation District event Thursday, April 3, at Health Sciences Park at Madison Avenue and Dunlap Street. The event, which will run from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., will include performances by Hattiloo Theatre, New Ballet Ensemble & School and Watoto De Afrika, and food trucks will be on hand.

ULI Memphis is exploring ways to create an innovation business district in and around the Memphis Medical Center that would use the neighborhood’s resources to draw in research and development and technology companies.

– Amos Maki

Two Film Programs Launching in April

Indie Memphis and Crosstown Arts are offering two programs for Memphis-area filmmakers and film lovers next month.

Both programs will be held at Crosstown Arts, 430 N. Cleveland St.

Shoot & Splice is a monthly filmmaking forum exploring technical and creative topics related to film production. The first will be offered Tuesday, April 8. The program will begin at 7 p.m., with doors opening at 6:30 p.m. for networking.

MicroCinema Club, meanwhile, is a revival of a monthly short film screening series offered by Indie Memphis from 2004 to 2009. The first screening will begin at 7 p.m. April 24.

– Andy Meek

Kellogg Lockout Leads to Labor Board Complaint

The National Labor Relations Board has issued a complaint against Kellogg Co. related to a lockout of more than 200 employees at its Memphis facility.

In a news release, the board says Kellogg violated the National Labor Relations Act by insisting on an impasse on bargaining proposals related to wages and benefits and by locking out the workers "in furtherance of its bad-faith bargaining position."

The complaint says Kellogg failed to provide requested information that would help the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers union assess Kellogg's bargaining proposals.

The complaint comes five months after contract negotiations between the company and the union broke down. Workers have picketed outside the plant since then.

A hearing is set for May 5 in Memphis.

Kellogg is based in Battle Creek, Mich.

– The Associated Press

Consumer Confidence Slips in March

U.S. consumer sentiment slipped in March from the previous month, as Americans said they were less likely to buy cars and homes because of slightly higher interest rates.

The University of Michigan says its consumer sentiment index dipped to 80 in March from 81.6 in February. That's still about five points higher than last fall, when sentiment fell during the government shutdown. The index was 82.5 in December.

Economists say that the figures suggest confidence didn't take a big hit during the harsh winter. That could bode well for spending as the weather improves.

And Americans are more optimistic about the economy this year. One out of three respondents said they expect their finances to improve in the year ahead, the highest proportion since the recession ended in June 2009.

– The Associated Press

Mississippi Governor to Mull Marijuana Oil Proposal

Mississippi lawmakers are sending Gov. Phil Bryant a bill that would legalize a marijuana oil to be used as medicine under tightly controlled circumstances.

"The governor will review it closely when it reaches his desk," Bryant spokeswoman Nicole Webb said Friday after the bill won final approval in the House and Senate.

Sen. Josh Harkins, R-Flowood, said a family in his district has an almost 2-year-old daughter with Dravet syndrome, a form of pediatric epilepsy, and the oil can help reduce the number of seizures.

Harkins said he has been told by academic experts and officials at the Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics that the oil does not produce a high.

It would be available only by prescription and dispensed through a University of Mississippi Medical Center pharmacy. The medical center would obtain its supply from the University of Mississippi's National Center for Natural Products Research in Oxford. That center grows marijuana for medical research sponsored by the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

– The Associated Press

Unemployment Rate Falls in 29 States

Unemployment rates fell in most states in February and two-thirds of the states reported job gains, evidence that most of the country is benefiting from slow but steady improvement in the job market.

Unemployment rates dropped in 29 states, rose in 10 and were unchanged in the remaining 11, the Labor Department said Friday. Meanwhile, hiring rose in 33 states and fell in 17.

The rate declines occurred even though unemployment rose nationwide last month, to 6.7 percent from 6.6 percent in January. That increase occurred partly for a good reason: more Americans began looking for work, though most weren't immediately hired. But the fact that they started looking suggests they were optimistic about their prospects.

Employers added 175,000 jobs nationwide in February, close to the average monthly gains of the past two years. Those gains followed two meager months of hiring. Employers added only 129,000 jobs in January and just 84,000 in December. Harsh winter weather likely dragged on job gains in those months.

The biggest drop in unemployment occurred in South Carolina, where the rate fell to 5.7 percent from 6.4 percent. Ohio reported the next biggest decline, to 6.5 percent from 6.9 percent.

South Carolina actually lost jobs last month, so the big drop in its unemployment rate partly occurred because many of the unemployed stopped looking for work. The number of unemployed people in the state fell sharply. The government doesn't count those out of work as unemployed unless they are actively searching.

Rhode Island reported the highest unemployment rate, at 9 percent, followed by Illinois at 8.7 percent and California with 8 percent.

North Dakota had the lowest rate, 2.6 percent, followed by South Dakota and Nebraska at 3.6 percent each.

– The Associated Press

MORTGAGES 80 320 1,066
BUILDING PERMITS 120 590 2,248