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VOL. 129 | NO. 193 | Friday, October 3, 2014

Daily Digest

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Germantown Assisted Living Facility Sells for $10.7 Million

The Gardens of Germantown, an assisted living and Alzheimer’s care facility, has been sold.

The Gardens of Germantown LLC sold the facility at 3179 Professional Plaza in Germantown to SHP IV Germantown LLC for $10.7 million, according to a Sept. 29 special warranty deed. The Gardens of Germantown LLC acquired the property in 2009 for $4.2 million.

Built in 2011, the 31,065-square-foot residential care building sits on 2.2 acres near Poplar Pike and Forest Hill Irene Road. The Shelby County Assessor of Property’s 2014 appraisal is $3.5 million.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

– Amos Maki

Luttrell Appoints Two Division Directors

Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell has appointed Dale Lane as the county’s new director of the Office of Preparedness and Martha Lott as the county’s new director of Community Services.

Lane comes to the position, which was held by Bob Nations until this week, from being chief inspector of the uniform patrol division of the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office. He assumes his duties Oct. 16 after being in law enforcement since 1987.

Lott replaces Dottie Jones in the Community Services post and returns to county government from being the General Services director for the city of Memphis since 2010. Lott was grants manager with Shelby County government and also reorganized several divisions within county government during her previous nine years at the county administration building.

When Luttrell announced he would not be reappointing Jones, he indicated it was pending a reorganization of Community Services.

Lott was brought over to City Hall to reorganize the General Services division shortly after A C Wharton Jr. was first elected mayor in 2009.

– Bill Dries

Delta Airlines Makes More Memphis Flight Changes

Delta Airlines is making more changes at Memphis International Airport.

Delta is adding a second flight between Memphis and New York City’s LaGuardia Airport beginning Feb. 13.

But the airline, which has dramatically reduced service in Memphis over the last several years, is seasonally suspending its nonstop flights between Memphis and Salt Lake City, Utah, from Nov. 2 until June 4.

To help offset the suspension of the service to Salt Lake City International Airport, Delta is increasing the size of its aircraft on its Memphis to Los Angeles, Cali., flights, providing an outlet for passengers who need to reach the Western U.S.

Delta currently offers one flight per day between Memphis and LaGuardia. The second flight will be available for purchase on Oct. 4 at www.delta.com. Beginning Feb. 13, Memphis will have departure times of 7 a.m. and 1:15 pm to LaGuardia, with arrivals at Memphis from LaGuardia occurring at 11:57 a.m. and 10:05 pm.

“While we’re excited about the addition of the second flight to the world’s business market of New York City, we are disappointed to lose the nonstop flight to Salt Lake City,” said Scott Brockman, president and CEO of the Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority, in a statement. “We recognize that during this period of change and reinvention, we must continue our relentless pursuit of additional air service, especially to markets in the Western U.S.”

– Amos Maki

Independent Weather Group Joins National Effort

Cirrus Weather Solutions, the umbrella organization for independent weather service MemphisWeather.net, is a new Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador, an initiative by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration that works to improve the nation’s readiness against extreme weather events.

The initiative is the hub of a network of government, emergency management, media, academia, private industry and others toward making the nation responsive to the impact of extreme weather and water events.

Cirrus’ MemphisWeather.net, JacksonWeather.net, and StormWatch+ brands reach hundreds of thousands of users each year.

– Andy Meek

$1.6 Million UTHSC Grant Will Fund Diabetes Study

Ivan Gerling, professor in the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, has received a $1.6 million grant from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, a subsidiary of the National Institutes of Health, to study the process of Type 1 diabetes.

The award will be distributed over a three-year period.

Type 1 diabetes is the result of a failure of the insulin-producing cells found in structures called islets of Langerhans in the pancreas. It often appears at a young age and requires lifelong insulin injections as a treatment. Even with this therapy, many patients eventually suffer severe complications, including kidney disease and blindness.

A critical part of scientists’ work toward preventing or curing the disease is to develop a better understanding of its early stages by looking at what happens in the islets before a person gets sick.

– Don Wade

Haslam Announces $28 Million in Community Grants

Gov. Bill Haslam has announced more than $28 million in community development grants to help improve infrastructure, health and safety projects and downtown improvements.

Seventy cities and counties around the state received the block grants under Wednesday’s announcement.

Haslam said the improvements help communities attract investment and jobs.

The state grants ranged from $88,000 to $525,000, with local governments matching some of that total.

The largest combined projects are a $1 million waterline extension in Bradley County, $950,000 in water system improvements in Townsend and another $825,000 waterline extension in Sumner County.

Sewer system improvements total $750,000 in Oliver Springs and nearly $666,000 in Lenoir City.

Other grants are funding fire protection, housing rehabilitation, ambulance services and drainage improvements.

– The Associated Press

30-Year Mortgage Rate Averaging 4.19 Percent

A key long-term U.S. mortgage rate dipped this week, the second drop after a large increase two weeks ago.

Mortgage company Freddie Mac said Thursday the nationwide average for a 30-year loan slipped to 4.19 percent from 4.20 percent last week. The average for a 15-year mortgage, a popular choice for people who are refinancing, was unchanged at 3.36 percent.

The 30-year rate is down from 4.53 percent at the start of the year. Rates have fallen even though the Federal Reserve has been trimming its monthly bond purchases, which are intended to keep long-term borrowing rates low. The purchases are set to end next month.

The decline in the 30-year rate comes after sales of existing homes fell in August. Investors retreated from real estate and first-time buyers remained scarce, according to a report last week from the National Association of Realtors.

Fewer Americans signed contracts to buy homes in August, suggesting that sluggish sales could continue. The Realtors group said Monday its seasonally adjusted pending home sales index fell 1 percent.

By contrast, the Commerce Department said last week that sales of newly constructed homes surged in August, to the fastest sales pace since May 2008.

– The Associated Press

Applications for Jobless Benefits Drops to 287,000

The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment benefits dropped 8,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 287,000, as the total number of beneficiaries dropped to its lowest level in more than eight years.

The four-week average of applications, a less volatile measure, fell 4,250 to 294,750, the Labor Department said Thursday. Overall, 2.3 million people are receiving jobless aid. That’s the fewest since June 2006, which predates the start of the Great Recession by 18 months.

“The numbers are so low now that it seems just a matter of time before we see a run of big gains” in monthly hiring figures, said Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics.

– The Associated Press

PROPERTY SALES 0 220 16,417
MORTGAGES 0 85 10,172
BANKRUPTCIES 0 136 7,733