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VOL. 131 | NO. 135 | Thursday, July 7, 2016

Daily Digest

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Council Likely to Vote On Pinch Plan in 90 Days

A plan for the redevelopment of the Pinch area is essentially complete and Mayor Jim Strickland’s administration is rounding up grant funds and other financing for elements of the plan, according to Memphis City Council member Berlin Boyd.

Boyd said Tuesday, July 5, a timeline for a council vote on the plan is within 90 days, as the council approved a continued moratorium on new development in the Pinch district until the council approves the redevelopment plan.

A Looney Ricks Kiss plan unveiled in late June calls for an expanded campus at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital beyond the borders of the current campus, featuring high-rise buildings, some as tall as 12 stories, for office space and residential as well as retail on ground floors.

The expanded campus is being compared to the Amazon.com campus in Seattle by LRK planners.

The plan would also feature a retail strip on Overton Avenue between the Bass Pro Shops store at the Pyramid and St. Jude.

The plan is being coordinated by the Downtown Memphis Commission, the city’s Division of Housing and Community Development and the city-county Office of Planning and Development.

Meanwhile, the council delayed a final vote Tuesday on an ordinance that would change the rules governing the recently reconstituted Civilian Law Enforcement Review Board.

The rewrite so soon after the council reconstituted the dormant board last November was prompted by a part of the ordinance that violated Tennessee’s Open Meetings Law.

But the revision also removes a section from the 2015 ordinance that allows the council to use its subpoena power to call witnesses for the review board.

Council attorney Allan Wade has said the council cannot delegate its subpoena power.

Some council members said Tuesday they want to hear more about that specific part of the revision and possibly vote on the various changes as separate items. The item returns to the full council for a vote at the second council meeting in August.

In other business, the council approved a used car lot at 1780 Bartlett Road at Pleasant View Road in Raleigh as well as a single-family historic district designation for 480 W. Brooks Road in Walker Homes, the home of the late photographer Ernest Withers.

Developers of a proposed truck stop-motel on Hollywood Street at Interstate 40 in Frayser withdrew their latest effort to win council approval of the development on the site of the old Treasury department store before it got to the council.

The council also approved a referendum ordinance on the second of three readings that would ask voters to approve a city charter change requiring all city employees hired after a certain date in the future to live in the city of Memphis.

– Bill Dries

Archer Malmo Sets Record For Employee Headcount

Memphis-based branch communications agency Archer Malmo, has announced 22 new hires in its Memphis office.

That, combined with the agency’s recent acquisition of creative agency Combustion, brings Archer Malmo’s total employee count to 205 – the largest staff in the agency’s 64-year history.

The new hires span disciplines across the agency. The accounting and finance department has seen two new hires. The digital team and the agency’s PR practice each gained three. The creative and account services team each added seven. Eleven employees also recently got promotions.

“We are fortunate to continue our strong growth,” said Archer Malmo CEO Russ Williams in a statement about the news. “That growth gives us the opportunity to add terrific new talent to our team and creates exciting growth opportunities for current staff.”

Archer Malmo announced its acquisition of Combustion in May. Combustion’s founder and president Billy Riley joined Archer Malmo as group creative director. Other team members include Eric Christopherson and Leah Jones, associate creative director/art directors; Adam Shellabarger, senior designer; and Katie Steed, designer.

The acquisition added several clients to the Archer Malmo roster, including International Paper Co., Memphis College of Art and Brother Industries, among others.

There are six students interning this summer – three in Memphis and three in Archer Malmo’s office in Austin, Texas. This is the 10th year of the agency’s internship program, and this summer the interns will support client and account teams and participate in a summer internship project for the Memphis-based nonprofit Bridges.

– Andy Meek

US Golf Challenge Comes To the Links at Fox Meadows

The United States Golf Challenge (USGC), a premier Two-Man Best-Ball Tournament, will be holding a King’s Cup Qualifier at The Links at Fox Meadows in Memphis on Saturday, July 9.

Now in its second year, the USGC is a two-man best ball competition with local qualifiers known as King’s Cup Qualifiers, leading to a National Championship at Disney World Golf Resort in Orlando, Fla.

Teams are broken down into four flights: Championship Flight – 4.9 handicap and under; A Flight – 5.0 to 9.9; B Flight – 10.0 to 14.9; and C Flight – 15.0 handicap and above.

The National Champions in each flight earn a spot on the United States King’s Cup team, which travels to Ireland to compete in a Ryder Cup-style event against Irish golfers.

There are still open spots for two-man teams. Interested teams can sign up at www.usgolfchallenge.com.

– Don Wade

Cordova Students to Benefit From Backpack Giveaway

Deserving young students in Cordova will soon benefit from a national backpack giveaway campaign.

TCC, the largest authorized retailer for Verizon Communications Inc. in the U.S., announced that A Wireless is partnering with the company and its Culture of Good to donate 235,000 backpacks full of school supplies to children through TCC’s annual School Rocks Backpack Giveaway.

The participating TCC store in Cordova is located at 750 N. Germantown Parkway, Suite 111. Each participating TCC store will donate 250 backpacks and each A Wireless store will donate 125 backpacks. Any leftover backpacks will be donated to local schools.

Local families and their children can visit participating locations on Saturday, July 30, between noon and 3 p.m. to pick up a backpack filled with various school supplies, including pencils, paper, a pencil box, folders and glue.

One backpack per child present will be given away on a first-come, first-served basis while supplies last.

Since 2013, TCC has donated more than 360,000 backpacks filled with school supplies.

– Daily News staff

US Services Firms Grew in June at Fastest Pace in 7 Months

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. services firms expanded last month at the fastest pace since November, good news for the U.S. economy.

The Institute for Supply Management said Wednesday that its non-manufacturing index rose to 56.5 in June from 52.9 in May. Any reading above 50 signals growth. Production, new orders and export orders grew faster in June. Employment grew last month after contracting in May.

Services have been a source of strength for the American economy. The ISM services index has shown growth for 77 straight months.

"The rebound in the ISM index reinforces our view that the US economy remains on a firm footing," Andrew Hunter, an economist at Capital Economics, wrote in a research report.

He expects growth to accelerate to an annual pace of 3 percent in the second quarter and to come it at "a solid" 2 percent for the year.

Employees of private services companies hold 71 percent of American non-farm jobs, and services firms account for 94 percent of the 12.9 million jobs created since the Great Recession ended in June 2009.

The ISM is a trade group of purchasing managers. Its services survey covers businesses that employ the vast majority of workers, including retail, construction, health care and financial services companies.

The ISM reported last week that American manufacturing expanded last month for the fourth straight month. U.S. factories had been hurt last year by weak demand overseas and a strong dollar that makes U.S. goods more expensive in foreign markets.

The American economy got off to a slow start this year, growing at a lackluster 1.1 percent annual pace from January through March. Economists expect the economy to grow at least twice as fast from April through June, lifted by a pickup in consumer spending.

– The Associated Press

PROPERTY SALES 107 331 6,877
MORTGAGES 60 239 4,368
BUILDING PERMITS 190 508 16,423
BANKRUPTCIES 22 136 3,532