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VOL. 131 | NO. 194 | Wednesday, September 28, 2016


Bill Dries

Last Word: Stewart Case Conclusion, River Re-View and Rhodes Hacks

By Bill Dries

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81.4 million of you watched Monday’s Trump-Clinton debate which aired on 11 networks altogether, according to the preliminary numbers from Nielsen, the television rating business.

The day after the debate here in Memphis was a reminder of the urgent issues that will likely remain once all of the votes – popular and electoral -- are counted and estimated on Nov. 8.

The Justice Department review of the July 2015 fatal shooting of Darrius Stewart by MPD officer Connor Schilling concludes there is no federal civil rights case to be made against Schilling. Last November a Shelby County grand jury decided he would face no state charges.

Ron Garrison, the president of MATA, gets a contract extension Tuesday as the MATA board also approves a set of new bus routes and changed routes that take effect in December.

At Tuesday’s Shelby County Schools board meeting there was not a roll out of a comprehensive plan by SCS superintendent Dorsey Hopson to “rightsize” the school system as anticipated. But Hopson offered some peeks at what is likely to be in a plan he is now billing as a “transformation” of the school system with a slower roll out to start in October.

They include his long-held hope that East High School can be overhauled. And a private group got the greenlight for its plans to raise private money for a library and learning center at White Station High School with plans by the group to help build a similar effort for Whitehaven High School. And the board approved a move to likely demolish five closed schools.

More preview tours this week of Big River Crossing – the bicycle and pedestrian boardwalk on the north side of the Harahan Bridge over the Mississippi River. And we offer a review of the experience itself as we move toward the Oct. 22 opening. It looks to be a big draw similar to the crowds we’ve seen recently at Shelby Farms Park and going even further back, the informal early opening of the Shelby Farms Greenline several years ago.

Between now and Oct. 22 it’s not a matter of waiting for the crossing and the River Arts Festival and the St. Jude bike rally that are all happening at the same time, There is plenty to do between now and then including the return of Drew Holcomb’s Moon River Music Festival at Levitt Shell.

It’s called “RhodesHacks” – the gathering of 11 coders at Rhodes College last week. But they weren’t looking for anyone’s emails or similar undertakings. They were giving two local nonprofits a tech boost by developing some software solutions that allow the nonprofits to do their digital thing better.

The biggest free agent signee in Grizz history checks in at Grizz media day this week and everybody is watching his knees.

AP gets a batch of UT emails that show athletic director Dave Hart retired after the school decided against giving Hart a two year contract extension with a raise. The emails cite the coming of a new Chancellor at UT in the next year.

Meanwhile in Starkville, the search is underway for a new AD.

PROPERTY SALES 23 23 1,365
MORTGAGES 21 21 1,068
BUILDING PERMITS 117 117 3,173