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VOL. 133 | NO. 145 | Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Council Gets First Look at Sanitation Overhaul

By Bill Dries

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Memphis City Council members offer their first thoughts Tuesday, July 23, on the reconfiguration of city sanitation services outlined last week by Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland.

Strickland is seeking approval from the council to use $6 million to $15 million from city general fund reserves to move the city to every other week pickup of curbside garbage not in a container. Currently, residents are required to call 3-1-1 to notify the city.

Strickland intends to have the new system in place by October. He wants enough money to fill 76 vacant sanitation positions and buy 24 pieces of sanitation equipment to meet the need and operate for a year before considering any kind of hike in the city’s household fee for garbage services.

Memphis City Council members get their first look Tuesday at Mayor Jim Strickland’s plan to overhaul city sanitation services and vote on two more de-annexations. (Daily News File)


Strickland said Friday he has no plans currently to raise the existing $22.80 monthly fee without seeing what the exact cost is and whether there are efficiency measures that can be taken to reduce the need for hiking the sanitation services fee.

Strickland also terminated the city’s four-year contract with Inland Waste with about a year left in the agreement. Inland was picking up garbage for an estimated 35,000 residents in Cordova and Hickory Hill, about 20 percent of the city.

Waste Pro will be the interim contractor until a new contract is bid. Strickland said the city is keeping its legal options open, including trying to recoup expenses from Inland.

City council member Frank Colvett, whose district includes part of Hickory Hill and large parts of Cordova, said he agrees with dropping the contract with Inland after numerous complaints.

“We need to move along,” he said last week.

Council members also continue their discussion Tuesday of a possible November referendum to abolish the elected office of city court clerk and move the clerk’s functions to a division within the city treasurer’s office. The measure proposed by council member Martavius Jones will be discussed at a 10:30 a.m. committee session along with a first look at the detailed de-annexation proposals by the administration for the Rocky Point and Southwind-Windyke areas.

The council meets at 3:30 p.m. at City Hall, 125 N. Main St. Follow the meeting @tdnpols, www.twitter.com/tdnpols, for live coverage of the council session and updates from committee sessions earlier in the council day.

At an 8:35 a.m. committee session, the council talks about the administration’s Fairgrounds redevelopment plan. The item could be added to Tuesday’s agenda on its way to the state building commission for a vote, with the council using the plan as the basis for a Fairgrounds Tourism Development Zone. The city will take the plan, if approved Tuesday, to Nashville in the fall for the building commission’s approval.

Already on Tuesday’s agenda for third and final readings are ordinances that amend rules for the city impound lot to stop charging storage fees to the owners of stolen cars that are recovered and taken to the lot, and regulations for shared mobility services including Explore Bike Share and Bird electric scooters.

The council also votes on a resolution approving the economic impact plan for the University District. The plan is required to establish a Tax Increment Financing – or TIF – district using an increment in increased city and county property tax payments to finance public improvements in the area.

The council is also voting on a resolution that would allocate $1.5 million in capital funding to pay for cameras monitored by Memphis Police to be placed at public facilities in each of the seven single-member council districts.

The council routinely approves the placement of similar cameras in specific areas when neighborhood groups, donors and businesses put up the money to pay for them. The city funding would put a priority on areas where there isn’t such private funding available but a need for the cameras.

In planning and development items, the council votes on an 11-lot single-family residential development on the southwest corner of Kirby Parkway and Sulgrave Drive and a six-lot single-family residential development at 5499 Park Ave. by Park Place LLC. The development includes the rear areas of 1118 and 1130 East Irvin Drive approved earlier this month by the council.

The council also votes on a change to a planned development at the southwest corner of Valleybrook Drive and Alladin Avenue by Loeb Properties to allow two vacant lots to be used as parking with a landscape buffer around the lot.

The council will also schedule an Aug. 14 public hearing and vote on the Shelby Oaks Drive Commercial Planned Development, a construction landfill by Blaylock and Brown Construction Inc. on the south side of Shelby Oaks east of Summer Avenue. It is the latest proposed site for a construction landfill after several earlier sites were rejected. The council is also expected to set Aug. 14 as the date for a public hearing and vote on a day care for 45 children at 2538 James Road.

The council also votes on selling city land at 701 N. Main St. and 189 Barksdale St.

Wolf River Harbor Holdings LLC, a company made up of the Orgel Family LP including Billy Orgel, his son Benjamin Orgel, Tom Marsh and Adam Slovis, would buy the Main property, the former offices of the Memphis Division of Housing and Community Development for $452,000 cash.

Wolf River Harbor already has bought 32 acres in the neighborhood including property next to the former HCD offices and is considering buying another 20 acres in the area, according to the offer letter from Wolf River Harbor Holdings. The company’s plans are a craft brewery and “golf entertainment facility” as part of an overall master plan that includes 400 residential multifamily units and single-family homes on the Wolf River Harbor.

Lexington Asset Management of Memphis would buy the Barksdale property, a circa 1910, two-story, 7,685-square-foot former police horse stable, for $406,000 cash and renovate it as the company’s executive offices. The company estimates the renovation would have a total project cost of $1.6 million and take a year to complete.

PROPERTY SALES 61 61 6,453
MORTGAGES 46 46 4,081
BUILDING PERMITS 113 113 15,474
BANKRUPTCIES 19 19 3,289