Photo Credit: NASA Earth Observatory
Over the Hump and Now
the Long Climb Back
Local Conditions Updates: A good starting point for local news is Memphis Flood.com. Shelter updates, from WREG. There is also the continuous updating of Twitter with the #memflood hashtag. Total Traffic Network has a constantly-updated map of road conditions. ABC24’s a running list of road closures and other updates. FEMA’s disaster resources webpage. Websites for Memphis/Shelby County Emergency Management Agency, Shelby County Emergency Preparedness and here. MLG&W. Hydrology forecasts here. (Scroll down) WREG has an extensive number of flood links. Hydrological chart showing the rising/forecast of Mississippi River waters. Maps of the flooding for Shelby, Tipton and Tunica Counties.
Booker T. Washington High School: They are the winners of the Race to the Top Commencement Challenge! President Barack Obama will give a speech to the graduating students. More reports from Memphis Business Journal, the Daily Nws, Fox13 and again, ABC24, WMC and again, WREG and the Commercial Appeal. No date has been set for his speech. Reaction from alumni.
The Cleanup Begins: The city’s biggest fear now rolling past, the City looks to start the recovery. Businesses are already looking at “disaster recovery”. An insurance expert talks about what comes next for homeowners. Most folks will require thousands of dollars in cash to begin rebuilding; the State will offer unemployment funds to those flooded out of a job. The ASPCA has begun relocating shelter animals to other parts of the country. Trash and debris are left behind as the waters recede. Many local wild animal populations have been thinned or destroyed.
Don’t Drink the Water! Or walk in it or swim in it or fish in it or remove anything from it , says the Shelby County Department of Health. Sewage backing up into the rivers may contaminate local crops.
Flood Reports: From the Daily News, by the numbers. Police Director Toney Armstrong reassures the public that looting “isn’t a big problem”. An aerial view of the river crest. Observers “amazed” by the size of the river. Massive flooding around the Chisholm Lake resort area. The number of evacuees at Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church nearly doubled overnight yesterday. More “wait and see” for some residents.
Flood Photos: Flood Photos: Photo galleries from ABC24, the Commercial Appeal, WMC, WREG, the Tennessean. Photo gallery from Weather.com, CNN. Filtered search for “Memphis flood” on Flickr, Twitpic and YouTube, Yahoo News.
Tennessee: What are the state’s most- and least-needed degrees, according to the Tennessee Higher Education Commission and the University of Tennessee Center for Business and Economic Research? How about the top boys and girls names for 2010, in TN?
US Senator Bob Corker: He tells The Flyer’s Jackson Baker that America needs to rethink its relationship with Pakistan.
Income Tax: The resolutions that would put before voters a referendum on constitutionally banning a State income tax are now ready for floor votes in both chambers of the Assembly.
Mississippi Flooding: All of the state’s dockside casinos are closed now, which is hurting the local economy savagely. More on that from ABC24. The Tunica Cutoff area may never be rebuilt; more from WMC, WREG and again, the Commercial Appeal. But local officials say it will not be condemned.
Other Mississippi News: A review of campaign finance disclosures for candidates in the governor’s race. Preparation is what saved Lady Luck Casino. Entergy says their 4-state system is being strained by energy demands.
Real Estate: March home prices in Memphis fell almost 4 percent over last year. April home sales for Fayette and Tipton Counties took a big dip, year over year. According to Bloomberg Businessweek, Memphis is the 7th toughest city for renters.
Internet Exclusive: Chuck Bates: Our financial correspondent calms down the clucking Chicken Littles who are saying, The Debt Ceiling is Falling, The Debt Ceiling is Falling!.
Online Exclusive: Joe Saino, the Shelby Watchdog: Memphis Mayor A C Wharton asked the public to offer suggestions about cutting the Memphis City budget and Joe is only to happy to provide Some Suggestions that would reduce it substantially!
Online Exclusive: George Kuykendall: The executive director of Citizens for Community Values says that it’s Game Day for Memphis in its fight against strip clubs.
Memphis City Schools: Part of the Gates Foundation money is being used in a campaign to improve teacher morale with awards and billboards.
Downtown: The Center City Comission will interview three finalist teams next week for the task of reviewing and updating Downtown’s signage, design guidelines, new construction and more.
State Education Reform: HB0130, which will strip teachers unions of collective bargaining rights, is bouncing between House committees, because its amended version differs from the Senate version and the House appears to prefer their original, softer, version. Its final fate is unclear at this point. More from the Commercial Appeal.
World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest: With no throngs now filling the Downtown, businesses near the Fairgrounds are making plans for the unexpected crowds. A shuttle service has been set up between Downtown and the Fairgrounds. Organisers are working to get 400 pounds of meat donated to local shelters housing flood evacuees.
DeSoto County: An estimated seventy homes have been damaged by flood waters in the county. “Snow days” that need making up mean a delay to the end of the school year. The local Farm Service Agency has Federal disaster loans available for farmers.
Business: Flood fears, stoked by heavy media coverage, are leading many to cancel hotel reservations in Memphis.
Mitsubishi Electric: A report from Fox 13 on the groundbreaking yesterday on the new plant.
Amazon.com: At hearings in Nashville yesterday, Senate legislators questioned representatives from the company about the nature of the tax-exemption deal and how binding it is. More from the Nashville City Paper, the Chattanooga Times Free Press, WKNO-FM, WPLN. The Commercial Appeal reports on Amazon’s expansion plans elsewhere in the nation.
UrbanArt Commission: A new website and aggressive promotion campaign have reinvigorated the organisation’s efforts toward public art.
Local Media: The E. W. Scripps company, corporate parent of the Commercial Appeal, reported weak advertising and classified ad revenues led to a ten-fold increase in losses for Q1, versus last year.
St Jude Children’s Research Hospital: A letter of intent was filed with the State saying the plan to build a $190 million medical tower for a “a replacement surgical department and intensive care unit”. More from the Daily News and the CA.
Internet Exclusive: Memphis Film Commission’s Linn Sitler: Main Street Journal contributor Mick Wright talks with Sitler about Getting Memphis Before the Cameras again.
Internet Exclusive: Shelby County Commissioner Steve Mulroy: Commissioner Mulroy takes a few minutes to explain Why the Need for Public Secrecy? when it comes to County Commission business on public issues.
2011 Memphis Giving Guide: If you want to help but aren’t sure where to volunteer your time or donate your money, this free Memphis Giving Guide, from the Main Street Journal, can help you find the Christ-led ministries effecting social change in Memphis. (11 MB PDF document; right-click and save)
Politics: A House immigration reform bill has been delayed by its sponsor so he can ascertain its financial feasibility. The bill to relax minimum requirements for third parties to get on the State ballot is now on the governor’s desk. The Department of Tourist Development is coming under fire for spending four times the budgeted amount for promotional brochures; more from WSMV. The Nashville City Paper’s Pith in the Wind blog on the non-discrimination resolution bill.
HOPE Scholarships: State Senator Thelma Harper is asking why only 11 percent of recipients are African-American, calling that “disproportionate”. The Tennessee Education Lottery Corporation recently announced it had generated $2 billion for “education-related projects”.
Picture of the Day
|The sun sets on a deceptively calm Mississippi River, from WMC by X. © 2011.|
Bill Hubbard: Amazon.com does not get a pass on State and Federal laws on tax collection. (via the Tennessean)
Amy Howell: Don’t let social media be a mystery to your business. (via the Daily News)
Light Their Fire: If you let a customer’s confidence get shaken, you might lose that customer forever. (via the Daily News)
Guerrilla Sales & Marketing: What to do when “hot prospects go cold”. (via the Daily News)
Joe Spake’s Daily Buzz: His site hits all the news from a variety of sources worth a look-in.
Commercial Appeal: Critics of State Senator Stacey Campfield’s legislation to block teachers talking about homosexuality forget (or don’t mention) it was in reaction to something. High praise for Booker T. Washington High School.
Donna Melton: She argues that collective bargaining by teachers unions has produced many good things for students and teachers. (via the Tennessean)