Main Street Journal - Monday, March 5, 2012

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Photo Credit: CW30/WLMT
Briefly, the Light Shines Here on Memphis

Tennessee is one of tomorrow’s Super Tuesday states and the political world, for a few days, pays intense attention to us. Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum was in town on Sunday, making a media appearance at Corky’s and two campaign appearances in Cordova. Reports from the Commercial Appeal, WREG, WMC, ABC24.

According to a Rasmussen poll, the TN race is a toss-up between Santorum and Mitt Romney.

A Los Angeles Times report on the Corky’s visit. Tom Humphrey of the Knoxville News-Sentinel reports on the overall State efforts. More bits and notes from over the weekend, via Humphrey, and the Associated Press.

Former governor Mitt Romney has raised slightly more than half of all Memphis campaign donations in the most recent reporting period. There was a lightly-attended Newt Gingrich rally Saturday. Democrats are taking early aim at Mitt Romney. Former candidate Herman Cain toured the state, supporting Newt Gingrich. But one of Gringrich’s TN campaign co-chairmen, State Senator Stacey Campfield, has switched to Santorum.

The March 6 Elections: The never ending campaigns, in this case for Shelby County Assessor of Property. A report on fundraising in the General Sessions Court clerk race. Fox13’s Les Smith looks at the County Commission Seat 1, Position 3 primaries.

This will be the first test of the new voter ID laws. The small number of reported problems has State officials “optimistic” about tomorrow but the Chattanooga Times Free Press reports some confusion. And if you have problems, one newspaper wants to hear from you! Do term limits mean “never run again” or “try again after a break”? The Tennessean thinks this election will symbolise the future direction of the GOP.

Coming Tomorrow! The Main Street Journal adds a new bi-weekly columnist: Andria K. Brown and her column, Southpaw. She’s a fun and engaging new addition. Starting Tueday.

Memphis City Council: At this week’s meeting, they are expected to take up a resolution funding upgrades and “major improvements” to the Liberty Bowl stadium.

Memphis-Shelby County Merger: A group who wanted to file a lawsuit before the failed metropolitan merger vote in 2010, blocking its City and County votes in favor of a single-Countywide vote, can now do so.

Achievement School District: Teachers and students at three Frayser schools are awaiting news of how their lives will change as they become the first Memphis schools placed in the ASD.

DeSoto County: Local officials are optimistic after a “blue ribbon” briefing with legislators in Washington, DC, about local issues. Take A Knee DC held its third rally in the area, this time in Hernando. That city also won its second Tree City USA designation. And the head of the County Greeways project, Larry Jarrett, wants to nominate a section of Mississippi 161 to a Federal Scenic Byway honor. More information on the Save Rural America Rally aimed at helping and supporting farmers.

The Commercial Appeal is reporting that Southaven mayor Greg Davis sought double reimbursements from the City and from the Chamber of Commerce on some of his charges. The petition drive, by the Concerned Citizens of Southaven, to get Governor Phil Bryant to remove Davis begins today; Bryant wants to discuss the options first. At least one Southaven alderman, Greg Guy, is suspicious now. More from WMC.

Politics: Governor Bill Haslam’s legislative agenda has hit some snags. Ongoing fallout from the planned retirement of State Senator Andy Berke. US Senator Bob Corker spoke to the Madison County Republicans about a number of issues, including tomorrow’s primary. Former governor Phil Bredesen is part of a group, Bipartisan Policy Center’s Governors’ Council, urging Medicaid reform. How corporate PAC money is flowing to Republicans (but not Democrats?). The State Senate unanimoously approved a bill to give teachers greater leeway (and protections) in the use of force in classrooms.

Gasoline: Prices have now risen nationally to $3.75/gallon. Locally, the average price is $3.57/gallon. (via

Germantown:: The town’s Police Department has, after a 10-year break, begun to use unpaid interns again.

Tell your friends you read it here:

NEW! INTERNET EXCLUSIVE! Farewell, Andrew Breitbart: Mick Wright pens a remembrance of the “iconoclastic provocateur”, the man who showed us the way.

NEW! INTERNET EXCLUSIVE! Bloomberg’s Money, Part III: Our Second Amendment contributor Craig Harper continues his series, looking at the use of Bloomberg Philanthropy money in Memphis. In Part III, he notes it’s all going according to plan.

Internet Exclusive: Comparing Economic Plans: Our economic contributor Chuck Bates looks at the tax plans of the four Republican presidential candidates and President Barack Obama to see which offers the great, most beneficial change.

Shelby County Schools: Allegations of an “unauthorised fundraiser” involving Bolton High School soccer coach James Haywood

Downtown: A carriage horse died Friday night near the trolley tracks, temporarily blocking the trolleys.

Municipal School Districts: State law only allows a maximum of six school districts in a county. Who will get left out in suburban Shelby?

Animal Abuse?: An illegal animal dumping ground full of pit bulls has been discovered near Southland, in West Memphis, AR. More from WMC.

Transition Planning Commission: They are finding themselves swamped by rapidly changing events that may overwhelm whatever plan they finally adopt. WREG’s Live@9 interviews TPC members Barbara Prescott and Kenya Bradshaw.

Shelby County Commission: Commissioners Steve Mulroy and Sidney Chism are urging support for tougher animal abuse ordinances. Local government is beginning to feel the pinch of gas prices.

Planned Parenthood: A judge has restored grant funding from the Department of Health taken away last year that paid for free HIV and AIDS testing.

Nashville: Signs are going up in State-owned public properties warning against camping, a move designed to prevent Occupy protests. And Occupy Nashville is going out with a whimper, not a bang. Metro Councilman Brady Banks, charged recently with patronising a prostitute, talks about the incident with the Nashville City Paper.

Tennessee: A Federal lawsuit has stopped two East TN telemarketing companies. We trail other States in money to attract filmmakers. Beginning this Summer the State will publicise teachers’ performance ratings.

EDGE: President Reid Dulburger want to increase women- and minority-owned business participation and improve capital access for small/medium business.

Business: From the Business Journal, a list of Memphis’ largest non-government employers. Also, their Small Business Spotlight shines on Med Communications. Restuarants that aren’t using social media are giving up a crucial competitive edge. The Commercial Appeal has an article on the building of Memphis’ entrepreneurial environment.

The Business Journal reports People on the Move and the Daily News covers Today’s Events. In the Commercial Appeal, it’s People in Business for Sunday and Monday; What to Do for Monday; and Property Transfers; also, the entrepreneurial news.

FedEx: The company is increasing same-sex domestic partners; benefits.

LightWave Solar: They are building a solar farm at the Agricenter, and they are opening a Memphis office.

Colgan: The Pinnacle subsidiary is expected to contest a fine being imposed by the FAA for for violating rest and duty rules. The fine is $153,000 over a 2009 crash.

Zimmer Holdings: The Indiana orthopedic device maker will close a plant there to consolidate here in Memphis.

Labor: A Federal judge has ruled that the National Labor Relations Board can require posters be put up at worksites informing workers of their legal right to unionise. More from the Commercial Appeal.

Mo’ Money Taxes: After interest was expressed by two Congressmen (including Memphis’ Steve Cohen) the Department of Justice has “passed complaints” along to other agencies about Mo’ Money.

Elvis Presley Boulevard: There will be a public meeting this Thursday to discuss work on renovation several miles of Highway 51.

Mississippi: More information on the Save Rural America Rally aimed at helping and supporting farmers. Backers for a Grammy Museum in Cleveland, to celebrate the state’s musical heritage, are seeking State funding.

The Great Recession: Even as the Mid-South’s senior population rise, access to home health care is on the decline. Area non-profit agencies are having to adjust to “the new normal”.

Picture of the Day

People gather at the “bear pits” at the Memphis Zoo to gawk, circa 1910, from Shorpy by the Detroit Publishing Company. © 2012. Used with permission. Be sure to click through to the larger, high-resolution image to study the details!


Frank Daniels: I think he missed the other point Adler makes about information versus ephemera. (via the Tennessean)

Gail Kerr: Are Republicans “callous” for wanting lottery and HOPE scholarship reform? (via the Tennessean)

Grover Porter: Will civil service reform “open the door” to more and more blatant political patronage? (via the Tennessean)

Jackson Sun: Listen to the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Governor’s Council’s advice on Medicare reform.

Jerry Gist: The mayor of Jackson assures his citizenry that the owner of the Karma night club will be held accountable. (via the Jackson Sun)

Bill Minor: Is every effort to change voting ID requirements or laws an effort to bring back Jim Crow? (via the Desoto Times Tribune)

David Hampton: A supporter of the minority party reminds and exhorts legislators that “dissent does help”. (via the Desoto Times Tribune)

Chattanooga Times: The state’s growth is threatened by “reactionary right-wing diehards” in league with developers.

Memphis News: The stories of Memphis and Manassas High School.

Ronnie L. Williams: For the health care industry, 2012 will be a busy year. (via the Daily News)

Smart Stuff 4 Work: The same “spirit of cooperation” that gets us through tragedy can sustain us every day. (via the Daily News)

Joe Spake’s Daily Buzz: The rest of the day’s news, from all sorts of eclectic places.

Small Business Advocate: Heed the sales pipeline in business. (via the Commercial Appeal)

Andre K. Fowlkes: Accurately studying the social climate and sentiment in Memphis. (via the Commercial Appeal)

Wendi C. Thomas: She opines on the Iving Hamer situation, who she feels must resign. (via the Commercial Appeal)

Kevin Boggs: He argues for the use of patent protection offices for university and public research and its exploitation. (via the Commercial Appeal)

Otis L. Sanford: If I was Tomeka Hart, I’d be very upset with his slap in the face. How did the CA’s editors miss this? (via the Commercial Appeal)

Chris Peck: He spends years building up Memphis to be the center of the Mid-South and then grouses when the smaller communties turn to us to solve their problems? (via the Commercial Appeal)

Better Business: This week is National Consumer Protection Week. (via the Commercial Appeal)

Jin Yang: “Self-stereotypes” fall away once someone breaks the barriers. (via the Commercial Appeal)

Commercial Appeal: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it? Notice it’s always Republicans who must be moderate and “flexible” and “non-partisan”? Recommendations in the local Democratic primaries but, oddly, nothing to say about the Republicans…. In the Republican primary for the City Council District 1, Position 3 race, they endorse Steve Basar as the “moderate”. Yet more spending called for in pre-K education.