Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Herman Morris Kept MLGW Closed to Public Scrutiny

Posted By on Tue, Oct 20, 2009 at 4:47 PM

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The Memphis City Council should ask Herman Morris Jr. what he thinks of open government before confirming him as city attorney.

A C Wharton wants Morris to be the city attorney, replacing Elbert Jefferson. When Morris ran MLGW, the place was an island fortress, as hostile to the notebooks and cameras of the media as any agency in town. Sham public meetings. Severance packages for Morris and other top executives. The Herman Morris bobblehead doll. The confused reaction to Hurricane Elvis. Memphis Networx. The place needed fresh air. Willie Herenton got that one right.

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Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Council Hooked on Bass Pro

Posted By on Tue, Oct 6, 2009 at 3:44 PM

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How much did the city council like what it heard about the possibly imminent marriage of the Pyramid and Bass Pro Shops?

So much that members gave point man Robert Lipscomb a round of applause.

So much that members didn't make any snarky comments about bait shops or the Bass Pro logo.

So much that Councilman Joe Brown praised Jeff Sanford of the Center City Commission for "guts, testicles, and balls" in a recent speech about the state of downtown.

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Monday, October 5, 2009

Council Will Look at Herenton's Vacation Pay

Posted By on Mon, Oct 5, 2009 at 3:58 PM

When it meets Tuesday, The Memphis City Council will discuss vacation pay and policy with regard to former mayor Willie Herenton and former chief administrative officer Keith McGee.

The discussion item, a certain hot button topic, was added to the Personnel Committee agenda Monday. This will be the last scheduled council meeting with Myron Lowery as interim mayor. Lowery is a city charter expert and is running in the special mayoral election this month.

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Chief Administrative officer Jack Sammons said the amount at issue with Herenton is at least $73,000 that was paid to the former mayor in 2003 and subsequent years. The administration became aware of the information this week, he said.

In Lowery's view, the city charter intends that the job of mayor is a salaried executive position and the mayor and CAO are not eligible for extra pay for vacation days.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Real Memphis Grizzlies

Posted By on Thu, Oct 1, 2009 at 9:22 PM

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They ran, wrestled, fished and played in the water. The real Memphis Grizzlies, the newest attraction at the Memphis Zoo's Teton Trek, made their public debut Thursday night.

Shortly before sunset, the three bears — stop if you've heard this one — came out of their lair and into what must be bear heaven. They figured that out soon enough and spent an hour or two amusing the guests of Fred and Diane Smith, benefactors of the zoo's newest exhibit.

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Hard Times: Cash For Old Tires

Posted By on Thu, Oct 1, 2009 at 1:37 PM

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Would you pick up old tires and haul them away for 50 cents apiece?

The city of Memphis and Shelby County hope so. A plan will be presented next week that puts a 50-cent bounty on old tires taken to the Shelby County Recycling Facility. It also cracks down on used-tire haulers who illegally dump hundreds of them at a time after picking through the ones they can resell.

The intent is laudable — beautification, blight removal, a little economic stimulus, and a small, potentially useful thing at a time when governments are strapped to do big things. But the economics are so brutal they could make can hunting or journalism seem attractive.

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