Archive for December, 2010

by (RSS) Memphis City Schools | December 30th, 2010 12:28am CDT | 8 Comments

Jim Crow: ethnic discrimination especially against blacks by legal enforcement or traditional sanctions. We’ve been thinking about this a lot as a result of our give and take yesterday with our friend, albeit adversary on this issue, Ken Hoover, when he suggested that we are off-base in saying that the current debate about unifying our […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | December 29th, 2010 2:55pm CDT | Comments Off on Rebuilding Detroit the Sane Way — A Block at a Time

By Roberta Brandes Gratz / Dec 24 2010 For Release Sunday, December 26, 2010 Citiwire.net DETROIT — Organic development, not “big bang projects” — that’s the sane, and effective way, to build and rebuild great cities. For evidence check out hard-pressed Detroit’s corner of Michigan Avenue and 14th Street, located at the nexus of Corktown […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | December 29th, 2010 12:18am CDT | 36 Comments

As we predicted in an earlier post, the anti-school consolidation folks position themselves as experts on schools and are coming out of the woodwork with specious “facts,” stilted arguments, and more trafficking in fear and fiction. In many respects, they act like we are a community of amnesiacs.  Just yesterday, more red herrings and alleged […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | December 27th, 2010 12:30am CDT | 8 Comments

A recent speech by Thomas Sevcik, managing director of Arthesia, (a think tank that consults large institutions on cultural positioning and strategies), caught our eye for its provocative conclusions, but also because he and his firm have been hired by Greater Memphis Chamber of Commerce and Memphis Area Convention and Visitors Bureau to develop a […]

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by (RSS) Economic Development, Uncategorized | December 27th, 2010 12:06am CDT | Comments Off on No Methadone For Tax Freezes Addiction

Previously posted November 17, 2009: Here we go again. It seems that Memphis economic development officials have an addiction to tax freezes that the Betty Ford Clinic couldn’t cure. Meanwhile, they have an obsession with North Mississippi that Sigmund Freud couldn’t have shaken. As a result, real reform of our community’s Payment-in-lieu-of-tax (PILOT) program always […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | December 26th, 2010 11:22pm CDT | Comments Off on State GOP Lawmakers Want More Disclosure of Business Deals

GOP lawmakers want to know how millions in tax breaks and incentives will be used before they vote. State officials are taking steps to improve oversight over two government offices responsible for much of Tennessee’s recruitment of business and industry — as well as the incentives and tax deals that attract those companies. Republican lawmakers […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | December 25th, 2010 11:02pm CDT | Comments Off on

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by (RSS) Poverty, Uncategorized | December 24th, 2010 12:23am CDT | 1 Comment

Previously posted December 24, 2009: This time of the year, it’s impossible for us to not think about Peggy Edmiston, who died seven years ago. It wasn’t the glittery Christmas sweaters, complete with blinking ornaments,  that no one else had the courage to wear.  It wasn’t the permanent collection of Christmas decorations and miniature villages […]

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by (RSS) Memphis City Schools, Uncategorized | December 23rd, 2010 12:10am CDT | 2 Comments

The cast of characters in suburban politics would flunk a remedial course in elementary logic. Here’s the syllogism they offer up: One, Shelby County Schools are superior to Memphis City Schools and the paragon of exceptional education. Two, our only concern is about the kids and getting them a quality education. Therefore, we will do […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | December 22nd, 2010 12:22am CDT | 1 Comment

A 2009 study by the Department of Agriculture found that 2.3 million households do not have access to a car and live more than a mile from a supermarket. Much of the public health debate over rising obesity rates has turned to these “food deserts,” where convenience store fare is more accessible—and more expensive—than healthier […]

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by (RSS) Economic Development, Uncategorized | December 22nd, 2010 12:11am CDT | Comments Off on A Modest Proposal: Tax Freeze Transparency

Previously posted July 12, 2006: It’s time for a modest proposal regarding the controversial city-county PILOT program waiving $50 million in property taxes this year. “Modest” being the operative word, since it seems obvious at this point that is what government officials are going for as they study the tax freeze programs to death and […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | December 22nd, 2010 12:03am CDT | Comments Off on A Timely Moment to Consider Inequality and Child Outcomes

As 2010 comes to a close, it is a good time to pause and reflect on the stack of reports released over the past year that comment on the well-being of children, and ask how these studies apply to Memphis, particularly in terms of what they can tell us about early childhood brain development, and […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | December 21st, 2010 12:57am CDT | 5 Comments

There are times when it seems that Memphis can’t get its economic development strategies into the 21st century. It’s as if we just don’t want to compete in a knowledge economy in a global marketplace.  Our economic development strategies are caught in the commodity trap, stemming from our background as an agricultural center and continuing […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | December 21st, 2010 12:53am CDT | Comments Off on Defining Success by How Many Tax Freezes Are Handed Out

From Memphis Business Journal: Memphis did not recruit much new industry to the area in 2010, which isn’t a surprise, given the economy is experiencing what Charles Gulotta calls the “worst economic downturn since the Great Depression.” But as director of the Memphis and Shelby County Office of Economic Development, Gulotta is tasked with finding […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | December 20th, 2010 12:05pm CDT | 7 Comments

The Flyer’s John Branston weighs in on tonight’s  vote on the surrender of the Memphis City Schools charter, and decides that “For better for worse, MCS and Shelby County schools should get married.” He writes: You never know if a marriage or divorce is going to work out. You just have a feeling that it’s […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | December 20th, 2010 11:31am CDT | Comments Off on Amazon Looking to Chattanooga for 1,400 Jobs

State officials have confirmed they are negotiating with Amazon.com about locating two centers in the Chattanooga area. Gov. Phil Bredesen and Economic and Community Development Commissioner Matt Kisber said in a news release Monday night that the potential sites are at the Enterprise South Industrial Park in Chattanooga and along Tennessee 308 in Bradley County. […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | December 20th, 2010 12:34am CDT | Comments Off on Student Achievement Gaps Linger and Will Take Decades to Close

The Center on Education Policy (CEP) released a study that tracks trends in achievement gaps for minority and low-income students in all 50 states, and the picture is bleak, according to The Christian Science Monitor. The report calculates how long it would take to close various gaps at their current rates. For Florida, which is […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | December 19th, 2010 11:11am CDT | Comments Off on Free The Data: It’s the Public’s In the First Place

John O’Leary is a research fellow at the Ash Center of the Harvard Kennedy School and co-author of “If We Can Put a Man on the Moon: Getting Big Things Done in Government.”  This post is from Governing: One thing government has in abundance is data. Most of it is buried in agency computers. What […]

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