Archive for September, 2013

by (RSS) Poverty | September 30th, 2013 2:48pm CDT | 1 Comment

The Annie E. Casey Foundation reports that for the first time since the Great Recession, the U.S. child poverty rate did not increase, holding stead at 23%.    Unfortunately, that’s a trend line that doesn’t apply to Memphis.  Since 2008, the number of children in poverty in Memphis has risen from 59,000 to 71,000.  In 2008, […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | September 27th, 2013 3:53pm CDT | Comments Off on The Uneven Growth of High and Low Wage Jobs

From Atlantic Cities: It’s no secret that the recovery has been incredibly uneven. Some of its biggest benefits are accruing to the one percent, while the majority of Americans have seen their economic prospects stagnate or diminish. Income inequality has surged to levels not seen since before the Great Depression. When it comes to jobs, […]

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by (RSS) Economic Development | September 27th, 2013 12:09am CDT | 16 Comments

We write often here about economic development, and in this vein, John Lawrence, a longtime friend and someone who understands the factors that make Memphis and Shelby County successful, is authoring nine posts for us in the next three weeks about economic growth.  He’s written more than 30 posts for us in the past, and […]

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by (RSS) Poverty | September 26th, 2013 12:01am CDT | Comments Off on Poverty Rates Stubbornly High: Estimate Says Memphis Rate Up 10% in 2 Years

These poverty rate estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau would mean that the poverty rate in Memphis has increased 10% since the 2010 Census (we’ve previously cautioned about unquestionable accepting these estimates). The estimates are that the following percentages are living in poverty in Memphis: People under 18 years of age – 44.3% People 18-65 […]

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by (RSS) Economic Development | September 25th, 2013 12:06am CDT | 17 Comments

We write often on this blog about economic development, our concern about our troubling economic indicators, and our suggested strategies for improving our trajectory.  John Lawrence, a longtime friend who has worked in the trenches on a number of important issues, has ideas of his own.  He’s authoring nine posts for us in the next […]

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by (RSS) Economic Development | September 23rd, 2013 12:44am CDT | 18 Comments

We write often here about economic development, our concern about our  languishing economic indicators, and possible strategies for improving our trends lines.  In this vein, John Lawrence, a longtime friend of ours and someone who understands the factors that make Memphis and Shelby County successful, will be authoring nine posts for us in the next […]

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by (RSS) Economic Development | September 20th, 2013 12:15am CDT | Comments Off on Piloting a Way to Better Business Incentives

We were writing in our last post about how the tax waiver incentive program in Memphis and Shelby County is broken, but even more to the point, despite our largesse in doling out almost $100 million in tax waivers a year, our economic trend line is still going decidedly south. We wrote about changes from […]

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by (RSS) Criminal Justice | September 18th, 2013 3:00pm CDT | 1 Comment

From Think Progress: The largest study of gun violence in the United States, released Thursday afternoon, confirms a point that should be obvious: widespread American gun ownership is fueling America’s gun violence epidemic. The study, by Professor Michael Siegel at Boston University and two coauthors, has been peer-reviewed and is forthcoming in the American Journal […]

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by (RSS) Economic Development, Poverty | September 16th, 2013 3:06pm CDT | Comments Off on Reducing Memphis Poverty Is Major Economic Opportunity

From citiwire.net: By Neal Peirce America’s cities, its towns and counties and communities, “gotta care.” Significant numbers of citizens are obliged to live with low wages and sometimes miserable working conditions, which critics blame on, among others, Wal-Mart, Amazon.com, Macy’s, KFC, McDonald’s, Wendy’s and Burger King. It’s small wonder that low-income workers, with a special […]

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by (RSS) Economic Development | September 16th, 2013 12:19am CDT | Comments Off on Piloting Smart Incentives for a Better Economic Landing

We are like the vast majority of people in Memphis and Shelby County when it comes to the liberal tax freeze policy here. Like most people, we are not suggesting that the PILOT (Payment-in-lieu-of taxes) program should be totally scrapped, but like most people, we are ready for them to be used more strategically rather […]

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by (RSS) Trends and Issues | September 13th, 2013 3:00pm CDT | 1 Comment

From New Geography: When the 2010 Census results were released, a number of big cities had populations that were very off from what would have been expected based on the Census Bureau’s previous annual estimates of the population – sometimes grossly so.  Some of these were related to cities that had challenged the estimates and […]

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by (RSS) Trends and Issues | September 13th, 2013 12:01am CDT | Comments Off on Childhood Stress Has Impacts for Life

Tiffany and Briana are only five years old, but already, their environments have had effects that can last their lifetimes. We began our ”Tale of Two Children” about Tiffany and Briana in the last edition of Perceptions, and in the coming weeks, we’ll check in on the two five-year-olds to see how they are doing […]

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by (RSS) Planning and Urban Design, Uncategorized | September 11th, 2013 12:34am CDT | Comments Off on Designing a City That Loves Itself

This is the second half of our posts about urban design.  The first was Creating a City That Loves Itself. One marker for a city that loves itself is in good urban design that at the least ties together a city with a cohesive sense of itself and that at its best produces pride and […]

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by (RSS) Downtown Revitalization, Planning and Urban Design | September 10th, 2013 3:11pm CDT | Comments Off on A Healthy Downtown is Key to a Strong Community

Local Memphis architect and planner Andy Kitsinger is now writing a regular column for the highly respected Planning Commissioners’ Journal.  He is a principal consultant at The Development Studio, a firm focused on helping clients build stronger communities. He writes about Downtown and Main Street Issues. His first piece ran this week: Downtowns in many […]

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by (RSS) City of Memphis Government | September 10th, 2013 3:00pm CDT | Comments Off on Time for Universities (and Hospitals) to Pay Taxes?

From Wall Street Journal: For the latest evidence of the town-gown divide, look no further than New Jersey, where earlier this summer residents of Princeton banded together to sue the prestigious school in their backyard. The residents argued that Princeton University, which boasts the largest endowment per student in the country, should no longer be […]

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by (RSS) Economic Development, Talent | September 9th, 2013 3:00pm CDT | Comments Off on Memphis Ranks Low for College Graduates Looking for Work

From Atlantic Cities: It’s September, which for many of us is synonymous with heading back to school or back to work. And for many newly minted college graduates, it means revving up their job search. For grads who weren’t fortunate enough to have a job waiting for them immediately after getting their diplomas, the first […]

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Standing at the foot of Union Avenue, two couples from Indiana are surveying the Mississippi River when one of the men said: “I’ve been here four times for Elvis Week.  I absolutely love this city, but it doesn’t look much like it loves itself.  Memphis could use lots of TLC.” Their conversation then covered littered […]

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by (RSS) Uncategorized | September 6th, 2013 2:57pm CDT | Comments Off on Why We Love Maps

From Twisted Sifter: If you’re a visual learner like myself, then you know maps, charts and infographics can really help bring data and information to life. Maps can make a point resonate with readers and this collection aims to do just that. Hopefully some of these maps will surprise you and you’ll learn something new. […]

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