We’re hard-pressed to think of any recent enterprise reporting that’s more impressive than Memphis Flyer reporter Chris Davis’s coverage of Memphis Light, Gas & Water’s troubled investment in Networx.

Methodically, he has connected dot after dot until the entire the Byzantine story is coming into focus, a story of interconnected people, conflicts of interests and conflicting loyalties to the public utility and the private company.

In a prize-worthy series of stories, Mr. Davis has built the story brick by brick in a way that pays tribute to the role that the alternative press can play in a city like ours, where the daily newspaper continues to decimate its reporting staff and seems intent on jettisoning the institutional memory of the old-timers.

That he has been given free rein to spend the time to mine the records and connect the dots speaks volumes on the quality of editorial direction at the weekly and should inspire our daily to do more.

But back to Networx, since Mr. Davis seems to own this story, we hope he’ll explain to us the sense of urgency about this sale and why it has to be made right now.

As his coverage points out, there are many questions remaining to be answered if the public is to have any confidence about the recommendations for the sale of MLGW’s stake in the troubled company.

We’re also hoping that he will also ask if anybody at MLGW has thought about the utility turning its share over to City of Memphis. Who knows? Perhaps, the Networx backbone can serve a public purpose that could actually establish Memphis as an innovator.

Some cities are already using fiber optics so that utility customers can go online at any time and see their usage. Others use it to track citizen complaints, identify trouble spots and keep real time reports on potholes, road repairs and more. In this way, every morning, the mayor and his administration – and miracle of all miracles, the public – can go online and see exactly how their tax dollars are being used.