Statues an Unconstitutional Nuisance - Chairman Berlin Boyd's Council Recap for September 5th, 2017

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Good evening, Memphis,


Things didn’t slow down too much this meeting from last. I’ll do my best to capture it all below, but the full picture, as always, is here.


What do we memorialize? 

I won’t retread ground from last week. I’ll simply say three things:

  • This Council moved forward with the 1st reading of an ordinance to remove the statues if the Tennessee Historical Commission again refuses to do the right thing by October 13th
  • Here are the words of then Senator T.B. Turley, a member of the Forrest Monument Association: “the principles of the cause for which Forrest fought are not dead, and they will live as long as there is a drop of Anglo-Saxon blood on the face of the earth”. They won’t live on here.
  • From the ordinance: “Davis [a Mississippi U.S. Senator before secession] represented, defended and stood for the principles in Mississippi’s Declaration of Secession which stated that Mississippi ‘thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery—the greatest material interest in the world,” and opposed “…negro equality, socially and politically”.


…Speaking of Memphis Park: Riverfront Development Corporation head Benny Lendermon joined this morning’s Economic Development & Tourism Committee to discuss the Memphis Riverfront Concept Plan and the already-in-progress RiverLine connecting the future trail head of the Wolf River Greenway to the Big River Crossing. Learn more from this recent article in the Commercial Appeal.


…And Speaking of Park(side)s: The Council approved an amendment to the Planned Development at the Parkside at Shelby Farms, a monumental mixed-use development that will certainly come to define the eastern edge of our City. The amendment adds a new boutique hotel and condos to the first phase of the project, and the Council also approved the first 2 of 8 phases to move forward. Continue to pay attention: there are 6 more phases to go, as well as upcoming plans for the financing and commencement of the Shelby Farms Parkway, having lingered as a plan for more than a decade.


Other Highlights:

  • Having not been involved in the Administration’s policy change, this Council weighed in on the decision to put Memphis’ development and Memphians first in discontinuing the practice of new sewer system connections in unincorporated Shelby County
  • The Council accepted more than $43k from Baptist Memorial to partially fund the City’s innovative Nurse Dispatch program, part of the Healthcare Navigator project in Fire EMS, which you can read about more here
  • The City’s Division of Housing and Community Development will weatherize at least 90 more households in FY 18 thanks to a $647,828 grant from Federal Department of Energy
  • The Council sent down and approved on 1st reading an ordinance to extend legal hours of residential construction to Saturdays from 9am to 4pm
  • The Council approved a combined $21m in "bridge" loans to begin construction on the Cook Convention Center renovation and the Bicentennial Gateway Project along the riverfront and in the Pinch District, bordering St. Jude


Thanks as always for calling Memphis home.