business

House balks at six-hour minimum on motel room rentals (after unanimous Senate approval)

A bill prohibiting rental of motel rooms for less than six hours – passed unanimously in the Senate – failed on the House floor Wednesday with one critic citing the TV show ‘Shark Tank’ in voicing opposition, reports The Tennessean.

Continue reading

Governor’s daughter, son-in-law buy 250-acre N.C. mountain retreat

Gov. Bill Haslam’s daughter and her husband are buying “The Swag,” a 250-acre western North Carolina mountain inn and retreat currently owned by Haslam family friends, reports the News Sentinel.

David and Annie Haslam Colquitt will purchase the property from founders and longtime owners Dan and Deener Matthews…  Annie Haslam Colquitt is the daughter of Gov. Bill Haslam and granddaughter of Pilot Flying J founder Jim Haslam. David, an attorney, left his job as a Pilot Flying J executive last month.

Continue reading

Nine Tennesseans make 2018 Forbes rich list; Jimmy Haslam richer than Trump, but not Bill

Nine Tennesseans are on Forbes’ 2018 list of the world’s richest people, including Gov. Bill Haslam, who the magazine had declared the nation’s richest politician prior to the election of President Donald Trump.

Trump is still ahead of Haslam in wealth — $3.1 billion of net worth to the governor’s $2.3 billion, by the Forbes estimate. That’s down a bit from last year for the president, who has declared Forbes underestimates his wealth. It’s unchanged for the governor, who has always refused to discuss the “private matter” of his fortune, based on the family-owned Pilot Flying J chain of gas stations.

Jimmy Haslam, the governor’s brother and CEO of Pilot, is listed with a net worth of $3.4 billion – ahead of the president as well as his brother.

Continue reading

Bill Lee quits business coalition board that endorsed candidate in Nashville mayor’s race

Republican gubernatorial candidate Bill Lee resigned from the board of the Nashville Business Coalition Wednesday after the group publicly urged Democrat David Briley to seek election as Nashville mayor and called on other prospective candidates to stay out of the race, reports Tennessee Star. Briley, who had been vice mayor, took over duties as mayor following the resignation of former mayor Megan Barry this week.

Continue reading

AG contradicts Jack Daniels’ bill — says whiskey barrels can be taxed

A legal opinion from the state attorney general’s office says the barrels used to age whiskey in Tennessee distilleries are subject to property taxes paid by businesses, despite a contention to the contrary in a bill pending before the General Assembly.

Producers of Jack Daniels whiskey have been pushing the bill (SB2076) since officials in Moore County laid plans to begin applying the tax to aging barrels, something not done in the past. The fiscal note prepared by legislative staff estimates that would mean about $2.8 million in new revenue for Tennessee’s smallest county.

Continue reading

Slatery among critics of federal move to block state oversight of student loan collectors

The Trump administration is taking steps to shield student loan collection companies from state regulators, over the objections of consumer advocates and even some Republican attorneys general, reports Politico. Tennessee AG Herbert Slatery is one of them.

Continue reading

Boyd company gets third TN base in minor league baseball management

Boyd Sports, owned by Tennessee gubernatorial candidate Randy Boyd, is taking over management of the Greeneville Reds. It will be the third minor league baseball team in Tennessee to have an agreement with the Knoxville company, reports the Greeneville Sun.

Continue reading

Politico: TN one of six states with no enforcement of minimum wage rules

Excerpt from a Sunday Politico piece:

As Democrats make raising the minimum wage a centerpiece of their 2018 campaigns, and Republicans call for states to handle the issue, both are missing an important problem: Wage laws are poorly enforced, with workers often unable to recover back pay even after the government rules in their favor.

Continue reading

TN Tech research used in lobbying ‘eviscerated’ by some professors

“Growing faculty outrage” prompted a Tennessee Technological University internal investigation into the validity of the school research that was financed by a Tennessee company, then used by U.S. Rep. Diane Black in supporting the company’s viewpoint on federal air pollution regulations, reports The Tennessean. Tech’s president suggests the internal review may “exonerate the innocent.”

Continue reading

Jury finds former Pilot Flying J president guilty of fraud, conspiracy and witness tampering

A federal jury Thursday convicted the former president Pilot Flying J, the nation’s largest diesel fuel retailer, in a plot to rip off truckers to boost both his own bottom line and that of the company, reports the News Sentinel.

Continue reading