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News - Friday, June 21, 2019

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Tennessee’s carmakers are focused on the next generation of global consumers
Nissan, GM, VW all-in on electrics, self-drivers

Tennessee’s three big automakers, General Motors, Nissan and Volkswagen, are being forced to adapt to a global economy largely dictated by China. Why? Because China is now the world’s largest producer and consumer of automobiles.

And the Chinese are going all-out to make electric vehicles. What does that mean for Tennesseans and the state’s auto industry? Expect big changes to vehicles in the coming years, with all three automakers phasing out their existing lines for both electric vehicles and self-driving cars, analysts say.


VW spending big on electrics

Volkswagen opened its Chattanooga plant in 2011 after the German automaker was lured to Tennessee with a reported $500 million incentive package. The Chattanooga site is VW’s sole U.S. plant.

Volkswagen Chattanooga currently employs about 3,800 workers, says Amanda Plecas, a representative for the company.


Nissan has big impact on Tennessee

When former Gov. Lamar Alexander convinced Nissan to move to Tennessee, he promised it would be a boon to the state’s economy. He was right.

The Japanese automaker opened its first North American plant in Smyrna in 1983. It announced in 2005 that it was moving its North American headquarters from suburban Los Angeles to Franklin.


GM Spring Hill: From Saturn to high-end SUVs

General Motors announced in 1985 that it would build a $3.5 billion plant in Spring Hill and employ 6,000 workers to build the new Saturn line of cars. There were 10 Saturn models built between 1990 and 2009.

The state of Tennessee spent a combined $95 million to lure Nissan to build an assembly plant in Smyrna in 1983 and GM to build an operation in Spring Hill two years later. The state also gave GM $35 million for retraining employees to build a new car after the Saturn run ended.


Dooley gets 3-year term on ADTA executive council

Leitner, Williams, Dooley & Napolitan attorney C. Douglas Dooley has been elected to a three-year term on the executive council of the Association of Defense Trial Attorneys. The appointment was made during the ADTA’s 78th annual meeting in St. Andrews, Scotland.


Tennessee Bar Foundation selects Wade Hinton

Wade Hinton has been elected a fellow of the Tennessee Bar Foundation, an association of 868 attorneys across the state.

The board of trustees extended invitations to membership to 24 attorneys this year. The introduction of new fellows took place earlier this year at the annual fellows’ dinner in Nashville.


Faith elected to regional leadership, Chattanooga selected for conference

Brittany Thomas Faith of the law firm of Grant, Konvalinka & Harrison has been elected by her peers as chair of the American Immigration Lawyers Association Mid-South Chapter and the association’s executive committee.

The Mid-South chapter is a sub-chapter of the national association that consists of lawyers in Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, Louisiana and Kentucky.


HBA supports Habitat, Red Cross

Representatives from the Home Builders Association of Greater Chattanooga recently visited two local organizations to present cash donations on behalf of the residential builder and developer group.

Checks in the amounts of $5,000 each were presented to the local chapters of Habitat for Humanity and American Red Cross.


Erase one homebuying hurdle with pre-approval

Buyers sometimes put the cart before the horse when looking to purchase a home. It’s easy to get swept up in the idea of buying a new home.

One piece of advice I give to everyone is to be pre-approved for your home loan. If you don’t seek a loan pre-approval before you start looking, you might actually prevent yourself from finding and buying your dream home. Here’s why:


Get your home in shape for summer

Chattanoogans got an early start to the summer this year with temperatures soaring into the 90s sooner than expected. Still, it’s not too late to ready your home for the summer.

Simple home improvements made now can help you avoid significant repairs and costly utility bills later. Below are some tips to get your home in shape for summer inside and out.


Crye-Leike welcomes England to East Brainerd

Crye-Leike Real Estate Services announces the addition of Realtor Tracy England to the company’s Chattanooga-East Brainerd branch, 1510 Gunbarrel Road. England will specialize in residential, relocation, military and investment property services in Hamilton and Bradley counties in Tennessee and Walker and Catoosa counties in Georgia.


Story joins Crye-Leike Ooltewah

Realtor Wendy Story is now affiliated with Crye-Leike Real Estate Services’ Ooltewah branch, 5913 Main St. Story will serve the needs of residential buyers and sellers in Hamilton, Bradley and Sequatchie counties.

Story is a member of the National Association of Realtors and an active volunteer in her community. S


Barnette earns Commitment to Excellence endorsement

Crye-Leike Real Estate Services broker and career development director Susan Barnette has earned the Commitment to Excellence endorsement from the National Association of Realtors.

The endorsement is earned through a self-directed program that enables real estate professionals to assess and build on their competency in core areas of real estate practice.


Critic's Corner: Memory eraser is only cure for latest ‘Men in Black’

“Men in Black: International” caps three weeks of big budget duds from major movie studios.

“Godzilla: King of the Monsters” lumbered into empty theaters May 31 and died a quick box office death.

“Dark Phoenix” arrived one week later, straining for narrative relevance long after even die-hard X-Men fans stopped caring about Twentieth Century Fox’s aimless film franchise.


Adequate notice imperative when representatives tackle big issues

More than 22 year ago, a group of citizens in Englewood filed a lawsuit against their city, alleging that their Board of Commissioners did not provide adequate notice of a meeting in which it selected a route for a highway expansion project.

The case reached the Court of Appeals, which established a three-pronged test still relied upon when considering if a public notice of a special-called meeting is adequate under the requirements of the Tennessee Open Meetings Act.


Pinkston receives NAACP’s Thurgood Marshall Award

The Chattanooga-Hamilton County branch of the NAACP has awarded the Thurgood Marshall Award to its first white recipient, District Attorney Neal Pinkston. The awards ceremony took place during the organization’s 13th annual Criminal Justice Seminar June 8 at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.


Gardenhire seeks to increase access to healthy food

Sen. Todd Gardenhire (R-Chattanooga) plans to sponsor legislation in the 2020 legislative session to help increase access to fresh food and reduce food deserts in Tennessee.

Gardenhire says he wants to incentivize grocery stores to locate in inner-city areas that are considered food deserts, where access to affordable, healthy food is often limited because grocery stores are too far away.


Smart financial moves for every stage of life

Regardless of what stage of life you’re in, you must make financial and investment decisions that will be with you for the remainder of your years. But the moves you make when you’re just starting out in your career may be quite different from when you’re retired. So, let’s look at some of these moves, stretched out across your lifetime.


First Horizon to unify brands

First Horizon National Corporation will bring together its family of companies under a unified set of brand names and a new logo.

This fall, Capital Bank, First Tennessee Bank, FTB Advisors and FTN Financial will become First Horizon Bank, First Horizon Advisors and FHN Financial, respectively.


Volunteer teaching assistants needed

Chattanooga Goodwill Industries needs volunteers to help students in Goodwill Digital Career Accelerator classes. Volunteers will assist the instructor and help answer basic computer, Excel and Word questions.

Volunteers must be at least 18 years old, have intermediate computer skills or higher, pass a criminal background check and serve as a volunteer for at least two hours a week.


La Paz Chattanooga opens nominations for Latino Leadership Awards

La Paz Chattanooga will begin Hispanic Heritage Month celebrations Sept. 16 with its eighth annual Latino Leadership Awards. Nominations are now open for the awards ceremony.

Each year, La Paz asks the public to nominate individuals in Chattanooga of Latino descent who have shown leadership and servitude qualities within their respective communities and the community at large


Lady Vol basketball: Sullivan learns to harness power of orange

Jennifer Sullivan immediately sensed a change in the atmosphere whenever a member of the Tennessee women’s basketball staff walked into a gym.

First as a player and then as a coach, Sullivan noticed how the orange and white apparel and Lady Vols logo carried an aura of respect on the recruiting trail.


Events: Aloha Summer Cruise

The Red Shoe Society will host its Aloha Summer Cruise on the Southern Belle Friday, June 21, 10 p.m.-1 a.m. All proceeds will benefit the Chattanooga Ronald McDonald House. Tickets


EPB to continue Home Energy Upgrade program

EPB has completed its 250th Home Energy Upgrade since the program started in 2015 and will continue the program for approximately 100 homes with an additional $1 million in financial support.

Home Energy Upgrade provides customers living in limited income households with renovations that reduce energy usage. An additional $500,000 in support provided by the Tennessee Valley Authority and $500,000 from Federal Home Loan Bank of Cincinnati and Pinnacle Bank will enable EPB to continue to work with green|spaces in Chattanooga to continue the program through 2020.


Perennial favorite Pilot meets its match in Telluride

The Honda Pilot has always been a strong choice for a midsize, three-row, crossover SUV. But Kia has recently introduced an all-new model known as the Telluride that it hopes will attract shoppers with its bold styling and value.

The basics are similar. Both the Pilot and the Telluride roughly occupy the same amount of garage space, seat up to eight people, and come with standard V6 engines. But there are significant differences. Edmunds compares them to find out if the new challenger has what it takes to upset the status quo.