More coming in the Wednesday edition, which goes online Tuesday afternoon, about local reaction from our federal prosecutor about the “Smart on Crime” initiatives announced by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Monday in San Francisco.
The initiatives amount to prosecutors being more selective about who they prosecute and whether they charge them with crimes that upon conviction have mandatory minimum sentences. It also includes more use of re-entry programs supervised by a federal court judge for those who complete their sentences.
The reentry docket has been a regular feature of Memphis Federal Court dockets since 2011.
We wrote about it as a cover story in our weekly, The Memphis News, about two years ago.
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“We’re ready for history,” interim schools superintendent Dorsey Hopson said this afternoon of Monday’s start of the school year.
But don’t look for him or his cabinet to go home for the weekend on a Friday afternoon.
Hopson himself continues to sweat the details of the new bus routes that came with the three bell times for starting school with the new school year.
He described it as “the thing that keeps me up at night.”
There are 470 different routes serving 48,000 students with a bus fleet that is a mix of buses the school system owns and buses run by a contractor the school system is working with.
It’s a hybrid arrangement that allows the school system to keep a fleet that it might use to become a contractor itself in providing transportation services to the suburban school districts to come as well as charter schools and similar paying customers.
Deputy superintendent David Stephens said his experience as a principal is that he was usually at the school until 11 p.m. the Sunday before the first day of school.
And while the leadership of the consolidated school system has repeatedly acknowledged parental concerns about some of the changes outside the classroom with the merger, Hopson and Stephens at the Friday press conference began to push back a bit.
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A follow up to our Friday edition story about parking and traffic at Overton Park.
The coming of bike lanes and on street parking on the south side of North Parkway bordering the Memphis Zoo could be the real game changer for some kind of parking garage at the zoo.
“I think that the zoo and the conservancy and probably the city all agree that a parking garage makes the most sense as a permanent solution to that greensward overflow parking,” Tina Sullivan of the Overton Park Conservancy told us. “But a 500-space parking garage may not be the solution.”
Some on our on line comments about the story have included some concerns about a massive landscape changing parking garage.
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Memphis Congressman Steve Cohen’s media blitz Monday, July 22, included a return to the place where the reason for the tour of cable news programs began – CNN’s “New Day” program.
It was “New Day” that broke the story last week that Cohen was not the father of Victoria Brink according to DNA testing done on Cohen, Brink and Brink’s natural father, John Brink.
And Cohen didn’t care for how the story was done initially.
But that seemed to be water under the bridge when Cohen sat down Monday morning with co-host Andrew Cuomo and offered more details about how he came to believe he was Brink’s father.
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Our story on this is coming. But here is the link to this morning’s appearance by Congressman Steve Cohen of Memphis on the MSNBC show “Morning Joe.” It is the first in a round of media appearances Cohen is doing today in D.C. on the ongoing fallout from the paternity tests revealed last week that show he is not the father of Victoria Brink.
It covers a lot of ground on and off the central subject.