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TUESDAY,SEPTEMBER17, 2013 Haslamannouncesworkforcedevelopmentgrants(AssociatedPress)

Gov. Bill Haslam says more than $2.7 million in workforce development grants for two Memphis colleges can help meet Tennessee's need for qualified workers. Haslam announced the grants Monday at the Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Memphis. The college is receiving $1.2 million for equipment to enhance its Avionics and Aircraft Maintenance and Advanced Manufacturing programs. Haslam says every graduate of the college gets placed in a job. Southwest Tennessee Community College is getting $1.5 million for its mechatronics program. Mechatronics combines mechanical, electronic and systems engineering in product design. Haslam says only 32 percent of Tennesseans have certificates or degrees beyond high school. Studies show that number must be 55 percent by 2025 to meet workforce demands. (SUB)

Governorawards$2.7 millionto technicaltrainingin Memphis(CA/Roberts)

Gov. Bill Haslam awarded $2.7 million in grants Monday to two technical schools here that cannot produce graduates fast enough to meet local employers needs. The money will be divided between Tennessee College of Applied Technology campuses here and Southwest Tennessee Community College. At TCAT Memphis campus near the airport, $550,000 will be used to buy an additional cockpit simulator for the 18-month programs in aircraft mechanics and avionics. The investment will allow the schools to admit 90 more students per year, nearly a 30 percent increase. The TCAT Memphis campus on Alabama Street near Downtown will receive $663,000 to upgrade advanced manufacturing programs, including welding and HVAC studies. We think this is a significant day for Memphis and West Tennessee because we are putting $2.7 million into specific training for jobs that are available if we can train more folk, Haslam told reporters. What we are trying to do is listen to what employers are telling us they need and make sure we are training people to meet that need. (SUB)

Governor Bill Haslam made a big contribution aimed at training Memphians to be better prepared for the changing job market. Haslam presented $2.7 million in workforce development grants to the Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Memphis and Southwest Tennessee Community College Monday. TCAT-Memphis will receive $1.2 million for equipment to enhance its Avionics and Aircraft Maintenance and Advanced Manufacturing programs. SWTCC is getting $1.5 million for its mechatronics program. The grants are part of Haslams Drive to 55 program, which is geared toward increasing the number of college graduates to 55% across Tennessee by 2025.

Memphisgettinglionsshareof statetrainingmoney(MemphisBiz Journal)

The Tennessee College of Applied TechnologyMemphis and Southwest Tennessee Community College will receive more than $2.77 million in workforce development grants from the state of Tennessee. During an announcement at the Tennessee College of Applied Technologys Aviation Campus, Gov. Bill Haslam explained how the funding would be used for job training programs at both schools. TCAT will receive $550,000 and $663,398 to provide equipment for its avionics, aircraft maintenance and advanced manufacturing programs. The equipment will include a Aeorism Boeing Virtual Procedures Trainer, as well as a lab expansion for the advanced manufacturing program. Southwest will receive $1.5 million for its mechatronics program, which integrates business training and education credit programs. The funding will allow Southwest to expand capacity and increase its capability to provide training in multiple locations at its campuses around the area.

WhyIs GraduatingFromHighSchoolNormalAndGoingTo CollegeNot?(WPLN)

Theres a stubborn mindset in Tennessee where college-going rates lag most of the country. Government officials trying to boost education levels say people just dont see the need, despite dire forecasts that a majority of jobs will require a degree by 2025. In a handful of rural counties, fewer than one-in-10 working-age adults went to college. And while money, proximity to campuses and even broadband access all play a role, state leaders say the primary stumbling block may be cultural. The biggest barrier we have is the low expectations we have for ourselves and for our children, says Randy Boyd, special assistant to Governor Bill Haslam on higher education. Hickman County less than an hours drive from Nashville is a place where practically everyone finishes high school and very few go to college. In a barbershop on the Centerville town square, Mae Rosson snips at a full head of silver hair.

The governor's conference on tourism kicks off on Tuesday. The conference is being held in Franklin and will conclude on Thursday. Tennessee Tourism Commissioner Susan Whitaker will present the "State of the Industry" address Wednesday morning. Last month, Whitaker was named the 2013 State Tourism Director of the Year by the U.S. Travel Association's National Council of State Tourism Directors. Gov. Bill Haslam is scheduled to speak at the conference on Thursday. (SUB)

TN labordepartmentprojects1.2 percentjob growth(Tennessean)

In its report, the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development predicted an employment growth rate of 1.2 percent. Occupational therapists, vocational education teachers, and dental hygienists, as well as computer-controlled machine tool operators and psychiatric aides are among the occupations expected in demand. In terms of the largest number of anticipated job openings for Tennesseans with college degrees, officials said there could be more than 2,000 jobs for registered nurses and 1,100 elementary school teacher positions. The study compares projections with state workforce training to try to anticipate worker shortages in high-demand occupations. Hiring is expected in the industries of hospitality, metal and transportation equipment manufacturing, computer systems design and professional services.

TN CommonCoreCriticsTurnTo SocialStudies(WPLNRadioNashville)
Conservative activists say theres plenty to dislike about Common Core math and reading standards now in place in Tennessee. But they have even more objections with science and history. The social studies standards take effect in 2014, and Hal Rounds of Somerville says he sees a clear point of view that disagrees with his own philosophy. If you look at what they say about capitalism, in some cases, they say that capitalism allows people free choice but ends up in unequal distribution, as though that were bad. Education officials say critics are confusing the standards for specific curriculum, which is still chosen by each local school board. However, one new standard in economics is worded this way: compare the characteristics of capitalist and socialist systems in terms of their strengths and weaknesses. Rounds says he and dozens of others have a list of grievances they hope to lay out when Tennessee lawmakers hold a special two-day hearing on Common Core this week.

TennesseesEducationSpendingEarnsAn F (WPLNRadioNashville)
Tennessee ranks last in the nation for spending on schools, and only about half of that money makes it into actual classrooms. Those are the findings of two studies, issued by two very different organizations. The Education Law Center is a liberal group that advocates for spending more on classrooms with the poorest students. The ELC gave Tennessee a C for policies that give a little extra help to the students who have the least. But looking at the overall totals for 2009, the ELC found that Tennessee spent less per pupil than any other state. Tennessee also ranked last for the percent of its gross domestic product earmarked for education. Another report issued last month questions how that money is spent. Looking at figures for 2012, the conservative Beacon Center of Tennessee found that less than 54 percent of the states education dollars end up in the classroom. It says spending on teachers, textbooks and classroom supplies is on the decline while administrator salaries continue to rise. The 2

Beacon Center also suggested that actual spending on Tennessees schools is underreported by about 11%. But even when the figures in the ELC rankings are adjusted to add that supposedly unreported money, Tennessees per-pupil spending is less than half of whats allocated in places like Wyoming, New Jersey and Alaska.

TWRAwarnsof Asiancarp(WKRNTV Nashville)

The Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency is warning boaters and fisherman about an invasive species of fish that can jump as high as 10 feet into the air Asian, or Silver, carp have become notorious for being easily frightened by boats and personal watercraft, which causes them to leap high from the water. There have been many reports of the fish, some weighing as much as 40 pounds, jumping into boats and hitting skiers. "They're in Nashville in Cheatham Lake which is really the Cumberland River that goes through downtown. That's actually called Cheatham Reservoir," explained Bobby Wilson, Chief of Fisheries for the TWRA. According to Wilson, the fish have also been spotted in Old Hickory Lake and Drakes Creek. "They're going through these locks and dams where the barges can go through and the boats can lock through, the fish will also lock through," Wilson said.

Roeplansto submitalternativeto Obama'sAffordableHealthCareAct (H-C)

Tennessee s U.S. Rep. Phil Roe said Monday he has a better universal health-care plan for Americans to consider in coming days. And on Wednesday he plans to submit to Congress his alternative to President Barack Obamas signature Affordable Care Act, which is set to roll out in full force in coming months. You always hear that Republicans have no replacement, Roe, R-Johnson City , said Monday. So I did that. The Tennessee congressman initially touted the work as an aside late Monday morning after stepping into Virginia to stump on behalf Attorney General Ken Cuccinellis bid for governor. The idea was to pass a bill that didnt have mandates in it, that didnt have tax increases but had expanded coverage and lower costs, Roe said during a news conference at Blakely-Mitchell Clothing Co. in downtown Bristol . Thats a tall order, he added. Since May, Roe has chaired an eight-member committee tasked with crafting an alternative to the ACA, also known as Obamacare, passed in March 2010 and on track to mandate that Americans have a health insurance plan by Jan. 1.

CallingObesityA DiseaseMayMakeIt EasierTo Get Help(WPLNRadioNashville)

Under the Affordable Care Act, more insurance plans are expected to start covering the cost of obesity treatments, including counseling on diet and exercise as well as medications and surgery. These are treatments that most insurance companies dont cover now. The move is a response to the increasing number of health advocates and medical groups that say obesity should be classified as a disease. Not everyone thinks this is a good idea, but this summer, the American Medical Association determined that obesity is a disease. The organization followed in the footsteps of the Obesity Society, a health advocacy group that called obesity a disease back in 2008. Many overweight or obese individuals are victims of their own genetic history, according to Dr. Lee Kaplan, an obesity specialist and director of the Massachusetts General Hospital Weight Center. Were all wired in slightly different ways, he says, adding that those subtle differences are reflected in how the body deals with energy stores and fat. There are thousands of genes in the body, and Kaplan says about 100 of them are involved in making some people more susceptible to weight gain.

Fedexpectedto pull backstimulus(AssociatedPress/Crutsinger)

Hiring is soft. Pay is barely up. Consumers are cautious. Economic growth has yet to pick up. And yet on Wednesday, the Federal Reserve is expected to take its first step toward reducing the extraordinary stimulus its supplied to help the U.S. economy rebound from its deepest crisis since the Great Depression. If it does, the Fed will likely spark a debate: Has the economy strengthened enough to withstand the pullback? The answer might not be clear for months. The Fed is meeting this week at a time of deepening uncertainty about who will succeed Chairman Ben Bernanke when his term ends in January. On Sunday, Lawrence Summers, who was considered the leading candidate, withdrew from consideration. Summers withdrawal followed growing resistance from critics. His exit could open the door for his chief rival, Janet Yellen, the Feds vice chairwoman. If chosen by President Barack Obama and confirmed by the Senate, Yellen would become the first woman to lead the Fed. For months, the Fed has said it will slow its $85 billion-a-month in Treasury and mortgage bond purchases once the outlook for the job market has improved substantially. (SUB) 3

Organized labor may have backed President Obama, but Americas biggest unions dont like the idea he floated in April to consider selling the Tennessee Valley Authority. Labor unions representing more than 13 million American workers today approved a resolution to fight to prevent the transfer of the publicly-funded Tennessee Valley Authority to private interests. President Obamas Fiscal Year 2014 budget includes language aimed at the potential transfer of TVA to private interests. Privatization of TVA is a very bad idea, said Gay Henson, president of Engineering Association/ IFTPE Local 1937 in Chattanooga. Henson said privatization would diminish the critical role that TVA has played in the region, negatively impact the economy of many states, and bring a catastrophic blow to the more than 13,000 jobs many union jobs at TVA. Since 2005, Henson said, TVA services have preserved and created, 300,000 jobs and $32 billion in business investments. (REGISTRATION)

OPINION Editorial:Moreinitiativesneededto makesurefreshmenreceivedegrees(CA)

State and local elected leaders, education officials and business leaders have really revved up the conversation about increasing the number of Tennesseans with college degrees to help the state compete better for 21st century jobs. During a conversation last week with The Commercial Appeals editorial board, Tennessee State Universitys new president, Dr. Glenda Baskin Glover, brought up another element of the college-graduation equation: It is one thing to get graduating high school seniors into college and quite another to get them to graduate within six years. Glover, a Memphis native and TSU alumna, began her term as president earlier this year. She was in Memphis to announce the awarding of $3 million in scholarships to 50 high school seniors in Greater Memphis. The money came mostly from private donations, especially corporations, and included $17,000 that the historically black universitys Student Government Association voted to donate to the scholarship fund instead of spending it on a concert. She told the editorial board that only about 40 percent of the freshmen who enter TSU graduate. (SUB)

Editorial:Attemptto shieldethicsprobedocumentsshouldbe rejected(N-S)

A battle over public records erupted at a meeting of the Tennessee Ethics Commission last week, and Attorney General Robert Cooper has been asked to play peacemaker. Linda Knight, a former Ethics Commission member acting as attorney for the Tennessee Disability Coalition, argued that commissioners could not release multiple documents involving an ethics probe into the coalitions lobbyist. The commissions attorney, John Allyn, and Drew Rawlins, executive director of the Bureau of Ethics and Campaign Finance, suggest Knights interpretation of the relevant laws was overly broad. That is an understatement. Tennesseans right to see information regarding ethics 4

investigations is made plain in the law that created the Ethics Commission. That law states that panels investigation records are to be made public on the date the public hearing on the matter is held. (SUB)

Editorial:I-40 planswill maketravelingeasier, safer(JacksonSun)

We were pleased last week to learn plans are progressing for improvements to Interstate 40 and the intersection of Casey Jones Lane/Carriage House Drive and the U.S. 45 Bypass in Jackson. State Rep. Jimmy Eldridge arranged for John Schroer, the state commissioner of transportation, to come to Jackson and meet with local officials and businessmen. Schroer reported that the improvements are being designed. The project, estimated at about $100 million, has several facets: The widening of I-40 in Jackson from four to six lanes; the complete redesign of the interchanges at the U.S. 45 Bypass and at North Highland Avenue; and the realignment of the intersection just south of I-40 near Casey Jones Village. All of these projects are needed and have been for years. All of them will improve safety and make it easier for locals and tourists alike to get around Jackson. Anyone who has used the two interchanges that are to be redesigned knows that they leave little room for acceleration as you merge onto I40. They also dangerously mix the lanes for vehicles leaving the highway with those entering it. (SUBSCRIPTION).

Editorial:As EducationDeclines,So DoesCivic Culture(Wall StreetJournal)

Even as the cost of higher education skyrockets, its benefits are increasingly being called into doubt. We're familiar with laments from graduates who emerge from college burdened with student loans and wondering if their studies have prepared them for jobs and careers. A less familiar but even more troubling problem is that their education did not prepare them for responsible civic life. The decline in education means a decline in the ability of individuals and ultimately the nation as a wholeto address political, social and moral matters in effective, considered ways. The trouble begins before college. Large numbers of high-school students have faced so few challenges and demands that they are badly underprepared for college courses. Many who go on to four-year colleges seem to need two years of college even to begin to understand what it is to study, read carefully and take oneself seriously as a student. (SUBSCRIPTION) ###