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News From Shelby County

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Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell

  Phone Numbers for Many County Offices Change Next Week

November 3, 2011 

Shelby County Government agencies, including the Mayor's Office and Sheriff's Office, will have new telephone numbers starting Monday 

On November 7, all county agency offices at the Criminal Justice Center, 201 Poplar Avenue and the Vasco Smith, Jr. Administration Building, 160 North Main, will have new telephone numbers beginning with "222." 

The "222" numbers will replace several telephone exchanges that begin with 545, 377, 379, 544 and others.  Most new numbers with prefix "222" will have four new digits assigned to them. 

"Going to the new system will save $70,000 a year in phone line usage fees and make it easier for citizens to contact us," said Shelby County Mayor Mark H. Luttrell, Jr.

For several months, people who call the old county government numbers will get a recording for the new numbers.

The new "222" telephone numbers are already being used at the Shelby County Health Department offices on Jefferson.   The Shelby County Corrections Center and other administrative offices on Mullins Station Road will have new telephone numbers in the next few months.

Here are the new numbers for frequently called offices:

Mayor Mark Luttrell's Office: (901) 222-2000

Sheriff Bill Oldham's Office: (901) 222-5500

Shelby County Jail Inmate Information: (901) 222-4700

Additionally, the new telephone numbers will be available on the Shelby County Government Website http://www.shelbycountytn.gov/ and published in the 2012 Blue/White/Yellow Pages.

County Clerk Wayne Mashburn Partners with Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security to Provide Photo Driver Licenses to Registered Voters

MEMPHIS - Shelby County Clerk Wayne Mashburn announced today that he has partnered with the Department of Safety and Homeland Security to make more outlets available for registered voters to get photo driver licenses for voting purposes. Under a new state law, starting in 2012 voters will have to show a state or federal issued photo ID to cast a ballot at the polls in Tennessee.

Commissioner Bill Gibbon announced earlier this week that Wayne Mashburn is one of 30 county clerks across the state that have agreed to issue photo driver licenses at no charge to registered voters who currently have non-photo driver licenses. The Shelby County Clerk's Office is an existing partner with the Department and currently issues renewal and replacement driver licenses and identification cards to Tennessee residents. Under the new agreement, Mr. Mashburn will forgo the $4 service fee normally paid to Shelby County for providing this service. Wayne Mashburn and the 29 other county clerks have agreed to provide this service starting October 15 and will continue through March 12, a week after the presidential primary election.

The Secretary of State's office reports there are approximately 126,000 registered voters who have non-photo driver licenses in Tennessee. Drivers age 60 or older may choose to get a non-photo driver license in Tennessee.

"We very much appreciate Wayne Mashburn and his willingness to help the voters of Tennessee. This partnership greatly increases the number of locations where registered voters may get photos added to their driver licenses," Commissioner Gibbons said.

The photos will only be taken at the downtown office located at 150 Washington Avenue. "I'm pleased to offer citizens this location where they can update their non-photo driver's license with a photo.  The ability of all Tennesseans to vote in local, state and federal elections is the foundation upon which our democracy was built. My office is pleased to partner with the State of Tennessee by providing this important service to the citizens of Shelby County," said Mashburn.

 

Tennessee Confirms Human West Nile Death in Shelby County

MEMPHIS, TN - The Tennessee Department of Health has confirmed the first death in Tennessee due to West Nile virus since 2009. The individual is a citizen of Shelby County. There have been 14 total human cases in Tennessee this year, nine of which were reported in Shelby County. The Shelby County Health Department urges citizens to continue to take precautions to prevent mosquito bites to protect themselves against West Nile virus.

"Although we have had much cooler temperatures in the past few weeks, the threat of mosquitoes is still present," said Dr. Helen Morrow, Health Officer for the Shelby County Health Department. "We encourage residents and visitors to continue to take effective action to protect themselves from mosquito bites that could carry the virus."

Mosquito populations are at their peak May through October. There is no human vaccine for West Nile virus; therefore, citizens are encouraged to be vigilant as it relates to controlling mosquito populations around their homes and businesses.

The death was an adult male.  Persons who have had probable WNV cases in Shelby County this year have ranged from ages 32-84, and the mosquitoes that carry the virus have been identified in every Shelby County zip code. 

Because of the nature of the disease, there are myriad medical conditions that can complicate WNV infection causing the patient to deteriorate, and each case and/or death is exclusive to the patient’s health status. This death was not recent  and most likely occurred in the past 2 weeks. Again, this is why it is critical to highlight the public health preventive measures to minimize mosquito exposure and potential WNV transmission,” said Dr. Morrow.

September 20, 2011

West Nile Virus Threats More Prevalent in 2011

MEMPHIS, TN -The Shelby County Health Department's Vector Control Program has reported an increase in the prevalence of mosquitoes throughout the spring and summer of 2011 in Shelby County. Consequently, there has also been a drastic increase in the number of mosquitoes discovered carrying West Nile Virus which still continue to pose a threat to citizens in and around Shelby County.

Since April, the Shelby County Health Department's Vector Control Program has treated areas by applying larvicides to standing bodies of water. As an additional precaution, the Health Department continues to conduct weekly truck-mounted spraying (adulticiding) of EPA-approved insecticides, weather permitting, in portions specific ZIP codes across Shelby County.

Humans can catch the West Nile virus through being bitten by an infected mosquito. Although West Nile virus can occasionally cause severe disease, most human infections are mild, resulting in fever, headache and body aches that last only a few days. Symptoms of severe disease include a high fever, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma or convulsions. Persons over age 50 and those with compromised immune systems are at higher risk of severe disease. They should especially be careful to avoid mosquito bites.

Citizens are encouraged to be vigilant as it relates to controlling mosquito populations around their homes and businesses. Citizens are encouraged to:

  • Wear DEET-containing mosquito repellents according to label directions Eliminate standing water where mosquitoes can lay eggs. Check properties for objects - including old tires, flower pots and drip plates, tin cans, buckets, and children's toys - that collect rainwater and either drain or dispose of the water Install or repair windows and door screens Empty, clean and refill bird baths and small wading pools weekly Empty and refill pets' water bowls every few days Repair failed septic systems Repair leaky outside faucets Clean rain gutters and down spouts Secure swimming pool covers tightly and remove any standing water after rainfall Store wheelbarrows, canoes and boats upside down Stock ornamental lawn ponds with fish (Gambusia) that eat mosquito larvae (Gambusia fish are available FREE from the Vector Control Program)

Although temperatures are cooler and the presence of mosquitoes may have seemed to decrease, it is still vital to take precautions when outside during evening and nighttime hours. Mosquitoes will continue to breed and remain active until the first frost of the season.

September 1, 2011

Mayor Luttrell Chooses Members for School Transition Team

Shelby County Mayor Mark H. Luttrell, Jr., has chosen his five representatives to serve on the transition team for the merger of Memphis and Shelby County School Systems.

"These people have unique abilities and share the common commitment to put the interests of school children first.  They represent an excellent cross-section of our community," said Mayor Luttrell.

The transition team members are:

Christine P. Richards-Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary FedEx Corporation-Ms. Richards is responsible for ensuring the corporation's global activities are in compliance with international, federal, state and local government regulations, and handles international and domestic legal, security and government affairs for all FedEx operating companies and subsidiaries. Born in Amityville, N.Y., Richards earned her Bachelor's degree from Bucknell University and her Juris Doctorate from Duke University.

John Smarrelli, Jr., Ph.D-President, Christian Brothers University-During the past 25 years, Dr. John Smarrelli has also served in senior administrative positions at Loyola University in Chicago, IL and Le Moyne College in Syracuse, NY. He earned his Doctorate and Masters' degrees from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry, and has conducted postdoctoral work in biology at the University of Virginia.

Barbara Roseborough-Associate Vice President, Academic Affairs Southwest Tennessee Community College-With more than 20 years of educational service at Southwest, she has also served as Associate Professor of English, Department Chair for the Fine Arts, Languages and Literature Department, and Dean of Liberal Studies and Education. Ms. Roseborough holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from LeMoyne-Owen College, a Masters of English from Atlanta University, and a second Masters plus 45 hours of additional studies in Education from the University of Memphis.                                         

Jim Boyd, President-Bridges USA-Jim Boyd is President/CEO of BRIDGES, USA, an organization dedicated to racial, economic, educational and environmental justice. An ordained Episcopal priest, he served local Episcopal churches by helping to establish the emergency assistance fund at MIFA and SMART (St. Mary's Manassas Alabama Redevelopment Team) at St. Mary‘s Episcopal Cathedral. He also has served parishes in North Carolina and Oregon. Boyd received his Bachelors of Arts degree in Political Science from Vanderbilt University and a Masters of Divinity from Intermet Seminary, in Washington, D.C.

Louis Padgett, III-Principal, Northaven Elementary School-Mr. Padgett is a 24-year employee of the Shelby County School System, and is starting his seventh year as principal of Northaven Elementary School. Padgett received his undergraduate degree in Health and Physical Education from Rust College and earned a Master's degree in Leadership and Policy Studies from the University of Memphis.

The transition team candidates will be submitted to the Shelby County Commission for consideration at next week's meeting.

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August 11, 2011

 Shelby County Fire Department Explorer Post Coordinator Honored

The coordinator of the Shelby County Fire Department's Explorer Post, Brent Perkins, will receive one of the highest awards given by the Boy Scouts of America-The Silver Beaver Award.

 "This honor recognizes people who have made a significant impact on the lives of youth involved in scouting activities," said Woody Woodward, Scout Executive of the Chickasaw Council of the Boy Scouts of America.

"This is quite an accomplishment for our Explorer's Post at the Shelby County Fire Department.  I commend Brent Perkins and all of those at the fire department who provide this valuable program for young people in our community," said Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell, Jr.

During high school in St. Louis, Missouri, Perkins joined an explorer post sponsored by the 4th Precinct of the St. Louis County Police Department.  He started Explorer Post 343 at the Shelby County Fire Department in 2005.  "What I learned then helped inspire me to start our post.  The goal has been to steer our members towards careers in public service, especially firefighting," said Perkins, who also serves as the Public Affairs Officer for the Shelby County Fire Department.

More than 30 young people between the ages of 14 and 21 are members of the post.  They have to maintain a "C" average in school.  They also pay a yearly $20 fee that goes towards their uniforms and other supplies.  Members learn various firefighting techniques and help out at community events involving the fire department.

Perks will receive his award on September 15th, 6:30 p.m. at the Memphis Cotton Museum, 65 Union Avenue.

 

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Shelby County Fire Department Ranks High in 2010 National Emergency Call Survey

The Shelby County Fire Department recently took part in a national survey comparing the number of emergency calls made between different fire departments across North America. Submitted by Administrative Battalion Chief Glen Kneeland, the results were just announced. The Shelby County Fire Department placed in four key areas: The busiest fire station, engine company, rescue company and hazardous materials response.

"More than 80% of our calls are medically related.  The rankings help us compare our capabilities with other agencies around the nation," said Fire Chief Clarence Cash.

Some 238 fire departments took part representing 43 states, 5 Canadian Provinces and the District of Columbia. More than 65 million people are protected by these departments and their 3,402 engine companies and 1,236 ladder companies. The survey counted 7,985,491 fire and EMS calls last year from these fire departments.

Shelby County Fire Station 65 (Canada Rd. & I-40) is the 154th busiest fire station with 3,350 emergency calls.

Shelby County Fire Engine 63 (Southeast Shelby County) is 165th busiest engine company with 1,631 emergency calls.

Shelby County Fire Rescue 66 (Responds to all un-incorporated Shelby County & Lakeland) is the 55th busiest heavy rescue company with 1,124 dispatches.

Shelby County Fire also ranked the 79th busiest in hazardous materials response with 34 emergency calls made during 2010.

The Shelby County Fire Department dispatches nearly 18,000 fire and EMS calls annually. This is done with nine engine companies and a total fire department work force of almost 160 employees.

 

Federal Grant Will Help Children Affected by Violence

Shelby County has been chosen as one of eight (8) regions across the nation to receive federal money to help children who have been exposed to violence. The $159,099 grant will be coordinated by the Shelby County Office of Early Childhood and Youth and will help ensure children and their families affected by violence will get the necessary counseling and support from the community.

"Children exposed to violence have special needs.  If they don't get counseling and support, young people are more likely to continue to be victims of violent acts and may resort to drug abuse or other unhealthy behaviors," said Shelby County Mayor Mark H. Luttrell, Jr.

The one-year grant will fund the "Project Safe Futures" initiative.  Staff from the Office of Early Childhood and Youth will routinely meet with representatives from law enforcement, social service agencies, mental health centers and medical facilities to identify and track children affected by violence.  

The Shelby County Office of Early Childhood and Youth, part of Shelby County Government's Division of Community Services, applied for the grant earlier this year. 

"We're pleased to receive this Department of Justice grant.  It will help children who may have been exposed to violence in their homes, schools or other places in the community," said Dottie Jones, Director of the Division of Community Services.


 


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