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Adios Hefner

Adios Hefner

The Tennessean led its Tuesday editions with the planned retirement of beleaguered TSU president James Hefner. Citing an unnamed source, which is unusual for the paper, the story in the morning daily said that later this week the TSU board will announce his retirement effective "at the end of the 2004-05 academic year." Hefner was harshly criticized in recent state audits for lapses in management and questionable personal ethics.

Bridge over the River Cumberland

The new Gateway Bridge—a lovely expanse of steel and concrete swooping from SoBro into East Nashville—opens this week. For years, the closing of the Shelby Street Bridge to automobile traffic has inconvenienced East Nashville drivers. So the Gateway Bridge couldn't come a moment too soon. What with the newly remodeled Shelby Street pedestrian span nearby, our city is looking sophisticated in the bridge department.

Dr. No says yes to cuts

David Manning, the incredibly powerful director of Metro finances, agreed this week to cut his department's budget by a little over a million-and-a-half bucks. After years of amassing considerable power from all branches of Metro in his financial fiefdom—and seeing his department's budget grow considerably in the last five years—Manning nonetheless has decided to downsize. In recent weeks, he's been catching some flack from aggrieved Metro Council members who think Manning is spending too much money.

First coyotes, now mountain lions?

Approximately a decade ago, Tennesseans were startled to discover a new predator had arrived on the state's landscape: the coyote. Apparently they had crossed the Mississippi River from western states and invaded our territory. Now, West Tennessee farmers are said to be reporting sightings of a new critter: mountain lions. One alleged recent sighting was in nearby Hickman County.

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