The Week That Was 

Waste overhaul

Waste overhaul

Mayor Bill Purcell released his administration’s much anticipated solid waste plan last week, which calls for the eventual closing of the downtown Thermal plant. Meanwhile, state officials are concerned that the shutdown of the trash-burning facility, which heats and cools downtown buildings, will mean a drain on state coffers. The state officials estimate it will cost Tennessee $5 million more per year to heat and cool the state office buildings Thermal now serves.

Crowell resigns

Tennessee Valley Authority chairman Craven Crowell, a Nashvillian, has announced he is resigning from the monster public power provider this spring, which means the new Republican presidential administration will appoint his successor. Crowell has presided over a proverbial 800-pound gorilla that has been criticized both for its serial displays of fiscal liberalness and the inherent competitive advantages the federal agency has for providing electricity to its service area in the South.

Scalpel please

While Gaylord Entertainment Company continues to unravel, another major Nashville company is almost over its late unpleasantness. Nashville-based HCA, the largest hospital chain in the country, has pleaded guilty to criminal fraud charges and will pay $840 million to the federal government as its penalty for defrauding Medicare, the nation’s health insurance program for the elderly. It is apparently the single largest government fraud settlement in the nation’s history.

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