Mayor says Lee's barber shop guidance not strict enough
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — The mayor of Tennessee’s largest county has issued rules for the reopening of barber shops and hair styling salons after saying Gov. Bill Lee only offered guidelines but not strict COVID-19-related safety requirements for the reopening of close contact establishments. Lee has said close-contact businesses such as salons and barber shops will be able to open Wednesday in 89 of the 95 counties. Under a plan unveiled last week, barber shops and hair salons weren't included on the list of businesses allowed to resume seeing clients under a gradual reopening of the economy in Shelby County. Now they are, under strict rules.
Judge rules Tennessee's voucher law is unconstitutional
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Tennessee judge has ruled that the state’s much-debated school voucher program is illegal and cannot be implemented despite education officials receiving thousands of applications from parents hoping to use public tax dollars on private schooling tuition. Davidson County Chancellor Anne C. Martin said in her Monday order that the voucher law, which Gov. Bill Lee signed into effect last year, violated the Tennessee constitution’s “home rule.” Lee’s administration had backed the legislation during his first year as governor, gaining just narrow support from the GOP-controlled Statehouse and strong opposition from Democratic members and public education advocates
Vanderbilt finding ways to reuse masks, repurpose valets
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Vanderbilt University Medical Center had to scramble for personal protective equipment even before the coronavirus hit. That's because the deadly March 3 tornado that tore through Tennessee took out its distribution center. Robin Adkins is a nurse who consults with Vanderbilt. She says the hospital got distribution somewhere else, then COVID-19 created a nationwide shortage of many items, including N95 masks. According to the hospital, it has now started using hydrogen peroxide vapor to sterilize masks, allowing them to be reused up to 10 times. Adkins says the COVID-19 pandemic has spurred “a lot of out-of-the-box thinking” that she hopes will lead to important innovations.
Storms knock out power, blamed for 1 death in Tennessee
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Officials say storms with high winds swept through Tennessee knocking down trees and power lines, causing one death and leaving more than 100,000 customers without power. News outlets cited the Nashville Electric Service in reporting that Sunday's storms caused one of the largest power outages on record in the city. About 130,000 people were without power at one point, and about 101,000 customers remained without power Monday morning. One person was killed: The Spring Hill Police Department said in a statement that Spring Hill Firefighter Mitchell Earwood died due to “a tragic weather-related incident at his home."
BLUES MUSIC AWARDS
Kingfish Ingram wins 5 Blues Music Awards in online show
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Guitarist Christone “Kingfish” Ingram took home five Blues Music Awards in an online ceremony that featured appearances by Bonnie Raitt, Robert Cray and other musicians. The awards show Sunday was moved online because of the coronavirus outbreak. The program included performances recorded by nominees at home and flashbacks from past shows. Ingram won awards for best emerging artist album, best contemporary blues album, and album of the year. He also won two performer awards. The show’s host was singer Shemekia Copeland. She won in the contemporary blues female artist category. Sugaray Rayford won the B.B. King entertainer of the year award.
Tennessee man arrested after body found in burning apartment