Business Briefs: Tennessee Chamber of Commerce touts manufacturing

Business Briefs: Tennessee Chamber of Commerce touts manufacturing

April 17th, 2018 by Staff and Wire Reports in Business Around the Region

Tennessee Chamber touts manufacturing

The Tennessee Chamber of Commerce and Industry is conducting a series of meetings across the state to highlight manufacturing, including a meeting at 7:30 a.m. Thursday at Chattanooga State Community College, Building OMN 124/126.

The statewide tour is designed to promote manufacturing and the efforts of the state Chamber to help manufacturing businesses.

"Manufacturing powers Tennessee's economy, and we are proud to tout the strong economic impact manufacturing has on our economy, producing $53-plus billion every year in [Gross State Product] with 5,000-plus manufacturing facilities employing more than 350,000 workers," said Tennessee Chamber of Commerce & Industry President Bradley Jackson.

Denise Rice, who directs manufacturing for the Tennessee Chamber and the Tennessee Manufacturers Association, will provide an update on the status of manufacturing along with key economic and workforce updates that have an effect on manufacturers in Tennessee. Rice is an industry veteran and former plant manager with more than 25 years of experience in manufacturing.

The Chattanooga Regional Manufacturers Association is the co-host for the Chattanooga event. There is no cost to attend; however, pre- registration is required at


Food City starts building 3 stores

Supermarket chain Food City is breaking ground on three North Georgia replacement stores this week.

Groundbreaking is slated for Wednesday at 820 Mission Ridge Road in Rossville. The ceremony will begin at 2 p.m. at the construction site.

Also, on Thursday, the Abingdon, Va.-based company will break ground on a store at 540 U.S. Highway 41 in Ringgold, Ga.

In addition, Food City will break ground on a store at 1308 W. Walnut Ave. in Dalton, Ga., on Thursday.


Gas prices rising after attack on Syria

Gas prices in Chattanooga have risen to the highest level in six months and are likely to increase more this week in the wake of last week's attacks on Syria., which surveys 170 gas outlets in Chattanooga, said Monday that local prices at the pump rose 3.5 cents per gallon to $2.45 per gallon for regular gasoline. That's the highest since early last fall when prices briefly spiked up to an average of $2.54 per gallon after Hurricane Irma temporarily cut off some gas pipelines.

The AAA Auto Club said pump prices will get even more expensive this week and will likely rise to the highest level in more than two years, due to rising geopolitical tensions in the Middle East. The conflict in Syria sent crude prices to their highest point in more than three years, and as a result, motorists are about to feel the pain at the pump.

"Motorists should expect a 15 cent increase at the pump in the short term," said Mark Jenkins, spokesman, AAA - The Auto Club Group. "However, prices could rise even more, depending on how the crude market responds to the latest news of a U.S. missile strike over the weekend."

Chattanooga gas prices still remain 25 cents per gallon below the U.S. average of $2.71 per gallon, according to

"The seasonal surge at gas pumps is in full motion, causing the most dreaded time of year for fearful motorists, especially of what may still be coming," said Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy.


Vehicles will soon talk to each other

Toyota said it will start equipping models with technology to talk to other vehicles starting in 2021, as it tries to push safety communications forward. The company said most of its U.S. models should have the feature by the mid-2020s.

Vehicle-to-vehicle signals can warn others of heavy braking ahead or that another vehicle is headed into their path. Toyota Vice President of Product Planning Andrew Coetzee said the cars would use dedicated airwaves to send signals up to 984 feet.

Coetzee hopes other automakers will join. Others are testing it and standards have been developed so they can communicate.

Toyota is leading on automatic emergency braking, making it standard on all but four models. The industry has agreed to make it standard on all models in 2022.


Domino's delivers to national parks

Domino's, which has been bringing pizzas to doorsteps for more than a half century, will now deliver to the great outdoors.

The pizza chain said Monday its drivers can meet customers at U.S. beaches, parks and landmarks to hand over pizza, cheesy bread and other food on its menu.

In all, Domino's said it will deliver to 150,000 outdoor locations including under the Gateway Arch in St. Louis; by the Las Vegas welcome sign; or next to a statue of soul singer James Brown in Augusta, Ga. The locations show up in the company's app or website as "Domino's Hotspots."

Delivery is a key part of the company's business, and it has been aggressive in making it easy to order through tweets, text messages and Amazon's voice-activated Echo. But competition has grown from other fast-food chains offering more delivery options. McDonald's has a deal with online service UberEats, and the parent company of KFC and Taco Bell recently teamed up with Grubhub to expand delivery.

Franchisees chose the hotspots, including local dog parks and airports. Drivers will pull up to the curb to meet customers, Domino's said, and people can tell the app what they're wearing so they're easier to spot.


Trump nominates Fed board members

President Donald Trump has selected Columbia University professor Richard Clarida to be vice chairman of the Federal Reserve and Kansas bank commissioner Michelle Bowman to fill another vacancy on the Fed's seven-member board.

The two nominations are the latest steps in Trump's efforts to remake the seven-member Fed board, which currently has four vacancies. Both nominations need Senate approval.

Clarida would become the Fed's No. 2 official, filling a spot left vacant when Stanley Fischer stepped down last October.

Bowman would fill a spot on the Fed board reserved for a community banker or a regulator of community banks.