Contributed photo by Erlanger Health System / Erlanger Physical Therapy opened its latest office in the Ooltewah and Collegedale area.

Erlanger opens sixth physical therapy office

Erlanger Physical Therapy has opened its sixth office in the Chattanooga area to provide physical therapy evaluations, screenings and treatments.

The new clinic in Collegedale at 5953 Elementary Way offers outpatient treatments for ACL injury, total knee and hip replacements, sports injuries and concussion management as well as providing care and assistance for restoring function, relieving pain, and helping patients safely get back to the activities they enjoy.

"We are happy to offer an additional convenient location for patients to receive quality physical therapy needed to recover and resume activities," stated Lori Jurczak, Erlanger's director of rehabilitation services.

The new location joins other Erlanger Physical Therapy offices located in downtown Chattanooga, East Brainerd and Ringgold, Georgia.


Consumer prices up 0.6% in March

U.S. consumer prices increased a sharp 0.6% in March, the biggest increase since 2012, while inflation over the past year rose a sizable 2.6%.

The big gains were expected to be a temporary blip and not a sign that long dormant inflation pressures were emerging. The Labor Department reported Tuesday that the March increase in its consumer price index followed a 0.4% increase in February and was the biggest one-month gain since a 0.6% rise in August 2012.

While the 2.6% advance was significantly higher than the Federal Reserve's 2% target for inflation, the jump reflected in large part the fact that a year ago prices were actually falling as the pandemic shut down the country.


Tax evasion may cost $1 trillion every year

The head of the IRS calculated that tax evasion in the U.S. may total $1 trillion a year, a figure that is multiples higher than previous estimates from the federal government.

Internal Revenue Service Commissioner Chuck Rettig told a Senate panel Tuesday that previous tallies of the tax gap — which came to a cumulative amount of about $441 billion for the three years through 2013 — didn't include some tax evasion-techniques that weren't on their radar at the time.

New estimates include the use of cryptocurrency, he said. Offshore tax evasion, illegal income that goes undetected by the IRS and underreporting from pass-through businesses also contribute to a larger than previously known tax gap, Rettig said.

"I think it would not be outlandish to believe that the actual tax gap could approach and possibly exceed $1 trillion per year," Rettig told the Senate Finance Committee.

The ballooning difference between the tax dollars owed and what is actually collected by the IRS is an increasing point of focus on Capitol Hill, where a rising number of lawmakers are coming to see more aggressive tax enforcement as a way to boost government revenue.


Regulators probing GM air bag problems

The U.S. government's highway safety agency is investigating complaints that the air bags may not inflate in a crash on thousands of General Motors vehicles.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says the investigation covers nearly 750,000 Chevrolet, Cadillac and GMC vehicles from the 2020 and 2021 model years. Most are full-size pickup trucks and SUVs.

The agency says in documents posted Tuesday on its website that it has 15 complaints of air bag malfunctions, including six crashes with eight reported injuries. It also has eight field reports.

It says that GM issued a service bulletin to dealers about the problem in March, but there hasn't been a recall. The bulletin says rust particles can accumulate on a driver's air bag connection terminal. That can cause the air bag malfunction light to come on, and could stop the air bags from inflating.

The agency says it opened the investigation to figure out how large the problem is and to assess safety issues.

The probe covers Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups as well as Chevy Tahoe and Suburban SUVs. Also included are GMC Yukon and Cadillac Escalade SUVs, and the Cadillac CT4 and CT5 sedans and XT4 SUVs.


Economics field lacks diversity

Top Federal Reserve policymakers underscored their concern that Black and Hispanic people are sharply underrepresented in the economics field, which lessens the perspectives that economists can bring to key policy issues.

In a webinar sponsored by the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Tuesday, the officials and many outside economists addressed the problem on the same day that a study from the Brookings Institution reported that the top ranks of Fed remain disproportionately white, particularly at the 12 regional Fed banks.

The viral pandemic and last summer's racial justice protests have thrown a national spotlight on longstanding racial and gender disparities within the U.S. economy.

— Compiled by Dave Flessner