Memphis Mayor Pushing Again for Governmental Consolidation

MEMPHIS, TN - Memphis Mayor Willie Herenton is pushing again for consolidation of city and county government.

Herenton, in an unprecedented fifth term, says he'll seek a change in state law.

Herenton, the only mayor in the city's history to be elected to five terms, has been advocating consolidation of Memphis and Shelby County government for more than a decade.

He contends the dual system of separate schools, administrations and lawmaking commissions for Memphis and Shelby County is unnecessarily cumbersome and costly.

But residents of unincorporated Shelby County and its six small cities have long fought against forming a metropolitan government.  Over 70 percent of the county's more than 911,000 residents live in Memphis.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)