Toby McKenzie Says He Is Ready To Again Manage His Businesses

Seeks Removal Of Trustee Steel; Cleveland Businessman Changes Lawyers

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Cleveland, Tn., businessman Steve "Toby" McKenzie, who in February said he was too ill to continue to manage his huge estate that had gone into bankruptcy, now says he has recovered enough to take back over.

Mr. McKenzie, who filed a $151 million bankruptcy last December, has also switched attorneys. Kyle Weems, a bankruptcy specialist, has been replaced by Richard Banks.

Attorney Banks said in a court filing, "The medical problems of McKenzie have been stabilized and substantially resolved. Medical testimony, if necessary, can be presented at the hearing on this motion establishing that Toby McKenzie can act as a debtor-in-possession."

He said Trustee Steel has not filed a plan in the case, not stated why he has not filed a plan, and has not recommended conversion of the case to Chapter 7 (where the remaining assets are liquidated and there is no plan for ongoing operation of businesses).

Attorney Banks said, "Toby McKenzie and his wife, Rebecca McKenzie, respectfully submit that it is in their best interest, the best interest of creditors, the best interest of this estate and the best interest of present employees of these two entities (including several past employees covered by the major medical insurance policy owned by Sam Management Company LLC and funded by Villages Lanes LLC) for the debtor to be restored to the status as debtor-in-possession of these two entities."

He said Mr. McKenzie has obtained a commitment for funding "necessary to hopefully re-organize the finances of Village Lanes LLC. The revenue generated from the Village Lanes will generate future income for Toby McKenzie to be used to fund a Chapter 11 plan."

A hearing in the motion is set in Chattanooga Bankruptcy Court on Thursday at 10 a.m.

Judge Tom Stinnett is overseeing the case.

Meanwhile, Trustee Steel asked the court to allow one of Mr. McKenzie's properties - the Hampton Creek golf course and development at Ooltewah - to remain open.

Northwest Georgia Bank has filed a lien on the property, citing a $100,000 loan.

The motion says Mr. McKenzie owns the property where about 12 of the holes of the 18-hole course are located. It says he leased the land where the remaining holes are from Ellsworth McKee.

Trustee Steel said Hampton Creek Development recently entered into a contract to sell the remaining property at the site to the entity that acquired 51 residential lots. That deal closed in June.

Mr. McKenzie became wealthy in the rent to own business and as a pioneer in the lucrative check cashing business, then ventured into real estate, trucking and other businesses.

McKenzie Arena at UTC was named for Mr. McKenzie and his former wife, Brenda, after they gave a large gift to help pay off the debt on the former Round House.

New Book Chattanooga In Old Photos Now Available At Zarzours

The new book Chattanooga in Old Photos, sponsored by, is now available at Zarzours Restaurant on the Southside. John Wilson, publisher and editor of the large-size, soft-bound book, will be at Zarzours on Thursday from 11:30 to 1:30 to sign copies of the book. The limited edition of 800 copies is printed by College Press of Collegedale. ... (click for more)

Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: ARNOLD, WILLIE CARL  3600 SHIRL JO LN CHATTANOOGA, 37421  Age at Arrest: 30 years old Arresting Agency: Hamilton County FAILURE TO APPEAR DRIVING ON REVOKED, SUSPENDED OR CANCELLED LICENSE --- BARNES, DYLAN WESLEY  1026 PINNACLE HILLS DRIVE MURFREESBORO, 37127  Age at Arrest: 23 ... (click for more)

Drink Up, Chattanooga

I attended the meeting to discuss the placement of the sewage treatment plant at the Cambridge Center in Ooltewah today. My problem with the meeting (aka) dog and pony show, is that the meeting started out with the agenda of the Ooltewah Community Council.  After living in this area for 45+ years I have never heard of this group.  I would like for someone to answer ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Dear Faux Pelini

It has been my experience that of all the tribes and herds of different people on earth, sports writers are among the funniest people of all. Oh, there isn’t anything real sexy about Villanova beating Georgetown or a baseball player hitting for the cycle. Now, if a player hits a single, double, triple and homer in that order, that’s “a natural cycle,” and that is kind of fun to ... (click for more)

Knox Catholic Ends East Hamilton's Bid For Class 2A State Volleyball Title

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – East Hamilton’s bid to reach the TSSAA Class 2A state tournament title game was dashed Wednesday night when the Lady Hurricanes fell to Knoxville Catholic, 3-0, for the second time in as many days. Scores were 25-23, 25-22 and 25-17. “It’s hard to come back after playing a really good match like we did against Camden,” East Hamilton coach Bojana Hyatt ... (click for more)

Sale Creek Whips Watertown, 3-0, For Shot At First Class 1A State Volleyball Title

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Sale Creek wasn’t ready to head home short of its ultimate goal. And the roadblock Hickman County put up was nothing but a diminutive speed bump. Sale Creek (38-7) used its fast-paced attack to overwhelm the Lady Bulldogs, 3-0, Wednesday afternoon and remained alive in the loser’s bracket of the TSSAA Class 1A state volleyball tournament at Middle Tennessee ... (click for more)