Lack of Public Relations in Newburyport, MA

The gentleman who owns the Newburyport Crow Lane Landfill could use a PR lessen from Mr. Tolan (see earlier entry).

I am on the Crow Lane Landfill email list. And let me tell you the emails that come across are heart breaking. This is the 5th year that some of the residence of Newburyport, MA have had to put up with unbelievable odors from the Newburyport Landfill.

Anyone who has had the “pleasure” of the experiencing the “stench,” would have the most heartfelt heartbreak for these folks.

One very enterprising member of the list (many of the folks on that list are unbelievably enterprising) actually had a telephone conversation with the owner himself. Wow. The owner, up close or even not up close has been very hard to get a hold of (vast understatement).

Apparently the conversation did not go well. (I bet the owner’s lawyers did not like that one.) It ended, predictably, with the owner of the landfill, as I understand it from the email list, having some not so nice words with our enterprising resident, and the owner blaming everyone but himself.

This apparently has been done in documents, so it doesn’t exactly come as a big surprise. Maybe the not so nice language part, but the “it’s not my fault” part- no surprise at all. And now I want $7.1 Million from the city of Newburyport, MA (Newburyport Daily News, August 11, 2007), because I am a victim, I suppose, sadly, was almost predicable.

Really lousy PR.

Now, the owner, could have handled things much differently, we all know that. Otherwise the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts would not now (finally) be taking legal action to take over the “stench-plagued Crow Lane landfill,” (Newburyport Daily News, August 3, 2007).

What if all along, the actual owner, had done right by us in Newburyport, MA, which the State, the DEP and the City of Newburyport, MA, do not think he did.

Wow, we are talking way beyond hypothetical here. But, what if the owner himself had met with the residence in question, right from the get-go, had a personal relationship with them, walked the landfill and experienced what they experienced, and actually worked with them to solve the issue? Whole different ball game.

Great PR (especially if the issue had been taken care of).

And Mr. Karp is having a similar PR problem in Newburyport, MA. Mr. Tolan is again– good role model here on the PR stuff.

What if Mr. Karp made himself available, one on one, more than just once to the tenants (good start, but a little more needed), gave folks an idea of who he is and what, at the very least, the vaguest direction he could be contemplating. If there is nothing to hide, why not??

By showing 87 High Street, Leslie and Peter Tolan basically said we have nothing to hide, come take a look and see for yourself. And come meet us one on one. Great PR. A good example of the beginning to build the “trust thing” in a community.

By not making himself available, Mr. Karp is doing exactly the opposite. The “trust level” in Newburyport, MA, Mr. Karp wise, on a scale of 1-10, is way, way, way low.

And as for the owner of the Newburyport Crow Lane Landfill, there is no “trust level” at all. Apparently the residence of Newburyport, the City of Newburyport, MA, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the DEP feel the trust level has long, long, long ago has been beyond completely decimated. And now he wants $7.1 Million from us??

Lousy PR.

Mary Eaton