Newburyport, Massachusetts, Lisa Mead, Stephen Karp and Jacalyn Bennett

In the Newburyport Daily News on February 22, 2006 there is yet another Letter to the Editor extolling Nick Cracknell’s, Newburyport’s Planning Director, virtues. The Letter to the Editor is written by Mary Wilkins Haslinger. Ms Haslinger applauds Nick Cracknell’s many virtues while pointing out that we as the City of Newburyport need him because has won the confidence and respect of Stephen Karp–a very good point (hope it’s true.)

I would also add that we need Mr. Crackell because attorney Lisa Mead is representing a number of clients, including Jacalyn Bennett. (Ms Mead is also the lawyer for the directors of the Wheelwright House, and yes I gather she and Mr. Cracknell have been negotiating for the fate of that High Street property.)

Jacalyn Bennett is the owner of Bennett and Company and according to the Newburyport Daily News on February 17, 2006, is opposing Mr. Karp’s first project, a proposed restaurant on the former Mackenzie’s Warf, Fin51. (This is not the first project Ms. Bennett has opposed, but that would be the subject of another post, or in fact a number of posts. We are talking “controversial scale” here. However, I’m not quite sure where Ms Bennett would land on the “controversial scale,” whereas of course Norbert Carey was a slam-dunk.)

For those of you out there in Web-land or who are new to our city, Lisa Mead has been the mayor of Newburyport three times (no mean feat.) Ms Mead has also worked for Senator John Kerry. Lisa Mead knows who all the “players” are. Ms. Mead is a tough negotiator and as they say in New York (see earlier posts,) Lisa Mead is “one tough cookie.”

I personally don’t want a wallflower fighting for the City’s interest in this situation. Can you imagine negotiating between Stephen Karp and Lisa Mead? We as a City need a Planning Director who is also “one tough cookie.” And yes, and I think Nick Cracknell fits that bill quite nicely, thank you very much.

Mary Eaton, Newburyport