McBride residents are abuzz about two letters sent by ecoTECH Energy Group Inc. to members of the public last week.
The company proposes to build a green industrial park that would potentially provide some 250 temporary and permanent jobs in McBride. The company says construction could begin as early as spring 2012 and is holding a job fair this Saturday, Oct. 29th.
In two recent letters, the company discusses issues they feel could jeopardize their project.
One letter was addressed to McBride council and the other circulated through email. Both letters praise the efforts of mayor, council and village staff for their part in moving the development forward.
In the first letter addressed to Council Oct. 17th, which was included as an information item in the Oct. 25th Council agenda, ecoTECH CEO Colin Hall states: “I deeply regret that a destructive fringe may aspire to have the intent/potential to derail our developments in McBride.”
The company hints at legal action if a local businessperson, who they name, damages ecoTECH’s reputation. There is no mention of how the damage could occur.
The letter also states that some “candidates have very strange ideas on municipal management” and goes on to name one of the candidates for local office, citing concerns about that candidate’s alleged desire to disclose “corporate confidences.”
“It is unconscionable that everything can be overturned at a critical time by the threat of a change in government,” Hall goes on to say in the letter.
McBride Mayor Mike Frazier said in an interview on Monday that council asked ecoTECH at a special meeting Oct. 17th if the letter addressed to Council could be made public. Frazier said the company’s CEO Colin Hall confirmed that it could be.
Frazier said to Hall: “It sounds like you’re not just making a statement to us, you’re making a statement to everybody. He said ‘Yes.’ I said, ‘Well then is this document public?’ He said ‘Yes it is.’”
Frazier said making the letter public was meant to assuage fears in the community that the job fair was no longer happening. He said he wasn’t sure how exactly the letter was distributed.
“Once Colin said it was public, well I had a copy. If anybody asked me what was going on I’d say here – it’s Colin’s letter not mine.”
When contacted regarding the letters, ecoTECH issued the following statement:
“Never at any time has ecoTECH threatened to withdraw the project or intent on holding the community to any political coercion. The company has thanked the incumbent Mayor, Council and Officers of the Village of McBride for their support and help in moving the program forward. We look forward to enjoying support from the elected members in the new session in local Government as we move ahead with the project.”
ecoTECH did not respond to our requests for an interview.