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Eagle visit results in double-bogey for SLC

Several weeks ago, St. Lawrence Cement took its show on the road to the editorial board of The Berkshire Eagle. But on July 9th, Berkshires-based opponents learned that the Eagle was distinctly unimpressed. The paper issued a stinging rebuttal to the company's claims, dressing down one of SLC's highly-touted experts.

The paper wrote that "Dr. John J. Godleski, a Harvard associate professor of pathology hired by St. Lawrence to review the company's data on the proposed plant, told the editorial board the plant would pose no threat to the Berkshires, but the doctor's objectivity is debatable and his dismissive attitude toward the medical staff at Columbia County Hospital of Hudson, N.Y., is troubling. The staff voted 35-1 that the plant poses a serious threat to the health of the community, and while Dr. Godleski may have felt the doctors he met with were only interested in 'making speeches,' they were, according to Dr. Ira Marks, an attendee, asking pertinent medical questions and reminding the doctor his conclusions were based on data supplied to him by St. Lawrence."

Dr. Marks, in a recent letter to local papers, also noted that Mr. Godleski's partner, Dr. Petros Koutrakis, was asked whether he himself would want to live near a facility that SLC has proposed -- and replied, "No."

The Eagle editorial board concluded that "the company has not made its case economically or environmentally for its new plant, and its opposition to hearings on the plant suggests it fears it can't make that case."