Monday, August 17, 2009

Another Addition to the Mayor Dean's Cast of Patsies

Caleb Hannan reports that PR firm, McNeely, Pigott, & Fox has fallen on its own sword in the wake of its suspension from the marketing contract for the proposed Music City Center.

But don't cry for Nashville's largest pitch men. They exit copping an attitude about the "misleading" blogs they were paid $10,000 to monitor, and they likely avoid any consequences from their friends in Mayor Karl Dean's office. For his part, the Mayor is free now to drop his plans for an audit of the spending, probably rationalizing that his MP&F campaign patrons have suffered enough.

But more importantly, according to NewsChannel5, they still have a sweet deal lined up with the Metro Nashville Airport Authority, which was won the very same day they landed the convention center contract. Under that contract not only do they average $10,000 a month more than the previous PR contractor, but Metro paid them $30,000 per month on two separate occasions when they did not complete the hours they pledged. Nice work if you can get it.

And what would Music City Center coverage be without a slick interface between unethical business practices and inappropriate government influence?
In the end, the airport picked McNeely, Pigott & Fox, they say, because an evaluation committee like an oral presentation put on by the group.

"We thought their presentation was the best and it was the unanimous feeling of the committee," Watson said.

Among the evaluators: the airport's communications director, Emily Richard, was a former McNeely Pigott & Fox employee, who'd had just got her job a few months earlier using references from the firm.
When you look at those air brushed ads that MP&F is doing for these government agencies, just keep in mind that thanks to a few bureaucrats and a slew of conflicts of interest, you're paying for it.

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