I subscribe to the City of Port St Lucie’s online newsletter and found that NPR had done a story in February on Port St Lucie. The national media attention would normally be considered a good thing; however, the story wasn’t favorable for the city and I’m proud to say that PSL came back with a rebuttal to clear the air and make clear what the story portrayed and what was incorrect.
From NPR’s All Things Considered on February 18th, 2009:
Listen/read full article here.
Today, Port St. Lucie, the largest city in St. Lucie County, is a suburban dream gone bad. It has the nation’s eighth-worst foreclosure rate. Overgrown lots, vacant houses and “for sale by bank” signs are found on nearly every block.
[Doug] Coward, County Commissioner, wants the county to declare a state of emergency. Doing so would give administrators access to $17 million in county emergency reserve funds.
The rebuttal for the City of Port St Lucie shortly thereafter:
Read the full article here.
An erroneous statement by National Public Radio (NPR) was broadcast across the country Wednesday, mischaracterizing the city’s economic condition and potentially damaging the city’s favorable reputation within the financial industry.
Though the content of the story accurately stated that St. Lucie County is considering declaring a state of emergency to address economic problems, the promotional tease for the story that ran earlier in the program misrepresented the city’s reputation for being one of the state’s financially best-run cities.
The tease stated, “Not long ago, Port St. Lucie, Florida was one of the nation’s fastest growing cities … Now the city may declare itself an economic disaster area, going from boom times to bust.” Furthermore, the subtitle to the NPR Web version says, “Port St. Lucie, Fla., was America’s fastest growing city. Now it might be a disaster area.”
The City of Port St. Lucie is not an economic disaster area and has no plan or proposal to declare such. City management believes the statement was aired irresponsibly, especially considering that no one from NPR contacted city officials for clarification of the concept, which was originated by a St. Lucie County official, not by anyone from city government.