“Sales Spin” Verses “Actual Reality”

The McLaughlin Family Living Trust, John Antaya and Kathleen (McLaughlin) Mardirosian entered into a purchase and sales agreement with Steven F. Venincasa, a developer, who is doing business as Whitney Street Home Builders, LLC. A few members of the McLaughin family are now telling people in town that it was the family’s plan to develop 17 Rice Road in Millbury, Massachusetts as single-family house lots. The McLaughlin family members claim that the developer, Steven F. Venincasa, switched the plans to a condominium development with 52 units and one or two lots that can be used for an additional single-family house or multifamily dwelling units, which was not the McLaughlin family’s intention and that the family is not pleased with their perceived backlash from the neighborhood and others.

In reviewing recent projects proposed or built by Steven F. Venincasa, under various corporate entity names, the goal seems to be to maximize bottomline profits over everything else, including, but not limited to: not respecting the existing neighborhoods (i.e., harmony and fit), the impact on the natural environments, community impacts (i.e., health, safety, quality of life), etc. While no one faults anyone for wanting to make a healthy profit for their efforts, there are other things to consider, like one’s reputation and impacts on others.

Everyone should do their own due diligence. A simple internet search can sometimes provide a perspective as to reputation or integrity, to understand what is “sales spin” verses the “actual reality” of any given situation. Speaking to professionals and neighbors of projects that have been developed has been quite informative and everyone is encouraged to do the same.

If someone told you that they would build you a residence less than 50 feet from an active railroad and it would have no adverse impact on your quality of life, would you conclude that to be “sales spin” or the expected “actual reality”? The majority would answer it is “sales spin” and they would be correct. Common sense should tell anyone that building next to active railroad tracks is going to be noisy, unhealthy, and not be a good quality of life no matter the marketing ploy of calling the property “luxury.”

Consider any developer or engineer trying to sell a proposed project to the Millbury Planning Board as “used car salesmen.” This analogy should provide the necessary prospective to evaluate statements and promises made during the “sales cycle” or permitting phase of a proposed project to the Millbury Planning Board to gain the approval of their proposed project. There are other examples that were discussed throughout the series of public hearings, in written correspondence, etc.