Breakthrough Web Design - 641-201-1459 - Build Your Online Presence
News & Entertainment for Mason City, Clear Lake & the North Iowa Region
• Founded 2010

Protesters plague Robin’s Prestage pork party


This news story was published on June 2, 2016.
Advertise on NIT Subscribe to NIT

Robin Anderson and her protege, Julie Valencia formerly of Kaplan University, leave the "meeting".

Robin Anderson and her protege, Julie Valencia formerly of Kaplan University, leave the “meeting”.

MASON CITY – Robin Anderson’s Prestage pork extravaganza held Thursday morning had more protesters outside than people attending inside.

As many as 100 people were outside the Historic Park Inn hotel Thursday morning leading up to the 9:30 event. It was invitation-only, and NorthIowaToday.com was excluded. The Globe Gazette was allowed in, and they “live-blogged” as the meeting was held. That newspaper has been a strong supporter of going ahead and building the $240 million hog processing plant on the city’s south side.

Anderson invited “centers of influence” and “volunteer leaders of local boards” to come to the Park Inn to discuss how to bring the Prestage Pork Plant to a second vote.  Perhaps two dozen people attended, including media.  Three Mason City council members attended: Brett Schoneman (already strongly in favor of Prestage) and more importantly, Bill Schickel and Alex Kuhn – who are both rumored to be considering flip-flopping their votes.

The talk outside the Park Inn, amongst the protestors, was that at least one councilman is all set to flip-flop his vote but is waiting for at least one more councilman to come along. Bill Schickel has already indicated he would consider a new proposal from Prestage.  Several protestors remarked about councilman Brett Schoneman’s demeanor after the meeting.  He hung around outside the Park Inn and talked with some folks, who came to NIT and said his “confidence” really “stood out” to them.

“He knows something,” one woman told NIT.

A 3-3 tie vote back on May 3 put the brakes on Prestage Foods’ hog plant, but, one more councilman’s support would change the course of history in Mason City and lead to the plant’s existence here.  Currently, Prestage is seeking a home in Iowa for its plant, and Mason City has always been at the top of the list due to the availability of treated water and sewage capacity we already have.  NIT has been told for weeks that a new deal with Prestage is imminent, and Robin Anderson and others are lobbying the three “no” councilman hard to come around and support a “sweeter” deal so the plant can be built.

As Anderson’s meeting ended, people from inside trickled out, sheepishly, and strode past the protestors, who were armed with signs, loud voices and chants of “no Prestage”.

Frontman Rick Mathes – who is lobbying council members too change their vote to support the plant – came outside and refused to answer questions from NIT about how much money he thinks his business stands to profit from the pork plant if it is built.  He distributed flyers before the meeting on tables in support of the plant, but NIT is told he was asked to stop.

Anderson finally came outside with her new protege, Julie Valencia, who used to work for Kaplan University, known to take students to the cleaners. Both refused to answer questions.

Police arrived on the scene, and had a long conversation with the only black man who participated in the protest. An unmarked police car drove by numerous times, while two MCPD cars were parked outside.

Eventually, everyone dispersed.  Now, the people of Mason City wait to see what Robin Anderson and city hall will do next.  The smart money, NIT is told, is that a big development in this saga could come as early as Friday, June 3.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

 characters available

29 Responses to Protesters plague Robin’s Prestage pork party

  1. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    June 4, 2016 at 9:55 am

    Robin! YOUR FIRED -quote the DONALD !

  2. Avatar

    anonymous Reply Report comment

    June 3, 2016 at 1:19 pm

    But still here

  3. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    June 3, 2016 at 12:00 pm

    mason city is a dying town with no jobs. just the way it is and the way it will always be.

  4. Avatar

    anonymousi Reply Report comment

    June 3, 2016 at 1:38 am

    I was a supporter of this coming to town. I was a supporter of Robin and the Mayor. My conscience won’t let me proceed with my thoughts. I can’t tell you how wrong your actions are. It’s really not about WHAT you wanted but how you will do anything to get it. This is not a reflection in my mirror that I want to become or my children should not see the seedy side of the managers of our town any longer.
    You are no better than any gangsters or bad guys in our American history books.

  5. Avatar

    Chandler Reply Report comment

    June 3, 2016 at 1:27 am

    In recent months Bill Cosby has been accused of atrocities. 58 people came forth about his shenanigans. Like MC why can’t you believe the hundreds against this vs 6. Proofs in the pork.

    I hope the folks who are members pull out of her devious behavior through the Chamber. Don’t worry you will do just fine w/o the Chamber. We’ll make our own booklets.

  6. Avatar

    Barb Reply Report comment

    June 3, 2016 at 1:20 am

    What tidbit of integrity you had just left the bldg.

    How do ya like me nooow!

  7. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    June 3, 2016 at 1:17 am

    Oh Robin robin you think you are a first lady or something. It thrills most of us to watch your poison spill out of your pores. Same with your buddies.. Mayor.

  8. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    June 3, 2016 at 12:24 am

    I just saw on the Globs website that Prestage will not be seeking out Mason City any longer.

  9. Avatar

    Ralph Reply Report comment

    June 2, 2016 at 10:42 pm

    I would like to know why the chamber thinks that the city should offer Prestage a”sweeter deal”? The majority of the citizens do not want this. Besides, if Prestage wants to be here they need to give us a “sweeter deal”.

  10. Avatar

    rukidding Reply Report comment

    June 2, 2016 at 7:40 pm

    If these kinds of plants increase the standard of living for people in the community it should be very easy for the pro pig plant people to prove it. What is the average wage in Marshalltown, Storm Lake? What is the property values like compared to Mason City? How do the schools rate compared to Mason City? What was the population before and after these plants moved to town? How many police officers did these towns employee before and after the plants arrived? What other industries followed these kinds of plants to the town? What is the poverty rate in these communities compared to Mason City? Has any other type of company moved to the town?

  11. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    June 2, 2016 at 7:10 pm

    Looks like Robin’s new best friend, Julie Valencia, needs lay off the bacon, the donuts, the mashed potatoes & gravy, the cakes & pies and ice cream.
    Damn, she can lie down and stand up and her height doesn’t change and she’s got more Chins than a Hong Kong phone book.

    • Avatar

      Anonymous Reply Report comment

      June 3, 2016 at 12:22 am

      Robin may think that being with this big woman makes her look better. Well, it doesnt. And yes, this woman needs to lay off the bacon.

      • Avatar

        Anonymous Reply Report comment

        June 3, 2016 at 10:10 am

        really, tempting as it is, skipper for once got it right when he said we should lay of the character assassinations. please, leave personal health issues, unfortunate looks etc out of it! we need to hold our leaders accountable for their words and actions. not for being morbidly obese.

        • Avatar

          Anonymous Reply Report comment

          June 3, 2016 at 10:44 am

          Yes, you are right. My apologies.

        • Avatar

          Anonymous Reply Report comment

          June 4, 2016 at 11:13 am

          You mean like how Skipper uses his silly me to insult citizens who don’t support Globe’s hidden agenda.

  12. Avatar

    whatever Reply Report comment

    June 2, 2016 at 6:28 pm

    Wow the supporters of this plant are racist they just want to take advantage of the less fortunate.

  13. Avatar

    watching Reply Report comment

    June 2, 2016 at 5:42 pm

    Anything Robin Anderson supports is not good for the people of Mason City. I wonder how many people attended this meeting must have been a small minority because most of the citizens of Mason City thinks its a stupid idea.

  14. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    June 2, 2016 at 3:53 pm

    Does Prestage still want to deal with Mason City?

  15. Avatar

    Watching Reply Report comment

    June 2, 2016 at 2:51 pm

    Who are the protesters and who made the signs? Because one of the so called protesters is my cousin who without going into his health, can’t write Prestage which is in one of your pictures and stinks in another. He is illiterate and can’t sign his own name let alone make a sign. He can’t sign his name on his disability check he doesn’t know how!

    • Avatar

      Polio Loco Reply Report comment

      June 2, 2016 at 4:01 pm

      Donny can read just fine, he does karaoke!

      • Avatar

        Watching Reply Report comment

        June 2, 2016 at 4:15 pm

        Polio Loco I left you a response below.

    • Avatar

      Anonymous Reply Report comment

      June 3, 2016 at 6:46 pm

      Oh so you don’t like people who can’t read or write, shame on you!

      • Avatar

        Watching Reply Report comment

        June 3, 2016 at 7:06 pm

        The guy is my cousin my family so your comment on me not liking people who can’t read and write is redickuless! Also I have a son with severe Ceribal Palsy who can’t read or write ether, so the one to be ashamed is you!

    • Avatar

      Anonymous Reply Report comment

      June 3, 2016 at 7:18 pm

      Smooth move chamber, now our beloved Park Inn is now known as Pork Inn. I have some friends that come visit every summer and get a few rooms and are disgusted that the hotel would allow a meeting to discuss a pig killing plant. They will not stay there now, they plan to stay at Clear Lake.

  16. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    June 2, 2016 at 2:40 pm

    There’s got to be some kind if laws and rules that the elected council members need to follow. It seems our council just does whatever they please, and the common people don’t know if they are doing things legally or not. How can we find out the laws and bi-laws that are supposed to be followed.

  17. Allen

    Allen Reply Report comment

    June 2, 2016 at 2:34 pm

    Maybe Robins courting a new chamber or city employee.

  18. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    June 2, 2016 at 2:33 pm

    Thanks to all you who showed up to protest!