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Podcast releases episode 'Negative Mount Pleasant' which focuses on Foxconn agreement

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MOUNT PLEASANT, Wis. (CBS 58) -- The dirty laundry of a Racine County village is being aired out on an international stage.

A popular podcast did a deep dive into Mount Pleasant politics and the historical Foxconn agreement.

Village officials aren't happy with how they were portrayed as being duped by the company.

'Reply All' is one of the most popular podcasts in the country. It recently released an episode titled 'Negative Mount Pleasant.'

"They spent hours with us over a number of days." Kelly Gallaher is an important player in the episode's story. She's the spokesperson for the grassroots group 'A Better Mount Pleasant' and an outspoken critic of Village President David DeGroot.

The podcast largely credits DeGroot for orchestrating the Foxconn deal.

In the episode, he tells of his visit to a Foxconn plant in Japan, saying "I've seen the future and it's coming to Mount Pleasant. It was big, it was massive. It's just an amazing sight to see."

"What the podcast did best was allow us to tell our own story so that you had residents as well as officials and people from the area," said Gallaher.

The feeling listeners are left with after finishing the hour-long episode is that Foxconn, in essence, took advantage of the village and has not been following through on its promises.

DeGroot takes exception to that. He released the following statement to CBS 58 News,

“Contrary to the impression made by the podcast, there has been tremendous progress on the Foxconn site, including $100 million of site work and the near-completion of the first 120,000-square foot building. Work continues today, as any local resident can see.

In addition, the Village took nothing on faith, but developed a careful, conservative agreement with Foxconn that provides enormous safeguards and guarantees for local taxpayers. And, as was widely reported in the local media, the Village and County hosted numerous opportunities for public comment and involvement prior to approval.

We have seen tremendous progress in Racine County as a result of Foxconn's investment, including new jobs and business for local companies and increased opportunities for area residents. We look forward to continuing to maximize the benefits of this transformational project for our entire community."

Gallaher says the podcast has been downloaded a million times.

A large chunk of the episode is about the feuding between Gallaher and president DeGroot.

For CBS 58’s past coverage of the contentious relationship between Kelly Gallaher and Village President David DeGroot, click here.

To listen to the podcast episode “Negative Mount Pleasant,” click here.

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