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Some Municipalities Get Salt Shipments, Others Still Waiting

2-19-14

By Lauren Wanko
Correspondent

Roselle is one of the few towns that got a salt delivery when other communities couldn’t. The mayor says all it took was a phone call to their supplier — International Salt.

“I got a hold of the corporate office and they made a shipment within 24 hours,” explained Roselle Mayor Jamel Holley.

Holley says he personally called International Salt last Monday, Feb. 10 after his Public Works Superintendent George Phipps briefed him on the borough’s salt shortage. Phipps says he called International Salt multiple times with no success. That’s when the mayor made a phone call.

“I told him I’m sure that he’s probably getting inundated with calls and I was probably one of several mayors, but if he could do us this favor we weren’t looking for the whole order. And he was very accommodating,” Holley said.

Roselle received about half their order last week. International Salt’s spokesperson tells NJTV News she couldn’t speak specifically to Roselle’s order, but added International Salt tries to get salt to as many customers as they possibly can when there are back-to-back storms. Then they go into supply mode. NJTV’s call to the International Salt employee Mayor Holley spoke with was not returned.

“He asked me what my town was. I told what it was. He said, ‘Give me a few minutes.’ He called his point of contact at the port or staging sight and called me back in minutes and told me that, ‘Hey you’re gonna get a shipment in 24 hours,’” Holley said.

NJTV News also called International Salt’s Port Newark number. There was no answer.

When asked if Holley was told why he was getting a shipment and not other towns, he said, “Maybe I caught him on a good day. Maybe I caught the guy on a good day.”

Roselle has about 60 tons of salt left in the dome, with not much left from the shipment received from International Salt last week. The Public Works director called International Salt again on Monday asking for the remainder of the order.

“I was told we should be getting a shipment by Friday,” Phipps said.

Phipps thinks the borough got the delivery last week because the mayor called and because of the borough’s persistence.

“We just beating down continuously calls over to the company — morning, afternoon, sometimes early evening,” Phipps said.

While Public Works directors in other towns continue to tell NJTV News they can’t reach anyone on the phone at International Salt, the company spokesperson does admit phones lines have been extremely busy and there have been long wait times.

International Salt tells NJTV News there is a shipment of salt arriving in Port Newark on Thursday or Friday.