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Coronavius Strikes Methuen City Hall – Election, and Tonight’s Council Meeting Now in Question

Sources revealed today that the Methuen City Clerk has tested positive for the Coronavirus and possibly exposed others in city hall, including the city’s entire legal office and possibly the mayor. Officials at Human Resources were notified of the positive test and that the employee is currently quarantined.

City Attorney Rick D’Agostino sent a letter to the City Council informing them this afternoon that he will not be attending tonight’s city council meeting because he and those in his office had contact with with the employee last Thursday.

“Last Thursday, I was in my office in city hall when that employee came in to discuss a legal issue,” D’Agostino’s letter reads.

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D’Agostino says that two other people in his office were also present with the infected employee. He says he will monitor the meeting and be available via tele conference if his assistance is needed. D’Agostino says he will have to be tested and quarantined for the time being.

MEETING IN QUESTION

Methuen City Councilor Joel Faretra told The Valley Patriot that at this point he may not attend tonight’s meeting and doesn’t know if it will even take place because “it’s not safe.”

“I don’t know if we should go to city hall tonight. I don’t know if it’s safe for us to hold a meeting there tonight. I can’t imagine it’s going to be cleaned by then. What are the odds they will have the building disinfected and be ready for 6:30? This is bad.”

Councilor Nick DiZoglio told The Valley Patriot that he was concerned about tonight’s meeting but said that the Great Hall (where they hold the meetings) is probably not a risk. He said he would be willing to hold the meeting via Zoom or postpone the meeting until Thursday to give city hall a chance to get a handle on the situation. 

“I dont now if he was in the Great Hall, so it’s probably safe. Don’t get me wrong there are people testing positive in that building all the time. I think if we can get it sanitized and safe I’m fine with meeting tonight but if other councilors want to do it another way I am open to that.” 

VOTING PROCESS IN QUESTION

“What I am really worried about is if this this will effect the election, tomorrow,” DiZoglio said. “The worry is that workers may have been infected and that this may affect how we handle the election.” 

Mayor Perry could not be reached for comment. 

Tom Duggan

Tom Duggan

Tom Duggan is president and publisher of The Valley Patriot Newspaper in North Andover, Massachusetts. He is an author, host of the Paying Attention TV/Radio Program, lectures on media bias and police issues, is a former Lawrence School Committeeman, former political director for Mass. Citizens Alliance, and a 1990 Police Survivor. You can email your comments to valleypatriot@aol.com.

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