Good News for Lawrence, Methuen, & Haverhill

By: Rep. Linda Dean Campbell

Governor Baker has signed the $4 billion funding plan sent to him by the Massachusetts House of Representatives and Senate. The Legislature conducted extensive hearings before finalizing the legislation in order to hear the needs of communities across the state. The bill calls for $2.55 billion in federal ARPA (American Rescue Plan Act) spending and $1.45 billion in surplus state spending. We in the Legislature also thought it wise to put aside in savings a little more than $2.3 billion in ARPA funds to address future emergencies generated by the pandemic. ARPA money must be committed by the end of 2024 and spent by the end of 2026.

In general, the spending is focused on health care ($964 million), housing ($624 million), infrastructure ($414 million), education ($389 million), economic and workforce development ($267 million), and specific workforce initiatives ($500 million for essential worker premium pay and $500 million for the state’s unemployment insurance system).

Methuen and Haverhill fared very well in this legislation. Some highlights below include funding secured by the Methuen and Haverhill delegations in the House of Representatives, with additional funding available to our community through grants.

Funding for Methuen:

• $250,000 for an engineering assessment at the Burnham Road sewer pumping station for needed repairs to prevent possible sewer overflows
• $250,000 for an engineering assessment and infrastructure upgrades at the Riverside Drive sewer main to reduce sewer overflows
• $200,000 for Groundwork Lawrence to expand the Greening the Gateway Cities tree-planting initiative in Methuen and Lawrence – filed by Rep. Marcos Devers (Lawrence)
Funding for Haverhill:
• $250,000 for capital and safety improvements at Haverhill Public Schools
• $200,000 for Haverhill Public Schools to purchase an electric school bus
• $100,000 for improvements at Winnekenni Park
• $50,000 for the One Haverhill Fund to provide emergency assistance
• $50,000 for the food pantry at Sacred Hearts Parish
• $50,000 for Leaving the Streets Ministries in Haverhill for violence prevention

Our Commonwealth will soon receive an additional $9 billion in federal infrastructure funding for combined sewer overflow mitigation, highway improvements, public transportation, broadband access, and more. Our Merrimack Valley delegation will continue to work together to make the most of these dollars in our community.

I wish you and your loved ones joy and peace as we enter the New Year.

State Representative Linda Dean Campbell represents the cities of Methuen and Haverhill in the State Legislature. She serves as House Chair of the Joint Committee on Advanced IT, the Internet and Cybersecurity. She can be reached at or (617) 722-2380. ◊