Mayor Greg Verga Announces the Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds Appropriation Plan and Upcoming Infrastructure Projects

Funding will positively impact Gloucester’s community and residents for years to come. 

 

Today, Mayor Greg Verga announced the first major investment of the Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds and the general plan for this funding. Under the American Rescue Plan Act’s (ARPA) local funding provisions, the City of Gloucester was allocated $23 million. Mayor Verga launched the Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds Listening Group to solicit public input on the funding opportunity and report their findings back to the administration. After thoroughly reviewing the group’s report and the community’s requests, Mayor Verga has determined to appropriate Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds to the following categories:            

 

●       Infrastructure

●       Housing

●       Economic Development

●       Public Health

●       Community Initiatives

●       Parks and Open Space

●       Arts and Culture

●       General Government/Revenue Recovery                                           

 

“I am so appreciative of all of the hard work and dedication of the Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds Listening Group and to all of the residents and organizations for participating in this important dialogue,” said Mayor Greg Verga. “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and I want to be sure we are using this funding to positively impact our residents for years to come.”

 

Mayor Verga has chosen to strategically invest a significant amount of the $23 million in the City’s infrastructure in response to several critical issues within the community. From the beginning of Mayor Verga’s administration, it has been a priority to tackle the necessary upgrades for Gloucester’s wastewater treatment plant. The City of Gloucester will allocate 65% of the Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds to infrastructure projects; this includes $10 million to the wastewater treatment plant and $3 million to address our City’s roads. 

 

“It is time to stop kicking the can down the road and start the work on our wastewater treatment plant,” said Verga. “We can’t invest significantly in other areas until we have an adequate wastewater treatment plant; this investment is a necessary first step. I want to do the most good for the most people over the most time, and this project does just that.”

 

The $3 million investment will build on Mayor Verga’s commitment to improving Gloucester’s streets; the Mayor significantly increased the Department of Public Works (DPW) Fiscal Year 2023 paving budget and allocated additional free cash last fiscal year to have a greater impact on our roads. Due to this increased funding, Gloucester’s DPW will be able to repave several municipal roads and has already started its work. Attached is the “Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 Paving Schedule” that has already begun; this schedule is subject to change.

 

In addition to infrastructure, the Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds will be distributed across various priorities. The current economic landscape and post-Covid society have highlighted the need to invest in affordable housing, parks and recreation, and public health. Mayor Verga will allocate much-needed funds to support several projects and initiatives in these areas. Additional information regarding these categories will be announced in the coming weeks.

 

“This is an exciting opportunity and gives us the ability to have a real impact on our community,” said Verga. “This framework gives a good idea of our investment plan for this funding, and I look forward to continuing our work.”

 

For the final Covid Local Fiscal Recovery Funds Listening Group report and public submissions, please visit: https://arpa.gloucester-ma.gov/

 

Gorton’s makes $250,000 Gift To Sawyer Free 2025 Campaign

Front row: Gorton’s Vice President of HR Chelsea Cote, Sawyer Library Foundation Chair John Brennan, Gorton’s CEO Kurt Hogan and Bianka Amparo; Second row: Gorton’s employees Daniel Molloy, Diovery Severino, Melissa Rose, Santa Suazo, Sawyer Free Library Library Director Jenny Benedict and Gorton’s employee Kathleen Brown; Third row: Gorton’s employees Shevonne Orlando, Fay D’Angelo, Kelly Rizzo, Rick Turner and Angela Morrissey; Back Row: Sawyer Free 2025 Campaign Manager Sarah Oaks, Sawyer Library Foundation Steering Committee Chair Barry Weiner, Gorton’s employees John Scola, Adam Bartke and Tony Ventimiglia

Gloucester’s most iconic brand has made a charitable donation of $250,000 to Sawyer Free 2025 (visit sawyerfree2025.org), the philanthropic capital campaign to fund a comprehensive renovation, modernization and expansion of Gloucester’s public library building. The donation is earmarked to cover the cost of a new Library History Center inside the library’s existing footprint. 

“Gorton’s is proud to support the renovation and modernization of the Sawyer Free Library and its mission,” said Gorton’s CEO Kurt Hogan. “The library is a place of learning, creativity and innovation that nurtures and develops the community. We hope many generations will enjoy the new library for years to come.”

The Sawyer Free 2025 project will preserve the original exterior of Cape Ann’s oldest public library, which will house a fully redesigned interior, and will also double the size of the library’s current footprint with a 15,000-square foot addition. With the gift, Gorton’s secured another of the multiple donor-naming opportunities available in support of the campaign—one that will revolutionize the manner in which Gloucester’s historical artifacts and research materials are curated, archived, accessed and preserved. Currently, the library’s local history space is neither enclosed nor climate-controlled. 

“Sawyer Free Library boasts a 140-year legacy as a cultural, educational, communal, civic and social-services hub for the City of Gloucester,” said Barry Weiner, a retired attorney and the campaign chair for Sawyer Free 2025. “Thanks to Gorton’s, the new Library History Center will house invaluable pieces of Gloucester’s history and will take on international relevance as a place people can contact from anywhere in the world with a question about Gloucester. Authors, scholars, reporters, actors and everyday citizens everywhere will obtain a free, insider’s passport to the rich cultural history of this city and region that we all love.”

The design principles of Sawyer Free 2025 are grounded in the human experience and an ambition to put people first. The completion of the new facility—featuring a sound studio, a film studio, a digital tech lab and 110-seat community meeting space inside one of the most walkable destinations in the city—will result in a 25-percent increase in annual visitors, a 25-percent increase in the number of public programs offered each month by the library and a 50-percent increase in the number of programs hosted at the library by partner agencies.

The Sawyer Free 2025 project’s total cost is $28 million, a sum that includes built-in inflation costs through the completion of the project in 2025. The Sawyer Library Foundation, the fundraising arm of the campaign, has already inspired more than $15 million in pledged donations and grant awards, including $1 million in the first 150 days following the public launch of the campaign this past May. 

The newly renovated and expanded Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library will stand as a model for what a 21st century civic hub can and should be in terms of architecture, accessibility, sustainability, the use of natural resources and light, layouts, lines of sight, air quality and public safety. The end product will exponentially amplify the library’s ability to deliver critical services and outcomes not only for Gloucester, but for communities across Cape Ann and the North Shore as a place of equity, inclusion, connection, creation, compassion, renewal and advancement.

Since this spring, six of the project’s 14 naming opportunities have already been funded, including financing for a dedicated Children’s Room by the Institution for Savings, a separate Children’s Programming Room by BankGloucester, an all-ages digital makerspace by Cape Ann Savings Bank, a Teen Creation Center by Sudbay Automotive Group and a new, 16-seat library conference room by a private family foundation.

Since 1849, Gorton’s mission has been to help people everywhere enjoy the goodness of great seafood. Headquartered in Gloucester, Massachusetts, Gorton’s is one of America’s oldest continuously operating companies, and continues to be an innovative leader in the frozen seafood industry. The Gorton’s Fisherman, in his yellow slicker and rain hat, embodies this commitment. For more information, please visit http://www.gortons.com or call 1-800-222-6846.

✓ How do I learn more or contact Sawyer Free 2025?

Visit sawyerfree2025.org

info@sawyerfree2025.org

media@sawyerfree2025.org

Call 978.225.0363 or 978.225.0915

Facebook: Sawyer Free 2025

Instagram: Sawyer Free 2025

YouTube: Sawyer Library Foundation 2025

✓ How Do I Give to Sawyer Free 2025?

  • Visit sawyerfree2025.org
  • Text to donate: Text “325182” to 1-855-575-7888 and select an amount
  • Checks: SF2025, 2 Dale Ave., Gloucester, 01930 (Checks payable to: “Sawyer Library Foundation”)
  • Volunteer! Reach out if you want to pitch in at the library or with the capital campaign, either in person or virtually. Help your neighbors, serve your community and share your expertise. No matter what kind of volunteer work you do for us, you are contributing in invaluable ways.

Guest Artist Matthew Billey showing at Seven Suns Gallery Oct. 7 – Nov. 25

Artist Reception: Friday, Oct. 14 from 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Seven Suns Gallery, 48 Bearskin Neck, Rockport, MA 01966

Matthew Billey has been a traditional wooden boat builder for the last 25 years. He has a special interest in Scandinavian designs and construction methods. Matt built and lives aboard his 27’ Danish Cutter, Jette. She appears frequently as the main subject matter in his artwork. His expertise in designing, building and sailing wooden sailboats lends a discerning eye when portraying them accurately in their element.

His 7 year old daughter, Naomi, was a major influence in getting him started as a painter. Since the Spring of 2022, he has made several works based on his interest in metaphysics, global ascension, astrology, perception beyond the ordinary five senses and spirituality. He merges that interest with his passion for landscapes and boats. Matt’s latest body of work, The “Red Sun” series, showcases 7 tall vertical paintings; all acrylic on wood and all fantastical in nature.

The “Red Sun” series and others of Matt’s paintings will be featured as a Fall Event at Loren Doucette Studio at Seven Suns Gallery from Oct. 7 – Nov. 25th. The guest artist reception will be Friday, Oct. 14 from 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm and is free and open to the public. Seven Suns Gallery is located at 48 Bearskin Neck in Rockport, Ma. and is open 7 days a week from 10:00 am – 6:00 pm.

Get Rid Of All Your Junk Before Winter Hits With The Help Of LCI Services!

While many people may feel that they can declutter all on their own, it can be a major hassle. This is especially true when you have a lot of work to do between cleaning your house or business. If you need to get rid of junk in your home or business, hiring professionals is the best thing to do.

Call today & take advantage of our junk removal super sale!

Limited time offer978-704-9757

TWO WORDS – ✨LOBSTER RANGOON✨Try one of our favorites – served with chili cherry sauce at The Studio Restaurant On Rocky Neck

capeanneats

TWO WORDS – ✨LOBSTER RANGOON✨
Try one of our favorites – served with chili cherry sauce 🦞 #StudioGloucester
Available for takeout when you order directly through our website!

http://ow.ly/oCA950L7b7L

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