“The purpose of these grants is to provide stipend support to increase high school students’ (9-12th grade) access to highly engaging STEM internships, particularly in schools enrolled in schools with high concentrations of low-income and historically disadvantaged student populations, to explore and prepare for a STEM Career in the Commonwealth.
Through this grant, the Commonwealth hopes to expose students to exciting career opportunities in STEM while also building the pipeline of talent in potential employees in the Commonwealth.”
The Greater Lowell Workforce Board (MassHire) will administer the funds to businesses that hire an intern to work on STEM projects in 2023 (approximately 100 hours/student).
For more information on eligibility and how to apply for the Internship funds, please contact, Katy Gentile at the Greater Lowell Workforce Board, [email protected].
In a long-planned evolution of the firm, Meridian Associates, Inc. is pleased to announce that John M. Ings, PE has been promoted to President and CEO of the Beverly-based, employee-owned firm. John joined Meridian in 2011. He most recently has served as Meridian’s Vice President of Engineering.
Join NMCOG on Monday, May 22nd, 2023, at 6:00 PM, for a special presentation, panel discussion, and conversation on Net Zero planning and regional sustainability.
This workshop will include a presentation from Net Zero consultant, John Snell, who will share lessons learned from his work with Merrimack Valley Planning Commission and Metropolitan Area Planning Council communities. Additionally, NMCOG’s Sustainability Planner, Daniela Garcia Moreno, will moderate a panel discussion with Sue Thomas, Westford’s Sustainability Coordinator; Badhri Uppiliappan, Chelmsford’s Clean Energy and Sustainability Committee Chair; and Terumi Okano, Pepperell’s Climate Change Committee Co-Chair. The evening will conclude with a discussion on regional sustainability achievements and opportunities.
We welcome everyone to join us and be part of this conversation!
Who? Anyone interested in learning about Net Zero and sustainability efforts in the NMCOG Region.
When? May 22, 2023, at 6:00 PM
Where? In person at NMCOG’s 40 Church Street office in Lowell or virtually via Zoom, registration link below.
Why? To learn from regional sustainability achievements and participate in future undertakings.
How? Join either in person or online! We encourage participants to join in person for an opportunity to network with members of the NMCOG communities.
The Middlesex 3 TMA partnered with One Tree Planted for our April Earth Month Commuter Challenge. Thanks to all who participated from the M3 TMA and Coalition, One Tree Planted was able to plant 46 trees in the Amazon Rainforest! The certificate can be seen above, and you can check out what they are all about here.
We are excited to showcase our new economic development logo! The logo was designed as part of a collaborative project for the spring semester Branding & Identity Class at Framingham State University. Special thanks to Professor Laura Osterweis and her talented students including- Maddison Behringer, Hakim Carnes, Hayley Gaskin, Hannah Guerin, Geanny Infante, Thalia Nesvacil, Jake Petersen, and Lior Rachmany- for their high level of creativity and professionalism in this process.
“We enjoyed working with the students through this process and are excited to start using this great logo in our economic development work.” said Planning and Community Development Director Erika Oliver Jerram. The final design chosen was designed by student Lior Rachmany using a tagline submitted by a resident as part of the Community Survey. The map locator marks the spot as “The Place to Be” and the red, blue, and green colors represent the historic fabric (mills), open space, and water (two rivers). The logo can be used in a variety of ways so keep an eye out as we broaden our efforts.
Update on 279 Boston Road, Concord Shores
The development project at 279 Boston Road, Concord Shores, is the first project permitted under the Mixed-Use Overlay zoning enacted in May 2021. The project, located at the south corner of the intersection of Boston Road and Bridge Street, will feature a single building with a ground floor restaurant and retail space, and 20 residential units. The project received board approvals in January 2023 and has received approval from the Town’s Building Department to begin site preparation. Work is expected to begin in the next few months.
The Mixed-Use zoning allows for increased residential density in return for transit amenities. In this case, the applicant is creating a bike share program for tenants, installing bike racks for retail patrons, and will work with LRTA leadership to construct and maintain a bus shelter on Boston Road. In addition, site improvements will vastly improve the way stormwater is managed on this riverfront site and the project will greatly increase landscaped areas.
Throughout the month of March, the Town ran a resident survey aimed at identifying businesses and services our residents enjoyed, and what they wanted. Overwhelmingly, the messages were “we love our small-town charm” and “we want a great meal”! The big items on most people’s wish-list were general retail, specialty restaurants, and amusement options for kids. For town amenities, a lot of people are using the library and existing trails, but would like more access to sidewalks, bike paths, and community spaces.
The Planning and Community Development Department is using the feedback from this survey in two main ways: as they talk with potential new businesses and brokers about coming to Billerica; and as they highlight our existing businesses in town. The survey also provided resident input on the tagline that the Department has incorporated into their new logo which will be debuting in the next few weeks.
Local Food Truck Spotlight
The Town has issued over a dozen Mobile Food / Canteen Truck licenses this year! Many of these morsels are owned by Billerica’s very own residents and ready to cater any private or corporate event you have!
Souped Up Food “Not just soup, but souped up food!” They offer globally inspired comfort and street foods, with a constantly changing menu to highlight seasonal and health-focused dishes. This truck has been owned by Billerica residents since 2016. They are frequently found set up at Oak & Iron Brewery in Andover on Thursdays, at Carlson’s Orchard in Harvard during summer and fall, and at many other events! Find their schedule and book the truck (or their full-service catering, Above the Clouds) through their webpage. For the foreseeable future, they plan to stay in Billerica! https://soupedupfood.com
Polish Prince Pierogi These handmade pierogis descend from a 100yr old secret family recipe, and the Prince fills it with traditional fillings as well as modern creations. Recently, they celebrated March Madness with a Sweet 16 fillings bracket, where social media followers have voted on head-to-head challenges. Buffalo Chicken, Honey Hot Chicken, and Sausage made the Final Four, and the Winner is Potato and Cheese! Try all their flavors by finding their truck at nearby farmer’s markets or by picking up directly from their commissary kitchen at Browns Corner. https://www.polishprince.com
What the Fork What the Fork has a funny name with a serious menu! Their truck can be found at private catering events serving fine Italian food or popped up streetside for some juicy smash burgers. They’ve recently made the move to a “brick and mortar” restaurant location of their own, in the heart of Billerica, and should be opening soon. Until then, their truck is out front most evenings. Follow their social media to know when to make your next burger run! https://www.facebook.com/whattheforkcateringbillerica
Augusta’s Chicken on the Run Most Billerica residents will tell you all about Augusta’s being a local success story. For more than 30 years, Augusta’s has served Billerica and the surrounding towns and took “the best damned chicken…ever” on the road in 2012. They still have two “Cluck Trucks” they use, which you can track on their social media.
Puffy Clouds The Puffy Clouds party carts have redefined classic carnival confections like cotton candy, popcorn, and churros. Started during the Covid-19 pandemic, it has since grown into a multi-state, multi-cart resource for all sorts of social events like birthday parties, weddings, and corporate / branding events. Book them for your next event at https://www.puffy-clouds.com.
We are always looking for ways to connect with the district. If you have a specific policy question, an event you want our office to know about, or just want to get to know your representative, please sign up for office hours!
If you’re not able to make it to office hours, no problem. Please email my aide, [email protected], and she will find a time for us to meet.
BUDGET WEEK RECAP
The House passed its iteration of the FY24 budget last week, totaling $56.2 billion in spending statewide and including several hundred million on progressive programs and policies. Below is a graphic illustrating just a few of these fantastic wins.
Alongside these statewide wins, we were fortunate to get a combined $600,000 for Lexington, Woburn, and Winchester-specific programs and projects. Here is a breakdown of where that money will go (pending Senate concurrence and the Governor’s final approval):
$100,000 for Woburn to implement recommendations from the Massachusetts Downtown Initiative for Local Rapid Recovery program,
$150,000 for Lexington to assist with the operations and coordination efforts of the 250th Anniversary of the American Revolution events,
$175,000 for capital improvements to the O’Brien ice rink in Woburn, and
$200,000 for the renovation and maintenance of recreational parks and facilities in Winchester.
This funding will go far toward economic development and recreation in our communities. Thank you to my colleagues, Rep. Rich Haggerty and Rep. Mike Day, for championing the Woburn and Winchester amendments!
I am delighted to have been re-appointed to four committees: Environmental and Natural Resources (ENR), State Administration and Regulatory Oversight (SARO), Children, Families, and Persons with Disabilities (CFPD), and Elder Affairs.
Serving on these committees means I see bills that deal with a wide range of issues, from waste reduction, to disability accommodations, to retirees’ housing situations. I am fortunate to serve with amazing groups of legislators, headed by thoughtful chairs, to consider bills that will impact every resident.
ZERO WASTE CAUCUS IN LEXINGTON (WITH MINORITY WHIP KATHERINE CLARK!)
As House Chair and co-founder of the Zero Waste Caucus, I was thrilled to host an event in Lexington with Minority Whip Katherine Clark as our keynote speaker this past February. We had 150 attendees at Cary Hall and listened to almost a dozen legislators and advocates discuss the most pressing waste issues and the most promising waste solutions.
As always, a huge thank you to all of our speakers and attendees, including:
State Representative Jeffrey Roy, State Senators Jason Lewis and Mike Barrett, Shannon Emmett from the Committee on Environment and Natural Resources, Patrick Prendergast from State Representative Day’s office,
Kirstie Pecci from Just Zero, Juan Jaramillo from the Environmental League of Massachusetts, Janet Domenitz from MASSPIRG, Hien Nguyen from Lexington’s own LexZeroWaste, and
Congresswoman Katherine Clark!
It has been so heartening over the last few years to see discussions on waste reduction rise through the legislative agenda. With so many amazing advocates and legislators, I am very excited to see what we can do in the next few!
TESTIFYING FOR CHAPTER 90 FUNDING AND ELECTRIC LANDSCAPE EQUIPMENT PROGRAM
As many of you know, there are between 5-7,000 bills filed each legislative session, and each bill has to have a hearing. I’ve been fortunate to testify on two of my own bills reflecting two of our communities’ greatest priorities: transportation and the environment.
Every year, the Legislature re-authorizes funding for municipal road and bridge maintenance via a program called Chapter 90. However, I believe we have been woefully underfunding this program, with no significant funding increases in over a decade. This year, I was able to testify on the vital importance of raising Chapter 90 funding for this year, as well as propose a commission to study the formula by which we distribute the funding to cities and towns.
As anyone who drives in Massachusetts knows, our roads desperately need small and large repairs. Studying how the Chapter 90 program currently functions, and how we can make it better, is the first step towards restoring our roads and bridges to a state of good repair.
This week, I was also able to testify on H765, which would create a statewide program to support municipalities and small businesses in their transition to electric-powered landscaping equipment. Far from being a leafy suburban issue, this program would have huge benefits for landscape workers; the motors on gas landscaping equipment do not have meaningful filters, so workers directly breathe in soot, gas, and carcinogens for hours at a time. They also suffer hearing loss from the noise and vibrations of the machines.
Electric landscape equipment is significantly quieter and has virtually no onsite emissions. This means better air quality for our communities and for the workers handling the equipment for hours at a time.
Last year, we were able to get funding in the FY23 budget for the Town of Lexington to pilot a similar program with great success. I look forward to continuing our advocacy on this important issue and building off of Lexington’s success!
MassHire Greater Lowell Career Center has set up an opportunity for employee recruitment at the upcoming MassHire Career Center Annual Job Fair on May 9th and 10th. The Career Center is now enrolling companies that would benefit from participating (No charge of any kind to companies that participate).
The following industry-specific information will guide you regarding the Job Fair:
MassEcon celebrated the 19th Team Massachusetts Economic Impact Awards on April 6, 2023, at Gillette Stadium, with Citizens as presenting sponsor. Over 330 people attended the ceremony to honor 13 companies for their outstanding contributions to the Massachusetts economy. Bristol Myers Squibb received the inaugural 2023 Massachusetts Summit Achievement Award for its long-standing commitment to Massachusetts. Yvonne Hao, Secretary of the Executive Office of Economic Development, was a featured speaker. Lisa Hughes, news anchor for WBZ-TV News, and Lieutenant Governor Kim Driscoll also provided remarks.
To view the event video, program book, and photos, go to the event page here.
Maugel DeStefano Architects has completed the design of the 20,000 SF medical office expansion at Woburn Pediatrics Associates and Woburn Pediatric Psychological Services in Woburn, Mass. Located at 7 Alfred Street, the renovation will increase capacity to 42 fully accessible exam rooms and 9 behavioral health treatment rooms. The expanded facility enables the practices to meet the growing demand for pediatric patient services in Woburn and the surrounding area.
Maugel DeStefano worked as a strategic advisor to Woburn Pediatrics throughout the planning and site evaluation process. After a thorough analysis, Woburn Pediatrics elected to remain at the Alfred Street location and build-out additional space on the 2nd and 3rd floors. The Pediatric Psychological Services suite, currently located on the 1st floor, will relocate to newly renovated space on the 2nd floor. The move allows for better connection and communication between both offices, while maintaining a private waiting room and treatment rooms for behavioral health patients and their families.
Exceptional patient care is the highest priority for Woburn Pediatrics. To ensure the new healthcare suites fully meet the needs of patients, families, and staff, Maugel DeStefano conducted a comprehensive survey to gain insight into each user group’s requirements. Survey recommendations were then incorporated into the redesign of the medical suites, creating a welcoming, vibrant, and functional environment tailored for all ages.
Massachusetts residents who are unemployed or underemployed and interested in hands-on training and education related to Machining should register for this opportunity! Find more details and registration link below.
Where: Woburn, MA When: Starting May 1st, 8:00AM to 2:00PM
In case you missed it, the Middlesex 3 Coalition Annual Meeting was held last Thursday morning, April 27th, at UKG, Inc in Lowell. With approximately 150 guests, the event started with networking and lots of coffee! Riemer & Braunstein, LLP, Enterprise Bank, Ultimate Kronos Group (UKG), and ahp Architects sponsored the event.
UKG Vice President of Global Workplace and Middlesex 3 Board Member Jonathon Proffitt welcomed everyone to their Lowell Headquarters alongside Vice President of Marketing Lisa Pratt. Middlesex 3 Executive Director Stephanie Cronin presented a Year-in review for 2022-2023, including highlights, milestones, and collaborating efforts.
Board Member Scott Weiss of the Guitierrez Company led the motion to elect the Board of Directors and Executive Committee for their appropriate terms.
Congratulations to The Newest Elected Board Members
Thomas Golden Jr.
Lowell City Manager
Anderson Strategic Advisors, LLC
Westford Town Manager
2023 Community Impact Award Winners
Middlesex 3 Vice President Bob Buckley, Senior Partner of Riemer & Braunstein, presented the first Community Impact Award to Paul Cohen, Chelmsford Town Manager from the public sector.
Newly appointed Undersecretary of the Mass EOED (and former M3 Board Member) Sarah Stanton presented the private sector Community Impact Award to Ultragenyx of Bedford, MA. Ultragenyx Vice President Manufacturing-Gene Therapy Thomas Lauzon accepted the Award for the company and the Bedford team.
Thomas Golden, Jr., Lowell City Manager and new M3 Board member welcomed Secretary Yvonne Hao to the podium to deliver the Keynote Address. Secretary Hao outlined her plan for future economic development initiatives. This includes organizing the Executive Office of Economic Development (EOED) into three pillars, Economic Foundation, Economic Strategy, and Consumer Affairs.