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A New Day Has Come for Methuen
D.J. Beauregard  

President George W. Bush said in his first inaugural address, “The peaceful transfer of authority is rare in history, yet common in our country.  With a simple oath, we affirm old traditions and make new be-ginnings.” 

That is exactly what took place at the Tenney Grammar School auditorium in Methuen on January 2, 2006.  We saw William M. Manzi, III, formerly a city councilor representing the Central District, become Methuen’s fourth mayor.

Not only was a new mayor sworn in, but also taking the oath was a new slate of city councilors, school committeemen, Greater Lawrence Regional Vocational Technical High School committeemen, a Methuen Housing Authority member, and the Nevins Library trustees.

The slate of city councilors include at-large councilors Kathleen Corey Rahme, Kenneth R. Willette, Jr. and Stephen N. Zanni; East District councilors Larry F. Giordano and Joseph A. Leone, III; Central District councilors John A. Cronin, Jr. and Philip J. Lahey, Jr.; and West District councilors Robert A. Andrew and Deborah R. Quinn.

The slate of school committeemen includes Joseph M. Cosgrove, Ian P. Gosselin, Martha Monazynski Welch, and newcomers Kenneth A. Henrick, Gary M. Marcoux, and George J. Kazanjian.  Also sworn in were Greater Lawrence Regional Vocational Technical High School committeemen Michael E. Condon and Kenneth A. Henrick, Nevins Library trustees Josephine M. Napolitano and Arthur Nicholson, III, and Methuen Housing Authority member Richard True.  The other newly elected Methuen Housing Authority member, Francis T. Roberge, did not attend the ceremony.

Following a gracious and uplifting rendition of the national anthem by Methuen firefighter James Garrity, and an introduction by Congressman Marty Meehan, Manzi was sworn in to office by former state Senator and Justice of the Peace James Jajuga.  The other elected officials were sworn in by City Clerk Tina Conway. 

In Manzi’s inaugural address, he talked about the need for a new master plan and about development.  He also talked about the importance of education in Methuen.  He reiterated his campaign slogan, “Government works best when it works together,” and said that the slogan will no longer be just a slogan, but a reality.

Overall, Manzi’s speech was promising and hopeful about Methuen’s future.

The Methuen High School Ranger Jazz Band entertained the audience for the first half-hour of the evening before the ceremony began.  Musician Ben Cosgrove entertained the ceremony attendants during the inaugural dinner, which was served in the school cafeteria.

Ziti, meatballs, and various sandwich meats were offered, along with delicious cookies and brownies, all located in a series of buffet lines.

That evening, I also enjoyed the company of my lovely “best-est” friend, Rosemarie.  As I was pointing out all of the elected officials to her, I was surprised to find out that she already knew most of them.

Also in attendance was Lawrence Mayor Michael J. Sullivan, who attended Central Catholic High School with Manzi.

All in all, the transfer of authority from one mayor to the next went smoothly.

A new day has arrived in Methuen, but the old days will also be missed.  Mayor Pollard did a fine job in leading Methuen.  Though there were some controversies surrounding her actions as mayor, she was still a steadfast leader and kept Methuen strong and vibrant while surrounding communities struggled. 

During her administration, 90% of the roads in Methuen were repaved, and to top that, we experienced an amazing economic boom that created many new jobs.  Our new mayor has big shoes to fill, but we are all confident as a community that William M. Manzi, III will fill those shoes and make us proud.

D.J. Beauregard is The Valley Patriot's Methuen reporter. He was the campaign manager for Councilor Kathleen Corey Rahme's successful run for at-large City Council. If you have a news tip in Methuen,   you can email him at methuendj@aol.com

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The January, 2006 Edition of the Valley Patriot
The Valley Patriot is a Monthly Publication.
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