Haverhill Receives Working Cities Grant to Improve Lives of Low-Income People

Haverhill’s Working Cities Team.

Haverhill has been selected as one of 10 Massachusetts cities to receive a $15,000 grant aimed at improving “the lives of low-income people in the Commonwealth’s smaller cities.”

Grants are to be used to further develop proposals to receive between $300,000 and $500,000 next summer to help low-income families. Haverhill plans to focus attention on “a community resource center to facilitate innovative multi-generational educational and employment opportunities in the Mount Washington neighborhood of the city,” according to the Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce.

“We are very pleased to launch a second round of the Working Cities Challenge in Massachusetts and are grateful to Gov. (Charlie) Baker, Massachusetts legislators and our partners for their continued support,” said Federal Reserve Bank of Boston President and CEO Eric Rosengren said. “Just as we ask teams to lead collaboratively, so too must the Fed in order to make the Challenge work—that is why we have adapted the process to include a design grant phase, which offers necessary resources to city teams as they build their proposals for implementation. We look forward to seeing the teams’ progress as they work toward submitting proposals for implementation awards.”

Besides the city and chamber, Haverhill’s team includes Community Action. Other partners are Haverhill Public Schools, Northern Essex Community College, Rehoboth Lighthouse Full Gospel Church, Team Haverhill, Emmaus, Urban Kindness, Merrimack Valley Workforce Investment Board, Jaffarian Volvo and Toyota, Fantini Bakery, community groups and neighborhood residents.

Besides Haverhill, the design grants were awarded last week to Brockton, Lowell, Lynn, New Bedford, Pittsfield, Revere, Salem, Springfield and Worcester. The money comes from the state, Living Cities, Massachusetts Competitive Partnership, NeighborWorks America, Smith Family Foundation and MassDevelopment.

Successful Cities Have People Who ‘Work Together’

The Working Cities Challenge, launched in 2013, builds on Boston Fed research that found success in those cities where people “work together” towards “a comprehensive vision.” Studies found 10 mid-sized manufacturing-dependent cities out of 26 nationwide were able to “either maintain or recover much of their economic stability, as measured by income, reduced poverty rates, population and economic vitality.” The successful cities are Evansville and Fort Wayne, Ind.; Grand Rapids, Mich.; Greensboro, N.C.; Jersey City, N.J.; New Haven, Conn., Peoria, Ill.; Providence, R.I.; Winston-Salem, N.C.; and Worcester.

Related studies found success came from, first, having available development sites, followed by site amenities, economic development marketing, timeliness of approvals, parking and school “success.” (See chart below.)

“We are excited about the next round of the Working Cities Challenge in Massachusetts and the model of collaborative, cross-sector leadership it contributes to the Commonwealth,” said Baker. “We look forward to pursuing the mutual goals and potential that programs like these and our administration’s Urban Agenda can create and contribute to the economic development of cities and towns throughout Massachusetts.”


2 thoughts on “Haverhill Receives Working Cities Grant to Improve Lives of Low-Income People

  1. Also where are these jobs coming from? Every year the council and mayor when they have a chance to lower the business tax rate they increase it. No wonder businesses are leaving Haverhill.