The Haverhill City Council honored former Mayor James A. Rurak Tuesday by agreeing to name the Crystal Point Conservation Area on Crystal Street in Haverhill after the former city leader.
Mayor James J. Fiorentini said his predecessor, known for his love of the outdoors, helped make certain Haverhill never suffered from a lack of drinking water.
“Mayor Jim Rurak was instrumental in the re-use of Crystal Lake, having a line built from Crystal Lake to Kenoza, putting it back online. It’s one of the reasons we have never had a shortage of water in the city of Haverhill. He was then instrumental in preserving the area around the water supply so that we would protect the water supply,” Fiorentini said.
The area, which will now be known as the Mayor James A. Rurak Conservation Area, consists of 10 acres on the south side of Crystal Street along the northern shore of the lake which will be designated with a sign.
The mayor also listed other contributions made by Rurak during his eight years in office and beyond.
“He was responsible for building two new schools and the brand new police station. After Mr. Rurak was mayor, he continued to serve the city with distinction. He’s been involved for many years in civic affairs in the city. He’s a longtime member of the board of trustees of the Haverhill Public Library and he’s been instrumental in the library’s current remodeling drive,” Fiorentini said.
Although Rurak was not in attendance at the meeting because of a family commitment, many councilors took the opportunity to praise the former mayor calling him a champion for the Latino population and simply a great gentleman.
Councilors passed the proposal by a unanimous 9-0 vote.