Developer Seeks Haverhill Council Approval for Eight One-Bedroom Apartments in Historic District

Haverhill city councilors tonight will consider approving plans to construct eight, one-bedroom apartments above two storefronts in a building within the Washington Street Historic District. The property, in the Adams Building at 38-42 Washington St. in downtown Haverhill, was for many years the home of the Rosen family’s Modern Paint and Hardware store. The three-story, Italianate-style building was constructed in 1882 after the Great Fire of the same year. According to attorney Robert D. Harb, representing Rob Landry of Four Points Property Management, two apartments are to be set aside as affordable rental units to comply with the city’s Inclusionary Zoning ordinance, adopted last fall.

U.S. Supreme Court Gave Go-Ahead 72 Years Ago to Radio for Bus Riders; Proves Too Late for WHAV

‘Music as You Ride’ Fails to Save Original WHAV-FM in 1952

Editor’s note: A version of this story originally appeared in a WHAV newsletter May 17, 2010. Additional photograph below. The original FM incarnation of WHAV was a relatively short-lived affair of about only four years. It was conceived under difficult circumstances, lived in painful agony and died in part because of complaints from, of all people, bus passengers. WHAV FM was supposed to be Haverhill’s first radio station and would have been one of the first FM stations in the northeast.

Holy Family Hospital Owner Pledges to Sell Physician Group and Private Jets as Part of Turnaround Plan

The owner of Holy Family Hospitals in Haverhill and Methuen said Friday it is seeking to sell its physician group and private jets as part of, what it calls, a “six-point action plan” to save the company. As WHAV previously reported, Friday was a state deadline for Steward Health Care to meet certain demands, including producing financial records. The company said its lenders agreed to continue to withhold taking collections action against the chain through April 30 “to give the company time to execute this plan.”

“First and foremost, we want to continue to do the right thing for patients, our staff and our communities. That is our commitment going forward. In the future, that will take a different form, but the mission remains the same,” said Dr. Michael Callum, Steward’s executive vice president for physician services and interim president of the northeast region.

Haverhill Boys and Girls Club One of Two Bidders for State Land Near 495; Site Shares Some Club History

The Boys and Girls Club of Greater Haverhill is contemplating a move, placing a bid on state-owned property near Interstate 495 at Broadway. The Club, which is nearing its 125th birthday in downtown Haverhill, still faces several hurdles before obtaining the 6.5-acre property at 393 Broadway. It faces a competing $850,000 bid, purportedly from a housing developer, and any land sale still requires Federal Highway Administration approval, according to John Goggin, spokesman for the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. Goggin told WHAV the state received “two bids that tied and is now awaiting a best and final offer between the two bidders. The bid process is still ongoing, so MassDOT cannot identify the bidders at this time.”

The land, at the corner of Broadway and Monument Street, isn’t far from Haverhill High School.

Healey Threatens Steward Hospitals with Admission Freezes, Closing Beds if Demands Not Met by Friday

Gov. Maura Healey Tuesday released a list of demands—including financial records and safe staffing and supply levels—she said she is making of Steward Health Care, owner of Holy Family Hospitals in Haverhill and Methuen. Healey, in a letter sent to Steward CEO Ralph de la Torre, asked the chain to take a number of steps by Friday or face the state “freezing admissions, closing beds, canceling procedures and transferring patients to other hospitals.” One step asks Steward to produce financial records that are required of other health care systems, but that Steward has refused to submit for years.” The governor said information would show whether spending and resources might “put profits over patient care.”

“The time has come to move past our many months of discussions and begin executing a safe, orderly transition of your seven licensed facilities in Massachusetts to new operators as soon as possible,” the letter read. The governor went on to say, “For years, you have refused to engage in the same level of basic transparency that every other system in Massachusetts offers by not releasing your audited financial statements,” wrote Healey. “Your continued refusal to do so, particularly at this moment, is irresponsible and an affront to the patients, workers and communities that the Steward hospitals serve. It also leads to a further breakdown in trust and creates a major roadblock to our ability to work together to resolve this effectively.”

Steward disputed that the chain hasn’t provided financial data.

Haverhill Cultural Council Awards Grants for Music, Art and Other Community Programs

Haverhill Garden Club’s “Edible Avenue on the Bradford Rail Trail Extension” is one of more than three dozen concerts, art displays, movies, plays and other community programs in the works thanks to more than $50,000 in grant awards this year by the Haverhill Cultural Council. Visitors to the rail trail will also be able to enjoy a Team Haverhill-sponsored Art Walk as well as the traditional downtown Haverhill Art Walk. Other art-related programs are sponsored by Whittier Birthplace, which plans an open house weekend and art show, and Haverhill YMCA’s Teen Art Nights. Citywide, musical programs include the Jumpin’ Juba Senior Concert, Creeque Alley: A Tribute to American Folk Music and 60s folk-rock, Hip Hop Chair Dance for Seniors, a Summer Series by the Merrimack Valley Concert Band, fall shows at the New Moon Coffeehouse and more. The infrastructure behind many arts and cultural activities is also getting a boost with $2,000 going to the Haverhill High School ceramics studio for the purchase and installation of clay storage unit, $1,500 to the John Greenleaf Whittier School for a sound system to be used for productions, $1,000 to the East Parish Meeting House for grounds and building maintenance

Each year, the local Council distributes its allocation of money from the Massachusetts Cultural Council.

Police Charge Haverhill Tax Advisor, 78, on House of Prostitution, Drug Charges After Overdose Death

A 78-year-old Haverhill financial advisor was ordered held on $75,000 cash bail Friday after being arrested and charged with allegedly maintaining a house of prostitution, two counts of trafficking a person for sexual servitude and other sex and drug charges following an investigation into an alleged drug overdose death last month. John L. Caruso, described as a financial advisor and tax preparer, was arrested Friday morning by Haverhill police on a warrant after a local and State Police investigation into the Jan. 8 drug overdose death of an unnamed 32-year-old woman, according to Assistant District Attorney Mark Hintlian. The woman was found dead at 173 River St., Haverhill, where the prosecutor said Caruso operates his business and apartment building. Hintlian told Haverhill District Court Judge Susan H. McNeil the overdose victim was found in a chair after rigor mortis set in, suggesting the death had occurred many hours before.

Markey, Warren and Trahan Tell Haverhill Councilors They Seek ‘Permanent’ Hospital Solution

Haverhill’s federal legislative delegation says it shares elected leaders “deep concern about the grave consequences” of a local hospital failure and stands with them to find “permanent solutions.”

The statement by Sens. Edward Markey and Elizabeth Warren and Congresswoman Lori Trahan was dated Friday and given in response to Haverhill city councilors who expressed concern at the end of January. Several days later, Steward Health Care System, owner of Holy Family Hospitals in Haverhill and Methuen, said it had received bridge financing that will “help stabilize our company.” The statement acknowledged a final plan has not yet been detailed. “Although Steward’s recent announcement of funding will allow hospitals in Massachusetts to remain open and operational, we will stay engaged in conversations around permanent solutions that preserve jobs and enable every patient in the Merrimack Valley to receive accessible, affordable, and high-quality care in their communities,” the legislators wrote. Markey, Warren and Trahan were responding to a letter, signed by City Council President Thomas J. Sullivan, that asked for a briefing.