Northern Essex Community College Provides Online Winter Intersession Courses

Dozens of online classes are offered by Northern Essex Community College starting in January. Registration is open for the college’s Winter Intersession, beginning Monday, Jan. 3, and running for two or four weeks. Courses include Intro to Business, U.S. History I and Statistics, providing an opportunity for students to get caught up or get ahead in their degrees. Besides Northern Essex students, classes are open to area students who are home on break from other colleges and universities and can easily transfer the credits they earn during an intersession course.

Podcast: Windrush Farm Seeks Volunteer Horse Handlers and Side Walkers

The holiday season provides many opportunities to help others and, at the Windrush Farm, that includes helping people and horses. The Windrush Farm Therapeutic Riding Center’s Executive Director Janet Nittmann, a recent guest on WHAV’s morning program, said the North Andover-Boxford line center has a need for more “horse handlers.”

“These are people who lead the horse when it’s necessary, and many times it is necessary to help the rider until they become more independent. Our goal is to teach them to become more independent riders,” she said. Nittman says there is also a need for side walkers. Many of the farm’s clients appreciate the side walkers, because they help them with their balance while riding.

Groveland Voters to Consider Spending, Including Late-Billed Haverhill Sewer Bill, Next Monday

Groveland voters are asked to approve spending on various items during a special town meeting next Monday, Dec. 6. An unusual item calls for paying Haverhill $41,168 for last fiscal year’s use of the city’s wastewater treatment system. Officials explain voters must give permission to pay bills from a prior year and Haverhill failed to bill the Groveland Water and Sewer Department during the year that ended last June 30. The town has an agreement with Haverhill to process sewage and pay a portion of capital expenses.

History Over the Merrimack River: New I-495 Southbound Bridge Opens to Traffic Next Week

An historic milestone takes place next week as the second of two new bridges across the Merrimack River in Haverhill opens to traffic. Salisbury-based SPS New England completed the second span about a year after both northbound and southbound traffic began sharing the new northbound bridge. The twin bridges replace the 1961-era structures in Haverhill. The then-new highway divided a neighborhood by cutting a portion of the original River Street in half. The two halves became Western Avenue and Bank Road respectively while a new River Street, carrying Routes 110 and 113, shifted northward.

Plaistow Festival of Trees Runs Today Through Sunday; Proceeds Benefit Needy Children

The 2021 Plaistow Festival of Trees, featuring tree and wreath raffles, begins today and runs through Sunday. Trees and wreaths will be displayed around the hall for people to take chances on, and there will be raffle items including a 50/50. Drawings start at 3 p.m., Sunday. Admission is free and raffle proceeds benefit the Plaistow Lions Club Santa Fund for children less fortunate and other community outreach as funds allow. A craft fair will also be running during all three days of the event and a “Make it/Take it” crafts area for children.

Methuen Police K-9 Unit Discovers Hidden Burglary Suspect; Officers Arrest 42-Year-Old Saugus Man

A Methuen Police Department K-9 Unit helped officers locate and arrest a man hiding inside a commercial building he had broken into early Wednesday morning. Chief Scott J. McNamara said officers were dispatched after receiving a business alarm at 1:48 a.m., at 145 Milk St., and discovered audible alarms sounding but no open doors, windows or signs of a break-in. The company’s business manager also walked through with officers, discovering drawers and cabinets inside the building that appeared to be pried open and two televisions missing. Officer Christine Nicolosi and her K-9 partner Kilo began searching the building with Kilo leading officers to the second floor and then the third floor, where the K-9 tracked toward a dark, unfinished room containing several large cabinets that were on the floor and covered in ceiling tiles. Police discovered 42-year-old Juan Rivera of Saugus hiding there.

Sheriff Coppinger Puts COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate in Place for Employees and Others

All Essex County Sheriff’s Department employees, vendors and volunteers must provide proof of COVID-19 vaccinations by Jan. 4. Essex County Sheriff Kevin F. Coppinger issued the order Tuesday, following a similar executive order issued earlier this year by Gov. Charlie Baker that requires proof of vaccination for all state employees. “The COVID-19 vaccine is the most effective tool we have to ensure the health and safety of all within our facilities, which is why this department will be moving ahead with a vaccination mandate,” Coppinger said. “We are a congregate care setting, and as such, we must make sure everyone has the vaccination to protect not only themselves and fellow staff, but to also protect every person that we provide care and custody for.”

The Sheriff’s Department is experiencing a spike in additional COVID-19 positive cases similar to local communities.

Methuen Police Officer DiLeo Graduates from NECC Police Academy, Begins Full-Time

Methuen Police Officer Steven DiLeo is entering the department’s field training program after successfully graduating from the Northern Essex Community College Police Academy last Friday

DiLeo, who also received the Academy’s physical fitness award, grew up in Methuen and continues to live in the city with his girlfriend and their two children. He is a 2013 graduate of Methuen High School, and went on to serve six years in the U.S. Army Reserves while also working as a member of the grounds crew at Northern Essex. “Officer DiLeo has been a member of the Methuen community for his entire life, and we’re excited to welcome him as our newest member as he begins serving his hometown,” said Police Chief Scott J. McNamara. “I am looking forward to the contributions he will make and want to congratulate him on beginning his career as a full-time police officer.”

DiLeo will take part in the Methuen Police Department’s 17-week field training program prior to beginning full-time patrol. “The training Officer DiLeo underwent at the NECC academy is a groundbreaking and meaningful program that will benefit him, his colleagues and our entire community,” Mayor Neil Perry added.