Haverhill Men Face Drug-Related Charges for Alleged Illegal Sales at Vape and Smoke Shop

Two Haverhill men associated with a smoke and vape store were arrested Tuesday by Georgetown Police for allegedly selling THC vape cartridges and related charges after an investigation by police, Department of Revenue and the North Shore/Cape Ann Tobacco Policy Program. Thirty-year-old Ram Gupta and 29-year-old Dinesh Kumar Yadav were charged with distribution of a class C substance, possession with intent to distribute a class c substance, delivering cigarettes to a minor, sale of flavored tobacco and conspiracy to violate drug laws, according to a press release from Georgetown Police Chief David Sedgwick. “On behalf of the Georgetown Police Department, I want to express gratitude to the Massachusetts Department of Revenue, the North Shore/Cape Ann Tobacco Policy Program and the Georgetown Board of Health for their assistance with this investigation,” said Sedgwick. He also commended officers who successfully led and concluded the investigation. The agencies served a search warrant at Georgetown Smoke and Vape, 7 W. Main St., after police said they were previously notified the store was selling THC marijuana products even though it was not permitted or zoned to do so.

MeVa Transit Promotes Mendez to Second in Command, Names Two Others to Posts

Merrimack Valley Transit, known as MeVa, for short, recently promoted two—as deputy administrator and outreach coordinator respectively—and hired a comptroller. Niorka “Nio” Mendez, who received her start at the agency as a bus driver in 2014 and promoted three years later to administration, was elevated to second in command as deputy administrator at the start of the month. Besides beginning as a bus driver, Mendez has served a marketing director, communications director and chief communications director. “Always eager to learn and grow, she has applied her boundless energy to every task, brought the very best out of each of her colleagues, represented MeVa as our first ever graduate of Latinos in Transit’s Leadership Academy and served as de facto deputy administrator without the benefit of any official title,” Administrator Noah S. Berger told MeVa’s Advisory board last month. Nataylia Curet was also promoted from office coordinator to outreach coordinator, taking on many of Mendez’ former duties.

Whittier Tech, Essex Tech Share in Career Technical Initiative Grants for Job Training

Whittier Regional Vocational Technical High School and Essex North Shore Agricultural and Technical School were among schools awarded Career Technical Initiative grants Tuesday to train jobseekers for careers in high-demand occupations within the trades, construction, and manufacturing sectors,

Whittier was awarded $784,000 from the Healey-Driscoll Administration while Essex Tech was given $2 million. Whittier will provide training to 98 participants for welding, advanced manufacturing, carpentry, electrical, plumbing, culinary arts, marine technology, construction laborer, and auto body and collision repair positions. “We are thrilled to be able to support our region’s economy by providing career technical education to underemployed or unemployed adults. These training programs are critical to provide a skilled workforce for our region,” said Whittier Superintendent Maureen Lynch. Whittier will partner with Fairview Machine, Magellan, Aero Manufacturing, Auto Body Builders, Repairs Unlimited, Bradford Towing and Auto Repair, Cale Wood Construction, Pepe Training, M.L. Mazzotta Building and Excavation, Germaine Lawn and Landscape, Premier Builders, , East Coast Welding and Fabrication, Metalcrafters, Momentum Manufacturing Group, A Sweet Affair, Whitson’s Culinary Group, Chococoa Baking Co., Donahue and Son Electric, Sanford Electric, Piquette and Howard Electric Service, American Boat and Yacht Council, Massachusetts Marine Trades Association, Manchester Marine Corporation, T.J. Thistlewood, Bourque Plumbing and Heating and Riverside Plumbing and Heating. Essex Tech will provide training to 250 participants for automotive technology, biolab tech, carpentry, CNC machinist, construction craft laborer, culinary, electrical, electromechanical manufacturing, HVAC, plumbing and welding positions.

Methuen Plans Purchase of Historic Searles Estate; Perry to Seek Council Support

Methuen plans to purchase the historic estate of the late Edward F. Searles from the Sisters of Presentation of Mary and establish an independent commission to guide its future. Methuen Mayor Neil Perry said Tuesday the city last Friday signed an agreement, subject to City Council approval, to buy the 19-acre parcel at 209 Lawrence St. It includes 12 historic buildings and structures and $1 million worth of artwork and historic artifacts, for $3.25 million. The property, used for Presentation of Mary Academy until it closed in 2020, has an assessed value of over $10 million. “The City of Methuen has taken a major step toward ensuring that the most important piece of Methuen’s rich Gilded Age era of grand estates will not be lost to decay or unwelcome development, but rather preserved and restored for the benefit of future generations of Methuen residents,” Perry said in a release.

Haverhill, Methuen, Others Share in Grants to Reduce Cybersecurity Threats

The cities of Haverhill and Methuen, area communities, school districts and others are receiving federal money to help pay for protection against cybersecurity threats. They shared in $7 million in grants distributed by the state Executive Office of Public Safety and Security. Haverhill was awarded $43,640, while Methuen received $100,000; Andover, $92,000; North Andover, $43,600; and Merrimac, $24,933. Additionally, Essex North Shore Agricultural and Technical School was awarded $100,000 and Essex County Sheriff’s office. $99,124.

Former Student-Athlete, Coach and Administrator Becomes UML Athletic Director

Lynn Coutts has worn many jerseys—award-winning student-athlete, inspiring coach and successful higher education administrator—in more than two decades excelling in athletics leadership. Today, she dons one more. UMass Lowell named Coutts the next athletic director at an event on campus last Thursday morning. Lynn Coutts joins UMass Lowell from the Division 1 University of Denver, where she served as associate vice chancellor and deputy director of athletics. A first-generation college graduate, Coutts feels “uniquely equipped to align with the mission and values of UMass Lowell.”

“I am excited for the opportunity to lead a positive, high-energy environment inspiring student athletes, coaches and staff to achieve world class excellence in the classroom, in competition and within the campus community,” she said.

Senate $2.86B Economic Development Bill Promises Local Benefits, Policies

Both of Haverhill’s state senators are touting local benefits and advantages—including city and town infrastructure, small business and culture—contained in the Senate’s proposed $2.86 billion economic development bill passed Thursday. Senate President Karen E. Spilka, praising Sen. Barry R. Finegold, Senate chair of the Joint Committee on Economic Development and Emerging Technologies and others, said the bill builds on “the diverse and thriving economic ecosystem that enables people to stay in our state to build careers and families.”

“Massachusetts is home to great talent, industry and education, but we must act now to remain competitive in a changing global and national economy,” said Finegold. “This economic development bill bolsters our state’s competitiveness by strengthening sectors we already excel in and creating pathways to secure the lead in emerging fields.”

The bill, which still must be reconciled with a House version and signed by the governor, authorizes $400 million for MassWorks public infrastructure projects. Haverhill, for example, has used this money in the past to complete the Rep. Brian S. Dempsey Boardwalk. Sen. Pavel M. Payano said the bill includes his proposal to allocate $10 million toward social enterprise capital grant programs to pay for job skills training and paid employment opportunities to low-income individuals, prioritizing those from socially and economically disadvantaged backgrounds.

American Heart Association Honors Pridestar Trinity EMS for Rapid Care Approach

Pridestar Trinity EMS has received the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline EMS Bronze achievement award for its commitment to offering rapid and research-based care to people experiencing the most severe form of heart attacks and strokes, ultimately saving lives. The Mission: Lifeline EMS achievement award focuses on agencies’ on-scene care, bringing to the forefront the collaboration and contributions to patient care for prehospital providers. “Pridestar Trinity EMS is honored to be recognized by the American Heart Association for our dedication to providing optimal care for heart attack patients,” said David Green, director of Clinical Services and Education. “The Mission: Lifeline program puts proven knowledge and guidelines to work on a daily basis, so patients have the best possible chance of survival.”

Emergency Medical Services staff can begin treatment when they arrive—up to an hour sooner than if someone goes to the hospital by car. EMS staff are also trained to provide resuscitation efforts to someone whose heart has stopped.