EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Haverhill

May 22, 2013

City fills 156 potholes thanks to resident reports in contest

HAVERHILL — One of the winners in the city’s first pothole contest says the one she reported was so big and so well known in her neighborhood that it was given a nickname.

“We called it Jefferson Pond because when it rained it filled with water,” Beth Bertoni said about a pothole on Jefferson Street where it meets Lincoln Avenue in the city’s Riverside area. “I reported it online and within 24 hours it was filled.”

It was fun, three people won prizes – but most importantly 156 potholes were reported to the city by hopeful contest winners and were all of the potholes were filled within two days of being reported, the mayor said.

Mayor James Fiorentini recently announced the winners of a pothole contest the city held in an effort to entice residents to report these bothersome and potentially damage-causing springtime ruts in city streets and roads by offering prizes.

Everyone that reported a pothole during the contest period was entered into a drawing, and three lucky winners will each receive a gift card. The prizes were donated to the contest by The Tap Restaurant and Hans Garden Chinese Restaurant, both on Washington Street, and Haverhill Beef on Merrimack Street. The winners were randomly selected by computer, according to the mayor’s office.

Bertoni, one of three residents who won a gift card, said the contest was a great idea and that the best part was that the potholes at the end of Jefferson Street were quickly patched. The deep holes that filled with water after springtime rains were filled in by the city, although Bertoni says that section of Jefferson Street could benefit from resurfacing.

“It got people involved and it was fun,” Bertoni said about the contest. “And I feel like my voice was heard.”

The other winners are Haverhill residents Tiffany Ghrist and Wilfredo Perez. Officials in the mayor’s office said the winners will be presented with their prizes soon.

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