EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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January 3, 2014

Mayor sworn in amid swirl of snow and pink slips

(Continued)

Rivera has said that several others will be fired over the next few days, including Lorenza Ortega, Lantigua’s wife and a confidential secretary in the Personnel Department; Gilda Doran, a neighborhood planner; and Andrys Castillo, who Lantigua recently promoted from recycling coordinator to carpenter at the Department of Public Works.

Economic Development Director Patrick Blanchette, Chief of Staff Frederick Diaz and several other members of Lantigua’s staff also departed yesterday but did not have to be fired because they served terms contiguous with Lantigua’s. On Lantigua’s staff, only confidential secretary Maria Cruz survived the transition; she was moved to the Personnel Department, where she will replace Ortega.

Other shake-ups are expected at the Department of Public Works, where Rivera has said he will review the performance of Street Foreman Joel Chalas and Parks Foreman Jorge Jaime, who brought few technical qualifications to their jobs beyond serving as Lantigua’s top political lieutenants. As many as five DPW laborers Lantigua recently hired also may not survive the transition.

Rivera has announced no major appointments beyond his chief of staff, Lisa Torrisi, in the five weeks since the recount, although a few are expected shortly. Among them, he said he will restore Alexcy Vega as city assessor. Lantigua demoted Vega four years ago and replaced him with Breda Daou, who will now swap jobs with Vega.

Rivera was sworn into office at City Hall by an assistant city clerk, while City Clerk William Maloney was at Lawrence High School swearing in the new City Council, which elected Modesto Maldonado to replace Frank Moran as council president. Moran, a state representative, held both the city and state jobs for a year did not run for re-election to the council.

Rivera was accompanied at his swearing in by his wife, Paula; Chief of Staff Torrisi and her brother, former state Rep. David Torrisi, who was on the legal team that advised Rivera through the recount; and several staff from his campaign.

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