EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Merrimack Valley

October 28, 2013

Three vie for two East District seats

METHUEN — Three candidates are in the running for two East District City Council seats, including two incumbents running for their second two-year term.

All three candidates cited development in the eastern part of the city as a prime issue in their district. In a debate hosted by MCTV earlier this month, they talked about managing growth along Merrimack Street and other parts of the city.

City Councilor Ron Marsan, 53, of 10 Hawkes Brook Lane, said he wanted to improve communication between the entire nine-member city council and the mayor.

Councilor Tom Ciulla, 43, 375 Merrimack St., said he wanted to continue getting owners to clean up dilapidated properties around the city, including by getting new code enforcement technology.

Challenger Tom Firth, 64, One Currier St., said he wanted to trim the budget by reigning in perks to some employees, such as municipal cell phones and vehicles.

Marsan is a contractor who has had a business in Methuen for more than 30 years. He took a no-tax pledge last year and reiterated it this year. He also sits as a representative of the City Council and as a businessman with construction experience on the Building Committee overseeing the high school renovation project.

Ciulla served on the Everett City Council for more than eight years before moving to Methuen, and served as a code enforcement officer there. He now works as a custodian at Everett Public Schools.

Firth served on the School Committee for eight years, on the Zoning Board of Appeals for 10 years and the Cable Television Advisory Board for 11 years. He is a mortgage banker.

Two of the three top vote-getters will be elected to a two-year term representing the eastern third of the city. The city charter limits all elected officials to three consecutive terms. Along with the East District, two Central District councilors, two West District councilors, three at-large councilors, six School Committee seats and the mayor are up for election Nov. 5.

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