EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Merrimack Valley

May 28, 2010

Mayor: $100m Methuen High renovation is a done deal

METHUEN — Mayor William Manzi announced today that city councilors will approve the $100 million Methuen High School renovation and addition.

Some councilors had voiced skepticism about the project because the city is facing layoffs of municipal workers, but Manzi said he won them over because officials figured out how to have the School Department pay the $500,000 needed for the project next fiscal year.

"We have a deal," Manzi said.

Manzi said councilors Pat Uliano, Philip Lahey Jr., Larry Giordano and Jeanne Pappalardo told him they will vote in favor of the project.

Manzi needs at least six of the nine councilors to vote in favor of the project in order for it to pass. He already had support from Councilors Jennifer Kannan, Stephen Zanni, Joyce Campagnone and Jim Hajjar.

That means the one person who has not yet committed to supporting the project is council Chairman John Cronin Jr.

Manzi said he plans to ask councilors to vote on the project June 7. He plans to give the School Committee a letter explaining this latest funding plan on Tuesday, he said.

The state plans to pay for 68.84 percent of the school.

Please see tomorrow's The Eagle-Tribune for full coverage.

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