Haverhill Farms Receive Over $86,000 Through ACRE Grant

Two Haverhill farms have received $86,720 through the state’s Department of Energy and Environmental Affairs for the purchase of equipment to be used on both of their farms, located in the city’s Bradford section.

The Rogers Spring Hill Farm and the Crescent Farm have been awarded $57,440 and $29,280 respectively for the purchase of no-till equipment to be used on their farms and farm and garden centers.

The money was awarded through the Baker Administration’s Agricultural Climate Resiliency & Efficiencies (ACRE) grant program, which will distribute over $1 million to 40 agricultural operations around the state this year to assist farms with installing practices that help mitigate their impacts on climate change and also adapt to changing climate conditions.

With their grant, Rogers Spring Hill Farm in Ward Hill will use $29,280 toward the purchase of no-till equipment to be used on their farm, while the remaining $28,160 will go toward the purchase of no-till equipment for the farm’s Garden and Farm Center.

Crescent Farm, also located in Ward Hill, will receive $29,280 with which to purchase no-till equipment.

“While farms are a staple of life in rural areas of the Commonwealth, smaller farms located in sparsely populated areas of our cities also play a critical role in our local economies and food systems. We’re proud to have them here in the First Essex District,” said State Senator Diana DiZoglio, D-Methuen.

Newburyport Park to Receive $100K Investment from State

The Maudslay State Park Association has received a matching $100,000 grant from the state Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) to assist with its Flowering Pond Dam project.

The project is one of 25 finalists to receive money from the DCR for park restoration and improvement projects in FY 2019. The grant program will provide a total of $1,821,400 for those eligible projects.

On hand to accept the grant at the State House were Marlys Edwards, chairwoman of the Pond Restoration Committee of the Maudslay State Park Association, and Edward Speck, artistic director of Theater in the Open, a non-profit organization that performs at the park.

Now in Phase II, the Flowering Pond Dam project is working to restore a dam at the pond. The infusion of $100,000 of state money will greatly help the Maudslay State Park Association in their goal of completing this project.

“This grant will go a long way toward helping the park association complete this much-needed project,” said State Senator Diana DiZoglio (D-Methuen), who represents the city of Newburyport in the 1st Essex District. “This is a great investment that will help keep this public space a wonderful place to walk, run, play and enjoy nature.”

Financial Literacy Bill Signed into Law

28468739_10156083213093480_3302492065284237021_nFinancial literacy legislation sponsored by State Senator Diana DiZoglio (D-Methuen) has been signed into law.

Under DiZoglio’s bill, An Act relative to financial literacy programs in schools, the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) is directed to develop standards and objectives on personal financial literacy, for grades pre-kindergarten to 12, within the existing mathematics curriculum. The curriculum will include understanding loans, borrowing money, interest, credit card debt, and online commerce; as well as    banking, housing, retirement and taxes.

DiZoglio was inspired to draft the legislation after reading a study by the Center for Financial Literacy at Champlain College in Vermont, which gave Massachusetts an ‘F’ grade for the quality of its financial literacy programs. Along with Massachusetts, the study assigned its lowest rating to 10 other states that have “few requirements, or none at all, for personal finance education in high school.”

“I am so pleased to see the Commonwealth adopt this legislation to include financial literacy in our public school math curricula, as many students are graduating without a full understanding of how to manage a personal budget,” said DiZoglio. “As a nation, our failure to teach the importance of financial literacy has led to the exploitation of millions of people and triggered a financial crisis a decade ago that we have only recently recovered from as a nation.”

DiZoglio added that “the importance of understanding how debt, interest and credit affect one’s financial health cannot be overstated.”

The bill signed into law this week will ensure that public schools statewide will teach students the importance of properly managing money and will help inform them of their best options for paying for college, buying a car and someday purchasing a home.

The financial literacy education bill comes on the heels of the passage of another bill expanding civics education curriculum in the Commonwealth.

DiZoglio said the new financial literacy bill, coupled with the civics education law, will lead to important improvements in Massachusetts public schools.

“These new laws will ensure students learn real world skills that will benefit them for the rest of their lives and make them more engaged, responsible citizens in our state,” said DiZoglio. “The Merrimack Valley delegation is united in seeking the very best education for our children, because engaging and educating the children of today ensures that they grow up to become the responsible, conscientious leaders of tomorrow.”

DiZoglio Sworn in as State Senator for the 1st Essex District

inauguration photo

Diana DiZoglio (D-Methuen) has officially been sworn in as the new State Senator for the 1st Essex District.

DiZoglio is among the five newly elected members of the State Senate and the only freshman senator to move from the House of Representatives, where she served three terms representing residents in Methuen, North Andover, Haverhill and Lawrence in the 14th Essex District.

She succeeds Kathleen O’Connor Ives, D-Newburyport, who served the 1st Essex District for three terms as State Senator.

In addition to Haverhill, Methuen, Newburyport and four wards in North Andover, DiZoglio will represent the towns of Amesbury, Merrimac and Salisbury in the 1st Essex.

Following her swearing in, the Merrimack Valley’s newest state senator said she is ready to hit the ground running on the issues of critical importance for her constituents.

“I’m so humbled to have the opportunity to continue serving the residents of the Merrimack Valley. I can’t wait to get straight to work for the people in our community,” said DiZoglio. “Thank you to everyone who put their faith in me to represent you on Beacon Hill. I will work hard to take our collective work to the next level as your state senator.”