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Mayor Daniel Rivera, Governor Charlie Baker, Secretary of Administration and Finance Mike Heffernan, State Senator Barry Finegold, State Representatives Frank Moran, Christina Minicucci and Marcos Devers and Police Chief Roy Vasque announce the funding of a new police station in Lawrence through an agreement with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The $49-Million-dollar agreement will go towards the study, design and construction of the police station. The city is prepared to add up to $10 million if needed.
The effort for a new station has a long history. Its chances got better when Senator Barry Finegold and President Lane Glenn of Northern Essex Community College ramped up the idea of a Regional Public Safety Center to teach urban policing and make the project a police station and college campus. The heightened attention got the project on Governor Charlie Baker’s radar. After the Columbia Gas Crisis, where Governor Baker saw firsthand, our hardworking police force and visited the condition of the current station, he directed Secretary Heffernan of the Executive Office of Administration and Finance, the State Delegation and Mayor Rivera to figure out how to build a police station that the city and the community could be proud of.
Governor Charlie Baker: “Our Administration is pleased to support public safety operations in the City of Lawrence by working with our legislative colleagues to help fund this important project,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “We look forward to these significant upgrades supporting the important work that the Lawrence Police Department does to serve their community every day.”
State Senator Barry Finegold: “The current Lawrence Police Station, which was recently flooded, is inadequate and does not meet the city’s needs. This project is long overdue and I thank Mayor Rivera for his leadership in helping to secure these funds."
Representative Frank Moran: “This essential funding will ensure that the Lawrence Police Department is equipped with a state-of-the-art facility that will allow our law enforcement officials to conduct their work on safe and accommodating premises. I was proud to secure funding for this brand new police station and would like to thank my colleagues in the Lawrence delegation and Mayor Rivera for their continued support.”
Representative Christina Minicucci: “A modernized police station is long overdue for the city of Lawrence and I am proud of the collective work of Mayor Rivera, my colleagues in the Legislature and the men and women of Lawrence Police Department for this commitment to the betterment of Lawrence through public safety.”
Representative Marcos Devers: “I am pleased with the funding of the new headquarters for our Lawrence Police Department. I am sure that the new infrastructure will maximize its operations and services to make our police officers more efficient and responsive to deal with criminality. I am thankful for the leadership and commitment of Mayor Rivera and Chief Roy Vasque to move our community forward.”
City Council President Kendrys Vasquez: “This new police station is another step in the right direction of increasing the quality of life of our residents. I look forward to having a police station our city and taxpayers can be proud of- a place that makes them feel safe and secure during a dark moment.”
Lawrence Police Chief Roy Vasque: “I am extremely grateful for the leadership of Governor Baker, Mayor Rivera and our state delegation for their tenacious advocacy for the new Police Station. This project is long overdue, and I am absolutely thrilled that the hardworking men and women of the Department and the residents of Lawrence will be getting the Police Station they deserve.”
Lane Glenn, President of Northern Essex Community College: “Northern Essex Community College has been proud to partner with Mayor Rivera and the City of Lawrence on a comprehensive vision for improved community policing that includes diversifying the police force, our own local police academy, and, finally a new, modern community police station that will provide better safety and service for our thousands of students and all Lawrence residents.”
This partnership hopes to build a modern police facility that puts our 21st Century police force and staff into a 21st Century police station. The plans for the police station are the result of a multi-year collaboration between the Governor’s Office, Mayor Rivera, the State Delegation, Northern Essex Community College, the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security and the Executive Office of Administration and Finance. The current police station is significantly overcrowded, with no proper intake areas, interview rooms and undersized dispatch facilities and operations. The new police station will institutionalize excellence in public safety with specialized spaces for the police, while also adding space to host the community or informal meetings between police and residents, bridging the gap of positive community engagement. The study for the new police station is expected to be complete by Spring 2021, followed by design and construction.
“When I became Mayor, I inherited a police department that was divided, demoralized and decimated. For decades, the men and women of the Lawrence Police Department have answered the call of duty from a decrepit headquarters,” said Mayor Dan Rivera. “Today, thanks to the support and leadership of Governor Baker and our State Delegation, we are a majority minority police department that is a leader in the field in professional standards and training. This new crucial funding and commitment from Governor Baker ensures that our community will have the trifecta in their police department: a police force that is representative of their community, with strong professional standards and a state of the art, world class facility.”