LYNNFIELD – The town will be receiving $175,000 in state funds for three different projects that were included in the $52.7 billion fiscal year 2023 state budget.
House Minority Leader Bradley H. Jones Jr. (R-North Reading) and State Sen. Brendan Crighton (D-Lynn) were able to secure the $175,000 for the three projects in the finalized state budget for FY23. The final budget, which was released from conference committee on July 17 and enacted by the House and the Senate on July 18, includes $75,000 for upgrades to Jordan Park. The budget also includes $50,000 to help defray the costs associated with the construction of the town’s new War Memorial, and $50,000 for improvements to the historic Meeting House.
“Sen. Crighton and I worked together to advocate on the town’s behalf for these important local priorities, which not only will honor Lynnfield’s veterans and rich history, but also will provide enhanced recreational opportunities for the town’s children and other residents,” said Jones. “I am pleased that our collective efforts were successful in ensuring that this funding was retained in the final budget.”
“Investing in local infrastructure projects like these must always remain a top priority,” said Crighton. “I appreciate Rep. Jones’ collaboration in securing this funding in the budget for these important community projects.”
The Lynnfield legislative delegation previously secured $50,000 in the fiscal year 2022 state budget for the town’s new War Memorial, which will educate visitors about the town’s history and will include the names of every Lynnfield resident who has served in the country’s major wars from the Revolutionary War to the present day. The new memorial will be constructed on the green space adjacent to South Common Street across from the Town Common, and will be near Lynnfield’s existing veterans memorial.
Select Board member Joe Connell, who is chairman of the War Memorial Committee, said it’s “great news” that the grant for the new memorial was included in the finalized FY23 state budget.
“The next $50,000 will be used to purchase the granite plaques for the new War Memorial,” said Connell. “The plaques will include a description of the war and a map of the war, and below that will be the names of the citizens from Lynnfield who served. We currently have bids, the best of which is $68,000 for the granite plaques as well as benches. Between the $50,000 grant and the money we have as a committee, we will make this purchase as soon as the state gives us the grant. This is a major portion of the project.”
The Jordan Park renovation project was first proposed by the Fields Committee in 2013 and was approved at Fall Town Meeting in October 2019. Select Board Chairman Phil Crawford said the $75,000 grant will be used to expand the field and parking lot. He said a new playground area for preschool and elementary school children will be constructed as well.
“It’s going to be a wonderful addition to Jordan Park,” said Crawford. “The grant is going to be supplemented by funds that the Lynnfield Moms Group raised during a Casino Night fundraiser this spring.”
The $50,000 earmarked in the state budget for the Meeting House will be used for interior preservation work and kitchen facility upgrades. Built in 1714, the Meeting House is listed on both the National Register of Historic Places and the Massachusetts State Register of Historic Places. According to the Lynnfield Historical Commission, the Meeting House is the third oldest Puritan meetinghouse in New England still standing on its original “green” and is the second oldest active meetinghouse in New England.
“We are going to use the $50,000 to renovate the Meeting House’s kitchen the correct way,” said Crawford.
Crawford and Connell thanked Jones and Crighton for securing the $175,000 in the FY23 state budget.
“We really appreciate everything Brad and Brendan do for the town,” said Crawford.
Connell concurred with Crawford’s point of view.
“Brad and Brendan work incredibly hard on the town’s behalf,” said Connell. “I also want to thank Town Administrator Rob Dolan for advocating for the funds.”
In addition to the three state grants, Lynnfield will be receiving $6,419,355 in local aid in FY23. The town will be getting $4,996,011 in Chapter 70 education aid and $1,204,754 in unrestricted general government aid.
The FY23 budget is now on Gov. Charlie Baker’s desk. He has until Thursday, July 28 to sign the budget into law.