AMESBURY — State Sen. Diana DiZoglio will show off a local section of her district to fellow state senators next week, including Senate President Karen Spilka.
The Methuen Democrat represents the First Essex District, which includes Haverhill, Merrimac, Methuen, Salisbury and portions of North Andover. But she will lead senators on a "September SenaTOUR" of Amesbury and Newburyport, where they are expected to hear about community concerns from businesses, residents and other local elected officials on Tuesday.
DiZoglio will bring Spilka and two other Senate leaders to Amesbury and Newburyport — President Pro Tempore William Brownsberger and Majority Leader Cynthia Stone Creem.
DiZoglio said she hopes to address the region's environmental, educational and small-business concerns during the tour.
"A significant portion of the tour will be hosted right on the Merrimack River," DiZoglio said. "We will be taking a boat ride to highlight environmental issues, including (combined sewage overflows), pollution and other environmental hazards affecting our beloved resource, the Merrimack River."
Previously known as Commonwealth Conversations, the SenaTOURS statewide initiative is designed to keep the state's 40 senators informed about what is going on outside their legislative districts as well as highlight interesting works taking place across the state.
DiZoglio will begin the day hosting a policy forum for the senators at CI Works on Chestnut Street in Amesbury, where she expects to have Triton Regional School Committee Chairman Nerissa Wallen on hand as well.
"Before the education bill is rolled out during this legislative session, I really want the opportunity for my colleagues, especially those who are in leadership, to be able to hear about the unique challenges our communities are facing regarding education funding," DiZoglio said.
The group is then expected to take a tour of CI Works before heading over to Larry's Marina, where they will take a boat ride to downtown Newburyport.
"Newburyport thrives on the success of its small businesses, tourism and it's amazing history and culture," DiZoglio said. "But this visit is essentially to highlight the region and its amazing opportunities and some of our unique challenges."
The senators are then scheduled to take a walking tour of downtown Newburyport, including the Custom House Maritime Museum and the U.S. Coast Guard Station Merrimack River.
"I will continue to advocate on Beacon Hill, but I think this is a good way to be able to make the policy initiatives I have been working on at the Statehouse, along with these senators, more salient to them," DiZoglio said. "I believe that bringing them into our community will assist with the passage of important legislation that will help our communities."
Staff writer Jim Sullivan covers Amesbury and Salisbury for The Daily News. He can be reached via email at email@example.com or by phone at 978-961-3145. Follow him on Twitter @ndnsully.