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CLASS Inc. Updates Lawrence Facility with MassDevelopment Bond

May 3, 2017


Meggie Quackenbush, MassDevelopment, 617-330-2011 & 857-208-2777 (cell)

Robin Ellington, CLASS Inc., 978-975-8587 ext. 1227

CLASS's facility in LawrenceMassDevelopment has issued a $3.5 million tax-exempt bond on behalf of C.L.A.S.S. Inc. (CLASS), a nonprofit organization serving individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities in the Merrimack Valley and North Shore. CLASS is using bond proceeds to renovate its Lawrence facility, located in a 130-year-old mill building at 1 Parker Street, by improving accessible ramps; HVAC and information technology systems; furnishings; and equipment. Bond proceeds will also fund repairs to the roof and exterior entrance; and the refinancing of past debt. TD Bank purchased the bond.

“CLASS provides North Shore and Merrimack Valley residents with disabilities with the skills required to pursue personal growth and independence,” said MassDevelopment President and CEO Marty Jones. “We are proud to support this organization’s efforts to improve its facility in Lawrence, a Gateway City, and its work to expand opportunities for individuals with disabilities and their families.”

CLASS was established in 1976 and is headquartered in Lawrence. It has grown from an enrollment of 14 sons and daughters to serving more than 400 individuals in northeastern Massachusetts today. In that number, CLASS counts 85 families in its adult family care program, which supports caregivers and loved ones in the home. Additional services include employment, day habilitation and community-based day services programs, clinical and case management support, and transportation. A proud chapter of the Arc of Massachusetts, CLASS operates the Arc of Greater Lawrence to support younger families. MassDevelopment issued a previous bond on behalf of CLASS in 2010.

“These MassDevelopment funds make it possible for us to realize our 2020 vision to deliver our high-quality services in a high-quality environment,” said CLASS President and CEO Bob Harris. “Our programming continues to create meaningful days for every individual and our invigorated facility appearance will invigorate everything that happens under our new roof. Our building will be one of the cornerstones of this Gateway City, one that reflects our innovation and mission.”

MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency, works with businesses, nonprofits, financial institutions, and communities to stimulate economic growth across the Commonwealth. During FY2016, MassDevelopment financed or managed 352 projects generating investment of more than $4 billion in the Massachusetts economy. These projects are projected to create about 8,200 jobs and build or rehabilitate about 4,200 residential units.