Public Health Policy

Since starting his term, Pavel has focused on creating policy to improve public safety, the environment, government transparency & accountability, and Lawrence’s economy. The following are proposals he sponsored or co-sponsored that deal with public health:

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Doc 104/18: 2017 annual report from city physician

A request to receive the 2017 Annual Report that is mandated by the City Charter. The hope is that this report will give the City Council and the public a better understanding of the duties of the City Physician and the Board of Health.

Submitted on 3/13/18; Referred to Public Safety Committee on 3/20/18; Tabled at Public Safety Committee and Request for Report from City Physician Dr. Gorn on 4/10/18.

SPONSORED BY: City Councilors Pavel Payano

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Document 214/18: Amendments to the Board of Health Ordinances

This amendment will create more transparency and accountability within the Board of Health (BoH). It creates the followings changes:

  • Compensation - Members of the BoH shall each be paid an annual stipend of $2,400.

  • Organization Meeting - Sets the BoH’s organizational meeting to January.

  • Defines the process of how the BoH will appoint & grant powers to its agents.

  • Sets standards on publication and notice of public hearings.

  • Sets standards on publication and notice of adopted measures.

  • Requires that full and complete records and accounts are kept.

  • Creates a set enforcement process for BoH regulations & codes.

  • Creates a hearing process within the BoH for anyone that has received an order of violation from the BoH. Currently if someone would like to appeal an order of violation they would have to go into court.

Submitted on 5/20/18. Tabled by the Lawrence City Council on 7/10/18.

SPONSORED BY: City Councilor Pavel Payano


Document 229/18: City Nurse job posting

According to the ordinances of the City of Lawrence all employment positions within the City of Lawrence must be coded and approved by the Lawrence City Council. The position for Lawrence’s Public Health Nurse has not been coded and written into our ordinances. This amendment will officially create the position of Public Health Nurse Supervisor into our codes.

Initially this amendment had a dual role in advocating for the need of a Public Health Nurse, a position that had not been filled in over a year, and in the importance of ensuring that the Public Health Nurse Supervisor would get a reasonable salary. The salary that the position is set for is a lot lower than what an average Nurse Supervisor receives.

Submitted to the City Council on 5/31/18; Referred to Personnel Committee on 6/5/18; Personnel Committee sends it to the City Council to be referred to the Ordinance Committee on 10/29/18; City Council refers it to the Ordinance Committee on 11/6/18; Ordinance Committee sends it to the City Council to order a Public Hearing on 11/27/18.

SPONSORED BY: City Councilor Pavel Payano


DOC 326/18:



Document 326/18: Opioid Litigation Resolution

Our country is in the midst of a public health crisis stemming from the flood of opioids pouring into our cities and towns. In Massachusetts alone, from the years 2015 through 2017, there were a total of 5,632 deaths and 62,377 emergency medical services incidents all related to opioid overdoses; Opioids are destroying families and friends and are placing significant financial burdens on the resources of our communities. This epidemic has been fueled by the greed of drug manufacturers and distributors who have misrepresented the addictive nature of opioids and who have encouraged their continued use even when addiction is apparent. Lawrence and other Massachusetts cities and towns have spent extensive funds on increased police presence; emergency medical response; Narcan; treatment, opioid-related workers’ compensation costs; and abuse prevention programs, among many other expenditures. To seek reimbursement of these expense the City of Lawrence should join the more than a hundred Massachusetts municipalities in filing and holding the Pharmaceutical Industry accountable for their part in the opioid crisis.

Submitted to the City Council on 9/13/18; Referred to the Public Safety Committee on 9/18/18; Sent to the City Council with a Favorable Recommendation from Public Safety Committee on 10/22/18; Referred to the Ordinance Committee on 11/6/18; Sent to the City Council with a Favorable Recommendation and a request for a Public Hearing from the Ordinance Committee on 11/17/18.

SPONSORED BY: City Councilor Pavel Payano & Jeovanny Rodriguez