By Barbara Tetreault
BERLIN — U.S. Senator Maggie Hassan will be renting office space in Berlin City Hall. The senator intends to have a staffer based there to serve constituents.
After meeting in non-public session Monday night, the city council approved a six-year lease with the senator to rent two small rooms on the first floor. She will rent what are known as the mayor’s office and map room. According to minutes of the non-public session, Hassan will rent the two rooms for $320 a month. She will pay her own phone and Internet costs.
Councilor Mike Rozek said since the space is the mayor’s office, he would support Mayor Paul Grenier’s decision. Grenier said he approved the proposal, noting the rent money will cover 25 percent of the building’s total heating costs. The mayor’s office has not been used in recent years.
The motion to approve the lease passed unanimously.
Meira Bernstein, press secretary for Hassan, confirmed that the senator plans to have a regional office at city hall.
“We are in the process of working with the City of Berlin to rent office space for a staffer as part of our efforts to set up offices across the state where constituents can come to voice their concerns, inquire about policy issues, get help with federal agencies, or simply stop by to get to know our staff,” she said. “In addition to our staff’s permanent offices, we also regularly hold office hours at other town halls in every corner of the state where constituents are encouraged to stop by. We always make sure to alert local newspapers about upcoming office hours in advance,” Bernstein said.