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Pittsfield Candidates Pledge to Support Tyler Street Growth
By Joe Durwin On: 02:22PM / Monday October 17, 2011
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A variety of candidates seeking election or re-election in Pittsfield touted their support for a resurgent Tyler Street last Thursday.

The candidates were invited to present their views at a meet-and-greet for Morningside area voters hosted by the Tyler Street Business Group.

A small but engaged crowd of voters attended the event, working their way around the tables set up where candidates were on hand to introduce themselves, ask questions, and take campaign materials such as fliers and stickers.

Pre-written statements were collected from each of the candidates by Dianna Marcella, president of the business group, and read at the function.

Ward 1 City Councilor Christine Yon, who is running unopposed, called Tyler Street "funky and charming" and "a piece of the puzzle" that is Pittsfield.

Pete White, current Ward 2 councilor who is running for re-election as a write-in candidate this year, called it "an important business district" and that having lived near it most of his life, "Tyler is home."

Kevin Morandi, who is making a second bid for the Ward 2 seat, said that if elected, he will advocate for and support efforts to expand downtownto Tyler. He cited opening the Woodlawn Street bridge as one priority.

Mayoral candidate Daniel Bianchi, who grew up on Tyler Street, said the street's "future can be a bright one,"  and will be one focus of his "Plan for Pittsfield."

Peter Marchetti, a current city councilor also seeking election to the mayor's office, said he, too, sees Tyler Street as an extension of downtown and that, as a resident, he has always seen it as an area of "local business flavor and caring residents."

Council at-large candidate Nicholas Caccamo called it the place where "commerce meets health," and drew chuckles from attendees with a reference to the delicious menu offerings at Café Reva's.

Council hopefuls Jason Clairmont touted the importance of Tyler Street's "essential goods and services" while Churchill Cotton called it "the spine from which the Morningside area gets its strength."

Anthony Maffuccio, who's hoping to return to the council as an at-large candidate, called it a "forgotten North Street," saying we need to "market it as one of our great hubs."

Councilor at-large incumbent Melissa Mazzeo spoke of how much she enjoyed Tyler Street as a place where one could go to a bakery, go to church, get their hair done, and shop for furniture all within walking distance.

Joseph Nichols, a councilor at large who running for re-election as a write-in candidate, called it "a fountain of memories" and a "cornerstone of future growth." He said he was pleased with the growth and attention it has received in the past couple of years.

Kevin Sherman, also running for re-election as an at-large councilor, called it a "gateway and business district" that "needs support to continue to grow."

Tricia Farley-Bouvier, Democratic candidate for 3rd Berkshire District state representative, also attended, telling the organizers that no matter who was elected, "now you can remind them that they promised to pay attention to Tyler Street."


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Bianchi Sets Meeting to Unveil 'Plan For Pittsfied'
Bianchi Campaign On: 12:52PM / Monday October 17, 2011
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Mayoral candidate Dan Bianchi announced Monday that he will hold a town hall meeting on Wednesday, Oct. 19, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the GEAA on Crane Avenue. The meeting is free and open to the public.

"Throughout this campaign, I have been overwhelmed by the number of suggestions and concerns that voters have about issues in Pittsfield. I have done my best to incorporate their feedback — and my vision for Pittsfield — into a comprehensive plan for Pittsfield. Many voters have heard pieces of my plan throughout the course of this campaign, but it has always been my goal to share the specific action items of this plan with the voters of Pittsfield," Bianchi said.

"Because of the enormous interest in the special election for state rep, municipal candidates have had limited public opportunity to debate the real issues facing Pittsfield. Over the next three weeks, I will share my 'Plan for Pittsfield' as I to continue knock on doors and generate public interest on the differences between myself and my opponent.

"As we celebrate our 250th anniversary of Pittsfield, it is a time to reflect and plan for the future. My plan addresses taxes, city services, education, economic development and job creation, expansion of open government, and public safety."

Bianchi said, "This meeting will give everyone an opportunity to learn about my specific action plan to move Pittsfield forward. And, there will be an opportunity for the public to ask me questions."

Following Wednesday's town hall meeting, Bianchi will put his "Plan for Pittsfield" on his website at votebianchi.com.


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Alcombright Highlights New Economic Projects
Alcombright Campaign On: 09:17AM / Monday October 17, 2011
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Richard Alcombright, who is running for a second term as mayor, is highlighting the positive trends in the city's economic growth.

"In my previous communication, I outlined many of the positive economic things that have happened since I took office in January 2010. There are many things that have happened and many great things that are in our immediate and near future," said Alcombright.

"We will have a Super Walmart announcement within the next couple of weeks. Walmart has filed plans with our Building Department and there currently is activity at the site. This multimillion dollar development will provide much needed growth to our tax base and will bring up to 90 new full and part-time jobs. This project could also be the catalyst for further development of the parcel just further to the south as well as a remarketing effort of the existing Walmart. The projected increases in traffic through the Main and Marshall Street intersection could provide additional traffic within our downtown and to businesses along the State Street corridor.

"Scarafoni Associates and the Brien Center will embark on a private/public partnership that will provide approximately $1.5 million in renovations to the Transcript building on American Legion Drive. This effort assures that the Brien Center will remain in North Adams and that the 60-plus jobs they provide will remain, as well as the exceptional services they provide.  And while the Brien Center is a not-for-profit entity, through the efforts of this administration and this partnership, the City is assured that real estate taxes exceeding $250,000 will be paid over the next 10 years.

"I am very excited about the continued progress of our solar initiatives. As we continue to plow through the negotiation and contract process, I, along with several from my administration, have been working diligently to bring a massive four-site solar project to the city. This includes solar arrays at the former landfill, the airport, the former sewer treatment plant in the west end, and the roof at Drury High School. The scope of this project is such that when completed, it has the potential to save the city up to $350,000 annually on electricity costs. This project is overwhelmingly attractive because it comes with no cost to the city.

"Another major project is the renovation of the former Haddad Ford building on Route 2 that will become the new home for Carr Hardware. This renovation will allow Carr to move and grow their operations, product line and will add eight to 12 new jobs. This expansion will also benefit our tax base.

"We are very close to a forward thinking, self-sustaining Mohawk Theater solution. I have been collaborating with MCLA and Mass MoCA for more than 10 months on a project that will provide an academic as well as a community theater solution. Combine this and all of the above with the $50 million MCLA Center for Science and Innovation project that has just broken ground, $3.5 million in improvements that have begun at the Greylock Valley Apartments, and the potential for school renovations and this city could have upwards of $100 million in construction projects beginning or happening in the city over the next 12 months.

"All of these projects will contribute to the growth of jobs, the growth of our tax base, will encourage people to locate here, buy homes here and educate their children here. I am excited to be a part of this growth and I will continue to look forward and not back."


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Jester Endorsed as 'Jobs Candidate'
Jester Campaign On: 12:31PM / Sunday October 16, 2011
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Mark Jester, Republican candidate for state representative, was endorsed on Friday by New Jobs for Massachusetts, an advocacy group for job creation in Massachusetts. Mike Hruby, president of the group, described Jester as the best jobs candidate.

"As a state representative, we strongly believe that Mark will fight for initiatives that will help grow jobs in Massachusetts. Mark Jester is the pro-jobs candidate," said Hruby.

NJFM conducted a survey of all the candidates running in the special election on Oct. 18 to fill the vacant 3rd District seat. Jester's survey showed that he has the best understanding of how regulations, high taxes and government bureaucracy can deter job growth, according to Hruby. Moreover, Jester supports immediate reforms that can help the commonwealth's economy.

Jester is the second candidate in the state to receive the distinction of being a "Pro-Jobs Candidate" from New Jobs for Massachusetts. Last month, newly elected state Rep. Keiko Orrall received the first recognition.

 
Unemployed workers 300,000
Underemployed workers 600,000
College graduates per year 90,000
High school graduates not going to college 10,000
Total 1 million
Figures supplied by NJFM   
"Pittsfield residents who want to turn around the economy and create more jobs locally should support Mark Jester's candidacy in the Oct. 18 special election," said Hruby.

NJFM has been sounding the alarm that Massachusetts has a jobs crisis. According to its figures, the commonwealth needs one million jobs in order to satisfy the need for employment.

NJFM officials say the new organization is funded by private small contributions so it does not have a membership list that might face retaliation from the State House for being vocal on issues.

Mike Hruby of Boxborough has been a consultant to large and mid-sized technology companies for more than 20 years. During the course of more than 500 projects, his firm helped companies nationwide enter new markets for their products. Since 2004, he built a data center cooling business for a client based on its patent, and found licensees for corporate technologies. He wrote an award-winning book on corporate growth strategy titled "Technoleverage." He has a master's degree in resource economics from the University of New Hampshire.
 


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Council Candidate Bullett Sets Meet & Greet
Bullett Campaign On: 09:59PM / Thursday October 13, 2011
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — City Council candidate Nancy Bullett will host a meet and greet reception on Sunday, Oct. 16, from 1 to 7 at the Greylock Community Club on State Road.

Bullett, who is running for council for the first time, invites the public to come speak with her.

The afternoon will include hamburgers, hot dogs and chili, volleyball, horseshoes and dancing. Tickets are $10 or $8 for seniors and children.

Reserve tickets by calling 663-7862 or pay at the door.


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Where to vote in Berkshire County

State Primary
Tuesday, Sept. 9

Voting is from 7 to 8 p.m.
Deadline to register or change party affiliation is Aug. 20; only unenrolled voters may select which primary to vote in. More information on registering can be found here.

Candidates on the ballot in a race for their party nomination; all others on the ballot are unopposed

Republican
  Governor: Charles D. Baker & Mark R. Fisher

Democratic
  Governor: Donald M. Berwick, Martha Coakley & Steven Grossman
  Lieutenant governor: Leland Cheung, Stephen J. Kerrigan & Michael E. Lake
  Attorney general: Maura Healey & Warren E. Tolman
  Treasurer: Thomas P. Conroy, Barry R. Finegold & Deborah B. Goldberg
 

Municipal Elections

The cities of Pittsfield and North Adams will hold municipal elections for mayor, city council and school committee in 2015

You may vote absentee: if you will be absent from your town or city on election day, have a physical disability that prevents you from voting at the polls or cannot vote at the polls because to religious beliefs.

2010 Special Senate Election Results

Election 2009 Stories

Election Day 2008

 

 

 



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