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Historic Blackinton Cemetery Hoping for City Takeover

Brush and weeds are slowly being cleared from Blackinton Cemetery, uncovering graves lost to the overgrowth. For nearly a century, volunteers have kept up the private graveyard on Massachusetts Avenue but their numbers, and time, is running down.

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Failed Williamstown Hotel Applicant Weighs Legal Options

Williamstown attorney Donald Dubendorf said his client, Vipul "Vinny" Patel, was "disappointed" with Thursday's Zoning Board of Appeals decision denying him four special permits needed to develop a three-story, 77-room hotel at 562 Main St., the so-called Lehovec property.

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Two Groups Interested In Leasing Cheshire School

Two different educational organizations have reached out to the Selectmen about leasing Cheshire Elementary School. Selectman Robert Ciskowski said he was against leasing the building at this time because he felt there were too many unknowns. He said he feared it would end up costing the town money.

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Williamstown Rural Lands Honors Retiring Executive Director

Surrounded by the pastoral setting she worked for more than two decades to protect, Leslie Reed-Evans received the heartfelt congratulations of the Williamstown Rural Lands Foundation at Saturday afternoon's annual meeting.

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Build a Better World Reading Program to Take Place in Adams

Children will be able to participate in the Build a Better World reading program to benefit Habitat for Humanity. The library trustees voted Thursday to allow Library Director Holli Jayko to spend up to $1,500 from the unrestricted passbook account and gifts to fund the initiative for the youth summer reading program.

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Earl Persip Jumps Into Pittsfield City Council Race

Earl Persip III has joined the race for City Council. The director of operations at the Berkshire Family YMCA announced his candidacy for an at-large seat Friday morning.

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Pittsfield Looking to Standardize Park Signage

The new sign for Durant Park will be the model for all park signs in the future. Parks and Open Space Manager Jim McGrath presented the design to the Parks Commission on Tuesday, showing a fairly basic sign with letter naming the park, the city's seal, and a note that it is overseen by the Parks Commission. McGrath said the signage replicates the standard signs at the city's conservation areas except with a green background instead of maroon.

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@theMarket: The Trump Dump

Wall Street blamed it on the growing scandals engulfing the White House. However, there was little follow through despite predictions that this was the beginning of the long-awaited pullback.

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Hinds Gives BRPC Updates From the State House

Local organizations have great long-term plans for the future of Berkshire County. But, state Sen. Adam Hinds said the state needs to get the "fundamentals right" before that can take hold. Hinds spoke with the Berkshire Regional Planning Commission on Thursday and reviewed the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy. He said 1Berkshire also has a similar blueprint with how to revitalize the Berkshire economy. But, both plans are still two or more years away, he said.

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Clarksburg School Committee OKs $2.44M Budget for Fiscal 2018

He anticipated that the school would have to lay off some paraprofessionals and possibly cut programs. At the same time, the school will have to add a kindergarten teacher to accommodate a growing number of incoming kindergartners.

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The Independent Investor: Health-Care Costs Are Strangling Us

Recently, none other than the Sage of Omaha, Warren Buffet, has sounded the alarm on what he sees as the number one threat to American businesses rising health care costs. His advice is that we better do something and do it quickly.

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Cultural Pittsfield This Week: May 19-25

Join the Berkshire Museum to celebrate the "electric" opening of its newest exhibit, Guitar: The Instrument that Rocked the World, from 5:30-7:30 p.m.

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Convenience Plus At First And Tyler Eyed For Rebuild

The Shell gas station at the intersection of First and Tyler is eyed to be razed and rebuilt. Global Montello Group, which operates the store through a lease agreement with O'Connell Oil, has filed an application with the city to tear down the existing station and rebuilt as a Xtra Mart.

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Adams Selectmen Unsettled By Regional School District Amendment

The vagueness of an amendment pushed by Cheshire citizens to amend the regional school district as a way to keep their school open has Adams officials wary of the fall out. The Selectmen have added the amendment to the annual town meeting warrant but wanted to make it clear that it could have a financial impact in Adams. The amendment would purportedly allow Cheshire to spend more on its school without triggering proportional spending by Adams.

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North Adams Eagle Street Initiative Launches; Exchange Project Grows

Two big initiatives are launching this summer and next to promote elements of North Adams downtown area. It's a year away, but the $60,000 NAMAzing Eagle Street Initiative, or NESI, will reinvigorate the city's historic byway with new signs, social spaces, art installations and clearly marked entrances for pedestrians and motorists.

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Williamstown ZBA Denies Hotel Bid for Lehovec Property

A divided Zoning Board of Appeals on Thursday ruled against four applications for special permits that would have allowed the development of a 77-room, three-story hotel at 562 Main St. The application to develop the so-called Lehovec property on Route 2 next to the former Agway met with fierce opposition from residents in the neighboring Colonial Village development.

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Pittsfield Police Honors Officers Killed In Line Of Duty

A total of 145 law enforcement officers across the country died in the line of duty last year, the highest total since 2011. "One average one American law enforcement officer is killed every 53 hours somewhere in the United States. Last year 145 law enforcement officers made the ultimate sacrifice. That is the highest total fatalities since 2011," Police Chief Michael Wynn said.

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Culture, Recreation Dominate Downtown Pittsfield's Annual Meeting

The Berkshires has a niche when it comes to scenic beauty and cultural institutions that other places can't replicate. The city's downtown is has placed those two aspects as cornerstones to economic development. At Downtown Pittsfield Inc.'s annual meeting Thursday morning, businesses who have helped expand in those areas were honored for their efforts.

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Searchers Recover Body of Missing Pittsfield Man in State Forest

Investigators do not suspect foul play in the death of a missing Pittsfield man whose body was discovered Wednesday afternoon in October Mountain State Forest.

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North Adams Happenings: May 17-23

Brought to you by: MCLA's Berkshire Cultural Resource Center and the North Adams Office of Tourism & Community Events

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Clothing Sale, Now a Decade Old, Set for Saturday, May 20

The sale features gently used clothing and shoes sized from infant to teen styles, including pajamas, swimwear and outerwear, as well as infant bedding/gear, sporting and dance apparel, costumes, accessories and maternity items. The sale featuring items for all seasons, including high-quality winter coats. All items will be 50 percent off from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m.

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Adams Welcomes New Fire Chief

The Adams Alerts Hose Company has a new leader in John Pansecchi, who was elected as chief engineer during the annual Fire District election on May 9. Pansecchi, who has been on the Fire Department for 30 years, said taking the helm feels like a natural transition.

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Backyard Bees Creating A Buzz Between Two Pittsfield Neighbors

Beekeeping is becoming a hobby for more and more people. William Slater and his son Aaron recently took beekeeping classes and decided to keep two hives in their backyard. However, Jim Saldo owns and maintains the lot next door and he's got a serious allergy to them.

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North Adams School Budget Up 2%; Cuts Dozen Positions

The School Committee will vote next week on a fiscal 2018 budget that's up about 2 percent over this year and includes reductions in positions, including the assistant principal at the high school.

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Health Officials Talk Substance Abuse From Jail to Recovery

Where does the system fail from the time an addict is arrested to well after leaving jail? That's what Marisa Hebble, of the executive office of the trial court, wants to not only answer but fix. She is heading the Community Justice Project, which focuses on "sequential intercept," essentially every point through the process someone struggling with addiction faces in the criminal justice system.

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