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Williamstown Elementary Earns Level 1 Status, State Commendation

Williamstown Elementary School passed its first year under a new standardized testing regime with flying colors, the School Committee learned on Wednesday. Last spring marked the first time the school's pupils were evaluated by the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, or PARCC, test in place of the commonwealth's traditional Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System.

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Pittsfield Will Not Yet Ask Waterstone For Economic Impact Study

The City Council opted against asking Waterstone Realty for an independent economic impact study on the proposed Walmart Supercenter at this time. The council voted 6-4 against Downtown Pittsfield Inc.'s request to have the developer pay for an independent consultant to analyze the economic the project to build a 190,000 square-foot store at the William Stanley Business Park. However, some councilors said they'd like a study done, once a proposal is made and the once the scope of the study is

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Clarksburg Select Board Fires Treasurer/Tax Collector

The town's treasurer/tax collector was fired on Wednesday night after a nearly 45-minute executive session of the Select Board. The board provided no explanation for the firing.

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Adams May Look at Tax Break Incentives For Businesses

The town may take a more in-depth look at business tax incentives to attract companies to the industrial park and downtown. Selectman John Duval asked Wednesday during a workshop meeting if the town could benefit from offering tax breaks to businesses of all kinds in hopes of attracting some that will create jobs and vibrancy downtown.

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Pittsfield Denies Permit For Medical Marijuana Facility In Former KFC

The Zoning Board of Appeals denied a special permit for a medical marijuana dispensary at the former KFC because the members felt it would be detrimental to the character of the neighborhood. Happy Valley Compassion Center was looking to turn the former Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant into a medical marijuana dispensary - provided it received all of the necessary approvals from state and local government. But, the Zoning Board of Appeals unanimously rejected the company's application for a

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Renal Dialysis Center Opening at BMC's North Adams Campus

The dialysis center is the latest medical service to open on the former North Adams Regional Hospital campus since its acquisition by BMC. The center had been under consideration for some time and the board of directors approved its construction last year, along with a planned relocation of the Pittsfield center. with fewer chairs, to the former hematology/oncology offices on Dan Fox Drive. Fairview Hospital also has a six-chair center.

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Williamstown Elementary to Hold 10th Annual Children's Clothing Sale

Shoppers will find all types of weather bargains from shorts, pants and sweaters to jackets, boots, snowpants, bathing suits and mittens.

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Lanesborough Settles Tax Appeal With Berkshire Mall

The town has settled the tax appeal lawsuits with the former owners of the Berkshire Mall. The former owners, Strategic Property Services under Berkshire Mall LLC., had appealed its assessment for both fiscal year 2015 and 2016. But, when in preparing for its sale to Kohan Retail Investment Group, the owners sought a settlement agreement with the town and the Baker Hill Road District on those assessments and a lawsuit.

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North Adams Happenings: Sept. 28-Oct. 4

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Williamstown Selectmen Give Town Manager Glowing Review

The board held its final vote on a weeks-long process that began with the development of a comprehensive technique for performing the evaluation and ended in a 5-0 decision to approve a report that found Hoch, "has shown himself to be a thoughtful, intelligent and articulate manager who comes with significant expertise in his field and the ability to learn quickly as new issues arise."

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Adams ZBA Avoids 'Oversaturation' of Asian Cuisine

A potential Asian fusion restaurant owner seeking a special permit at Tuesday's Zoning Board of Appeals was upstaged by another potential Asian fusion restaurant owner just two doors away. The first was Xing Li, who had applied to operate a restaurant at 131 Columbia St., the former Berkshire County Stove property.

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Pittsfield Council Rejects Funds to Start Demolition of JB Paper Site

The City Council rejected a request to add funds to the property demolition budget line Tuesday night, which was eyed to start moving toward securing the JB Paper Company building, which burned earlier this year. Mayor Linda Tyer put in a request to add $25,000 to the property demolition budget, a budget which the City Council had cut during the budget process by that much. Tyer said the increase would go to performing a hazardous materials assessment and creation of specification for the dem

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North Adams City Council Approves Funds Toward Church Repair

The City Council on Tuesday unanimously voted to match a $50,000 state grant to begin emergency repairs to 140-year-old Notre Dame Church. The emergency preservation grant was awarded by Secretary of State William Galvin, as part of his oversight of the Massachusetts Historic Commission, will be matched with $50,000 from the city's stabilization fund. The stabilization fund has about $970,000 in it.

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Alcombright Hopes to Share Trendsetter Award With Community

City Hall is looking to share the love when it comes to the city's recent Berkshire Trendsetters award. Mayor Richard Alcombright said last week that he and Suzy Helme, the city's event coordinator, are considering ways that local businesses and organizations might host the award.

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Pittsfield Fire Now Carrying Narcan

The Fire Department is now equipped with Narcan. The firefighters are being equipped with the overdose reversing drug through a Massachusetts Department of Public Health grant. All of the engine companies were issued nasal Nalozone - Narcan - on Tuesday morning.

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Adams-Cheshire District Creating Plan to Increase Test Scores

Another year of subpar standardized test scores has administrators in the Adams-Cheshire Regional School District seeking ways to improve performance. "What we need to do is more parent outreach and work with students, teachers and administration because it is going to have to be a broad initiative if we want to be successful because we have to turn around what has been a steady trend for a long time," interim Superintendent Robert Putnam told the School Committee on Monday.

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Pittsfield Licensing Board Considering New Processing Fees

The Licensing Board is looking to add on a processing fee for alcohol license holders who make changes mid-year. The fees would be tacked on to such transactions like changing of hours or changing of managers which are done outside of the annual renewal or up all of the annual renewal fees.

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Commission Listens to Grandparents Raising Grandchildren

The gathering was the first of eight listening sessions across the state by Commission on the Status of Grandparents Raising Grandchildren. The panel included Chevers and fellow Commissioner Ilene Mitchell, an assistant deputy court administrator for Probate and Family Court in Boston; Catherine Madden, project manager of the Opioid Task Force for the Office of the Attorney General, and Abigail Taylor, assistant attorney general for the Child and Youth Protection Unit for the AGO.

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Middle East Refugee Plan Outlined to Overflow Pittsfield Crowd

An overly packed library auditorium heard an overview of the organization looking to resettle 50 Syrian and Iraq refugees in the city's plans. But, did not field questions. The meeting only lasted an hour with more than 300 people, in standing room and overflowing into the back, with Jewish Family Services providing an overview of the program. The plan will bring the 15 or so Arab speaking families from the Middle East to Pittsfield and volunteers and the JFS will work closely with the famili

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Two Accidents, No Injuries in Southern Vermont

A local woman avoided injury when her Chrysler Town and Country crashed into a tree on Saturday morning shortly before 11. Karen Wheeler, 57, of Readsboro was southbound on Route 100 in her 2005 van when she experienced a mechanical malfunction with her steering wheel, according to State Trooper Lauren Ronan. The van left the highway near Lincoln Road, collided with a guardrail and then a tree.

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Berkshires Beat: Fall Foliage Week Has Arrived

Remember, the parade kicks off at 1 p.m. from the Ocean City Job Lot parking lot. All of this week's events can be found online.

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Unistress Volunteers Build Shelter For Dogs At Sonsini Shelter

There are some cool dogs at the Eleanor Sonsini Animal Shelter thanks to local businesses. Some 30 Unistress employees were at the volunteer-run shelter building a shelter for the dogs to protect them from the elements. The project allows the dogs to be outside without overheating from the sun which beats down onto the kennels.

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End of Session Review: William 'Smitty' Pignatelli

State Rep. William "Smitty" Pignatelli said despite a slow start to a short session, the Legislature was able to make some progress on big issues. "It was an interesting session. We have two-year legislative sessions and it was a slow start to the session mainly because of the change in leadership in the Senate and we had a lengthy dischord that is still going on about the rules and the joint rules of the Legisture. That slowed our process down a little bit," Pignatelli said.

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Annual Fall Run Fundraiser Returns For 35th Year

The rumble of engines echoed through Adams on Sunday morning as more than 1,000 motorcycles queued up at Bowe Field for the 60-mile Fall Run motorcycle ride.

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Q&A: Pownal Woman Conquers Appalachian Trail After Detour

Hannah Cochran is a hiker through and through, but she is not a "thru-hiker," not technically, at least not in her opinion. Others would differ with the Pownal, Vt., resident and Mount Greylock Regional School graduate.

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