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Letter: Transparency Critical in Preschool Discussions

Seeing these two meetings unfold at the nearly the same time, (1 hour or so at the Planning Board, 45 minutes at School Committee meeting, and then back to Planning Board for another hour) I was struck by their similarities and their startling differences.

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Letter: Support Waubeeka Compromise & Sarah Gardner

I plan to vote for the Waubeeka petition at our Williamstown town meeting as amendments are worked out on the floor. It is the best way to actually preserve open space possibilities as well as perhaps "banking" the land for the future as climate change brings more challenges to food production. It certainly would not hurt to realize the revenue off of the planned proposal if it could find a responsible developer.

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Letter: Senate Candidate Strongly Against Pipeline

Why do I oppose both pipelines? For starters, they transport fracked gas. Fracked gas has wreaked havoc on the environment because of all the chemicals injected into the groundwater and can ruin a water supply. Pipelines can be dangerous. In Sandisfield in 1981, they had to evacuate large parts of Sandisfield due to a leak. And they leak methane, which traps 84 more times more heat than carbon dioxide, increasing global warming. This is not to mention the disruption of the ecosystem upon install

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Letter: Answers Needed on North Adams Health Department Backlog

The recent revelation that the City of North Adams has fallen behind in its responsibility to provide its citizens of the most basic legally required Health Inspections demands a community announcement as compelling as Mayor Alcombright announcing his recision of the Winter Parking Ban sent to all citizens.

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McCann Cutting Costs for Electrical & Solar Array Repairs

McCann Technical School will receive $10,000 in repairs to its small roof-mounted solar array with a net-metering contract that will cut electricity costs. The McCann School Committee voted Wednesday to enter into a 25-year solar net metering contract that should cut electricity costs by 25 percent.

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Pittsfield Mulls Residency Requirement For Boards and Commissions

If a city board or commission is making decisions for the community, should the members actually live in the city? That's the question in front of the City Council's Ordinance and Rules Subcommittee. The group met on Monday to discuss a proposal put forth by resident David Pill to implement a residency requirement for all boards and commissions.

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Mount Greylock Retirees Address School Committee on Health Insurance

Several dozen current and retired employees of the Mount Greylock Regional School District attended last week's School Committee meeting to voice concerns that the district might unilaterally raise the percentage of health care costs borne by retirees.

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Francesconi Narrowly Keeps Selectman's Seat in Cheshire

Incumbent Carol Francesconi narrowly defeated opponent E. Richard Scholz for an open seat on the Board of Selectmen. The longtime incumbent and current chairwoman fended off Scholz by a slight margin of 25 votes.

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Cheshire Kindergartners Get Lesson on Voting

Monday's town election was a chance for some of its youngest citizens to learn about an important civic duty: Voting. The kindergarten classes of Robin Poirot and Heather Emerson walked through the rain from Cheshire Elementary School to the Senior Center to participate in a mock voting experience along with citizens of town.

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Nowak, Blanchard Returned to Adams Board of Selectmen

Joseph Nowak and Richard Blanchard were re-elected to the Board of Selectmen on Monday. The two incumbents were handed second three-year terms over Michael Ouellette, a former selectman.

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Letter: Moving Forward on Full Day Side-By-Side

The following are some thoughts on the recent Williamstown Elementary School Committee meeting on April 28. While I am on the High School committee, my comments are those of an individual.

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Williams Features Equal Justice Advocate at 227th Commencement

Bryan Stevenson, founder of the Equal Justice Initiative, will be the principal speaker at Williams College's 227th Commencement Exercise on Sunday, June 5. The day before, Pulitzer Prize-winning author and science journalist Elizabeth Kolbert will be the baccalaureate speaker. Both will receive honorary degrees at commencement, as will Sarah Bolton, current dean of the college at Williams and president-elect of The College of Wooster; author and illustrator Eric Carle; writer and commentator

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Downing to Give Keynote Address at 56th BCC Commencement

State Sen. Benjamin Downing, D-Pittsfield, will be the keynote speaker at Berkshire Community College's 56th Commencement Exercises to be held June 3 at Tanglewood in Lenox. Downing was first elected in 2006 at the age of 24. During his decade of service, Downing, who recently announced that he will not seek a sixth term, has represented 52 communities of the Berkshire, Hampshire, Franklin and Hampden District, the largest Senate district in the commonwealth.

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Pittsfield Airport Fence Revision Will Curb Deer Incursion

About three to five deer a day are among visitors to Pittsfield's municipal airport each day. It's a form of unwanted traffic the airport is looking to curtail, with the systematic repair or replacement of several significant sections of its perimeter fence

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Berkshires Beat: Save Stockbridge Bowl Campaign Nears Goal

The SBA has raised more than $2.4 million of the estimated $2.8 million cost to pay for Phase 2 of the Town of Stockbridge Lake Management Plan. The work will include dredging to remove silt that has built up over many decades, and to permit a significant winter drawdown to kill the roots of invasive non-native plants clogging many areas of the lake.

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Advocates Continue to Push on Williamstown Preschool Program

Four members of the Williamstown School Committee on Thursday again explained their reasons for supporting a fiscal 2017 budget that includes a reduction to the school's popular preschool program. At a special meeting originally rescheduled from April 13, the committee members explained why they did not oppose the school administration's decision to eliminate the full-day option for Side-By-Side.

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Mount Greylock Decides to Reduce Building Debt Assessment in Year One

The Mount Greylock School Committee has decided to pay less on the school building project bond in the first year and forego savings that would not be realized until years down the road. The question of whether to more aggressively pay down the principal on a $30 million bond has been discussed since the school district's two member towns passed a debt exclusion for the project in March.

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Airport Study Group Continues To Pry Into Westwood Leases

PERC President Jay Anderson doesn't think the development of the Westwood Center would have happened without FAA approval. But, the only correspondence with the federal aviation agency is a letter disapproving of the leases. Now, a study group is worried that the city could ultimately be on the hook to pay the FAA back for some 30 years worth of leases.

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Barrett Contributing on Two Sports at Westfield State

Mount Greylock graduate Lucy Barrett went directly from basketball to lacrosse at Westfield State this spring.

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Long Timelines Not Uncommon in Domestic Terrorism Cases

It has been more than nine months since an Adams man was arrested and his Murray Street apartment was searched by the FBI. It has been nine months since the U.S. Attorney's Office announced that Alexander Ciccolo was charged with violating a federal weapons possession law and released a detention memo outlining the ISIS sympathies of the 23-year-old man who also went by the name Ali Al Amriki.

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Williams Men's Lax Upsets Amherst in League Quarters

The Williams College men's lacrosse team Saturday advanced to the conference semifinals.

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MCLA Men's Tennis Falls in Conference Semis

The Colby-Sawyer men's tennis team beat MCLA on Saturday en route to winning a conference title.

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New Adams Store Opens Up in Memory of Noah Brown

A new shop will be celebrating its opening this weekend, but its first day of business on Sunday will be bittersweet. Kayla Pierce and her fiance, John-Michael Bradbury, are opening up "Smalls" at 64 Summer St. for two reasons: to support local crafters and to keep her son's memory alive.

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BFAIR Meeting Shows How Far Services Have Come

Berkshire Family and Individual Resources on Friday recognized Doris Sartori and her family with BFAIR's inaugural Lifetime Advocacy Award at the non-profit's annual meeting. Weisenflue explained just how difficult a road Doris and her late husband Aldo faced when they became advocates for their three children, one of whom, Bobby, is a model employee at the North Adams Big Y through a program operated by BFAIR.

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Pittsfield Highlights Chestnut Seed Orchard to Celebrate Arbor Day

The American Chestnut tree was so woven into the fabric of early American life that it was referred to as a "cradle to grave" in when a child was born, he was placed in a Chestnut cradle and when he dies, in a Chestnut coffin. Between four to five billion of the trees crowded the Eastern United State's landscape and was used for construction and food for both humans and animals. It was economic for wood and nut harvesters. It was a fixture in the ecosystem for wild animals. Farmers used the n