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Three Berkshire Communities Could Benefit as 'Opportunity Zones'

The Opportunity Zone program provides a federal tax incentive for taxpayers who reinvest unrealized capital gains into "Opportunity Funds," which are specialized vehicles dedicated to investing in low-income areas called "Opportunity Zones."

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Berkshires Near Economic Development District Designation

The county is about halfway toward creating an economic development district, which will open up a new source of potential revenue for projects throughout Berkshire County. The Comprehensive Economic Development committee, which is orchestrated through Berkshire Regional Planning Commission, has signed agreements from eight of the county's 32 towns joining the effort. The creation of a district will allow for cities and towns throughout the Berkshires apply for additional grant funding from t

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North Berkshire Coalition Forum Tackles Economic Development

Butler said that while there is a lot of "growth potential" in those sectors, people are always asking him about specific jobs that are available. On that front, the news is both good - and bad.

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Lanesborough Releases Economic Development Plan

A town committee has completed the long-awaited economic development plan. The Economic Development Committee has spent more than a year crafting what is eyed to become the blueprint for the town's efforts to attract and grow businesses.

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Pittsfield Announces First-Ever Business Development Manager

When it comes to growing and attracting businesses to the city, Michael Coakley is the guy you want to talk to.

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Momentum Growing Locally Behind Outdoor Recreation Economy

The Berkshires recently hosted a meeting with the Legislature's Joint Committee on Tourism, Arts and Cultural Development. 1Berkshire Director of Marketing Lindsey Schmid stood up before the group and began to tell the story about the importance of tourism in the Berkshires. But she didn't start with Tanglewood. Nor did she start with the Clark or MassMoCA. She started with mountain biking, hiking, and snowshoeing.

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Tyer Pitches Incentive Package For LTI Smart Glass Expansion

Mayor Linda Tyer is asking to use $580,000 of Pittsfield Economic Development Funds to help LTI Smart Glass expand. LTI Smart Glass is looking at a 16,692 square-foot expansion to its current Federico Drive facility to accommodate a large contract the company recently received for its newest bulletproof glass product. It requires a $2.25 million capital investment and will add 38 new jobs over the next three years.

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State Budget Funds Office to Increase Employee-Owned Businesses

Adam Vartikar grew up in a family-owned business in Brookline and now his parents are looking to retire. But he, nor any of his siblings, want to run it. Vartikar has a close relationship with the employees and doesn't want to see his parents close the doors or sell out to an company which will move it away. So he thought he'd help sell the business to the workers. He found out it is not that easy.

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'Better Block' Program Eyed To Bring Morningside's Vision To Life

Seeing is believing. For the last year MassDevelopment has been in a planning process for the redevelopment of Tyler Street. But, words on paper doesn't always tell the story. But those visions and dreams enunciated by the Morningside community are set to become a reality, if only for a day. MassDevelopment has brought in Team Better Block, a group which will head a community effort to bring all of those ideas to life on one section of Tyler Street to show off exactly what can be. The imp

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Senate President Gets Feel For Berkshires' Economic Future

Senate President Stanley Rosenberg sat in on a number of meetings in the Berkshire on Friday to discuss the county's economic future. The Amherst Democrat knows a lot of the issues already from prior meetings here and representing the rural Franklin County.

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North Adams Developer Sees Historic Mill as Thriving Business Hub

Local developer David Moresi envisions filling the former Excelsior Mill on Roberts Drive with a thriving community of entrepreneurs, businesses and artisans. He expects to make announcements in the coming weeks about new tenants that are already in the works and will begin aggressively marketing the complex.

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Pittsfield Launches Coordinated Approach to Economic Development

Christopher Kapiloff has some big contracts in the works for Laminated Technologies Inc. and he'll be looking to expand. He can expand anywhere and down south, where his competitors are based, it is less expensive to do business. But he is a Berkshire guy and grew his business in Pittsfield so he wants to stay. He went to the mayor's office and asked if there was some way the city could help cover the gap to build an expanded facility.

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Economic Development Sec. Ash Holds Summit On Workforce Development

The state has brought together local leaders to develop a "blueprint" for regional workforce development. Representatives from business, education, and community organizations met with Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Jay Ash on Tuesday for a four-hour planning session. The session is part of seven Workforce Skills Cabinet meetings across the state with the hope to better align the education, workforce development, and economic development.

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Local Economic Specialists See Mall Site As An 'Opportunity'

Two years ago, BRPC undertook a survey of the available properties that are zoned for industrial usage, near main roads, and in proximity (not necessarily served by) to utilities. Only 41 of those properties have more than three acres of undeveloped, buildable land.

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Secretary Ash Tours Greylock Works Project

Greylock Works received a $2,176,341 MassWorks grant last fall to redo the entry and parking lots on the east and south side of the sprawling structure. Part of that grant was a 10-year easement for the city to allow use of the parking for the adjacent Alcombright Athletic Complex.

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North Adams Initiative Pursuing Eagle Street Crowdfunding Grant

The city is hoping to build on the recent enthusiasm surrounding the Small Business Revolution to leverage those online votes into online dollars. The goal: to raise $25,000 by May 5 toward a matching MassDevelopment grant to make historic Eagle Street more attractive to pedestrians and visitors.

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Four Towns Sharing Economic Development Planner

BRPC is looking to "rapidly expand" a shared economic planner job. Four towns, Hinsdale, Great Barrington, Clarksburg, and Lanesborough, had signed onto a project to bring on a full-time economic development specialist. William Compton was hired for the position and now splits his time working with the various communities.

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Secretary Jay Ash Presents Award To Apex, Discusses Manufacturing

Apex Resource Technologies, an injection molding company who found a particular niche in the medical devise manufacturing business, is just one example of the manufacturing that Massachusetts stills has, and wants to grow. Secretary of the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development Jay Ash joined state Rep. Tricia Farley-Bouvier Tuesday to highlight the company's efforts with the presentation of the first annual Massachusetts Manufacturing Caucus Award.

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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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North County Economic Forum Looks at Opportunities

There was a strong sense of optimism on Saturday as dozens of business and community leaders gathered to address North County's economic development. From hundreds of millions of dollars in current public and private investment to local entrepreneurs to a dropping jobless rate to ambitious plans for downtown development, the future seemed brighter than in years past.

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