The COOL Factor

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On Wednesday, July 5th, the Williamstown COOL (CO2 Lowering) Committee and Images Cinema are co-sponsoring a Community Conversation in connection with "An Inconvenient Truth," the global warming documentary starring Al Gore. The discussion will take place at Images from 6:05 - 7:00 p.m and will be hosted by Betsy Kolbert, author of Field Notes from a Catastrophe: Man, Nature, and Climate Change; Nancy Nylen, Associate Director of the Center for Ecological Technology (CET); and other members of the COOL Committee. "We are finding that many people who see the film are concerned and want to take immediate positive action," Nylen said. "We are also finding that they want to talk about what they've seen and heard-because it has such far-reaching implications at home and across the globe. The 'Community Conversation' is an opportunity to learn from each other about positive actions that we can take on the local level and beyond." On Wednesday, July 12 at 6:30 at the Milne Public Library, the COOL committee is sponsoring a workshop to help people save energy in their homes. The Town of Williamstown received a grant to purchase "Kill-a-watt" meters that individuals can check out of the library. Mike Tillou will lead the workshop, teaching people how to use the meters to learn how much their appliances and electronic devices are using energy-even when they're turned off-and what to do about it. CO2 emissions attributed to burning fossil fuels for electricity, transportation and other energy use are the major cause of climate change. Williamstown is a member of Cities for Climate Protection. The town has pledged to reduce its emissions by 10 percent by 2010. "An Inconvenient Truth" is playing at Images through Thursday, July 6th. For more information, contact Wendy Penner at wendypenner@hotmail.com or Sandra Thomas at sandra@imagescinema.org .
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Berkshire DA: Up to Towns to Handle Officers on 'Brady List'

By Stephen DravisiBerkshires Staff
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — If Select Board members hoped the Berkshire County district attorney would offer direction on how the town should deal with the impact of having a police officer on her office's "Brady list," they were very disappointed.
 
Twice during an hourlong presentation at Monday's Select Board meeting, District Attorney Andrea Harrington said it was not her office's place to tell towns how to respond when the county's prosecutor decides one of the municipality's law enforcement officers has a history that needs to be revealed to defense attorneys or, worse, that an officer's history is so concerning that he or she cannot be used as a prosecution witness without approval of a supervisor.
 
The town currently has 11 full-time officers — including one on administrative leave since March and another pulling double duty as lieutenant and interim chief. A third has been placed on Harrington's "do not call" list, meaning the DA has determined the officer has "made misrepresentations about material facts in a criminal investigation," she said Monday in Williamstown Elementary School's gymnasium.
 
Some in the community have wondered whether having an officer on the do-not-call list, particularly when the department already is short-handed, creates an issue for the department's efficiency. Many residents have suggested that the town should remove the officer on the list and replace him with an officer who can be fully functional.
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