Green Party's Miller Joins State House Race

By Andy McKeeveriBerkshires Staff
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Miller announced his candidacy at the local Green-Rainbow Party June meeting. 
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — After reeling in 45 percent of the vote last year, Mark Miller intends to make another run for the state House.
 
Miller announced his candidacy for the 3rd Berkshire District seat in the state House of Representatives on Thursday to a crowd of about 30 at the Berkshire Greens June meeting. 
 
"We’re going to win this time," Miller said at Baba Louie’s restaurant. "Last year, I thought this incumbent needed a challenge. Starting late and with insufficient funding and organization, I got 45 percent of the vote. That is a good foundation for this time around. This year we are starting early. We are organized."
 
The announcement came the day after current Rep. Christopher N. Speranzo was nominated by Governor Deval Patrick for the lifetime position of clerk-magistrate of the Central Berkshire District Court. Miller had planned the announcement before Speranzo’s nomination but said he was aware that it could come at any time.
 
Miller lost to Speranzo by less than 1,000 votes in November.
 
If Speranzo is approved for the lifetime appointed position, a special election will be held. Ward 2 Councilor Peter White also announced his candidacy for the seat — hours after Speranzo‘s nomination was announced.
 
While Miller will be running as a representative for the Green-Rainbow Party, he said he wants to be the "independent voice" in the House.
 
"I’m proud to be Green and I’m proud to be independent," the former Berkshire Eagle editor said. "We need to work together across party lines, Greens, Democrats, Republicans and independents."
 
Miller boasts of decades of work with various newspaper — as a reporter, editor and columnist — before turning his interest to studying economic development, energy and the environment.
 
"My main focus this year, as it was last year, is on resilient, secure, green local economies; Medicare for all, fair taxes; transparency in government; commitment to public education," Miller said.

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BCC Students and Faculty Must Be Fully Vaccinated By The End Of The Year

PITTSFIELD, Mass.— Berkshire Community College (BCC) students, faculty, and staff must be fully vaccinated by January of 2022.
 
The Presidents of the Massachusetts community colleges announced Monday that students, faculty, and staff at the Commonwealth's 15 community colleges must be fully vaccinated by January 2022.
 
BCC is one of the 15 Massachusetts Community Colleges.
 
"During the last eighteen months, the Massachusetts Community Colleges have prioritized the health and safety of our communities while also recognizing that many of our students have been disproportionally impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic" the Presidents said in a statement shared with their campuses. "While a significant number of students, faculty, and staff are already vaccinated or are in the process of becoming vaccinated, the fifteen colleges are seeking to increase the health and safety of the learning and working environment in light of the ongoing public health concerns and current guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The Massachusetts Community Colleges are committed to ensuring vaccination status is not a barrier to students and will continue offering a range of virtual learning opportunities and services."
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