Hinds Named Co-Chair of Committion on Public School Transportation

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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — State Sen. Adam Hinds has been appointed to co-chair the Special Commission on Improving Efficiencies in Student Transportation by Senate President Karen E. Spilka.
"The method and formulas by which our public school districts are funded are flawed, and this impacts the budgets of all our schools," Hinds said. "That is why I am excited by this opportunity to address such a significant issue that impacts school and municipal budgets, and, ultimately, directs money back into our classrooms."

The Special Commission, established by Section 77 of the FY19 state budget (Chapter 154 of the Acts of 2018), is charged with making recommendations to the General Court’s Joint Committee on Education on how school districts can improve and implement efficiencies in regards to various student transportation issues, such as: students attending regional schools; students in special education out of district placements; students attending out of district vocational and technical schools; students attending out of district agricultural schools; and any other student transportation the Commission deems appropriate.

During its scope of work, the commission will study and report on a review of methods districts use to transport said students, including current costs and bid processes in procuring transportation; a budget assessment for said costs; and recommendations for improving transportation services.

Hinds will be joined on the commission by state Rep. Brad Hill, who was appointed by the House Minority Leader, and Superintendent Brian Forget of the Triton Regional School District, who was appointed by the Senate Minority Leader. In total, there are 11 members of the Special Commission.


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Pittsfield Panel Wants Public Participation on Pot Growing

By Jack GuerinoiBerkshires Staff
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Ordinance and Rules subcommittee will take up outdoor marijuana cultivation in residential zones once members can meet in person.
The subcommittee voted to table an agenda item Wednesday that would restrict marijuana cultivation in residential zones until meetings can be opened more fully to the public. 
"I think it is important that we can meet in person," Chairman Nicholas Caccamo said. "If you attended the meetings before, there was a lot of community involvement and a lot of neighborhoods are involved in this."
In February, the Community Development Board acted on a petition from Councilor at Large Earl Persip III who wanted to restrict outdoor marijuana cultivation in residential areas.
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