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UFCW Local 1459 represents about 2,000 workers in the Berkshires and Western Massachusetts.

Biz Briefs: Stop & Shop Workers Still Without Contract

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UFCW planning Chicopee rally

Area UFCW locals are hosting a rally at the Stop & Shop in Chicopee on Wednesday, March 20, as the grocery and union representatives have made little headway in contract negotiations.  
 
UFCW Local 1459, representing about 2,000 workers in the Berkshires and Western Massachusetts, voted a week ago to authorize a strike if the contract talks continue to bog down. Local 1459's vote is in accord with four other UFCW locals that together represent some 30,000 workers in the grocery chain's New England stores. 
 
Local 1459 President Tyrone Housey said in a video message on Friday that the grocer made some economic package adjustments over two days of talks last week but that "It's still not satisfactory to us." 
 
The union is objecting mainly to pensions and benefit changes. No negotiations are scheduled this week. 
 
 

Scholarships available

The Southern Berkshire Chamber of Commerce is offering scholarships for higher education, additional career training, or job certification ranging from $500 to $1,000.
 
"We are honored to announce this scholarship, which reflects the chamber's  commitment to the individuals that make our businesses and nonprofits so great," said Maria Rundle, SBCC board member and chair of the Scholarship Committee. "We want to give our members a chance to appreciate some of the people they work with and who volunteer in our nonprofits by giving them a step up in their education or job training goals."
 
Nominees will be asked to submit a short application and awards will be publicly announced at SBCC's Business After Hours meeting on June 13 at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center. The nominee must be over 18 or in their senior year of high school, reside in one of the towns that the chamber serves, and must have a connection to one of the chamber member businesses or organizations. To make a nomination: 413-528-4284 or betsy@southernberkshirechamber.com.
 
 

Positive business outlook

Berkshire County business owners have weighed in after the New Year’s hangover. Overall, confidence is on the up and up and continues to remain positive. The most recent Berkshire BCI, which is distributed and analyzed by Berkshire Money Management, is 60.3, up slightly from the last survey’s 58.6, signaling continued optimism among Berkshire County businesses and organization leaders. However, 37 percent of respondents say that they are expecting a recession by 2020, while nationally, the impending recession seems more imminent.   To view the full results of the latest Berkshire Business Confidence Index, click here.

Local optimism regarding a potential recession did not bleed into another survey question regarding the ability to obtain financing. Berkshire business owners expressed their concerns about being unable to access "financing on reasonable terms." This question, which over the last six BCI’s has been one of the most positive components, dropped 8 points. This is possibly because interest rates have risen since the last survey (July 2018).

Not surprisingly, hiring also came up. The number of respondents with modest-to-substantial hiring plans jumped from 27 percent to 51 percent as many businesses altered their answers from the last survey from "no change" in their employment levels to an intention of "modest hiring" in the coming months. To address this challenge, Berkshire Money Management in partnership with the Associated Industries of Massachusetts is hosting "Finders Keepers: Hiring and Retaining Skilled Employees," a free panel discussion, on Thursday, April 11, at 3:30 p.m., at the Model Farm (BMM offices) at 161 Main Street in Dalton. For more information and/or to register, visit aimnet.org and click "Upcoming Events."

 

Transportation conference in Worcester

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation will hold its eighth annual Transportation Innovation Conference with presentations and exhibits on a wide-range of topics including connected and autonomous vehicles, environmental aspects of transportation, mobility options, construction materials, pavements, safety, technology, asset management, wayfinding and the Baker-Polito Administration’s Complete Streets Funding Program.
 
The conference will be held on April 9 and 10 at the DCU Center in Worcester, and is designed to showcase the latest technologies and equipment and to gather together transportation officials, advocates, members of the private sector and municipal officials to discuss trends in the industry, programs and initiatives. For more information or to register: MassDOTInnovation.com

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North Adams Happenings: Oct. 23-29

SAVE THE DATE
NOVEMBER 2nd - Masquerade at Greylock WORKS
On November 2nd, three weeks before FESTIVE, come to gWorks to dance in disguise at our MASQUERADE Halloween costume party! Doors open at 8pm !
Celebrate your costume ingenuity with DJ BFG spinning seamless upbeat dance music within immersive theatrical lighting choreographed by LJ McZawa.
Whether you're coming out in a dramatic mask + your favorite party clothes or a full-body transformation, our local friends are joining in on the fun to motivate your creativity with Costume Themes and PRIZES.
https://www.facebook.com/events/406993753316580/
Wednesday 10/23
9:00 A.M. (FREE), SOCIAL, Open Hours UNO Community Center, 157 River Street, (413) 664-4612 More information.

10:00 A.M. (FREE), KIDS, Terrific Tots Playgroup The Family Center, 210 State Street, (413) 664-4821 More information.  


10:30 A.M. (FREE), PARENTING, Parenting Workshop: Surviving your Adolescents nbCC Conference Room, 61 Main Street, Room 213, (413) 663-7588 More information.  


11:30 A.M. (FREE), KIDS, Little Wonders Baby Playgroup The Family Center, 210 State Street, (413) 664-4821 More information. 

4:00 P.M. (FREE), FAMILY, Family Literacy Night Series The Family Center, 210 State Street, (413) 664-4821 More information.  


6:00 P.M. (FREE), WORKSHOP, Educator Open House North Adams Public Library, 64 Church Street, More information.

8:00 P.M. (FREE), GAMES, Trivia Night! Ramunto's, 67 Main Street, (413) 398-5152 More information.

Thursday 10/24
9:00 A.M. (FREE), SOCIAL, Open Hours UNO Community Center, 157 River Street, (413) 664-4612 More information.

10:00 A.M. (FREE), PARENTING, Kids Safety of America: Child Abuse and Neglect nbCC’s Conference Room, 61 Main Street, Room 213 More information.

4:00 P.M. (FREE), TUTORING, After School Program UNO Community Center, 157 River Street, (413) 664-4612 More information.

4:30 P.M. (FREE), CONVERSATION, Spaghetti Supper with Tom Bernard North Adams American Legion, 91 American Legion Drive More information.

4:30 P.M. (FREE), FAMILY, Dad and Family Time- Bowling and Pizza Night Valley Park Bowling, Curran Highway More information.

5:00 P.M. (FREE), SOCIAL, Octoberfest in The Airport Rooms TOURISTS Welcome, 915 State Road More information.

5:00 P.M. (FREE), BIKING, Halloween West End Bike Around Greylock School, 100 Phelps Ave More information.

6:00 P.M. (FREE), OPEN MIC, OPEN MIC The Parlor Cafe, 303 Ashland Street More information.

6:00 P.M. (FREE), INFORMATIONAL, Milton Hershey School Family Event: North Adams, MA Freight Yard Pub & Restaurant, 1 Furnace Street More information.

7:30 P.M. (FREE), WRITING, Fiction Writing Workshop [open house] Common Folk, 85 Main Street More information.

7:30 P.M. (FREE), BINGO, Musical Bingo at Mingo's Sports Bar and Grill 41 Roberts Drive More information.

8:00 P.M. ($15), COMEDY, Comedy Night w/ Andy Sandford HiLo North Adams, 55 Union Street More information.
Friday 10/25
10:30 A.M. (FREE), CONVERSATION, Coffee with a Cop MCLA Campus Center, 375 Church Street More information.

10:30 A.M. (FREE), PARENTING, Ages and Stages The Family Center, 210 State Street, (413) 664-4821 More information.

10:00 A.M. (FREE), KIDS, Drop-In Playgroup The Family Center, 210 State Street, (413) 664-4821 More information.

12:00 P.M. (FREE), SOCIAL, Open Hours UNO Community Center, 157 River Street, (413) 664-4612 More information.

7:00 P.M. (FREE), MOVIES, Halloween cartoon movie night MCLA Freel Library, Blackinton Street More information.

7:00 P.M. (By Donation), CRAFTING, Knitting Nights with Common Folk Common Folk, 73 Main Street More information.

7:00 P.M. ($1 and up), GAMES, BINGO! North Adams Elks 487 Lodge, 100 Eagle Street, (413) 664-9039 More information.

7:00 P.M. ($12 adv, $15 at the door), CONCERT, Gregory Douglass LIVE at HiLo North Adams HiLo North Adams, 55 Union Street More information.

8:00 P.M. (Prices vary, click link for details), THEATER, Miss Julie MCLA Theatre, 375 Church Street More information.

9:00 P.M. (FREE), MUSIC, Karaoke Friday! State Street Tavern, 167 State Street, (413) 664-9152 More information.
Saturday 10/26
9:00 A.M. (FREE), CLOTHING DRIVE, Winter Clothing Drive First Baptist Church of North Adams, 131 Main Street More information.

10:00 A.M. (FREE), GARDENING, Gardening Program UNO Community Center, 157 River Street, (413) 664-4612 More information.

12:30 P.M. (Child $5, Adults $8, Family $25), FUNDRAISER, AYJ Fund Children's Princess Concert MCLA Church St Center, 375 Church Street More information.

3:00 P.M. (Cost of Admission), ART, Opening Reception: Sarah Oppenheimer, Jenny Holzer, and ERRE MASS MoCA, 1040 MASS MoCA Way More information.

6:00 P.M. (FREE), CONCERT, Fall Foliage Sunset Serenade - Jessica Gregory Wilson Wigwam Western Summit, 2350 Mohawk Trail More information.

8:00 P.M. (Prices vary, click link for details), THEATER, Miss Julie MCLA Theatre, 375 Church Street More information.

8:00 P.M. ($12 adv, $15 at the door), CONCERT, Misty Blues HiLo North Adams, 55 Union Street More information.

8:00 P.M. (Prices Vary, see link for details), CONCERT, Jenny Scheinman & Allison Miller’s Parlour Game MASS MoCA, 1040 MASS MoCA Way More information.
Sunday 10/27
2:00 P.M. (Prices vary, click link for details), THEATER, Miss Julie MCLA Theatre, 375 Church Street More information.

7:00 P.M. ($20 adv, $25 day of), CONCERT, Jeffrey Foucault HiLo North Adams, 55 Union Street More information.
Monday 10/28
5:00 P.M. (FREE), WORKSHOP, ROOTS Volunteer Training ROOTS Teen Center, 43 Eagle Street More information.

5:00 P.M. (FREE), BIKING, nbCC Bike Collective The Armory, 206 Ashland Street More information.

6:00 P.M. (FREE), WORKSHOP, Communications Career Panel Bowman Hall - MCLA, 375 Church Street More information.
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