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The Conservation Commission handled a number of issues at Thursday's meeting.

Adams ConCom Praise Organic Herbicide Used On Rail Trail

By Jeff SnoonianPrint Story | Email Story
ADAMS, Mass. — Adams Conservation Commission praised the use of an organic herbicide to clean up the Ashuwillticook Rail Trail Thursday.
 
The commission discussed the process that resulted in an organic herbicide being applied along the trail to knock down some overgrown vegetation. 
 
"We like to protect the people of the town of Adams," said Commissioner Thomas Robinson regarding the use of a citrus oil-based herbicide.  
 
DPW superintendent Tim Kota and licensed applicator Jim Hall presented the herbicide to the commission at a prior meeting and after some vetting and the mandatory ten working days notice it was approved for use on the trail. Signage was installed and gates along the trail were closed while the application was taking place. 
 
Although the material was approved for use on the rail trail, the commission might still require approval for use in other areas. Commissioner Brian Bishop is open to the idea of speeding up the approval process saying, "If we find out that this material is approved by the powers that be above us then how can we deny it?"
 
The Commission also gave Burt Street resident Robert Tomkiewicz to raise the elevation on a section of his property to remove the need for flood insurance. 
 
Brian Koczela of BEK Associates, the firm assisting Tomkiewicz with his local and FEMA applications, said that "the minor alterations could save my client a couple of thousand dollars by eliminating the need for flood insurance."
 
The commission ruled that the work on Burt Street is not subject to any municipal wetlands ordinance. The ruling gives Tomkiewicz the green light to present his application to FEMA.
 
There will be construction starting soon at 423 West Rd. after the commission gave the OK to start building a new home on the site. Although the permit was already approved in the spring the foundation work for the modular home was delayed slightly as the commission felt the silt fence and runoff/erosion protection was not what was specified on the plans.
 
"They had a drawing dictating what they were supposed to do and they were not doing it," said Robinson.  
 
After a site visit, the commissioners are satisfied that the conditions have now been met and the foundation work will begin shortly.
 
The last piece of business Thursday was an in-house matter regarding the restoration of the commission to its full seven members. The commission has been short two members for several months with the departures of Zach Bantle and Cory Bishop. Local resident Natasha Bordeau has expressed interest in serving thus bringing the membership to six.
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Suffrage Centennial Committee Kicks Off Yearlong Celebration

By Jeff SnoonianiBerkshires Correspondent

Cassandra Peltier as Alva Belmont Vanderbilt, a prominent figure in the suffrage movement.
ADAMS, Mass. — About 75 people filled The Manor on Saturday afternoon for the kickoff event of a yearlong celebration of Susan B. Anthony and the 100th anniversary of women winning the right to vote.
 
The event at St. John Paul II Parish's Italianate mansion was organized by the Adams Suffrage Centennial Celebration Committee. The committee serves as an advisory committee to the Board of Selectmen. 
 
Anthony was born in Adams and was a social reformer best known for spearheading the women's suffrage movement. She was also involved in the anti-slavery movement, collecting signatures for petitions as a teen, the temperance (prohibition of alcohol) movement, and women's financial rights.
 
Retired school teacher Mary Whitney, committee member and host for the day, shared why Anthony's work was so important. 
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