PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Mayor Linda Tyer is urging residents to be cautious this Labor Day weekend as COVID-19 cases in the city rise to levels seen in early August.
During her Friday address on Pittsfield Community Television, she said there have been 12 new COVID-19 cases in the past two weeks in the city.
"We are a lower risk community ... however this slight uptick in the positivity rate should be a warning to all of us," Tyer said. "We continue to battle a dangerous and highly contagious public health epidemic."
The mayor was referring to the state's COVID-19 community-level data map. Pittsfield has hit 2 for normalized cases per 100,000. Although still in the green low-risk category, Tyer asked residents to remain vigilant especially this Labor Day weekend.
"Please be safe," she said. "This is not the time to let our guard down ... avoid large gatherings, wear a mask, and social distance. Let's continue to do the right thing."
The city has had 221 total positive cases to date and six deaths.
Tyer also spoke to the state Department of Public Health's flu vaccine mandate for all children and said Berkshire Health Systems and the city's public health agencies are preparing for additional clinics.
In other comments, she congratulated U.S. Rep. Richard Neal and U.S. Sen. Edward Markey on their Democratic primary victories Tuesday and thanked the 10,000-plus Pittsfield citizens who voted.
"Thank you all who found a way to safely exercise your right and actively participate in our democracy," she said.
She said the unofficial number of votes cast is 10,707. This includes ballots sent in via mail.
Cellist Yo-Yo Ma and pianist Emanuel Ex performed in pop up concerts throughout the city and the county this week as a special thank you for front line workers.
"Pittsfield is truly proud to be home of this momentous and cherished occasions," Tyer said. "I think it's time that we give Yo-Yo Ma and honorary residency in the city of Pittsfield."
Tyer also sent her condolences to the family of former Pittsfield Mayor Remo Del Gallo who died Tuesday at the age of 94.
"He was a beloved member of our community who generously shared his political wisdom with those of us who sought elected office," she said. "He had a great scene of humor and was a brilliant storyteller."
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A relatively new cannabis dispensary's success is leaving it short-handed for parking.
On Wednesday, the Zoning Board of Appeals approved a special amendment to Bloom Brother's site plan to allow the use of additional on-site parking.
"We want to do everything we can to succeed," owner Nathan Girard said. "I've always said since day one that I want to be at or above compliance in every factor of the fashion of anything we do and this parking is nothing against that."
The dispensary located at the corner of Merrill Road and Larch Street was permitted to add three additional parallel parking spaces for employees and five compact car spaces.
In September, the Community Development Board reviewed an amendment application by Bloom Brothers with the primary concern being public safety related to a head-in parking space directly fronting Larch Street.
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