image description
Eric Lesser, four-term state senator for the 1st Hampshire-Hampden District, is running for the lieutenant governor nomination in the Sept. 6 primary.

Lt. Governor Candidate Lesser: Government Needs to Work for People

By Sabrina DammsiBerkshires Staff
Print Story | Email Story
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Eric Lesser says the next gubernatorial administration needs to focus on the cost of living, affordable child care, affordable housing for people, and transportation because they are all tied together.
 
"They all go together, you can't really have good, high-quality housing without good transportation, right to get people connected to where they work and where they live," the state senator said recently during a visit to Pittsfield.
 
He's running in the Democratic primary on Sept. 6 for the lieutenant governor nomination.
 
One of the most important roles of the lieutenant governor is helping carry out the governor's vision, he said.
 
"The lieutenant governor is the one who really works to put the pieces together, working with cities and towns, working with the legislature, working with the business community, nonprofits, to get everybody around the table, you know, really singing off the same sheet of music," he said.
 
Since being elected to the Senate in November 2014, Lesser said he has been working to improve the quality of life of the residents in the nine 1st Hampden and Hampshire District communities in Western Massachusetts that he serves.
 
 
During his time on the campaign trail, he has heard a lot of citizens expressing that although we live in a state with a progressive history, it is getting more difficult and expensive to live here. 
 
"It's a challenging time people have gotten through. We've gotten through COVID, but it's not completely in the rearview mirror and we've got all these other challenges. The price of housing, skyrocketing, rents are going up, gas prices continue to go up," Lesser said.
 
"So, I think people just feel like they need government on their side and I think especially for us in the outlying areas of the state right in Western Mass in the Berkshires, in the Pioneer Valley, it's even more important to get that focus from state government. I think what I really hear and something that I think I hear in common, really wherever we go, is that people just need some help. They need the government kind of working for them and helping them."
 
Lesser has championed bulk purchasing and prescription drugs in an effort to help bring prices down and give more bargaining power to MassHealth. 
 
He said we are in a crisis when it comes to health, especially in terms of mental health and the costs.
 
"You're seeing this, especially in our schools with our young people, especially teenagers, high school, and middle school age, all of our hospitals across the state, including our hospitals here in the Berkshires don't have enough beds, don't have enough space," he said. 
 
"So we've got to really tackle mental health, we've got to really dramatically expand access to care and improve reimbursement rates for mental health services, we've also got to do a lot more to bring costs down, you see cost continuing to go up."
 
As a Western Massachusetts resident, living in Longmeadow and representing Springfield and Chicopee in the state Senate, he really wants to place Western Massachusetts front and center when it comes to transportation. Lesser is a strong supporter of east/west passenger rail and was in Pittsfield for the maiden trip of the Berkshire Flyer from New York City.
 
"There are more than a dozen candidates for statewide office across all the various offices this year. There's not a single one outside [Instate] 495. It's very, very important that we have that regional balance that regional equity," he said.
 
He said his work on vocational education, tourism, art promotion, and being involved with several caucuses would make him a successful lieutenant governor.
 
Lesser is Senate chair of the Joint Legislative Manufacturing Caucus, the Gateway Cities Caucus, and the Libraries Caucus and Senate co-chair of the Food Systems Caucus.
 
He will face state Rep. Tami Gouveia of the 14th Middlesex and Salem Mayor Kim Driscoll in the primary.
 
More information on Lesser can be found here

Tags: Democratic Party,   election 2022,   lieutenant governor,   primary,   


If you would like to contribute information on this article, contact us at info@iberkshires.com.

Pittsfield Little League 11s, 10s See Tourney Runs End

By Leland BarnesiBerkshires.com Sports
PITTSFIELD , Mass. — After a strong outing by pitcher Cam Ginnity, the Holden Little League 11-year-old All-Stars defeated Pittsfield, 15-1, to move on in the Section 1 tournament on Sunday at Deming Park
 
Each team went into the elimination game with a 1-1 record.
 
Holden’s offense sparked early in the game with a series of walks finished off by a two-RBI single by Cole Pare, and a run scored on a passed ball.
 
During the game Pittsfields Offense struggled heavily against Ginnity
 
He registered five total strikeouts as well as going the distance in the run-rule win.
 
“Cam [Ginnity] is one of our better pitchers, he also has a really good team of players behind him,” Holden coach Matt Gull said.
 
Offensively, Holden’s Evan Zaccaria went 2-for-2 with a double, single and a walk.
 
View Full Story

More Pittsfield Stories