Pittsfield Sees Interest in All Wards, Two Certified Candidates

By Brittany PolitoiBerkshires Staff
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The city now has a potential candidate for Ward 2 and two with certified signatures.

Election papers became available on April 3 and there is now at least one interested candidate in all seven Wards. Incumbent Ward 5 Councilor Patrick Kavey's 50 signatures within the ward have been certified and City Clerk Michele Benjamin's 150 signatures to run for re-election have been certified.

Hot Dog Ranch owner Craig Benoit has taken out papers for a Ward 2 and an at-large seat.

Benoit ran at large in the 2021 election, touting his experience as a small-business owner and his advocacy for other restaurants during the pandemic. He also placed a large emphasis on public safety in the city.

In December 2020, Benoit stood outside of City Hall with a coalition of eatery owners he had formed to fight the Pittsfield-specific ban on indoor dining that was affecting their businesses.

As a result, Mayor Linda Tyer offered a compromise that restored indoor dining and gave Benoit and his colleagues their livelihood back.

After going to school for accounting, Benoit got into the restaurant business more than 35 years ago with leadership roles in various eateries in North Adams and Lanesborough. He bought the Hot Dog Ranch with his business partner in 2004 and expanded the operation to North Adams, which was sold and later closed.

Benoit is the only person who has taken out papers for Ward 2. Current councilor Charles Kronick has been contacted about his plans for the election and has not responded.

All four at-large seats now have interest, with four-term incumbent Peter White, three-term incumbent Earl Persip III, and community organizer Alisa Costa also taking out papers.

Costa also intends to run for Ward 3 against Matthew Wrinn, who has a background in criminal justice and community involvement, and William "Bill" Tyer, who has served on various committees and boards in the community.

Current at-Large Councilor Karen Kalinowsky has not taken out papers but confirmed on Thursday that she will be soon.

Peter Marchetti, current council president, and John Krol, a former councilor, are running for a four-year term as mayor. Incumbent Linda Tyer is not running for a third term. 

Marchetti touts his long experience on the council, a 35-year career at the Pittsfield Cooperative Bank, and his presence in the community as culminating factors to being a successful city leader. Krol points to his experience in broadcast and print media, working for former Mayor James Ruberto, and time on the council as tools to make Pittsfield the best that it can be.

The two have taken out papers along with resident Craig Gaetani, who ran for mayor in 2015 and garnered 0.51 percent of the vote. He also took out papers to run against two-term Ward 6 Councilor Dina Lampaisi, who has also taken out papers.

Gaetani is a former marketing director of Krofta Engineering and is a regular at City Council's open microphone.

The last day to submit nomination papers to the Registrar of Voters for certification is July 21 and the last day to submit papers to the city clerk is Aug. 4. A preliminary election, if needed, is scheduled for Sept. 19 and the general election is on Nov. 7.

More information about the other candidates.

Those who have taken out nomination papers so far:


Peter Marchetti
John Krol Jr.
Craig Gaetani


Michele Marie Benjamin


Earl George Persip III
Peter White
Alisa Costa
Craig Benoit


Kenneth Warren Jr


Craig Benoit


Bill Tyer
Matthew Wrinn
Alisa Costa


James Conant


Patrick Kavey
Ocean L Sutton


Craig C Gaetani
Dina Marie Lampiasi


Anthony Maffuccio


William Garrity Jr.
Sara Hathaway
William Cameron
Daniel Elias


Tags: election 2023,   municipal election,   

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Pittsfield ZBA Grants Casella Permit for Waste Transfer Facility

By Brittany PolitoiBerkshires Staff

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Zoning Board of Appeals calls Casella's planned redevelopment of the former trash incinerator an improvement to the site.

Last week, the panel approved a special permit to allow a waste transfer facility at the site on 500 Hubbard Ave. Casella Waste Management purchased the waste transfer facility on Hubbard Avenue from Community Eco Power LLC, which filed for bankruptcy in 2021 and has demolished it for redevelopment into a waste transfer station.

The owners say the trash will be brought to the facility and transferred away daily. Concerns that were voiced about the project include odor and impacts to the surrounding area but Casella says the new operation will be less of an impact than the former.

"I think this is going to be a vast improvement based upon the facility that was there previously. I know that sometimes you would get a sight of the other one, they used to dump the waste and it was laying like a floating pond," board member John Fitzgerald said.

"And since the trash is not going to be there, it's going to be in and out, I think the odor will be reduced and I think the vermin will be reduced."

It was also pointed out that the site has handled trash for 40 years.

"I think a lot of the odor before was related to burning," board member Esther Anderson "And there's not going to be burning so it it's going to be greatly reducing the amount of odor and if it's not sitting there is no place for vermin to be."

The former incinerator, including a 118-foot tall stack, has already been demolished a fabric structure is being used temporarily for waste handling.

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