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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

Governor Envisions Four-Phase Reopening to 'New Normal'
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
02:21PM / Monday, May 11, 2020

Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, head of the state's reopening advisory board, explains some of the restrictions that will be placed on businesses.  BOSTON — The commonwealth is looking at a four-phase reopening of the economy based on public health data and mandatory safety measures.   "The goal is to begin this process around May 18, but it will be gradual as the facts on the ground will obviously determine whether we actually hit that goal," Gov. Charlie Baker said at Monday's COVID-19 update. "But keep in mind, this is a disease, we're still learning about across the globe."   All non-essential businesses were closed as of March 23 and

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Pittsfield City Council to Consider TIF Agreements
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
12:43PM / Monday, May 11, 2020
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The City Council will act on two tax incentive financing agreements Tuesday as well as accept more emergency funding to strengthen the city's response to the pandemic.   One TIF is to support the development of a brewery and restaurant on North Street and the other to aid in the building of a new hotel.   Both of these projects came before the council earlier in February but were sent off to various subcommittees for consideration.   The City Council will first consider the agreement with Robert Trask, who plans to open a brewery and restaurant at 41 North St.   He plans to purchase and invest $1.7 million in the former J. Allen's

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Inauguration 2016
by Soapbox 02:00PM / Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Kids 4 Harmony Provided The Music At The Inauguration Reception
by Soapbox 08:38PM / Monday, January 06, 2014

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow
by Soapbox 04:10PM / Tuesday, December 10, 2013

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Mount Greylock to Ask Towns to Allow Stabilization Fund
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
03:58AM / Monday, May 11, 2020
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Mount Greylock Regional School Committee is set to ask its member towns to allow the regional school district to establish a stabilization fund.   The committee's Finance Subcommittee last week approved the language for a warrant article that will be sent to Lanesborough and Williamstown for their annual town meetings.   If passed by the towns, the stabilization fund, an idea previously approved by the full School Committee, would help the district save money for future capital expenses at the middle-high school.   Future School Committees could appropriate funds from the stabilization account by a two-thirds vote "for any purpose for

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Mount Greylock Names Finalists for Principal Post
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
04:32PM / Saturday, May 09, 2020
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Mount Greylock Regional School District on Friday evening announced the two finalists for the position of principal at the middle-high school.   Current Mount Greylock Vice Principal Jake Schutz and Kristen Thompson, an assistant principal at New Mexico's West Mesa High School, were advanced as finalists by the 18-member search committee, which conducted its second round of interviews on Thursday, according to an email to the community from Superintendent Kimberley Grady.   Schutz has been at Mount Greylock for about seven years, including a year he spent on deployment in Afghanistan with the Massachusetts National Guard.   Shortly after

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Youth Baseball, Softball Leagues Working to Salvage Seasons
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
06:26AM / Saturday, May 09, 2020

Players in the Williamstown Cal Ripken League eagerly await the start of opening day festivities last spring.  WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Playing before an international television audience in Williamsport, Pa., is not the goal for Little Leaguers this year.   Playing games in their own hometowns will be victory enough.   Local youth baseball and softball officials are discussing how they can give youngsters an experience in the sport if and when state and local authorities give the green light.   Last week, Little League announced that it is following the lead of its colleagues in professional, college and high school sports by canceling the World Series and

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@theMarket: The Stock Market Is Not the Economy
By Bill Schmick,
04:34PM / Friday, May 08, 2020
If ever one needed an example of the above saying, today's market would prove that point. Friday's unemployment figure for the month of April revealed that 20.3 million Americans are out of work, bringing the unemployment rate to 14.7 percent. The stock market gained more than one percent on the news.   While new cases of COVID-19 are reported and deaths multiply with no cure or vaccine in sight, the NASDAQ turned positive for the year. Corporate earnings have been abysmal and future guidance nonexistent for most companies, but their stocks went up anyway. How can this be, you might ask?   As I have said before, the stock market is a forward-looking mechanism. As such,

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Mayor Tyer: Pittsfield Making Progress Against Virus But Threat Remains
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
03:33PM / Friday, May 08, 2020
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Mayor Linda Tyer on Friday asked residents not to be lulled by the number of novel coronavirus cases and to stay the course.   Tyer, during her weekly COVID-19 update on Pittsfield Community Television, said although there have been no new cases in three days, residents need to remain vigilant.    "We have made incredible progress in slowing the spread of the virus but COVID-19 continues to be a serious threat to our health and that point cant be understated," the mayor said.   She pointed out that Berkshire County saw seven new cases during that period of time.    Pittsfield's numbers recently have remained fairly flat.

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Pittsfield Arrest Man
02:27PM / Friday, May 08, 2020
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A motor vehicle accident that lead to a shooting resulted in the arrest of a Springfield man on Thursday night.    Police say the incident occurred at about 10:05 p.m. when multiple units responded to the report of shots fired in the area of Palmer's Variety, located at 221 Elm St. There was some type of altercation that included two vehicles, one of which crashed. According to independent eyewitnesses, a passenger in one of the vehicles then fired multiple rounds at the other vehicle.    Damage consistent with gunfire was observed on the victim's vehicle. A handgun and ammunition were later discovered a short distance away from the

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Motor Vehicle Crash, Shooting Leads to Arrest in Pittsfield
02:27PM / Friday, May 08, 2020
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A motor vehicle accident that lead to a shooting resulted in the arrest of a Springfield man on Thursday night.    Police say the incident occurred at about 10:05 p.m. when multiple units responded to the report of shots fired in the area of Palmer's Variety, located at 221 Elm St. There was some type of altercation that included two vehicles, one of which crashed. According to independent eyewitnesses, a passenger in one of the vehicles then fired multiple rounds at the other vehicle.    Damage consistent with gunfire was observed on the victim's vehicle. A handgun and ammunition were later discovered a short distance away from the

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'Bang the Drum Slowly': Of Pitchers & Catchers
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
02:07PM / Friday, May 08, 2020

I wish that I were reviewing one of the half-dozen movies certain to be made when this pox upon our house is no more. But until that glorious return to normality has us resuming all the simple joys of life we take for granted, like going to the movies, I'll be retro-reviewing and thereby sharing with you the films that I've come to treasure over the years, most of which can probably be retrieved from one of the movie streaming services. It is my fondest hope that I've barely put a dent into this trove when they let the likes of me back into the

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Southwestern Vermont Health Care Resumes Elective Procedures
07:49AM / Friday, May 08, 2020

BENNINGTON, Vt. — Southwestern Vermont Health Care's outpatient surgeries and diagnostic services, like those for imaging and laboratory work, have resumed in full with enhanced safety protocols after Gov. Phil Scott announced May 4 that hospitals could resume these services.

In early March, the governor directed health systems to put on hold non-urgent appointments and procedures as Vermont prepared for, and responded to, COVID-19. 

One important protocol that has been implemented is that all patients should arrive to the hospital or clinic with their own cloth face covering and it must be worn for the entire duration of their visit.

"SVHC has always maintained the

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Pittsfield Board of Health OKs Trial Use of Mosquito Control Product
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
03:59AM / Friday, May 08, 2020
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Board of Health has approved a 2020 mosquito control plan with a new pilot program aimed at terminating insects carrying Eastern equine encephalitis.   Chris Horton of Berkshire Mosquito Control asked the board during a remotely held meeting Wednesday to approve the use of a new product, VectoMax FG.   "If we don't get a result then there really won't be a reason to use the product any more," Horton said. "But if we do get a result, it would be a step forward in practice not only here but the study would be published and be part of the scientific community."    Horton said 2019 was a good year in general for

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