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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

BCC Adds Two to Board of Trustees
10:05PM / Thursday, February 08, 2018

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Carlo Zaffanella and Julia Bowen have joined the Berkshire Community College Board of Trustees. Both were appointed last year by Gov. Charlie Baker.

Zaffanella is the vice president/general manager of Maritime & Strategic Systems business at General Dynamics Mission Systems, one of the largest employers in Berkshire County. He also serves on the board of Soldier On and the Naval Submarine League.

Bowen has worked as the founder and executive director of Berkshire Arts & Technology Charter Public School in Adams, Mass. Her work in the community includes being the founding board chair for Lever, Inc., and a member of the board of Northern Berkshire United

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Cultural Pittsfield This Week: Feb. 9-15
10:01PM / Thursday, February 08, 2018

 

Pittsfield's 10x10 Upstreet Arts Festival begins on THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 15   The 10x10 Upstreet Arts Festival takes place Thursday, Feb. 15 - Sunday, Feb. 25 and features music, art, theater, dance, film and more. There is something for the entire family, from Barrington Stage's 10x10 New Play Festival and opera at The Whitney, to 10 Days of Play at the Berkshire Museum and a fireworks extravaganza at the Pittsfield Common.    Click here for the full schedule! Artists from Berkshire County and beyond are invited to

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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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BMC Nurses Schedule Second Strike
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
09:30PM / Thursday, February 08, 2018
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The registered nurses at Berkshire Medical Center plan to go on strike for the second time.   The local chapter of the Massachusetts Nurses Association voted to hold a one-day strike on Tuesday, Feb. 27. Some 800 nurses have been in difficult contract negotiations with the hospital for about a year and a half after the last agreement expired in September 2016.   In October, the nurses held a one-day strike, which the hospital followed with a four-day lockout. For that week in October, the nurses held rallies and picketed outside the medical center's campuses. The nurses have been primarily focused on raising staffing levels, saying there are far too

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Hinds Secures $29.7M for Local Projects in State Capital Bill
Staff Reports,
06:36PM / Thursday, February 08, 2018
BOSTON — State Senator Adam G. Hinds, D- Pittsfield, has been able to place $1.2 million toward design and engineering for a new North Adams public safety building, $4 million toward a Pittsfield Police station, and $500,000 toward a new roof on Clarksburg School.    The funds were secured in the $29.7 million in capital spending authorizations for local projects in S. 2279, "An Act providing for capital facility repair and improvements for the Commonwealth," a bond bill engrossed by the state Senate.   "Securing these spending authorizations is critical for timely and much needed capital investments in our local schools, housing stock, public safety

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Pittsfield Finance Director: Grant Has Curbed Firefighter Overtime
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
11:36AM / Thursday, February 08, 2018
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The hiring of eight new firefighters through a SAFER grant is helping curb overtime.   For years, the overtime budgets for both the Police Department and the Fire Department have been underfunded, leaving a deficit that needs to be made up at the close of each fiscal year. This year, however, the city won the federal Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response grant to bring on eight new firefighters and with that, overtime has dropped dramatically.   Last week, Director of Finance Matthew Kerwood said $217,931 of the $700,000 appropriation had been spent so far. That is equal to 31 percent at the halfway point in the fiscal year. At about the

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Be a Smarter Curling Viewer and, Better Yet, Try It Yourself
Community Submission,
03:18AM / Thursday, February 08, 2018
  Since Pete Fenson and the U.S. men's bronze medal at the 2006 Winter Olympics, things have not gone well for USA curling at the Olympics. In 2010, both the men's team. and the women's team. finished last during the preliminary round. In 2014, the United States won only three of their eighteen combined ga.m.es with the men finishing ninth and the women tenth after the round-robin tournament   The United States should be moving up in 2018, but how much better and do any U.S. teams stand a chance to medal?   The 2018 Winter Olympics will begin with the new Olympic event of mixed doubles curling. Matt Hamilton and Rebecca Hamilton will represent the United States.

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BRTA On Verge of Work Stoppage
Staff Reports,
05:44PM / Wednesday, February 07, 2018
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Berkshire Regional Transit Authority is on the verge of a work stoppage.   Drivers for Paratransit Management of the Berkshires have reportedly voted down the best and final offer during contract negotiations as well as called for a strike. The workers are represented by International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 404.   The BRTA, which oversees Paratransit, was informed of the vote but has yet to receive written notification regarding the details of the strike, according to BRTA Administrator Robert Malnati.   "At this time, BRTA has not received the written notification from the union regarding the strike. There remain many questions that

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Mount Greylock Care Residents Get Dolled Up For Glamour Shots
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
02:46PM / Wednesday, February 07, 2018

The residents were treated to makeup and their hair styled.  PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Betty Sacco doesn't get all dolled up much anymore.   The senior citizen lives at Mount Greylock Extended Care Facility and doesn't get her hair and makeup done very often.   But on Wednesday, she was styling.   Sacco is one of two dozen residents who got all dressed up to take "glamour shots."    "I love it because it is dressing up, you don't do this every day," Sacco said. "They do a good job. They really know what they are doing. There are no complaints here."   Sacco had just sat down with Pam Ellis, who carefully

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Be Financially Prepared for Natural Disasters
Submitted by Edward Jones,
12:31PM / Wednesday, February 07, 2018

Just this past year, we've seen natural disasters in Texas, California, Florida and Puerto Rico – and looking back even further, it's not hard to spot other traumas in virtually every part of the country. Whether it's a tornado, hurricane, flood or wildfire, you may be at least potentially susceptible to a weather-related event that could threaten your physical – and financial – well-being. How can you protect yourself? 

As far as your physical safety is concerned, you're probably already aware of the steps you need to take to shield yourself and your family. And now that many alerts can be sent directly to your smartphone, you've got an even

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Pittsfield Considers Cost of Living Raises For Non-Union Employees
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
12:48AM / Wednesday, February 07, 2018
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The city is looking to give about $40,000 worth of raises to non-union employees.   On Monday, the City Council's Ordinance and Rules Committee approved changes to the pay scales of both exempt employees and management, both of which are not covered by collective bargaining.   Director of Personnel Michael Taylor said these groups of employees have not seen a cost of living increase in multiple years and he is proposing a 1.5 percent increase.   "We have a group of employees not covered by collective bargaining. So, there has been, over the past several years, no one advocating for these employees. Maybe a proposal has gone before but due to

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Lanesborough Starts Budget Process for Fiscal 2019
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
06:44PM / Tuesday, February 06, 2018
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — Town Manager Paul Sieloff is proposing a town budget that would raise the tax rate by 1.5 percent.   Sieloff is proposing two major additions — two emergency medical technicians to work in the Highway Department and doubling the amount of money going toward road projects. The town manager says the town will particularly benefit this year with no increase in health insurance. The town is part of the Berkshire Health Group, which voted last week to keep premiums the same.   "They decided to make everything zero this year," Sieloff said.   And the timing for such a decision is perfect for Lanesborough, which will be transitioning its

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Berkshire Baseball Artifact Heads to Hall of Fame
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
01:14PM / Tuesday, February 06, 2018
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — For four years, the "Baseball in the Berkshires" exhibit has chronicled, preserved and displayed local artifacts of America's pastime.   This month, one of those artifacts is getting the call up to "the show."   Since 2016, the exhibit, now housed at the Berkshire Mall, has displayed a 1957 Brooklyn Dodgers jacket worn by Dalton's Ed Ladley during his playing days.   On Feb. 13, Ladley will donate that piece of history to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, N.Y.   "Two months ago, the Hall of Fame came out with an article talking about the rookie teams the New York teams had in

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