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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

Work Starting on Pittsfield's West Housatonic & Center Intersection
05:06PM / Friday, March 30, 2018

PITTSFIELD — The state Department of Transportation is kicking off construction season next week, including work on the West Housatonic Street/Center Street intersection. The project completion date is July 1, 2018, though most work should be done by Memorial Day.

Work in the first two weeks includes: drainage installation, full-depth excavation of the center of the intersection, road widening for the turning lane West Housatonic westbound onto Center Street, road widening for the turning lane on Center Street southbound onto West Housatonic, grading of turning lanes and intersection, paving of intersection and turning lanes.

Following those first two weeks, the remaining work

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@theMarket: Will April Be Better for the Markets?
By Bill Schmick,
04:36PM / Friday, March 30, 2018
It has been a tough month for stocks and February wasn't much better. Granted, it was a small price to pay for last year's great gains, but, as in life, all good things must come to an end. Will April bring more of the same for us or can we hope for something better?   Much depends on White House initiatives, "Spanky's" (the President's new nickname) tweets, and the world's response to the administration's trade war initiatives. None of the above is certain, and, as readers know by now, the markets hate uncertainty.    This quarter, both the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Indexes have seen a nine-quarter win streak come to an end. As of this

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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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Superior Court Briefs: March 21 - March 29
Staff Reports,
03:30PM / Friday, March 30, 2018
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Wednesday, March 21.   Clinton Jennings, 34, of Pittsfield had a not guilty plea entered on his behalf on a single count of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute -  his second offense.    He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $2,000 bail. The charge stems from an incident in Pittsfield on February 2, 2018.   Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Thursday, March 22.   Mike Bedford, 42, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to a single count of armed robbery while masked.   He was ordered to serve seven to eight years at the Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Cedar

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Greylock Promotes Three to Market Manager Positions
02:16PM / Friday, March 30, 2018

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Greylock Federal Credit Union has announced the promotions of Jean Noel, assistant vice president/branch manager in North Adams, Stephanie Carlson, branch manager in Great Barrington, and Joe Maffuccio, branch manager at Kellogg Street, Pittsfield, to the position of market manager.

The new position assigns each market manager responsibility for the branch they currently manage as well as other branches within their market area.

"Greylock has established this new market manager position to achieve even higher levels of member service, create management efficiencies, and better serve our expanding membership and future growth," said Peter Mirante,

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MountainOne Investments Appoints Financial Adviser
11:51AM / Friday, March 30, 2018

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Tom McKeon has joined MountainOne Investments as a financial adviser

"Tom's experience working with clients in central and southern Berkshire County, coupled with his expertise in financial planning, complements our well-established financial planning and investment management presence in northern Berkshire County," said Lynn Sullivan, president of MountainOne Investments. "We really look forward to rounding out the suite of financial services we offer at MountainOne's Pittsfield office."

McKeon has served investment clients throughout Berkshire County and beyond for nearly 10 years. He is a certified financial planner practitioner

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Cultural Pittsfield This Week: March 30-April 5
11:28AM / Friday, March 30, 2018
The Berkshire Lightscapes Project Needs You! Have you heard about the Berkshire Lightscapes Project? When events and performances are scheduled in downtown Pittsfield lightscape spaces (Park Square, City Hall and on Dunham Mall), the City will close off these areas to traffic. Colorful, energy-efficient and eye-catching LED lighting will illuminate and decorate these areas. Examples of lightscape events include dances, musical performances, yoga, craft shows, public school events, food tastings, etc. Anticipated lightscape hours are dusk-11 p.m.   Berkshire Lightscapes has secured a spot in the Commonwealth Places program,

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Berkshire County Resident Awarded Hart Scholarship
11:19AM / Friday, March 30, 2018

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts senior Brittney White recently was awarded the 2017-18 Margaret A. Hart '35 Scholarship.

This scholarship honors Margaret A. Hart, Class of 1935, the first student of color to graduate from the former State Teachers College at North Adams. Her distinguished career in teaching and community service spanned more than five decades. The award is in recognition of Hart's outstanding contributions to the College and to Berkshire County.

A resident of Berkshire County for the past 16 years, White is a transfer student from Berkshire Community College in Pittsfield. She is completing her undergraduate degree in biology at

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Pittsfield Set to Make Final Payment For School Buses
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
03:43AM / Friday, March 30, 2018
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Soon the School Department will take another look at its transportation options.   The city currently owns and operates its own bus fleet. With the final payment being made this upcoming fiscal year, school officials this is the time to start planning for either purchasing new buses in a few years or opt out of the transportation business altogether.   "As we're heading into Year 5, we are definitely at a point where we should be considering the full range of options," Superintendent Jason McCandless said.   The city has been backpedaling with its bus management for years. In the 1990s, the state shut down the city's buses because

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The Independent Investor: Financial Planners Held to Higher Standard
By Bill Schmick,
04:13PM / Thursday, March 29, 2018
The Department of Labor's fiduciary rule looks "iffy" at best, thanks to a March court ruling. The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals says the agency exceeded its authority in insisting that financial services firms act as fiduciaries when giving advice to most tax-deferred savings accounts. However, some financial advisers are ignoring the courts and are going the extra mile for their clients anyway.   Over the last couple of years, I have written several columns on this issue. A "fiduciary" is someone who puts your best interests above his own and that of his company's. It is a concept that the financial community does not want to see implemented and has gone to

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Pittsfield Council Looks to Restart Committee on Homelessness
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
03:36PM / Thursday, March 29, 2018
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The City Council is looking to re-establish a committee to address homelessness.   City Councilors Melissa Mazzeo, Helen Moon, and former council candidate Edward Carmel have petitioned to update the rules establishing such a committee for the homeless in 1989.    On Tuesday, Mazzeo and Moon both said the committee would be aimed to combat what is a problem in the city. Specifically, Mazzeo cited a state budget issue earlier this winter that nearly left shelters unfunded as topics the committee can keep an eye on.   "I really think this is something we really should think about getting up and running again," Mazzeo said.   Mazzeo

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'The Leisure Seeker': Two for the Road
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
03:09PM / Thursday, March 29, 2018
If you are of a certain age, which I am, then director Paolo Virzi's "The Leisure Seeker" is certain to resonate anywhere from sentimentally positive to depressingly negative, depending of course on how you view the last few chapters of the life experience. It is not an easy subject, especially in these overindulged times when even the closing of a favorite restaurant is reason enough for extended mourning.    Shrouded in mystery, hope, despair and every other word the poets have employed to describe the inevitable, it is, along with love, the ultimate inscrutability.   We don't even like to say it: Old Age. There, I did it. Yet the realization that it is

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Pittsfield Schools Propose $61.6 Million Fiscal 2019 Budget
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
03:57AM / Thursday, March 29, 2018

Superintendent Jason McCandless, Deputy Superintendent Joseph Curtis, and Assistant Superintendent of Business and Finance Kristen Behnke presented the proposed $61.6 million budget. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The School Committee has put forth a $61,671,338 proposed budget for the upcoming fiscal year.   The request is a 1.6 percent more than this year's budget for a total increase of $985,000.   Superintendent Jason McCandless said the funding increases achieve three goals: covers contractual obligations relating to salary increases, bolsters the system's therapeutic classrooms, and restores paraprofessionals to the kindergarten classrooms — the last of which

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