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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

BEAT: Conserving Flowers and their Pollinators
04:04PM / Monday, May 16, 2022
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Joan Edwards will speak at the May Pittsfield Green Drinks event on Tuesday, May 17th at 6:00 PM and give a slideshow presentation about the rapidly decreasing biodiversity that is taking place globally, known as the sixth extinction.    She will specifically focus on flowers and their insect visitors.    This sixth extinction is primarily driven by human actions, from habitat loss to climate change. The impacts of biodiversity loss are far-reaching, resulting in biological communities that are less resilient and with diminished ecosystems services. As part of the discussion, Joan will explore the impact of biodiversity loss in the

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Severe Thunderstorms Predicted This Afternoon
12:30PM / Monday, May 16, 2022
The summer-like weather will lead to storms Monday evening.   Temperatures should stay in the mid to low 80s throughout the day. Temperatures will drop into the 70s around 5 pm, according to Accuweather.   Some rain could fall this afternoon with thunderstorms starting around 7 pm. Expect hail and damaging winds.   Steve Caporizzo said to be on the lookout for possible tornadoes    Temperatures will be lower on Tuesday, May 17. Expect a high of 68 with clouds and sunshine   

Be prepared.....Severe Weather Day.
Enhanced Risk

Time frame.....3 to 6pm....
Few strong/severe cells may form 2 to 3pm west.....head east. Main line arrives 4 to 6pm....leaves

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Letter: E-Scooters Injuries: A New Epidemic
Letter to the Editor,
07:10PM / Sunday, May 15, 2022

To the Editor:

With the advent of the Bird e-scooters in Pittsfield, available to anyone with a license, a few cents, and a cell phone, I hope that Berkshire Medical Center's emergency room is ready for the traumatic brain injuries coming down the road.

The rentals don't include helmets and I've seen plenty of people having a blast — laughing and zipping along next to traffic — some riding double and no one wearing a helmet. They feel like a toy but they aren't toys: E-scooters are one of the most dangerous vehicles on the road with double the head injuries of cyclists — the injury rate is comparable to motorcycle riding. This includes the pedestrians who

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Attorney General Candidate Quentin Palfrey Talks Progressive Issues
By Brittany Polito, iBerkshires Staff
06:34PM / Sunday, May 15, 2022

Quentin Palfry is currently an attorney in the Biden administration and is a former assistant attorney general. He tried for lieutenant governor in 2018.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Quentin Palfrey spoke of his fight for progressive issues during a meet and greet at Dottie's Coffee Lounge on Thursday.

The event was arranged by local Democrats and drew about 20 people. Palfrey, acting general counsel for the U.S. Department of Commerce and a former assistant attorney general, is vying for the Democratic nomination for attorney general.

"As a former assistant attorney general, I've seen firsthand how much impact the AG can have on Pittsfield and our communities all across

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State Awards $1.3 Billion in Loans and Grants to Fund Wastewater and Drinking Water Projects
12:37PM / Sunday, May 15, 2022
BOSTON — The Baker-Polito Administration announced that 183 projects across the Commonwealth are eligible to receive approximately $1.3 billion in low-interest-rate loans and grants to fund construction, planning and asset management projects designed to improve water quality, upgrade or replace aging drinking water and wastewater infrastructure and cut treatment plant energy use and costs.    These offerings include nearly $189 million in additional funding that Massachusetts expects to receive from federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) and $100 million from American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds this year.   "Wastewater and drinking water facilities play a

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Pittsfield Cultural Council Extends Invitation to Join Committee
08:04AM / Sunday, May 15, 2022
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Pittsfield Cultural Council (PCC) is extending an invitation to Berkshire County residents to apply to join the committee.     Those who join in the summer will be on board in time to participate in reviewing of the fall grant applications.  The committee invites potential members to come to a meeting, ask questions and see how they can be involved. The next meeting will be on Wednesday, June 8, 7pm, Pittsfield City Hall, Room 203.   Funded by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, each year the PCC reviews grant applications from artists, cultural groups and organizations in Pittsfield and surrounding communities and decides if those

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Pittsfield Dog Park Thanks Volunteers at Opening Ceremony
By Sabrina Damms, iBerkshires Staff
06:24AM / Sunday, May 15, 2022

Parks manager James McGrath address the gathering on Saturday morning. The park opened last fall and relies on volunteers and park users to keep it clean and policed.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Pittsfield Dog Dark had an opening event on Saturday to thank the volunteers and contributors for all their hard work in making the park a reality. 

"We want to celebrate everyone who has made the dog park possible. And our volunteers are priceless. They keep maintaining the park and helping us keep it up day to day," Recreation and Special Events Coordinator Becky Manship said.   A soft opening was held in September but the formal ribbon-cutting and ceremony was

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Dalton Select Board Sending Support Letter for Union Block Renovations
By Sabrina Damms, iBerkshires Staff
05:20PM / Saturday, May 14, 2022
DALTON, Mass. — The Select Board unanimously voted to offer a letter of support for a state grant to develop residential units in the Union Block.     Owners Linda and Faisal Ali are applying through the Community One Stop for Growth portal for development funding to construct apartments on the top floor of the three-story Union Block and add an elevator on the east side. The cost of the undertaking is upwards of $1.2 million.    The Alis are requesting a $100,000 to $500,000 in grants. They have already secured funds from Pittsfield Cooperative Bank and plan to use the money from this and the grant to continue renovations.   The couple purchased the

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Berkshire Planning Commission Plans In-Person Annual Meeting
By Brittany Polito, iBerkshires Staff
02:19PM / Saturday, May 14, 2022

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Berkshire Regional Planning Commission plans to have its 2022 annual meeting in person for the first time in three years.

The meeting was held virtually last year and took a hiatus the year before, both because of the COVID-19 pandemic that significantly impacted towns and businesses. 

The event is staged for the end of September.

This year, the planners did run into issues with inflated costs and are looking into alternate venues after getting a higher than expected estimate from a local country club.

"One of the other items the Commission Development Committee did take up at their meeting was to recommend the annual meeting be held on Thursday,

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State Makes Gap Energy Grants Available to Municipalities, Non-Profits and Small Businesses
08:00AM / Saturday, May 14, 2022
BOSTON — Continuing with its efforts to provide Massachusetts municipalities, non-profits and small businesses with clean energy assistance, the Baker-Polito Administration announced the launch of the Gap III Energy Grant Program, which is designed to implement energy efficiency and clean energy facility upgrades to qualified entities.    The program will make available up to $5 million to municipal drinking water and wastewater facilities, and up to $2.5 million to non-profit affordable housing, food- and agricultural-producing organizations and small business food-distribution and processing organizations across the Commonwealth. Interested entities can apply or learn more

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Council Subcommittee OKs Pittsfield's CDBG Annual Plan
By Brittany Polito, iBerkshires Staff
07:23PM / Friday, May 13, 2022

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The city expects to receive an allocation of about $1.3 million in Community Development Block Grant funds this year with the bulk of allocations going to housing rehabilitation and demolitions.

The Community and Economic Development subcommittee on Thursday approved CDBG Annual Plan for the program year 2022-2023. 

"We anticipate the allocation this year to be about equal to what the allocation was last year, we actually haven't gotten the announcement yet but we'll probably get it tomorrow, the estimated budget is $1.3 million," Community Development & Housing Program Manager Nate Joyner said.

"We're focusing on the typical

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Weekend Outlook: Farmers' Markets, Polish Dinners
By Sabrina Damms, iBerkshires Staff
04:56PM / Friday, May 13, 2022
Berkshire County will be offering a variety of indoor and outdoor events this warm cloudy weekends including a dance party, comedy night, festivals, play reading, and museum activities.    Williamstown Farmers Market Spring Street, Williamstown   A sure sign of warmer days ahead is the opening of local farmers' markets. Williamstown's opens Saturday from 9 to 1 in the parking lot on the lower end of Spring Street.    This year the market will feature new and returning vendors, including a fish monger, knife sharpener, baker, chef, and much more.    Along with vendors, many new and returning musicians will perform and there will be

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