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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

Governor Says Schools Will Remain Open
Staff Reports,
02:19PM / Monday, January 03, 2022
SALEM, Mass. — Gov. Charlie Baker gave no indication that the schools will go remote this year despite the rising cases of COVID-19.   Speaking at Saltonstall School early Monday morning, the governor noted that his administration has "aggressively partnered" with schools across the state to ensure they could safely open in the new year.    "We said for quite awhile from the beginning of the school year, and in fact al the way back to last spring, that it was critically important for kids to be back in school for a number of reasons," he said during the livestream event, pointing to the potential affects of remote learning on social development,

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MountainOne Acquires Cross Insurance
01:27PM / Monday, January 03, 2022
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — MountainOne Insurance Agency announced that it recently acquired Cross Insurance in Pittsfield.    This acquisition effectively makes MountainOne Insurance the largest agency headquartered in the Berkshires in terms of clients under management. MountainOne plans to retain the entire Cross Insurance team which will grow the combined insurance agency to 50 employees across six locations throughout Berkshire County.   "The acquisition of Cross Insurance in Pittsfield furthers MountainOne's commitment to the communities we serve," said Jonathan Denmark, President & COO, MountainOne Insurance Agency. "The combined agency will now be

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RMV Extending Use of State-Owned Vehicles for Road Testing into 2022
10:36AM / Monday, January 03, 2022
BOSTON — The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) announced the agency will continue with the use of Commonwealth-owned vehicles for Class D road testing services through April 30, 2022 and has delayed the return to the use of private passenger vehicles for road tests.   Due to the pandemic and health and safety protocols, since June of 2020, the RMV has deployed a fleet of Commonwealth-owned vehicles for road tests which are cleaned and sanitized on a regular basis. Plans to return to private vehicles have been delayed and existing protocols will remain in place: All occupants of a vehicle used in a road test, including the applicant, sponsor and examiner will

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Greylock Promotes Nowicki to Assistant Vice President
08:03AM / Monday, January 03, 2022
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Greylock Federal Credit Union has promoted Kaci Nowicki to Assistant Vice President, Residential Lending.    She started with Greylock in 2013 as a mortgage closer.   "Kaci is ready for this," said Vice President, Mortgage Originations Manager Tara McCluskey. "I have no doubt that her dedication to Greylock and deep understanding of the mortgage process will be an important part of our Members' success."   In her new role, Nowicki manages the mortgage closing and processing groups. She started her banking career as a teller at an area bank. She holds a bachelor's degree in Business Studies, Business Finance from

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Local Feral Cat Program Merges with Berkshire Humane Society
By Brittany Polito, iBerkshires Staff
05:06AM / Saturday, January 01, 2022

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Two animal welfare nonprofits have officially joined forces to best serve local felines.

A volunteer organization that aids feral cats of Berkshire County, Animal DREAMS, is now a part of Berkshire Humane Society (BHS) for shared administrative processes and streamlined operations.  

Animal DREAMS is now called the Community Cat Program and continues to be led by Executive Director Stacey Carver.  The organizations stressed that it will be business as usual for the cats, as the merge only affects behind-the-scenes work.

For about seven years, the program has both partnered with BHS and lived in the shelter after vacating its former location on North

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@theMarket: Markets Up on Thin Holiday Trading
By Bill Schmick,
03:15PM / Friday, December 31, 2021
The Santa Rally continued this week with the S&P 500 Index hitting a new record high. Most stocks that gained did so on little volume. Don't read too much into this week's gains, however.   There is an old, rarely used term called "painting the tape." It is a mild form of market manipulation where market traders buy and sell securities among themselves to create an appearance of substantial trading activity. The goal is to fool investors into buying into stocks, sectors, or the market thereby driving prices higher.   These kinds of tactics often result in an unsustainable spike higher in the averages, followed by a period of consolidation, or decline. The

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First Day Hike on the Mount Greylock Reservation
08:55AM / Friday, December 31, 2021
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — The Department of Conservation and recreation will host a First Day Hike on the Bradley Farm Trail, part of the Mount Greylock State Reservation.    "The Baker-Polito Administration is thrilled to continue the tradition of offering First Day hikes at state parks throughout the Commonwealth again this year," said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Kathleen Theoharides. "There is nothing more invigorating than hiking through one of our beautiful parks with family and friends, and we're pleased to offer the opportunity kick off the New Year by getting outside and exploring the wonderful natural resources we have here in

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What to Do and Where to Shop in Downtown Pittsfield on New Years and Beyond
By Brittany Polito, iBerkshires Staff
05:39AM / Friday, December 31, 2021

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Unsure of what to do for New Years?  We consulted Downtown Pittsfield Inc. to get the insider info on sales and events that will end 2021 in the right way.

"Come on out and enjoy New Years in Downtown Pittsfield," Downtown Pittsfield Executive Director Cheryl Mirer said.

She added that there is a good range happening from music to yoga and brunch.  DPI's newsletter "News From The Heart of the Berkshires" outlines all of the things that Downtown Pittsfield has to offer on the holiday.

On Friday, Dec. 31, Mr. Doubtfire will play an acoustic set from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. with a full band from 9 p.m to midnight.

The

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Pittsfield 2021 Year in Review
By Brittany Polito, iBerkshires Staff
05:01AM / Friday, December 31, 2021

2021 was a year of transition for Pittsfield.  The city not only elected a new slate of City Councilors, but it, along with the rest of the commonwealth, shifted out of the state of emergency after COVID-19 vaccinations were deployed throughout the community.

Election and Leadership

The 2021 municipal election brought five new faces to the city council and one At Large councilor was voted out.

Four of the city's seven wards saw new leadership in the 2021 municipal election and a majority of familiar faces were voted into the at-large seats.

New Councilors include Kenneth Warren, representing Ward 1, Charles Ivar Kronick, representing Ward 2, Kevin Sherman, representing Ward

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Berkshire High School Athletics 2021: A Year In Review
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires.com Sports
04:52PM / Thursday, December 30, 2021
"Normal" may still be a long way off.   But some of the usual suspects were back in their normal positions, at the top of the heap, during 2021's sports seasons.   The state's high school athletics governing body went 14 months without awarding a state championship. And once it did, a Berkshire County dynasty claimed another one.   The trend continued in the fall when one perennial power defended its state title and another earned a return trip to the biggest sports venue in New England.   Here is a look back at some of the athletes and teams making headlines in 2021.   Taconic baseball Coach Kevin Stannard's program earned its fourth straight

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The Retired Investor: Climate Change Is Costing Billions
By Bill Schmick,
04:04PM / Thursday, December 30, 2021
In 2021, worldwide, the costs of the ten worst disasters caused by climate change totaled more than $170 billion. It was the fourth time in the last five years that we have suffered that level of damages. Scientists expect next year to be even worse.   Insurance companies, like Zurich-based Swiss Re, bear the brunt of the costs of extreme weather. During the last decade, losses have been rising 5-6 percent per year, according to Swiss Re's recent analysis. They expect at least one $10 billion catastrophe, such as severe flooding, a winter storm, or a massive wildfire will be part of the new normal in weather changes.      What is worse, more than ever before, extreme

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BRTA Awarded Vehicles, Funds From MassDOT
01:00PM / Thursday, December 30, 2021
BOSTON — Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) will award the Berkshire Regional Transit Authority (BRTA) with five new vehicles and $8,414 in funding.   The Baker-Polito Administration announced that a total of $8.9 million for municipalities, Councils on Aging, nonprofit organizations and other entities to use under the Community Transit Grant Program administered by MassDOT.    "Community Transit Grants provide critical funding to local organizations to purchase equipment to help people get where they need to go efficiently and safely," said Governor Charlie Baker. "Our Administration will continue to make efforts to work with local

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