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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

Pittsfield Disability Commission Supports PCTV’s Accessibility Efforts
By Brittany Polito, iBerkshires Staff
05:50PM / Saturday, January 14, 2023

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Disability Commission is aiding Pittsfield Community Television's effort to make its programming more accessible with closed captions on city meetings. 

On Thursday, the panel voted to use $1,850 of its parking violation funds to support 500 hours of closed captioning on PCTV.  This will cover roughly a year of boards, commissions, and committees.    The CityLink channel is currently captioned through a pilot program and, in the future, the local broadcasters would like to expand it to all PCTV channels.    "This has been discussed multiple times in the past but the cost was exorbitant," Chair Cathy Carchedi

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BCC to Offer Suicide Prevention Training
04:20PM / Saturday, January 14, 2023
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — In recognition of the growing rate of suicide among college students, Berkshire Community College (BCC) will offer students, faculty and staff the opportunity to enroll in a free online course to learn how to recognize the signs of suicidal ideation and how to take action.    As an incentive, students who successfully complete the course by June 1, 2023 will receive a $100 stipend through a statewide mental health grant.     According to the American College Health Association (ACHA), the suicide rate among young adults ages 15–24 has tripled since the 1950s. Suicide is currently the second most common cause of death among college

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Small Business Administration Offers Veteran Certification Program
11:40AM / Saturday, January 14, 2023

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Small Business Administration began accepting applications through the Veteran Small Business Certification (VetCert) program as part of the Biden-Harris administration's commitment to expanding access to resources for Veterans and other underserved populations. 

The improvements in the customer experience for Veteran entrepreneurs and business owners made by VetCert will build upon the $25 billion in government contract spending with service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses in fiscal 2021. 

"The SBA's new Veteran small business certification program is designed with our commitment to

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1Berkshire's Berkshire Leadership Program Accepting Applications
09:34AM / Saturday, January 14, 2023
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — 1Berkshire's Berkshire Leadership Program (BLP) announced that the 2023 applications are open.    "The Berkshire Leadership Program is one of the most comprehensive ways to learn about the community and a great opportunity for additional professional development," stated Christine Hoyt, 1Berkshire Director of Member Services and BLP Coordinator.     The Berkshire Leadership Program seeks, prepares, involves, and sustains individuals from diverse backgrounds who are committed to and competent in addressing community challenges and improving the quality of life in the Berkshires. More than 600 community-minded individuals have

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Pittsfield Animal Control Commission Deems Two Dogs 'Dangerous'
By Brittany Polito, iBerkshires Staff
05:17PM / Friday, January 13, 2023

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Room 203 of City Hall was packed with more than 20 people on Tuesday for a Animal Control Commission public hearing on two dog attacks: one that killed a cat and one that killed a teacup Yorkshire terrier. 

Euthanization was kept off the table for both dogs but they were ordered to be muzzled and leashed.

There were supporters for both Violet, the 4-year-old teacup Yorkie who died, and her attacker, a 5-year-old mixed breed named Phoebe, who was deemed dangerous. 

The altercation between the two dogs occurred on Nov. 10, 2022, underneath the fence that separates their owners' homes on Plymouth Street. Violet had escaped from her home and Phoebe was

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Dalton Board OKs ARPA Funds for Sewer Project Engineering
By Sabrina Damms, iBerkshires Staff
02:59PM / Friday, January 13, 2023
DALTON, Mass. — The Select Board voted to transfer $36,000 in ARPA funds on Monday night to supplement the $50,000 that it already has appropriated for the Dalton Division Road Sewer Project.   The cost of engineering is estimated is approximately $37,000 based on the projected project cost. A typical engineering fee is 10 percent of the cost of the project. The original cost estimate did not include construction oversight only bidding services so the new cost is $85,750.    Town Manager Tom Hutcheson was originally going to go before the board to inform them that a total of $92,500 would be needed but, since posting the agenda, the amount had come down by about

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Wahconah Senior Wildrick Recipient of Superintendent's Award
12:28PM / Friday, January 13, 2023
DALTON, Mass. — Lucas Wildrick is this school year's recipient of the Superintendent's Award for Academic Excellence.    Wildrick, a senior at Wahconah Regional High School, was presented with the award at the Nov. 9 Central Berkshire Regional School Committee meeting by Superintendent Leslie Blake-Davis.   The Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents award is given to the student who has distinguished themselves by maintaining high academic standings and leadership endeavors.   Wildrick, the son of Rachel and Stephen Wildrick of Dalton, has participated in several groups at Wahconah High including the Youth Advisory Board, the Rotary Club, Best

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Flu Shots Still Available at Big Y Pharmacies
08:11AM / Friday, January 13, 2023
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — Big Y Pharmacy and Wellness Centers have administered over 30,000 flu shots this year, a record number for the chain.    Health officials continue to make another urgent push to encourage the public to get vaccinated. In the US, this flu season has been one of the most significant in recent memory with nearly 20 million illnesses, 210,000 hospitalizations and 13,000 deaths from flu so far, according to CDC estimates. Experts say it's not too late to get vaccinated. Each Big Y Pharmacy location still offers flu vaccines, no appointment is necessary.   In addition to their flu vaccinations that continue to increase daily, Big Y Pharmacies have

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Lanesborough Police/Ambulance Building Estimated at $5.9M
By Brian Rhodes, iBerkshires Staff
05:08AM / Friday, January 13, 2023

LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — The new estimated cost for the town's proposed combined police and ambulance facility is $5.9 million, which is lower than what the committee expected for the project. 

 

Police Station Committee Chair Kristen Tool presented the estimate, which includes about $4.7 million in fixed costs and $750,000 in soft costs, to the Select Board on Monday. She said architect Brian Humes of Jacunski Humes Architects based the estimate on the proposed site plan the committee shared at the beginning of last December. 

 

"Everything in this process has worked out better than I expected it to, to this point," she said. "... It's a

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The Retired Investor: Beware Political Pollsters
By Bill Schmick,
04:38PM / Thursday, January 12, 2023
The pollsters were wrong in 2016, 2020, and now 2022. The recent "Red Wave" of GOP wins, so confidently predicted in the final days of the mid-term elections, failed to be no more than a red ripple. Is this a question of "three times you're out?"   Heading into November 2022, Republicans were shown to have a clear edge in battleground states, as well as throughout the nation generally, according to the average of most polls. A minority of polls, mostly those of traditional pollsters, seem to dispute those results but were drowned out by the red wave forecasters.   Some argue that the traditional pollsters got it right, especially in the final weeks

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Holiday Hours: Martin Luther King Jr. Day
02:02PM / Thursday, January 12, 2023

The Rev. King waves to the hundreds of thousands gathered on the Washington Mall in 1963 when he gave the 'I Have a Dream' speech.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day is being celebrated Monday, Jan. 16. It is a federal holiday to commemorate the birthday of the civil rights activist born Jan. 15, 1929. It is observed on the third Monday in January.

King, a Baptist minister, led the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s by espousing nonviolent protest. His best-known address, the "I Have a Dream" speech, was given in front of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., to a crowd of 250,000 who participated in the March on Washington. The 1964 Nobel Prize winner was

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BMC North Adams Campus Renal Dialysis Nurse Earns DAISY Award
01:46PM / Thursday, January 12, 2023
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Berkshire Medical Center (BMC) Renal Dialysis nurse Michael Tessier, RN, has received the DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses, a national nursing recognition program that has been adopted by thousands of hospitals to honor individual nurses who have had a tremendous impact on patient care.    Tessier, who serves in the Renal Dialysis Center at the North Adams Campus of BMC, was honored for the compassion and above and beyond care he provided for a Renal patient who was facing end of life, according to a press release.   According to one of the nominations submitted for Tessier, "Recently a patient who receives dialysis in North Adams was

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