Lucas Willard

Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief/Weekend Host

Lucas Willard graduated from the State University of New York at Fredonia in 2010 with a Bachelor of Science in Communications. He also attended the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies in 2010, where he studied audio and multimedia storytelling.  Prior to joining WAMC in 2011, Lucas worked with the Sound and Story Project of the Hudson Valley, the Big Shed Audio Documentary Podcast, the Albany Broadcasting Company, WDVL & WCVF-FM Fredonia, and WSUC-FM Cortland.  

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New England News
6:00 pm
Thu January 17, 2013

Berkshires Hear Gov. Patrick's Call for Investment in Transportation, Education

Credit Boston Globe Web Staff

Out of many of the proposals Governor Patrick made in this State of the State address, an increase in transportation & infrastructure spending in particular struck a chord in the Berkshires.

The Governor’s specific mention of connecting Pittsfield to New York with commuter rail service was of particular interest to Pittsfield state representative Tricia Farley-Bouvier….

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New England News
11:27 am
Thu January 17, 2013

Conn. Officials Welcome White House Gun Control Measures

Conn. Gov. Dannel P. Malloy

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Connecticut officials are welcoming President Barack Obama's sweeping proposals for curbing gun violence following the deadly shooting at Newtown's Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, a Democrat, credited the president on Wednesday with taking "the critical first step" in making sure such a tragedy does not happen again. Malloy said the president has offered "common sense measures" that "we should all be able to agree on."

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New England News
10:00 pm
Wed January 16, 2013

Mass. Republicans Call For New Forensic Services Board

Credit AP File Photo

BOSTON (AP) — Republican lawmakers are calling for creation of a new state board to oversee forensic services facilities after a former chemist was accused of tampering with drug evidence at a state lab.

The proposal announced on Wednesday by the four GOP members of the state Senate would create a five-member oversight panel consisting of the secretary of public safety, the attorney general, the state inspector general, the head of the state police and one gubernatorial appointee.

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New England News
6:58 pm
Wed January 16, 2013

Mass. Gov. Proposes New Laws on Gun Ownership

Credit M. Glasgow / Flickr

The Governor of Massachusetts has filed new legislation that would introduce stricter regulations on gun ownership. The bill includes strict background checks and closing licensing loopholes. WAMC’s Berkshire Bureau Chief Lucas Willard reports…

Governor Patrick announced the legislation just over a month after the shooting deaths of children and educators in the massacre in Newtown, Conn, and only one day after New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the SAFE Act, putting tighter restrictions on gun ownership in the Empire State.

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New England News
5:31 pm
Wed January 16, 2013

Region Still Hard Hit by Flu Outbreak

Credit U.S. Army Corps of Engineers photo by Carol E. Davis

The influenza outbreak that came early this year to many in the region is reported as widespread across the country. WAMC’s Berkshire Bureau Chief Lucas Willard took a closer look at how the virus is affecting the region, and how governments are trying to contain the spread...

Mike Leary, spokesman for Berkshire Health Systems, echoed a sentiment being felt by healthcare organizations across the region….

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New England News
4:27 pm
Tue January 15, 2013

Conn. Lawmakers Announce Plans to Stop Gun Violence

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Connecticut legislators are establishing a bipartisan task force to recommend possible legislation to prevent gun violence, provide mental health care and improve school safety.

Senate President Pro-Tem Donald Williams Jr. said Tuesday the group will review current law and could propose a comprehensive bill for a vote by the end of February.

The effort stems from the Dec. 14 shooting rampage at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, which killed 20 first graders and six educators.

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New England News
11:07 am
Tue January 15, 2013

Williams College Holds Two-Day Celebration for Martin Luther King, Jr.

Photographs by Benedict J. Fernandez on display at Williams College in Williamstown, Mass.
Credit Lucas Willard / WAMC

A two-day series of events commemorating the life and message of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was held at Williams College.

On the Williams College campus, programs were held throughout Sunday and Monday paying tribute to Dr. King. Ranging from a documentary film screening, lectures, a gallery exhibition, and a presentation with local school children, students, faculty and the public took the time to remember and reflect the actions of those in the civil rights era.

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New England News
9:41 pm
Mon January 14, 2013

Conn. Task Force Recommends Changes in Shoreline Zoning Laws

Credit NOAA

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — A Connecticut task force recommends that local zoning laws reflect changes in rising sea levels and new flood elevations after two storms devastated the state's shoreline.

The legislative report released Monday recommends that municipalities and the state consider the impact of rising sea levels when deciding whether to build or issuing public health permits for sewage disposal.

The group was formed in February 2012, after Hurricane Irene hit Connecticut as a tropical storm and eight months before more damage was caused by Superstorm Sandy.

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New England News
9:40 pm
Mon January 14, 2013

7 Firms Submit Application Fees for Mass. Casino License

BOSTON (AP) — Seven companies hoping to build casinos in Massachusetts have plunked down $400,000 each in nonrefundable application fees ahead of a key deadline.

A 2011 law signed by Gov. Deval Patrick allows up to three casinos in Massachusetts.

Among those jumping into the casino race is Las Vegas developer Steve Wynn who has eyed a site in Everett.

Others who have paid the fee and submitted applications include: MGM Springfield; Penn National Gaming, Inc.; Plainridge Racecourse; Hard Rock; and Mohegan Sun.

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New England News
8:00 pm
Fri January 11, 2013

Pittsfield Lawmaker Will Not Run for U.S. Senate

Mass. State Senator Benjamin Downing

Massachusetts State Sen. Ben Downing won't be jumping into a special Senate election to fill Sen. John Kerry's seat if Kerry is confirmed as secretary of state. 

The Pittsfield Democrat had been considering a run, but on Friday released a statement saying he won't be a candidate.

Downing's exit narrows the list of possible contenders.

So far, Congressman Ed Markey is the only announced Democratic candidate. Other possible Democratic candidates include U.S. Reps. Michael Capuano and Stephen Lynch.

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