Paul Tuthill

Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief

Paul Tuthill is WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief. He’s been covering news, everything from politics and government corruption to natural disasters and the arts, in western Massachusetts since 2007. Before joining WAMC, Paul was a reporter and anchor at WRKO in Boston.  He was news director for more than a decade at WTAG in Worcester.  Paul has won more than two dozen Associated Press Broadcast Awards. He won an Edward R. Murrow award for reporting on veterans’ healthcare for WAMC in 2011.  Born and raised in western New York , Paul did his first radio reporting while he was a student at the University of Rochester. 

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New England News
5:21 am
Fri August 16, 2013

Lawsuit Claiming Persecution Of Gays By Pastor To Continue

A federal judge has rejected a motion to dismiss a lawsuit brought by a Ugandan gay rights group against an evangelical minister in Massachusetts.

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New England News
4:43 pm
Thu August 15, 2013

Massachusetts Unemployment Rate Rises To 7.2%

The unemployment rate in Massachusetts has climbed to the highest level in almost two years.

The Massachusetts economy added just 300 jobs in July, according to a report from the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development.  The unemployment rate rose to 7.2  percent from 7 percent in June.  Robert Nakosteen, an economist at the UMass Isenberg School, said the dismal job numbers are further evidence of an economic slowdown that he blames on federal budget cuts and higher taxes that took effect at the beginning of the year.

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New England News
9:05 pm
Mon August 12, 2013

Casino Development Deal In Palmer Said To Be Close

Credit Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority

Town officials in Palmer Massachusetts expect to finalize a casino development deal this week with Connecticut-based Mohegan Sun.

Even before details of the host community agreement are known, several pro casino groups in Palmer on Monday launched a coordinated effort with Mohegan Sun to win voter approval for the deal. The campaign slogan “ It’s Palmer’s Turn”  was  unveiled. The voter referendum is likely to be in late October.  John Toutant of Palmer believes  town voters will overwhelmingly support the casino project.

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New England News
6:30 pm
Mon August 12, 2013

High-Volume Sterilization Clinic Reduces Homeless Animal Population

"Princess", a 2-year old spayed female pitbull at Dakin Humane Society's adoption center in Springfield, MA
Credit WAMC

Four years ago this month an animal welfare agency arrived in Springfield Massachusetts and announced an ambitious goal—prevent dogs and cats from becoming homeless and euthanized.  The Dakin Humane Society says it can now guarantee a home for every healthy homeless animal in the Pioneer Valley.

There are fewer animals these days at the Dakin Humane Society’s adoption center on Union Street in Springfield and that’s a good thing according to Candy Lash, the society’s manager of marketing and communications.

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New England News
4:44 pm
Mon August 12, 2013

Turnpike Tolls In Western Massachusetts To Return Oct. 15

Credit AP File Photo

The free ride on the far western portion of the Massachusetts Turnpike will come to an end in mid-October  according to a plan announced Monday by state transportation officials.

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New England News
12:18 pm
Mon August 12, 2013

Tax Relief Program For Senior Citizens May Expand To Springfield

Credit Donkey Hotey/Flickr

A decade-old Massachusetts program that allows a property tax break for senior citizens may be introduced in the state’s third largest city.  Springfield would join several smaller cities in the region that already offer the popular program.

The Senior Tax Work-Off Program allows homeowners over the age of 60 to perform tasks for a municipality in exchange for a one-time abatement of a portion of their property tax bill.  It is offered in more than 100 cities and towns in Massachusetts including Westfield, Chicopee and Holyoke.

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New England News
5:40 am
Mon August 12, 2013

Construction To Start On New Hotel

Credit WAMC

A groundbreaking is scheduled Wednesday for a new hotel in downtown Springfield, while construction work is finishing on a second hotel expected to open later this year.

   Both hotels were planned more than 5 years ago, but work stalled because of the recession and other factors.   The fact that both projects are moving ahead is an indicator that business is turning around, in the view of  Mary Kay Wydra, president of the  Greater Springfield Visitors and Convention Bureau.

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New England News
12:50 pm
Sun August 11, 2013

Church Leader Pledges To Help People Impacted By Gambling

Some members of the faith-based community in western Massachusetts are starting to talk about ways to help people whom they believe will be harmed when a casino opens. The Massachusetts Gaming Commission is on track to award a casino license to one of three competitors in the region by April 2014. A casino could open in 2016.    WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Bishop Douglas Fisher of the Episcopal Diocese of Western Massachusetts.

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New England News
8:31 am
Sat August 10, 2013

Shoppers Get A Two-Day Break From Sales Tax In Massachusetts

Credit Holyokemall.com

Back-to-school shopping which retail analysts say is off to a slow start is expected to get a boost in Massachusetts this weekend because the state has authorized two days of sales-tax free shopping. 

   Jon Hurst, the president of the Retailers Association of Massachusetts expects a total of $500 million in sales to occur this weekend. He said the sales-tax free shopping during the second weekend in August has become the traditional start of the back-to–school shopping season in the state.

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New England News
6:14 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

New Hotel Construction Seen As Sign Of Business Rebound

Years before a casino might open in downtown Springfield Massachusetts construction on new hotels is beginning.   The people who sell the city as a tourist destination say it is a positive development.

 A new 100 -room hotel is expected to open in downtown Springfield by the end of this year, and a groundbreaking ceremony is scheduled next week for a new six- story hotel that will also have nearly 100 guest rooms when it opens in about a year.

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