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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Several  events  were held in Amherst Massachusetts over the weekend to mark the inauguration of Jonathan Lash as the sixth president of Hampshire College.  The highlight was a formal inauguration ceremony  featuring a keynote address by former Vice President Al Gore.  WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

 

      Gore spoke forcefully on his signature issue, global warming, saying policies and practices must change and critics who deny the scientific evidence must be refuted.

Wistariahurst Museum

The life of a renowned activist for social justice is being fondly remembered this weekend in western Massachusetts. And, the legacy of Carlos Vega is being preserved in an extensive collection of personal papers and artifacts at a museum in his home city of Holyoke.   WAMC's Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

        There is barely an aspect of life in Holyoke over the last half century, from housing to education to Latino culture that Carlos Vega did not influence, or at least, try to influence.

Former Vice President Al Gore will be in western Massachusetts today to speak at the inauguration of Hampshire College President Jonathan Lash.  WAMC’s Paul Tuthill reports…

The former vice president who has campaigned to educate people about climate change is a friend of Lash who is an environmental attorney and former head of the World Resources Institute.  Lash will be formally installed as Hampshire College’s sixth president. 

Lash said the small liberal arts college has students and faculty who are independent thinkers passionate about change…

Blue Star Equiculture

An organic farm in western Massachusetts is the officially designated retirement place for the carriage horses of New York’s Central Park.  Blue Star Equiculture of Palmer Massachusetts is participating in an event this weekend where people will have a chance to learn more about its unique mission to help working horses.   WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Blue Star Equiculture’s executive director, Pamela Rickenbach.

Former Massachusetts State Treasurer Timothy Cahill, who is facing corruption charges, was in court briefly Wednesday.  WAMC’s Paul Tuthill reports…

A pre-trial conference in Cahill’s case was postponed for a month at the request of Jeffrey Denner, Cahill’s new lawyer, who told the judge he needed time to get up to speed.  There was no change in the September date for Cahill’s trial.  

Cahill told reporters in Boston after the brief hearing that he is confident his legal team will prove he did nothing wrong. 

WAMC

The mayor of Holyoke Massachusetts has made the first major appointment
of his new administration. Mayor Alex Morse, Wednesday, appointed a new
director of economic development. WAMC's Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief
Paul Tuthill reports.

        Mayor Morse has hired Marcos Marrero, a young urban planner and
policy professional with experience in energy and sustainability
projects to implement the young mayor's vision for revitalizing one of
the state's poorest cities.

Two new reports suggest the long downturn in the real estate market in Massachusetts may be over.  WAMC’s Paul Tuthill reports…

Home sales rose by more than 19 percent in March compared to a year ago, according to a report issued Tuesday by the Warren Group, a Boston company that tracks real estate data.  With a total of 3,205 homes sold across the state, it was the best March since 2007.  The spring before the recession hit, home values sunk and unemployment rose. 

WAMC

Massachusetts state and local officials  in Northampton,Tuesday marked more progress in  a decades  long effort to  transform a former state hospital campus into a sustainable urban neighborhood..WAMC's Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

Hampshire College

Jonathan Lash will be inaugurated this Friday  as the sixth president of Hampshire College. Lash was an environmental attorney, and a former Vermont State Secretary of Natural Resources.  Former Vice President Al Gore will deliver a speech at the inauguration.  WAMC”s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Lash.

The Massachusetts House has begun debate on a proposed $32 billion state budget by rejecting a cut in the state sales tax.   WAMC’s Paul Tuthill reports…

A proposal to reduce the Massachusetts sales tax to 5 percent in three phases was sent off to a study committee by an overwhelming and mostly partly line vote of 119-37. 

WAMC

A relatively obscure agency created to help manage growth in part of western Massachusetts is marking 50 years of  accomplishments. WAMC's Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

  As the Massachusetts House is set to begin debate today on a proposed $32 billion state budget for the fiscal year that begins in July, anti poverty activists are decrying proposals they claim will erode the social safety net.  WAMC'S Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

WAMC

Officials in Springfield Massachusetts announced Friday they intend to seek state and federal funding to build a new school to replace an aged  one that was heavily damaged by the tornado almost a year ago. WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

An international conference hosted by the Five College educational consortium is taking place this weekend in western Massachusetts.  It is the wrap up to an 18 month project, known as riverscaping. The idea was to identify new ways for people to interact with the Connecticut River.  WAMC”s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with one of the project’s leaders, Thom Long, a professor of architecture at Hampshire College.

A new economic report is painting a much brighter picture of job growth in Massachusetts.  WAMC’s Paul Tuthill reports…

MassBenchmarks released an analysis on Wednesday showing that the state appeared to have added 38,900 jobs during the first nine months of 2011. That compares with a revised estimate issued last month by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics that showed Massachusetts only gained 2,300 jobs during the same period - a figure that had been questioned by Governor Deval Patrick and other state officials.

WAMC

            After almost two years of lobbying, a band of liberal political activists have persuaded Massachusetts Democratic Congressman Richard Neal to endorse some of their legislation.. This as the veteran congressman faces a Democratic primary challenge in a newly drawn district.   WAMC”s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

 

A series of proposals aimed at cracking down on crime are pending before the city council in western Massachusetts' largest city. Several of the public safety initiatives proposed in Springfield are intended to reduce illegal guns, and are being considered in the aftermath of recent horrific gun violence. WAMC's Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

   Experienced disaster response volunteers are canvassing the tornado devastated neighborhoods of Springfield Massachusetts to conduct a needs assessment.  Local organizations will use the  collected information to help people still struggling to recover from the storm.   WAMC”s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

Gasoline prices in Massachusetts continue to climb, although not as rapidly as in recent weeks.  WAMC’s Paul Tuthill reports…

The average price for unleaded regular self serve gasoline in Massachusetts rose two cents last week.  The average price, according to a survey by AAA is $3.89 per gallon. Prices ranged between $3.78 and $3.99 per gallon.  The price is 23 cents per gallon more than a year ago.

Gasoline prices have gone up for five straight weeks, but some energy analysts believe a peak is near.

Paul Tuthill, WAMC News.

There is debate currently in several states including Massachusetts, New York and Connecticut about raising the minimum wage. A group in one western Massachusetts city is pushing for what it calls a “living wage” WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

WAMC

Events to mark the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic are scheduled for later this week by the Titanic Historical Society.  The oldest and largest organization in the world devoted to preserving the history of the doomed luxury liner is headquartered in Springfield Massachusetts.  WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau  Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

WAMC

Civil rights authorities say they've seen a serious uptick in housing discrimination complaints in Massachusetts.  Its further fall out from the foreclosure crisis.  WAMC's Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

A Massachusetts man convicted of conspiring to help al-Qaida has been sentenced by a federal judge in Boston to 17 and a half years in prison.

Budget writers in the Massachusetts House have proposed a $32.3 billion state spending plan.

WAMC

Helping people help themselves to someday leave public housing was the goal of a conference Wednesday sponsored by the public housing authority in Springfield Massachusetts.  WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

    Every parent seeks a better life for their children was the motivational message aimed at more than 100 mostly young parents who attended today’s conference, some with their children in tow.

The five member Massachusetts Gaming Commission held its first public meeting Tuesday as it set about to bring casino gambling to the state.   WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

     Declaring  the decades long debate over whether to bring casinos to Massachusetts is over, Stephen Crosby, the chairman of the powerful gaming commission, said he and the other four appointees were ready to get to work to implement the public policy in the best way they can.  He pledged that much of that work would take place in full public view.

  Faced with a major decrease in property tax collections and no
expected increase in state aid, budget writers in Springfield
Massachusetts are proposing scores of fee hikes. But the city's top
finance officer says it still won't be  enough to avoid budget cuts.
WAMC's Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports..

  Law enforcement is slowly embracing social media as a crime
fighting tool. The latest example was announced Monday in Northampton
Massachusetts, as we hear from WAMC's Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul
Tuthill.

        The Northwestern District Attorney, David Sullivan announced the
launch of a text-a-tip program designed to help police solve crimes in
the 47 cities and towns in Hampshire and Franklin counties.

The five member Massachusetts Gaming Commission is now in place. The commissioners will draft regulations to establish a new casino gambling industry in Massachusetts and award the much coveted licenses for resort casinos.  One member of the new commission is from western Massachusetts. Bruce Stebbins is a Springfield resident, a former member of the city council, and a small business development specialist.    He spoke recently with WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill.

The second largest public school system in Massachusetts is going to make condoms available to students as young as 12 beginning this fall. The school committee in Springfield, Thursday night, approved a condom availability policy that proponents say will become  part of a comprehensive effort to combat one of the highest rates of teen pregnancy in the state. WAMC's  Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.
       

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