New England News

Vermont is one of 37 states along with the District of Columbia that allows early voting.  The process will begin at the end of the week and election officials are urging voters to take advantage of it.  While one political party has questions about the distribution of the ballots, others say that’s just political gamesmanship.

WAMC

A new initiative has been announced in western Massachusetts in an effort to reduce drug overdose deaths and the misuse of prescription medications.

Rutland, VT
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The Rutland Board of Aldermen has approved releasing a report by the city attorney that reviews whether the mayor acted within his powers under the city charter when he made plans to resettle Syrian refugees.

Maine regulators are considering a $500,000 fine for FairPoint for failing to meet service standards for landline customers during a period that included a four-month strike.

Kujtim Hashani talks about his experience in VSAC’s Talent Search program at an event at Burlington High School
Vermont Student Assistance Corp

The Vermont Student Assistance Corp. is getting a $2.8 million federal grant to encourage young Vermonters to seek higher education.

Statistics released by Governor Dannel Malloy’s administration show that Connecticut has decreased its number of prison inmates aged 18 to 21 years old by 54 percent over the last seven years.

A man charged in the fatal beating of another man inside an apartment at the Pittsfield Family YMCA Sunday has pleaded not guilty.

Brian Signor, 27 of Pittsfield, pleaded not guilty Monday to aggravated assault and battery, according to the Berkshire District Attorney’s Office. Authorities say Signor assaulted 44-year-old Joseph Wirtes Sunday. Wirtes was taken to Berkshire Medical Center and was later pronounced dead. Signor may face further charges pending autopsy results. He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $50,000 cash bail.

Older workers and regional employment workers celebrate the proclamation at Pittsfield City Hall on Monday.
Jim Levulis / WAMC

Mayors in Pittsfield and North Adams this week are recognizing older workers and the organizations that help them find jobs.

The Ludlow Mills Clock Tower from high above
WestMass Area Development Corp

    Massachusetts will fund enhancements to a riverwalk project in Ludlow that is part of the largest brownfields mill redevelopment in New England. 

     The town of Ludlow has officially signed an agreement with the state to accept a $429,500 grant from the MassWorks program. It will be used for lighting, benches, signage explaining the history of the property, and other amenities along the 1.7-mile Ludlow Mills Riverwalk. 

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Williams College and its museum of art are studying climate change through a variety of ways this academic year. It comes after a call by alumni, students and staff for the college to fully divest its endowment from fossil fuel companies.

Open Clip Art/Public Domain

       Two public forums are scheduled this week about an initiative to resettle refugees including some from Syria in Northampton, Massachusetts. 

       The meetings are being held tonight at the John F. Kennedy Middle School beginning at 6:30 p.m. and Thursday at 2 p.m. at the Northampton Senior Center. 

       The public conversations are being sponsored by Catholic Charities of Springfield. The agency has contracted with the U.S. State Department to resettle 51 refugees. The first of the refugees could arrive as early as January.  

npr.org

Two public forums have been scheduled on the resettlement of refugees, possibly including some from war-torn Syria, in western Massachusetts.

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A construction status report from the developer of Hartford's Dunkin' Donuts Park has revealed several deficiencies with the yet-to-be-completed minor league baseball stadium.

More than five years after a tornado destroyed Cathedral High School in Springfield, a groundbreaking ceremony is scheduled Sunday to build a much smaller Catholic high school in its place.

    Environmental activists are lobbying city councilors in Springfield to approve a ban on single-use plastic bags in retail stores in hopes it will lead to a statewide prohibition in Massachusetts.

The exhibition explores people's fear of shadows.
Jim Levulis / WAMC

You may have noticed the Halloween candy and decorations already creeping onto store shelves. Now, some rather spooky items have found their way out of the Berkshire Museum’s storage areas and into its exhibit halls.

Connecticut's attorney general will appeal a landmark court ruling declaring the state's education funding system unconstitutional and calling for reforms.

ESE

               The Eastern States Exposition, known as the Big E, opened its gates to the public in West Springfield today as the annual fair observes its 100th anniversary.

MassDOT Highway Administrator Tom Tinlin speaking in Lenox Sept. 15.
Jim Levulis / WAMC

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation on Thursday held its final public hearing before a vote on adjusted turnpike rates associated with a switch to all electronic tolling.

WAMC

The largest agricultural fair in the Northeast, the Big E, opens its gates in West Springfield to the public Friday and kicks off an observance of its 100th anniversary.

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Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin says he's cautiously optimistic that in several weeks the state will have an agreement with the federal government for an "all-payer waiver" to change how health care providers are paid.

One of the 3D printers at Taconic High School.
Jim Levulis / WAMC

Berkshire Community College and area business leaders showed off cutting-edge technology on Thursday that they believe will grow the region’s innovation and manufacturing sectors.

WAMC

The Five College Consortium is building a new library annex in western Massachusetts.

Moose on highway
Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department

The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department is warning drivers to be alert for moose crossing the state’s roads. 

Burlington School District logo
Burlington School District

The Burlington School District says it's working on a plan to improve the racial climate among staff after the director and two other employees of the diversity office complained of discrimination.

Burlington Police car
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Some police in Vermont are receiving training on how to de-escalate encounters with people who may be experiencing a mental health crisis.

A Hartford Police Department patch
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Connecticut authorities say 11 Hartford police officers got sick when they were exposed to heroin and fentanyl during a drug bust.

Jennifer Trainer Thompson was announced as the next CEO of Hancock Shaker Village Wednesday.
Jim Levulis / WAMC

The new leader of Hancock Shaker Village in Pittsfield is someone who has been involved in the region’s cultural realm for quite some time.

WAMC

  A woman who dedicated the majority of her adult life to public service in a western Massachusetts city was honored at a ceremony today. 

The renovated Hawthorne Hall at Berkshire Community College is open for classes.
Jim Levulis / WAMC

The fall semesters for most colleges and universities are just under way and in Pittsfield, the area’s community college is undergoing major changes.

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