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Operator of region’s electricity grid supports request by Northfield Mountain Pumped Storage for increased winter capacity

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

The operator of the region’s electricity grid is backing plans to pump more Connecticut River water through the Northfield Mountain Pumped Storage hydrogenerator this winter. Northfield Mountain’s owner, FirstLight Power, wants federal approval to boost the capacity of its generator station by 22 percent to augment the electricity supply available in the region when demand grows during the winter. The letter from ISO New England to the Federal Energy Regulatory …

UMass suspends confidential informant program; students speak out

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

AMHERST — A confidential informant program at the University of Massachusetts Amherst that came under fire this week following the report of a student informant’s death from a drug overdose has been suspended indefinitely pending its full review, Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy announced in an email to faculty and students Tuesday night. “The review …

Southampton residents, town employees assail proposal to share inspection services with Holyoke

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

SOUTHAMPTON — A proposal to outsource the town’s inspection services to Holyoke was met with strong and unanimous opposition from dozens of residents at Town Hall Tuesday night as well as a Holyoke city councilor who slammed the idea. Speaking before the Select Board and a standing-room-only crowd of about 50 people, Holyoke City Councilor Anthony Soto said he knows of constituents in …

Afghan-US pact signed

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

WASHINGTON — After lengthy delays, U.S. and Afghan officials signed a security pact Tuesday to keep American troops in Afghanistan beyond year’s end, aiming to prevent the country from descending into the kind of chaos that has plagued …

UMass Deputy Police Chief Patrick Archbald explains confidential informant program

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

AMHERST — University of Massachusetts Deputy Police Chief Patrick Archbald on Tuesday defended a confidential informant program that has come under scrutiny, saying it reduces illegal drug activity and the potential for gun violence on campus. He said the program using students, which dates back to at least …

Refugee of war-torn Democratic Republic of Congo relates his story to Smith Vocational and Agricultural School students

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Jowel Iranzi was barely 10 years old in 1996 when his life was turned upside down by war in his home country of Zaire — now the Democratic Republic of Congo. His family fled to Rwanda, …

Massachusetts chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving honors Amherst police

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

AMHERST — The state chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving honored Amherst police Tuesday as its “department of the month.” Amherst police officers Scott Soverino, Richard MacLean, Rita Contardo, Andrew Hulse, Benton Carr and Nicholas Chandler, were recognized for their efforts to enforce impaired driving laws and prevent …

Area court news

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Northampton ∎ Jesse K. Sherman, 24, of 17 Paquette Ave., pleaded not guilty in Northampton District Court Monday to charges of assault and battery of a person over 60, assault and battery on a family or household member, intimidation of a witness and malicious destruction of property valued …

Jorge Vicenty sentenced to three years in jail for cocaine trafficking after traffic stop in Hatfield

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — A Holyoke man was sentenced to three years in state prison after he pleaded guilty Monday in Hampshire Superior Court to drug charges resulting from a Jan. 23 traffic stop in Hatfield. Jorge Vicenty, 35, pleaded guilty to trafficking between 18 and 36 grams of cocaine …

Hampshire Power will supply Lowell with locally produced renewable energy in first-of-its-kind deal

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — In what its leaders believe is a first-of-its-kind agreement, the Hampshire Council of Governments has signed a deal to supply power to the city of Lowell solely through renewable energy produced in New England. The state’s fourth-largest city has signed a contract through which Hampshire Power …

South Hadley Town Meeting to consider $30,000 study on bike paths

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

SOUTH HADLEY — Creating bicycle and walking links between the Falls neighborhood and the South Hadley village center will be the focus of a Pioneer Valley Planning Commission study if Town Meeting voters approve $30,000 to pay for it. The study would also consider providing more access to …

After student's death, UMass eyes parental notice in informant cases

Monday, September 29, 2014

AMHERST — A confidential informant program run by the University of Massachusetts police will be reviewed by UMass officials to determine whether parents of informants in drug cases should be notified. Campus spokesman Edward Blaguszewski issued a statement …

VIDEO Governor hopefuls offer prescriptions on economy, education

Monday, September 29, 2014

SPRINGFIELD — Gubernatorial candidates are calling for strengthening the regional economy in western Massachusetts,improving funding for transportation and allowing a casino to be built in Springfield regardless of the outcome of the statewide November ballot vote seeking repeal …