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Lawsuit filed by longtime activist and self-described ‘citizen attorney general’ proceeds against Amherst Police

Friday, February 12, 2016

AMHERST — A man describing himself as a “citizen attorney general” with a history of dozens of arrests and lawsuits against the government over environmental issues now claims that Amherst Police roughed him up while he was being served a trespass notice in 2012. And last month Hampshire Superior Court Judge Mary-Lou Rup ruled that the lawsuit filed last May could proceed, rejecting an appeal from attorney David S. Lawless …

Bird Sightings

Friday, February 12, 2016

The Audubon Society has reported a variety of recent bird sightings in western Massachusetts. A greater white-fronted goose and a cackling goose were found in Longmeadow. Reports continue of the red-headed woodpeckers in Longmeadow. A northern shrike is still being seen at the Moran Wildlife Management Area in Windsor. A short-eared owl is still being reported in Northampton. A Barrow’s goldeneye and Iceland, …

Valley Views: Winter Texture

Friday, February 12, 2016

Building commissioner raises concern about weight of new roof planned at Deerfield Elementary School

Thursday, February 11, 2016

DEERFIELD — The town’s building commissioner is concerned that the weight of a new roof planned for the Deerfield Elementary School might exceed state building codes, and he is reviewing information from the project architect. Richard Calisewski told the Select Board this week he was frustrated that Raymond …

Elevated levels of lead found in Granby Junior-Senior High School and East Meadow Elementary School

Thursday, February 11, 2016

GRANBY— Lead in water from five taps at the Junior-Senior High School and the East Meadow Elementary School tested at levels higher than allowed for childcare facilities in the state, according to Judith Houle, the interim school superintendent. She posted a statement alerting the public Thursday on the …

Swastika found in UMass bathroom prompts police investigation

Thursday, February 11, 2016

AMHERST — University of Massachusetts Amherst police have launched an investigation after a swastika was found carved in a bathroom stall on campus earlier this month. The swastika was discovered etched into a bathroom stall in the Integrative Learning Center building. After the symbol was found, officials taped …

Area police news

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Amherst • An Amherst woman called police at 11:13 p.m. Wednesday to report returning home and finding fresh spackle on the ceiling. Police said there was no evidence that anyone entered the residence, and it was not clear if the spackle was recently applied. • Police are investigating …

Gov. Charlie Baker names Northampton lawyer John Pucci to commission that will screen applicants for Supreme Judicial Court

Thursday, February 11, 2016

NORTHAMPTON — Lawyer John P. Pucci, of Northampton, is one of 12 people named by Gov. Charlie Baker to recruit and screen candidates to fill three vacancies this year on the state Supreme Judicial Court. “The SJC has …

Amherst Town Clerk rules that Select Board challenger Helen Berg fails to submit enough certified signatures

Thursday, February 11, 2016

AMHERST — Select Board challenger Helen Berg said Thursday that she will dispute the town clerk’s ruling blocking her name from being on the March 29 ballot. Town Clerk Sandra Burgess said Berg, of 273 Montague Road, Apt. 4, submitted her nomination papers by the 5 p.m. Tuesday …

Jones Library negotiates with Amherst Historical Society over acquiring land for expansion

Thursday, February 11, 2016

AMHERST — Jones Library and Amherst Historical Society officials are nearing an agreement for the library to acquire a portion of the neighboring ¾-acre property to accommodate a proposed expansion and renovation project. Library Director Sharon Sharry said in an email Wednesday that she anticipates a memorandum of …

Cold in forecast postpones Amherst WinterFest, but Black Liberation flag-raising still set for Saturday

Thursday, February 11, 2016

AMHERST — Forbiddingly cold temperatures are forcing the postponement of the annual WinterFest from Saturday to Feb. 20. Barbara Bilz, who oversees Cherry Hill for the town’s Leisure Services and Supplemental Education Department, said the decision was made with the WinterFest committee, made up of representatives of the …

Political analyst Mary Anne Marsh reflects on ‘craziest’ election after New Hampshire primaries

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Expect a “slugfest through the spring and possibly the early summer.” That’s the word from Mary Anne Marsh, the Greenfield-raised political pundit reporting on “the greatest election of my lifetime, and the craziest I’ve seen,” following Tuesday’s New …

Dean and two associates resign from UMass College of Education

Thursday, February 11, 2016

AMHERST — Three top officials at the University of Massachusetts Amherst College of Education are all resigning, and there has been no public explanation for their departures. Dean Christine McCormick, who has held that role since 2005, as well as associate deans Joseph Berger and Linda Griffin, have …