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Thomas Paine Day celebration in Amherst features forum on labor issues

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

AMHERST — A labor forum focused on the living wage, equal pay for equal work and the growing gap between high- and low-income earners will be held Saturday afternoon at the Jones Library. The annual Thomas Paine Day Celebration starts at 1 p.m. in the library at 43 Amity St. It will feature several speakers, including Jon Weissman, coordinator of Western Massachusetts Jobs With Justice; Aubretia “Windy” Edick, a member …

US may lease drilling sites in Atlantic

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration floated a plan Tuesday that for the first time would open up a broad swath of the Atlantic Coast to drilling, even as it moved to restrict drilling indefinitely in environmentally-sensitive areas off Alaska. The proposal envisions auctioning areas located more than 50 miles off Virginia, North and South Carolina, and Georgia to oil companies no earlier than …

‘We never close’: Staying open during a storm means good business for some establishments

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Though there was hardly a light on in downtown Amherst Tuesday afternoon, the crowd was hopping inside Antonio’s Pizza as hungry customers piled in with skis and sleds in hand. “Welcome to the lodge, guys!” manager Jay Carreiro called out lightheartedly to a group of young people entering the small pizza restaurant on …

Fifth teenager arrested in connection with Northampton bike-path beating that police say was gang-related

Monday, January 26, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — A fifth teenager whom police believe has ties to a criminal gang was arrested this weekend in connection with the Dec. 5 beating of another teen on the Northampton bike path. Nerkin Morales, 18, of Chicopee, pleaded not guilty in Northampton District Court Monday to charges …

CLOSED! Valley communities urge residents to stay home in response to storm

Monday, January 26, 2015

Long before the first snowflakes fell Monday night, groundwork was laid to keep people safe from one end of Hampshire County to the other. With plenty of time to prepare for what has been predicted as a storm …

Plow crews in Valley will be sorely tested by heavy snowfall, officials warn

Monday, January 26, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — In company with 4,000 pieces of state-owned equipment and about 50 from the city of Northampton, Florence resident Kate Towles will be out with her own little snowblower clearing her patch of road Tuesday — her …

Smith goes early with early-decision announcement

Monday, January 26, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — One potential upside to this week’s predicted record-breaking storm is that early-decision applicants to Smith College learned their fate a full 24 hours earlier than planned. Smith offers two rounds of early-decision applicants, and the second batch expected to find out if they’d been accepted by …

Discussion Wednesday on Amherst Fire Department budget

Monday, January 26, 2015

AMHERST — Concerns about Amherst Fire Department funding have prompted a Town Meeting member to schedule a public discussion on its budget Wednesday. Isaac Ben Ezra said he is arranging a meeting between Finance Director Sanford “Sandy” Pooler and a representative from the Amherst Firefighters Local 1764 at …

Area police news

Monday, January 26, 2015

Amherst ■ A 16-year-old Amherst youth was arrested at an Amherst home at 10:21 p.m. Sunday on a charge of possession of firearms ammunition without a license. ■ Police are investigating a break-in reported at the Bacon Wilson law office, 6 South East St., at 6:34 a.m. Sunday. …

Obama seeks bigger Alaska refuge

Sunday, January 25, 2015

JUNEAU, Alaska — President Barack Obama is proposing to designate the vast majority of Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge as a wilderness area, including its potentially oil-rich coastal plain, drawing an angry response from top state elected officials …

Street clock coming home: City to buy historic timepiece, install it in renovated Pulaski Park

Sunday, January 25, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — A historic downtown street clock dedicated by former mayor Calvin Coolidge in 1910 is coming home, after sitting in a Holyoke warehouse for a quarter-century. The city has agreed to buy the large outdoor Seth Thomas …

Leverett, Obama on same page with high-speed Internet

Sunday, January 25, 2015

LEVERETT — President Obama’s call Tuesday for Internet expansion to “help folks build the fastest networks, so that the next generation of digital innovators and entrepreneurs have the platform to keep reshaping our world,” had a special ring for people in this town. Obama’s State of the Union …