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Jobs, economic development dominate debate between 2nd Franklin District candidates

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

ERVING — Jobs and economic development in the North Quabbin region dominated a debate Saturday evening between 2nd Franklin District state Rep. Denise Andrews, D- Orange, and her Republican challenger Susannah Whipps Lee of Athol. The debate, which was moderated by Kathy Ann Becker, a former town moderator in Wendell and broadcast on Athol-Orange Community Television from the French King Bowling Alley, saw the two candidates defend their positions on …

Plainfield, Ashfield, Buckland join to seek state grant reducing cost of installing solar panels for residents, businesses

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

With 133 households interested in installing solar-electric systems on their homes, the newly formed Ashfield-Buckland-Plainfield consortium has applied for a “Solarize Mass” grant that would cut the cost of electricity-producing solar panels by up to 20 percent below the statewide average. If the consortium’s application is among the 10 to be awarded by the state next month, residents and businesses in these towns …

Amherst Select Board supports increase in CPA surcharge; opposes fluoride testing

Monday, October 20, 2014

AMHERST — The Select Board on Monday voted to support an increase on the surcharge on residential tax bills, and opposed more rigorous testing of the fluoride that has been put in the town’s drinking water supply since 1987. The Select Board Monday voted 3-1, with one abstention, to endorse an increase in the Community Preservation Act surcharge from 1.5 percent to 3 …

UMass student Chloe Malast found dead in dorm; no foul play suspected

Monday, October 20, 2014

AMHERST — A University of Massachusetts student died at McNamara dormitory in the Sylvan residential area Sunday night, according to the Northwestern district attorney’s office. A campuswide email sent Monday afternoon informed students, faculty and staff that Chloe Malast, a member of the Commonwealth Honors College from Needham, …

UMass student arrested in connection with racist graffiti; cases involve new notes, not earlier reports

Monday, October 20, 2014

BELCHERTOWN ­— A University of Massachusetts Amherst student who admitted to police that he wrote racist notes on a dorm room door earlier this month has withdrawn from school and is remorseful, according to his lawyer. The graffiti …

Malfunctioning traffic signals snarl traffic at intersection of Route 9 and Damon Road Sunday

Sunday, October 19, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Malfunctioning signals briefly caused a traffic jam on the Northampton side of the Coolidge Bridge Sunday afternoon. Northampton Police Sgt. Josef Barszcz said police received a report that the traffic signals at the intersection of Route 9, Damon Road and the I-91 northbound exit ramp were …

Cause of South Hadley fire that killed nine dogs remains under investigation

Saturday, October 18, 2014

SOUTH HADLEY — Officials continue to investigate a kitchen fire Friday in a house at 5 Grandview Road that killed nine dogs and displaced one woman. No cause of the fire had been determined as of Sunday evening. …

Woman hospitalized after head-on crash on South Maple Street near malls in Hadley

Saturday, October 18, 2014

HADLEY — One woman was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries after a head-on collision Saturday afternoon on South Maple Street. The two vehicles collided at 12:42 p.m. as one left the Hampshire Mall and the other exited the Mountain Farms Mall, said Officer Jesse Green. One …

Hikers enjoy Salamander Trail at newly opened Mount Warner Reservation in Hadley

Saturday, October 18, 2014

HADLEY — Outdoor enthusiasts dodged falling leaves Saturday to take the inaugural hike on the newly opened Mount Warner Reservation. “Every time you walk a trail here, it’s different,” said Hadley resident Andrew Morris-Friedman. “It’s great to be …

Southampton Town Meeting Tuesday to consider buying land behind Fire Station, but future use unclear

Saturday, October 18, 2014

SOUTHAMPTON — Officials will ask Town Meeting on Tuesday to approve using Community Preservation Act funds to buy a small piece of land behind the Town Hall, but it cannot legally be used for the purpose originally intended. Officials had hoped to use money designated for preserving open …

From costumes to art, Northampton ReUse Committee encourages repurposing waste

Saturday, October 18, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Ellen Smith showed up at the Halloween costume swap at Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School Saturday morning to drop off the makings for a skunk and rooster. She and her 5-year-old twin sons Gabe and …

Smith Vocational serves up breakfast and talk about its future for area politicians

Friday, October 17, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Student cooks at the Oliver Smith Restaurant at Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School served up breakfast Friday morning to nine legislators while officials discussed possible changes in the way the school operates. Superintendent Jeffrey Peterson …

Congressman James McGovern cites importance of Greenfield Community College to region at its foundation’s annual meeting

Saturday, October 18, 2014

GREENFIELD — Some colleges and universities build big fences and walls around their property and have no interaction with the community, said U.S. Congressman James McGovern, speaking at the Greenfield Community College Foundation’s annual meeting Friday night. Not here. “This school is an essential part to the future …