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Plainfield

Hilltown Voices: Large turnouts in Chesterfield and Goshen approve WiredWest broadband fiber-optic network

Saturday, July 4, 2015

In two of the best-attended special Town Meetings in recent memory, Chesterfield and Goshen this week each overwhelmingly approved spending more than $1 million to help create a regional state-of-the-art broadband fiber-optic network. The project will be built and operated by WiredWest, a cooperative seeking to provide broadband to 32 towns in western Massachusetts. On Monday, Goshen voters unanimously approved $1.4 million as the town’s share of the project, and …

Federal regulators plan July 29 meeting in Greenfield on Tennessee Gas Pipeline

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Federal regulators have issued formal notice for the Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. Northeast Energy Direct project, scheduling a July 29 public meeting in Greenfield. The notice starts the clock for the 60-day process to decide the scope of issues considered in a environmental impact statement on the project, which would cross Plainfield in Hampshire County and eight Franklin County towns en route from …

Environmental groups question Beacon Hill Institute report on pipeline-created jobs

Saturday, June 27, 2015

A new report funded by Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. states that construction of its Northeast Energy Direct pipeline would create 1,713 jobs in the state, and that the impact could be over 12,000 jobs by 2020. But the report, by the Beacon Hill Institute at Suffolk University in Boston, with ties to the conservative billionaire Koch brothers, is being called into question by …

Congressman James McGovern, attorneys for environmental groups criticize Tennessee Gas Pipeline

Friday, May 22, 2015

Two letters released by federal officials this week — including one by Congressman James McGovern — chide the Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. for lack of transparency and misleading statements about its proposed Northeast Energy Direct Project. In letters …

‘No smoking gun’ in UMass natural resources assessment of proposed Tennessee Gas Pipeline route

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

A detailed report on the proposed Tennessee Gas Pipeline route through western Massachusetts points to its impact on protected open space dedicated to agriculture and conservation, and especially on Franklin County’s primary habitat for rare species habitat, wetlands wildlife habitat and communities of biodiversity. If there is anything …

State Sen. Benjamin Downing files legislation to promote clean energy

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

A state Senate bill encouraging utilities to adopt policies that incorporate energy storage systems to make more efficient use of solar, wind and other renewable sources is one of several initiatives by Sen. Benjamin Downing of Pittsfield to reshape the state’s energy future and keep its position as …

Hilltown Voices: Retirement party for Chesterfield highway superintendent, fishing derby in Plainfield, colonial hearth cooking in Williamsburg

Saturday, May 9, 2015

There will be a retirement party from 2 to 4 p.m. May 17 at the Chesterfield Community Center at 400 Main Road for Ed Dahill. He retired as Chesterfield highway superintendent last June after serving in the position for 26 years. All are welcome at the party hosted …

Plainfield voters approve $1.9M budget, OK WiredWest, re-elect Dennis Mimitz to Select Board

Sunday, May 3, 2015

PLAINFIELD — Voters on Saturday afternoon approved a $1,904,978 budget which included $657,000 for the Mohawk Regional School District, $178,000 for Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School and $90,000 for school transportation. “All the budget items passed very easily this year,” said Finance Committee member Robert Persing. In …

Berkshire Gas spokesman apologizes for referring to pipeline opponents as engaging in ‘ecoterrorism’

Friday, May 1, 2015

Ecoterrorism? The term used by Berkshire Gas Co. spokesman Christopher Farrell last week to describe Tennessee Gas Pipeline project opponents has caused some confusion, hard feelings and, in some cases, amusement, among those who say they have never thought of themselves that way. Farrell, the company’s manager of …

State Sen. Benjamin Downing receives several honors

Thursday, April 30, 2015

April was a good month for state Sen. Benjamin Downing, D-Pittsfield, who achieved several honors. On Wednesday, he was named the Massachusetts Association of School Committees’ legislator of the year for a second time, recognizing his “support and aggressive advocacy for our annual budget priorities, such as regional …

Plainfield voters to consider budget increase of 7.7 percent, settle contest for Select Board

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

PLAINFIELD — Voters Saturday will consider a $1.9 million budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1, decide whether to authorize the town to pursue broadband Internet service through Wired West and settle a contested race for Select Board. The annual Town meeting begins at 1 p.m. in …

Berkshire Gas Co. spokesman tells Franklin County Chamber of Commerce of ‘critical need’ for Tennessee Gas Pipeline

Saturday, April 25, 2015

DEERFIELD — Berkshire Gas Co. spokesman Christopher Farrell made a case last week with the region’s business leaders for what he called the “critical need” for the Northeast Energy Direct project proposed by Tennessee Gas Pipeline. Farrell said it is needed not only to grow the economy, but …

Hilltown Voices: Goshen Meltdown ends, organizer to take frigid plunge into Hammond Pond

Saturday, April 25, 2015

The 11th annual Goshen Meltdown is over, but organizer Bob Labrie has one last thing to do before officially wrapping things up for this year. This Sunday, Labrie, a captain in the Goshen Fire Department, will live up to his spur-of the-moment challenge to hurl himself into the …