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Patricia and Stanley Libucha: Belchertown taxpayers should review property bills carefully

Friday, August 28, 2015

To the editor: If you own a home or vacant property in Belchertown, do not take for granted that your tax bill and the calculation of the acreage and square footage for your property is accurate. According to the director of assessments, and I quote, “As of 1-1-12 our assessors maps were updated using the MassGIS mapping system developed by the Commonwealth. This program utilizes aerial orthoimagery, which is significantly …

J.M. Sorrell: Gazette wrong to come to Chris Duval’s defense on free speech grounds

Thursday, August 27, 2015

To the editor: It’s one thing to hear from Chris Duval (infamous now for guns and Confederate flag defenses) and to print his comments. It seems ridiculous, however, for a well-regarded newspaper to come to his defense regarding the Cummington Fair. If he had painted on his building “Die Faggot” or “Filthy Jews,” I suspect you would not have a problem with his …

Tenzin Tsedon: See Confederate ‘battle flag’ for what it is: a racist symbol

Thursday, August 27, 2015

To the editor: Lot of people who support the Confederate flag always seem to compare it to the rainbow flag or a flag of another country, saying all of them represent pride and Americans have the right to fly them regardless of others’ disapprovals. If one truly wants to compare the rebel banner to another flag, why not do it with the flag …

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my daughter just graduated from smith vocational and she has cmt disease in her hands and legs and has ADD learning disability...(full comment)

Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School changes graduation requirements

Hi Lynne -- How did I miss this the first time around? (Thsi time via Chris.) My very bad -- would Miley...(full comment)

Lynne Bertrand: What spring can reveal if we remember to look, listen

Max Page: Free public higher education is within state’s reach

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

To the editor: In your Aug. 5 editorial about reducing tuition and fees for University of Massachusetts students, you correctly suggest that UMass should lower or eliminate the fee increases it imposed now that the Legislature has added $5.2 million back into the university’s budget. You write, “It’s …

Rob Weir: Ill-advised State Police policy on keeping names of officers involved in fatal crashes needs overturned

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

The Gazette recently brought news of a policy change in which Massachusetts State Police will no longer release the names of officers involved in fatal automobile crashes, unless that officer has been formally charged with an offense. This is absurd and flies in the face of nationwide efforts …

Jonathan Goldman: Smith Voc decision to compost could lead to citywide program

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

To the editor: While the announcement may have gone nearly unnoticed within the Northampton community, Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School’s recent decision to begin composting this coming fall is an extremely important change for the city. Since 2004, the extent of Northampton composting has been quite limited. …

Congress should cancel August break, work to avert shutdown

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

To the editor: There have been growing fears of another federal government shutdown, the second in three years. The current fiscal year ends Sept. 30 and few new appropriation bills have been passed. Furthermore, Republicans in Congress have set defunding Planned Parenthood as one of their priorities, and …

Kathryn H. Holmes: Hopes Sunoco in Amherst fixes tax problems and re-opens soon

Monday, August 10, 2015

To the editor: I saw, with sadness, a small article in the July 31 Gazette announcing the seizure by the state of the Belchertown Road Sunoco due to nonpayment of taxes. I’ve bought my gas and gotten my cars inspected at this station for many years and have …

Cheryl Zoll: Urges pols to stop playing politics with women’s health

Monday, August 10, 2015

To the editor: The deplorable attacks launched against Planned Parenthood in the last two weeks highlight once again the war on women’s health currently underway in Washington, D.C. The threat to defund Planned Parenthood on the basis of false allegations and a deceptive partisan video, if successful, will …

Anne Monahan: It’s time to strip funding from Planned Parenthood

Monday, August 10, 2015

To the editor: I am disgusted with the mainstream media. They covered more over two days last week on Cecil the Lion than the two-week scandal of Planned Parenthood. Where is the outrage? Planned Parenthood is trafficking harvested baby parts on the taxpayer dime. Why aren’t people prosecuted …

Jim Ballard: Wants speed bumps installed on new Pine Street in Amherst

Monday, August 10, 2015

To the editor: An open letter to town of Amherst: After a long wait, it looks as if Pine Street will be resurfaced. I was talking to a friend who lives on that road, and he said, “It’s always been a speedway. Now, with a new surface, it …

Anita Page: Medicare is so successful it should be expanded to all ages

Friday, August 7, 2015

To the editor: July has always been my favorite month, not just because of July 4th, strawberries and corn, but because it is my birthday month. Now, it is even more special because Medicare turned 50 on July 30. Medicare is a landmark federal insurance program signed into …

Dr. Newton D. Bowdan: More evidence that medical marijuana may not work

Friday, August 7, 2015

To the editor: I wrote a guest column in the Gazette last fall concluding that marijuana was not ready for prime time. I cited a meeting in which nearly all of the audience and panelists exhibited a fervent advocacy for the success of medical marijuana. Only one person …