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$1M for water tower approved, audit voted down at Orange Town Meeting
06-20-2024 1:24 PM

By DOMENIC POLI andERIN-LEIGH HOFFMAN

ORANGE — Annual Town Meeting adjourned late Tuesday night after lengthy discussion on the remaining 30 articles that were carried over from Monday, including a $1 million request for a water tower and fire suppression system at the industrial park and...

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Earthquake centered near New York City rattles the Northeast
04-05-2024 12:25 PM

By JAMES PENTLAND and ALEXANDER MACDOUGALL

NORTHAMPTON — Sen. Jo Comerford was at home in Northampton on a Zoom call Friday morning when suddenly her home started shaking.“I thought maybe it was ice falling off the roof,” Comerford said. “It was quite jarring.”Leeds resident Jeffrey McLeod,...


Franklin County, North Quabbin voters back Trump, Biden in local primary
03-06-2024 4:55 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE and DOMENIC POLI

With Super Tuesday in the rear-view mirror, election results show no surprises in Franklin County and the North Quabbin region, as the two presumptive candidates, President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump, emerged victorious with wins...


$1M in grants to boost local food system in Franklin, Hampshire counties
02-28-2024 3:57 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE and JAMES PENTLAND

NORTHAMPTON — Area organizations are welcoming grant awards that will boost the supply of fresh, local food available to those in need and provide support for local farmers.“We’re really thrilled to have been selected,” said Lev BenEzra, executive...


Union 28 begins search for new school superintendent
11-12-2023 5:00 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACHand DOMENIC POLI

SHUTESBURY — A search is underway for a new superintendent to oversee the Erving School Union 28, a district that includes four elementary schools serving preschool through sixth-grade students in Shutesbury, Leverett, Erving, Wendell and New...


Franklin County school ceremonies thank veterans for their service
11-10-2023 5:00 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE and JULIAN MENDOZA

In anticipation of Veterans Day on Saturday, Erving Elementary School took the time to thank locals for their military service early.Reprising tradition, Erving Elementary School staff and students celebrated the military service of around two dozen...


10 local schools classified as ‘requiring assistance or intervention’ following MCAS results
10-02-2023 5:00 PM

By JULIAN MENDOZA, BELLA LEVAVI, MARY BYRNE and MAX BOWEN

Gill Elementary School and Petersham Center School have emerged as two of the state’s 66 strongest-performing schools relative to MCAS test taking, while 10 others in Franklin County and the North Quabbin region have been classified as “requiring...


DA’s Office IDs man driver killed by falling tree in New Salem
07-20-2023 3:54 PM

By DOMENIC POLI and JULIAN MENDOZA

NEW SALEM — The Northwestern District Attorney’s Office has identified the 75-year-old Leicester man killed by a falling tree while driving on Route 122 on Wednesday.William Mattei was the sole occupant of a pickup truck traveling west on Petersham...


State expected to provide funds for school cellphone bans
05-30-2023 9:42 AM

By MAX BOWEN AND MARY BYRNE

The state’s K-12 education department is encouraging districts to restrict or ban students’ cellphone use in schools, possibly moving toward a statewide mandate in the future.Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) Commissioner Jeffrey...


‘A barbaric procedure’: Many state veterinarians support legislation to outlaw declawing cats
05-05-2023 5:03 PM

By SYDNEY KO, CHRIS LARABEE and MAX BOWEN

Following the lead of New York and Maryland, veterinarians in Massachusetts are gathering support to ban procedures that declaw cats.A bill introduced by Sen. Mark Montigny, D-New Bedford, aims to ban the practice, a move veterinarians in...


Pioneer Valley river watchdogs receive state funds
04-28-2023 5:15 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE and DOMENIC POLI

Local watchdogs of our rivers will have additional tools at their disposal through a state grant intended to provide water-quality monitoring equipment for the Deerfield and Connecticut rivers.The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection...


Athol, Turners Falls high schools join Innovation Pathways Program
04-19-2023 4:37 PM

By JULIAN MENDOZA and MAX BOWEN

Turners Falls and Athol high schools will benefit from the state’s expansion of its Innovation Career Pathways internship program, adding new fields of study for students with professional aspirations.The announcement came on April 13 from the office...


Turnin’ the tables: Vinyl albums making a resurgence
04-16-2023 10:18 PM

By EMILY THURLOW and JULIAN MENDOZA

NORTHAMPTON — When digital downloads became widely available in the early 2000s and subsequently surpassed sales of physical music, the music industry and the public had all but signed the death certificate for local record stores, resigned to the...


$223K to aid in PFAS remediation for Franklin County, North Quabbin
04-10-2023 3:28 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE and MAX BOWEN

A total of $223,079 in state grant funding is headed to four Franklin County and North Quabbin towns to help filter potentially harmful chemicals from their water systems.The Healey-Driscoll administration and the state Department of Environmental...


Girls basketball: Franklin Tech overcomes slow start, locks down St. Bernard’s in Div. 5 tourney
03-02-2023 10:14 PM

By JEFF LAJOIE and THOMAS JOHNSTON

On the road in a hostile environment, the last thing the Franklin Tech girls basketball team wanted to do was fall into an early hole.But host St. Bernard’s wiped that plan out completely when it scored the game’s first eight points of their MIAA...


Town officials: SoulFest music festival not coming to Northfield 
02-08-2023 5:12 PM

By DOMENIC POLI and BELLA LEVAVI

After months of controversy, the 2023 SoulFest Christian music festival will not be held in Northfield, town officials announced this week.The proposal had been heavily scrutinized by the Northfield Selectboard and the organization is now in...

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