Wednesday, July 24, 2024

News and Ideas Worth Sharing



Great Barrington’s Board of Health on Housatonic Water Works: ‘We are not the specific regulator for the water supply’

“The Board of Health is responsible for all health-related issues in Great Barrington,” said Board of Health Chair Michael Lanoue. “But the devil is always in the details. When you get into a public water supply, we are not the specific regulatory authority."

Food Justice: So others may eat

According to the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts, roughly one in eight people continues to experience hunger in this part of the Commonwealth, an eye-opening fact. Furthermore, one in five children lives in food-insecure households.

Gilded Age loses its glitter in Stockbridge — for now

"Stockbridge is a model, small New England town, and we’ve maintained its character for 250 years. The intent of bylaws is to save these properties, but we don't want to be creating a Club Med North.” -- Stockbridge Planning Board member Eugene Talbot

Our very own Mass. imprisonment

Prison reform in the age of our own Mass. imprisonment has become a low-priority issue for today’s brand of timid political activists, who often seem more concerned about their own comfort than they are about the greater good of the society.

School choice forum provides abundant information, but few were there to hear it

Total revenue for Berkshire Hills from students choicing in to the district is $1,450,000. Subtracting what is lost by students choicing out, net revenue comes to $850,000.

Great Barrington Selectboard endorses the Ride$hare concept

We believe that the Ride$hare concept – if widely adopted – could have important public benefits, including reducing gasoline consumption and air pollution, expanding the employment radius for job-seekers, and fostering a sense of civic connectedness. -- Great Barrington Selectboard resolution

Big bad things that didn’t happen: How the southwest corner of Massachusetts nearly drowned

Northeast Utilities had proposed to construct the world’s largest pump storage hydroelectric facility, drowning Plantain Pond on the heights of Mount Washington and most of Sheffield south of the village under two lakes.


Why is it we always know best? Especially when we know nothing. Why? Because we are Americans? Because we know best? That, of course, is something Republicans and Democrats can always agree upon. We not only know best, but are the best.

Fairgrounds improvements on hold, awaiting required floodplain engineering studies

We are not professional developers. We’re the leading edge of a community movement to get this done and to make this happen at the fairgrounds. -- Janet Elsbach, co-proprietor of the Great Barrington Fair Ground

Eye on the Pipelines: Opposition gathers to network of natural gas pipelines from the ‘fracking’ fields

The pipeline proposed by Kinder Morgan would add more than 15 times the expected growth rate in natural gas consumption in New England. This pipeline is providing natural gas for export.

World Cup fever mounts in the Berkshires

It is a soccer extravaganza with an estimated worldwide viewing population of 3.2 billion humans, long anticipated and riddled with controversy. Yet soccer itself is the everyman’s game, ferociously beloved by both rich and poor, and everyone in between.

Once heralded RiverSchool redevelopment of Searles School now in default, future uncertain

The terms of the repayment of the $640,000 may be able to be renegotiated, but not the amount to be repaid. -- Great Barrington Selectboard Vice Chairman Sean Stanton

Where’s Great Barrington’s first Main Street? A legacy of reconstruction and relocation

The public disdained using the new roadbed for several years. You can improve our roads, but you can’t make us use them, people declared silently. -- Reaction in 1812 to improvements in what would become Route 7

Book Review: The surveillance state: No place to hide, really

Page after page reveals to us with ever increasing horror that we are the most surveilled and spied upon people to ever walk the earth. This is not fiction.

Berkshire Playwrights Lab: Seven Successful Years Celebrated with a Gala

"This is one of my favorite events in the Berkshires. It’s a true honor to be a part of this -- they are celebrating new playwrights, new work, rich language and stories that resonate within all of us." -- Shakespeare and Company actress and Communications Director Elizabeth Aspenlieder

Part I. Big, bad things that never came to pass: A short history of environmental activism in the Berkshires

In 1964, Mount Greylock Tramway Authority planned to transform the highest mountain in Massachusetts into a downhill ski area with a 100-foot tower on the 3,491-foot summit of Mount Greylock for the “world’s largest” aerial tramway.

Barrington Selectboard to regional school district: We need a more equitable agreement

I believe the high school renovation is a good project, and anything I can do to improve the money situation I will do." -- Great Barrington Selectboard Chair Deborah Phillips