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CONNECTIONS: Baldwin’s in West Stockbridge marches on

The Civil War had created pent-up demand for goods, and there was Baldwin’s. Folks all over the North and South were glad to see the war ending and new businesses starting up.

Praise for Rep. ‘Smitty’ Pignatelli’s response to Great Barrington vote on horse racing

I want to recognize Smitty for his exemplary response to the concerns of the voters in Great Barrington.

News Brief: GB to hold town meeting improvements forum

The forum will consider how to encourage participation and how to improve the way the town meeting works.

It’s Not That Simple: Where should solar power installations be sited?

This column is a companion to the WSBS radio call-in show, “It’s Not That Simple.” Every other Friday at 9:05 we will discuss and...

Citizen petition items would ‘protect the right of speech’ at town meeting

In a letter to the editor, Steve Farina writes "The essence of this petition is to ensure that all registered voters have the opportunity to share on any issue brought before the meeting attendees without being shut out by parliamentary procedure."

Petition to rename regional middle school after scholar, civil rights advocate W.E.B. Du Bois to be on town meeting warrant

In an incident that garnered much publicity, the Berkshire Hills Regional School Committee in 2004 declined to name after Du Bois one of the two new regional schools it had just built.

The single-use plastic water bottle ban and GB on TAP: A progress report

These refill stations are extremely hygienic, as no skin or mouth contact is needed to refill your bottle. The units will be owned and maintained by the town.

Great Barrington Selectboard backs away from enforcement of plastic water bottle ban

Selectboard Chairman Steve Bannon said he could not support enforcement of the bylaw until there is an implementation and funding plan for the series of water stations that are planned to help consumers refill the reusable bottles.

News Briefs: Bottle ban enforcement discussion; zoning amendment reviews

Voters at last year's town meeting amended the plastic water bottle ban measure with a May 2019 enforcement date. However, the selectboard must first approve the regulations and develop enforcement provisions.

News Brief: GB citizen petition deadline Jan. 31

Jan. 31 is citizen petition deadline for annual town meeting Great Barrington -- Town voters wishing to submit a citizen petition to place an article on...

Of plastic bottles and ‘marijuana wars’: a Great Barrington year in review

2018 has provided enough Great Barrington news to keep journalists busy and observers of town politics highly amused, signaling that the community dubbed "best small town in America" by Smithsonian Magazine continues to be a place in transition.

Land Court judge thwarts town and neighbors; gives legal victory to trucking firm

The case has been an enormous headache for town officials and nearby residents in the Blue Hill neighborhood and has so far cost tens of thousands of dollars in billable hours from the town’s law firm.

Citizen Simon: Author, journalist, OBE, sage of Sandisfield

“I wanted to create a sense of community in a town that has no downtown or sense of cohesion given that it’s spread out over 53 square miles. And I believe the paper has done that to a certain degree.” -- Simon Winchester, founding editor of The Sandisfield Times

Second-class citizens no longer: Berkshire second-home owners eye greater involvement, voting rights

Second-home owners have no voting rights in Massachusetts, so their influence in state and local affairs is necessarily limited. They certainly are permitted to attend town meetings and, in most towns, are allowed to speak at the discretion of the moderator.

Nonvoters allowed to attend and speak at Monday’s special town meeting

Town moderator Michael Wise said nonvoters (including minors and nonresidents) are allowed to attend the special town meeting and speak if they obtain permission.

Resist effort to repeal plastic water bottle ban

In her letter to the editor, Marj Wexler writes: "We urgently need consumer pressure on bottling companies to challenge the unsustainable practice of producing new plastic bottles."

THE REST OF THE STORY: On plastics, people vote with their feet

Some people have turned to bottled water because they perceive it as safer and better tasting. But more importantly, because it is convenient.

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