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News and events in South Berkshire, Mass.

@theMarket: Markets Get Back to Business
By Bill Schmick,
06:15AM / Saturday, September 10, 2016

Since Labor Day marked the end of summer for Wall Street, the big guys came back to work and evidently did not like what they saw. As this week comes to a close, all three indexes suffered losses.

Friday's downturn could be attributed to North Korea, the rogue state that detonated a nuclear device on Thursday night. Those kind of one-off political events often-times unsettle markets. Stocks went down, the dollar spiked as did interest rates and that I found interesting.

Normally, U.S. Treasury bonds are a safe haven so prices go up in times of uncertainty; but not Friday. We have to therefore look under the hood to discern what is really going on with the markets. Aside from the fact

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Superior Court Briefs: Sept. 2 - Sept. 9
Staff Reports,
04:02PM / Friday, September 09, 2016
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Friday, Sept. 2.   James Tarjick Jr., 44, of Becket pleased guilty to two counts of receiving stolen property over $250.   On January 14, 2015 Tarjick was in possession of stolen items take from housebreaks that occurred throughout the state in the past several years.   He also pleaded guilty to four counts of unarmed burglary, nine counts of larceny over $250, three counts of receiving stolen property over $250, and two counts of breaking and entering a motor vehicle in the nighttime.    Those charges stem from house and motor vehicle breaks in Berkshire County between October 29, 2010 and September 21,

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The Independent Investor: The VA — If It Isn't Broke, Don't Fix It
By Bill Schmick,
02:07PM / Friday, September 09, 2016

In the heat of presidential campaign rhetoric, the quality of care given to our veterans has become a popular topic. Needless to say, neither candidate has received care in a veteran's hospital and probably does not know anyone who has.

Actually, few of us know anything at all about the Department of Veterans Affairs medical capabilities. Most Americans have never served in the military. Fewer still have ever been inside a VA facility, and if they have, it was to see a relative or friend.

As such, our ignorance breeds a whole host of misunderstandings about how good or bad our veterans are being treated. Critics are quick to point to the 2014 scandal when some VA facilities were

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Republican Canning-Wilson Alleges Election Fraud
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
12:38PM / Friday, September 09, 2016

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Republican Christine Canning-Wilson is claiming there was fraud in the election process on Thursday. 

The Lanesborough candidate for the state Senate seat released a statement Friday morning, the day after the primary, saying she is filing a complaint with the state Office of Campaign and Political Finance saying there were violations depriving her of votes. She also contacted the secretary of state's office, which oversees such matters.   "I need to request a recount because there's a lot of zeros — and I know people voted in those towns. The long arm of this Democratic machine stops at nothing. I know for a fact people in Adams voted

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Hinds Wins Democratic State Senate Primary
By Andy McKeever & Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
11:21PM / Thursday, September 08, 2016

Adam Hinds hugs a support at Hotel on North on Thursday night.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Adam Hinds says over the last seven months if his "head was off the pillow" he was working on his campaign for state Senate.

And it paid off.

Hinds won the Democratic nomination on Thursday in a three-way race. He claimed victory at Hotel on North and will now face Republican Christine Canning-Wilson in the general election.   While he may have won the first step, Hinds says he is going to be getting right back to work toward filling the seat being vacated by state Sen. Benjamin B. Downing, who opted not to run for re-election.   "We're going to keep to the same

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'Southside with You': A Sensible Romance
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
01:13PM / Thursday, September 08, 2016

My Dad, a kindly stoic whose inner romanticism made a poignant appearance when the occasion stirred him, was fond of pointing out, if seeing, let us say, a very large woman and a very small man strolling down the street, "See, there's someone for everyone." All of which is my nostalgic, roundabout way of noting the kismet that writer-director Richard Tanne captures in "Southside with You," a chronicle of Michelle Robinson and Barack Obama's first date in 1989.

The thought here is that the odds of two such socially incisive and committed people finding one another is perhaps even greater than the serendipitous meeting of the big gal and the little guy. The given

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Shakespeare & Company Names New Artistic Director
11:30AM / Thursday, September 08, 2016

LENOX, Mass. — After an extensive national search, Shakespeare & Company has named renowned actor and director Allyn Burrows, a long-time member of the company, as its new artistic director.

“This is a watershed moment for Shakespeare & Company,” said Board Chair Ken Werner. “Allyn is one of the most lauded and exciting actors and directors both in Boston and nationally, and we are extremely fortunate to have him take over the artistic leadership of our company. He is someone who is well known to us, and our search for a new artistic director could not have turned out better. I extend my deep gratitude to our interim artistic directors, Ariel Bock and

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Berkshire Tibits: Fermentation Festival
By Judith Lerner, Special to iBerkshires
05:43PM / Wednesday, September 07, 2016

For the month of September, Rachel Alves, the registered dietitian and nutritionist for Guido's Fresh Marketplace, 760 South Main St./Route 7 in Great Barrington and 1020 South St./Routes 7 and 20 in Pittsfield, will be offering the following tasting demos at both stores on the remaining Thursdays and Fridays.

On Sept. 8 and 9 she will be rethinking risotto. On Sept. 15 and 16 she will be doing a wow-worthy whole grain dessert yet-to-be-decided. There will be no tasting demos on Sept. 22 and 23. On Sept. 29 and 30 she will be offering a pumped up pasta e fagioli, normally a homey Italian bean and noodle soup but, in this case, who knows?   She is in

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Biz Briefs: New Boston Crane Service & Sleds Expands Reach with U-Haul Trucks, Trailers
03:37PM / Wednesday, September 07, 2016

The long haul: New Boston Crane Service & Sleds has signed on as a U-Haul neighborhood dealer to serve the Sandisfield community. New Boston Crane Service & Sleds, located at 85 South Main St., will offer U-Haul trucks, trailers, towing equipment, support rental items and in-store pickup for boxes.  

Hours of operation for U-Haul rentals are 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday and Saturday and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. After hours drop-off is available for customer convenience. Reserve U-Haul products at this dealer location by calling 413- 258-7254 or online.

New Boston Crane Service & Sleds owner Billy White said he is proud to team with the industry leader in

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Senate Candidate Del Gallo States Positions on the Issues
12:53PM / Wednesday, September 07, 2016

I differ from my opponents as follows: I am running as a "Bernie Sander progressive"; they declined to say whether they voted for Bernie or Hillary when asked by a debate moderator; they figure you are not entitled to know how they fall on the political spectrum.

They were initially undecided about whether to oppose the pipelines. This shows that they had reservations about opposing the pipelines and upsetting the pipelines' advocates. They only opposed the pipelines after I jumped in the race and opposed the pipelines from the start. To fight against global warming, which could literally cause the cataclysmic end of mankind, I am for having wind energy here in the

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Use 'Open Enrollment' to Help Improve Your Financial Outlook
11:51AM / Wednesday, September 07, 2016

It's Open Enrollment Season, so if you work for a medium- or large-sized company, you will need to make some choices regarding your employee benefits — and these choices can have a big impact on your financial situation.

Depending on your employer, your benefits package may include various types of insurance, plus access to a 401(k) or similar retirement plan. Here are some suggestions for getting the most out of these benefits:

* Health insurance: Companies regularly change plans and providers, so the coverage and premiums you had last year may not be the same this year. In any case, look at all aspects of your coverage options – premiums, deductibles, co-pays and total

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Letter: One Real Option for State Senator
Letters to the Editor,
10:00AM / Wednesday, September 07, 2016

To the Editor:

There is only one real option for state senator.

Adam Hinds does not support the $15 an hour minimum wage. Although initially stating he did, when faced with opposition from the Berkshire County Farm Bureau, Hinds suddenly changed his position. Then at the North Adams debate, the candidates were asked directly whether they fully support the $15 an hour minimum wage. All raised their hands except Hinds.

This is deeply troubling. First, Hinds does not support a more livable minimum wage; he certainly does not support labor. But second, we can no longer believe anything Hinds says. Adam Hinds panders to his audience, telling them whatever they want to hear. As state senator,

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