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News and events in South Berkshire, Mass.

'Green Book': Because Look Out Old Macky's Back
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
12:43PM / Friday, January 18, 2019
There it was, the perfect opportunity I thought I wanted — staring me right in the face. A quadruple bypass procured the day after Thanksgiving 2018 can have that effect on a film critic.   What more reason could I conjure to call it a career, to be done with this movie reviewing stuff and finally retire to that long-fabled cabin on the lake in Vermont where I would idyllically pen those 36 essays and short stories with which I had been threatening the world of belles-lettres lo these many years?   But then the words of professor Halberstadter, my mentor back at Olde Ivy Film Criticism College, slowly interceded.    "Always remember the oath you took,

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Barrett Enters First Full Term With Legislative Agenda
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
03:56AM / Friday, January 18, 2019
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Entering his first full session in the House of Representative, John Barrett III is doubling down on the priorities he held when he was first elected.   "One of the areas I'm obviously concerned about is transportation in the county. We need it, especially in the Northern Berkshire area," Barrett said.     "Obviously we have to do some things to revamp it statewide but one of my bills is that under Massachusetts General Law is that 16 percent of your sales tax goes to running the MBTA so I am including a piece in there that may not go anywhere but it will get people maybe thinking about the way we can start directing some

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The Independent Investor: Pay Gap for Women Is Growing
By Bill Schmick,
07:22PM / Thursday, January 17, 2019
If Citigroup, one of the world's largest banks, is any indication, women earn 29 percent less than their male counterparts. It also revealed that only 37 percent of its managerial jobs were held by females.   Wall Street has long been known as "the last bastion" for white males. But to Citigroup's credit, it just made public its internal assessment of the existing pay gap between the genders. One reason it did so was the new disclosure standards that are now required in the United Kingdom since last April.   Last year, when Citigroup first reported these numbers for its U.K. workforce, women were paid 44 percent less, and if bonuses were counted, the gap widened

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Biz Briefs: Balance Rock Investment Group Celebrates 20 Years With Move
02:01PM / Wednesday, January 16, 2019
Happy anniversary

Balance Rock Investment Group closed out 2018 with after celebrating the firm's 20th anniversary and move to its new office space on South Street in Pittsfield. Formerly known as Colt Investment Services, Balance Rock Investment Group was founded by David Milligan in 1998. Specializing in developing retirement income strategies built on the best interests of each client and designed to promote clarity across all chapters of life, the firm’s personalized approach has attributed to its 20 years of growth and success.

In early 2011, in conjunction with its rebranding, Balance Rock Investment Group moved to new offices on Elm Street. Since that time, the firm's

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What's Keeping You From Protecting Your Family's Future?
Submitted by Edward Jones,
01:08PM / Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Think about your loved ones. What will their future be like? Can you picture them living in your house many years from now? Can you picture your children going to college? Can you picture your spouse or partner enjoying a comfortable retirement? These are all pleasant visions – but what if you weren't in these pictures?

If you were no longer around, you would leave a gaping hole in the lives of your survivors. The emotional element would be tough enough, but the financial aspect – the permanent loss of your income – could be devastating to all the hopes you have had for your family members. Fortunately, you can help prevent this 'worst-case" scenario from

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Baseball in the Berkshires Museum Offers Red Sox,Yankees Items this Weekend
12:57PM / Wednesday, January 16, 2019
LANESBOROUGH, Mass, -- The Yankee-Red Sox rivalry continues this weekend at the Baseball in the Berkshires Museum at the Berkshire Mall.   Long-time Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia and  Yankee Troy Tulowitzki bats will be on display this weekend. These bats are exact replicas of the bats that these two All-Stars use.   Touch, hold and get your picture taken with these the bats.   The museum is open Friday, Saturday and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.

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Clinton Church Restoration Hires Project Architects
Community Submission,
11:49AM / Wednesday, January 16, 2019
GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — Clinton Church Restoration has announced the hiring of Huff & Gooden Architects as the project architect for the restoration and adaptive reuse of the historic Clinton AME Zion Church.    The New York City-based firm, headed by architect Mario Gooden, is one of the few African-American architectural firms in the country.    Joining Gooden on the design team is historic preservation architect John A. James, architect and historian Mabel O. Wilson of Studio And, and landscape architect Walter J. Hood of Hood Design Studio. Other team members include Silman Associates for structural engineering; Landmark Facilities Group for mechanical,

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College Notes: January & February 2019
04:53PM / Monday, January 14, 2019
Sports management majors Rachael Donahue of Pittsfield and Jacqueline Lemaire of North Adams were among 10 students from the Western New England University School of Business who spent part of their winter session in Australia. They are the first cohort to participate in the college's "J-Term" program of academic study and cultural experiences.   The students arrived in Sydney in time to take in the New Year's celebrations, including the spectacular fireworks atop the Sydney Harbour Bridge, and returned to Springfield for the start of the spring semester on Jan. 14. The two-week course, "International Business in Asia Pacific," was delivered through

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Auditor Makes Recommendations to the District Attorney's Office
04:06PM / Monday, January 14, 2019
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — An audit of the Berkshire County District Attorney's Office released Monday found that improvements were needed to the office's internal controls and recording of forfeited funds.     The audit covers the period from July 1, 2016, through March 31, 2018, and was requested by former District Attorney Paul Caccaviello shortly after his March 2018 appointment.   "As Berkshire County District Attorney Andrea Harrington takes the reins of the office, I encourage her to use this audit as a roadmap for improvement," State Auditor Suzanne M. Bump said in a statement. "The recommendations in this audit will ensure the office

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Berkshires Beat: Mt. Everett Students Join Dance Exchange Program in India
01:23PM / Monday, January 14, 2019
International experience

As part of the World Education Alliance program, five Mt. Everett students traveled to India in the fall, joining a group of 29 students from around the world. At the start of this academic year, the Keswick Public School in Madurai hosted Dance Mela, a workshop and dance performance that brought together international youth to learn Indian dance and experience Indian culture.  

Produced by Chris Graham, station manager of CTSB, a short video detailing the performance and workshop is now available online on the Southern Berkshire Regional School District (SBRSD) website or on Vimeo. A documentary sharing the full story of the Mt. Everett student experience in

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Hinds Chats Priorities With BRPC
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
01:16AM / Monday, January 14, 2019
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Berkshires don't have the traffic congestion or real estate prices that the Boston area does.   Jim Lovejoy, from Mount Washington, sees that as an opportunity.   He envisions using the effort to expand broadband in Western Massachusetts as a chance to build a far superior internet connection that will incentivize companies to build and grow here instead of in the pricier eastern end of the state.   "If we took that middle mile and made a robust connection out of it, that was low cost, then you would have a situation where people would be incentivized to move here," Lovejoy said.   Lovejoy has been a longstanding member of the

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Five Years Later, 'Sustainable Berkshires' Plan Being Implemented
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
07:17AM / Sunday, January 13, 2019
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — When it comes to local planning efforts, nothing was more ambitious than the Sustainable Berkshires master plan.   The 800 or so page document was developed by stakeholders throughout the county as it looked to create a master plan for the entire county. After three years of work, Berkshire Regional Planning Commission adopted the full document in 2014.   That process revealed what planners at the time called "sobering" information that the trends in the county were unsustainable and it developed 352 strategies to turn the tides.   But a plan doesn't do much if it just sits on the shelve collecting dust and Sustainable Berkshires was

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