Lee | WAMC


Four ballots - one pink, one blue, one green, and one purple - are attached to a wall.
Josh Landes / WAMC

As Massachusetts prepares for in-person voting in Tuesday’s primary, town and city clerks around Berkshire County have already seen unprecedented turnout through mail-in and early balloting.

The Berkshire Sterile Manufacturing Logo

A company in Berkshire County is working on manufacturing new drugs to treat COVID-19.

An SUV is parked on the street in front of a brick building with "Pittsfield Police" on its doors
Josh Landes / WAMC

Police departments around Berkshire County are adapting their service as the COVID-19 pandemic intensifies.

A shot of the Canna Provisions building with a "Now Open" sign
Josh Landes / WAMC

The first recreational marijuana dispensary in Lee, Massachusetts, has made its initial Community Impact Fee payment to the town.

Josh Landes / WAMC

A mill rehabilitation project in Lee, Massachusetts has received a new infusion of state funding.

This summer, Lee, Massachusetts will become the next Berkshire County community to host an adult-use marijuana retailer. Canna Provisions, which cleared its final regulatory hurdle in May, will soon open in the town of around 6,000 just off the Mass Pike. CEO Meg Sanders is the former head of Mindful, a Colorado chain of marijuana dispensaries. She says the company has hired more than 40 full-time employees to work in Lee. She spoke with WAMC about the investments her company is making in Lee and what it’s been like working with the town.

Josh Landes / WAMC

A coalition of groups that promote multiculturalism in the Berkshires recently proposed a “welcoming” resolution to skeptical leaders in Lee, Massachusetts. 

Multicultural BRIDGE

Community activists are working to pass local ordinances in the sanctuary city model in communities in the Berkshires.


As Massachusetts Democratic State Senator Adam Hinds comes to the end of his first term representing the Berkshire, Hampshire, Franklin and Hampden district, he’ll face a primary opponent from Lee Selectman Thomas Wickham. Wickham is a self-employed carpenter who’s served on the Lee select board for five years. Wickham has spent more than a decade on the Lee planning board in a variety of roles, including chair, and he’s also been the chair of the energy committee for six years. Wickham has been a delegate to the Berkshire Regional Planning Commission. He spoke to WAMC about his plans to challenge Hinds September 4th.

By John Phelan [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons

At Thursday night’s town meeting, Lee, Massachusetts finalized its marijuana bylaws.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/Wikimedia Commons Public Domain

Lee will conduct its annual town meeting tonight.

Josh Landes

The Select Board in Lee, Massachusetts voted this week to continue sharing a town administrator with Lenox for another year. 

Lee Historical Society / Facebook: Lee Chamber of Commerce

A Lee, Massachusetts mill complex is one step closer to being redeveloped into affordable housing and retail space. 


Lee, Massachusetts voters will decide at a special town meeting in January where to site a medical marijuana dispensary. 

JD Allen / WAMC

Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito touted the access small towns in Massachusetts have to state funding for vital infrastructure projects during a ribbon cutting this week in Lee. 

E. Coli Found In Laurel Lake

Aug 25, 2017
This is a photo of E. coli bacteria.
Rocky Mountain Laboratories, NIAID, NIH

High levels of the E. coli bacteria have been detected in Laurel Lake in Lee, Massachusetts. 

The attorney for the former police chief of Lee, Massachusetts — who was convicted of extortion in May 2016 — says he will file an appeal to the Supreme Court. 

JD Allen / WAMC

Lee, Massachusetts is shutting down its local emergency dispatch center. It will switch to a countywide system instead. 

Phil Scott
Candidate's Facebook page

Phil Scott served five terms in the Vermont Senate before being elected Lieutenant Governor in 2010.  The Republican is now seeking the state’s top office. The businessman and race car driver has been campaigning for a year. When his campaign began, some thought his popularity combined with the state’s tradition of flipping parties when an incumbent governor leaves office provided Scott with the overwhelming advantage.  Instead, he faced a primary and a strong challenge from Democrats.  Now, as Election Day looms, Scott says the goal of his campaign is making Vermont more affordable.

Sue Minter
Sue Minter for Governor/Facebook

Democrat Sue Minter beat four challengers in the August primary and now faces Republican Phil Scott and Liberty Union candidate Bill “Spaceman” Lee in her quest for Vermont Governor. With just over a month remaining in the race, she says she wants to focus on making Vermont more affordable.

Lee Police Department

The police chief in Lee, Massachusetts finds himself on the wrong side of the law. A federal grand jury has indicted Lee Police Chief Joseph Buffis for extortion and money laundering involving owners of a local inn. In February 2012, Buffis allegedly forced the couple who owns the Laurel Inn to make donations to a toy fund in an agreement that the chief would drop prostitution-related charges against them.

A federal investigation is reportedly underway involving a long-standing toy fund in the Berkshire town of Lee.

Ryan Delaney/WAMC

More than a year after Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee, New York State has forwarded more than 400 applications for property buy-outs to the Federal Emergency Management Agency.  And state officials say there are more pending.