New England News | WAMC

New England News

Vermont health officials are watching for any impact from Vermonters returning from the rally and mob attack on the U.S. Capital on Wednesday.

This is a picture of Pittsfield Mayor Linda Tyer speaking at Interprint Tuesday.
Jim Levulis / WAMC

The mayor of Pittsfield, Massachusetts is laying out her agenda for 2021. 

Vermont Governor Phil Scott
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Vermont Governor Phil Scott delivered his third inaugural address Thursday. Because of the pandemic he held an evening telecast with no audience rather than delivering it to an afternoon joint session of the Legislature.

The Great Barrington Town Seal
Town Of Great Barrington

The town of Great Barrington, Massachusetts has approved a plan to build 14 to 20 affordable housing units in the village of Housatonic.

Vermont Statehouse
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The Vermont Legislature convened this week to begin a new biennium. A new House Speaker, Lieutenant Governor and Senate Pro Tem, all women, have been sworn in over the past two days.

A white man in a white shirt and khakis stands behind a podium in a park in front of a large campaign bus and a woman in a dress
Josh Landes / WAMC

Democratic Massachusetts U.S. Senator Ed Markey is joining the chorus calling for the removal of Republican President Donald Trump. It comes after extremists violently occupied the Capitol Wednesday in an effort to halt the counting of electoral votes certifying Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 election. Earlier this afternoon, Markey explained to WAMC why he supports impeaching Trump for a second time, and what the unprecedented events of the week mean for America moving forward.

State Senator Adam Hinds holds a microphone at an outdoor event.
Becki Joppru Connolly

With the eyes of the world on Washington as extremists supporting President Donald Trump carry out a violent occupation of the U.S. Capitol, Democratic Massachusetts State Senator Adam Hinds says it’s a gut check moment for democracy itself. Before returning to Western Massachusetts, the Shelburne Falls native spent about 10 years with the United Nations handling conflict resolution in Iraq and Syria. WAMC spoke with Hinds Wednesday about the crisis, as well as the disparity in law enforcement responses between this summer’s civil rights protests and the acts of insurrection taking place in the nation’s capital.

A sign with directions for various departments of a hospital stands at a crossroads
Josh Landes / WAMC

Unionized nurses at Berkshire Medical Center in Pittsfield, Massachusetts are at odds with the hospital’s management over what they call an understaffing issue.

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont
Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont delivered his 2021 State of the State address via video on Jan. 6. Below is a transcript of the Democrat's speech provided by his office.

Vermont Statehouse and the new battery system in its basement
Green Mountain Power

Vermont officials say a new battery system to provide backup power has been installed in the Statehouse in Montpelier.  It’s thought to be the first such system in a state capitol in the country.

An ambulance drives through a street scene
Jonnica Hill / Unsplash

With the vaccination of hospital and long-term care facility workers against COVID-19 already underway in Berkshire County, first responders are next in line. Berkshire Regional Planning Commission Public Health Program Manager Laura Kittross – who also serves as director of the Berkshire County Boards of Health Association and the Berkshire Public Health Alliance — says the Moderna vaccine will be administered to county fire, police and EMS staffers across the county starting on Monday, January 11th. Kittross spoke with WAMC.

The Black Lives Matter flag flies in front of Burlington City Hall
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The Burlington City Council has failed to override a veto by the mayor that would have placed a question on the Town Meeting Day ballot asking voters if an independent police oversight board should be created.

Vermont Statehouse in winter (file)
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The Vermont Legislature is getting ready to kick off the 2021 session with most of the pomp and circumstance occurring remotely or not at all.

The Springfield Thunderbirds' logo
Facebook: Springfield Thunderbirds

The Springfield Thunderbirds are opting out of the 2020-21 American Hockey League season. The team says the decision, made in conjunction with its NHL affiliate the St. Louis Blues, was based on safety and logistical concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Colleen Laico, from Kingston, NY, a medical professional at the ER at Kingston Hospital, receives her COVID-19 vaccination at MidHudson Regional Hospital in Poughkeepsie, December 18, 2020
Courtesy of the Office of Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan

First responders in Massachusetts will be able to receive the COVID-19 vaccine beginning on January 11, Gov. Charlie Baker announced Monday. 

The seal of the the city of North Adams, Massachusetts
North Adams

After months of disease and economic downturn, smaller municipal governments are hoping for an easier 2021 even as they await federal relief and the COVID-19 vaccine. WAMC caught up with North Adams, Massachusetts Mayor Tom Bernard to find out what Berkshire County’s second-largest community learned from 2020 – and what 2021 may hold.

A blue banner that says "MASSACHUSETTS 2050 DECARBONIZATION ROADMAP" sits over a rustic scene of fall in Massachusetts with trees and a stone wall
Massachusetts /

Massachusetts has released two plans for achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

The governors of the six New England states and New Jersey have extended a prohibition on interstate youth hockey through the end of January.

Zachary Pigeon (left) and Allen Pigeon mugshots
Vermont State Police

The Vermont attorney general's office says the state is seeking to dismiss charges against a former St. Albans police officer and his father who were accused of entering a woman’s home and assaulting her in April.

Vermont Statehouse
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Vermont Governor Phil Scott gave his 100th pandemic briefing since he declared a state of emergency and his last briefing of 2020 on Thursday morning.

The Massachusetts State Flag
State of Massachusetts

The Massachusetts minimum wage will increase to $13.50 an hour on Friday. 

A bearded white man speaks while seated at a table with a brick wall behind him and a mic with a WAMC logo on it in front of him
Josh Landes / WAMC

Not all Berkshire County legislators are pleased with the final form of the police reform bill Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker signed into law on Thursday.

A person wearing a mask holds up a fist while speaking into a mic in front of a crowd of hundreds on a lawn below some steps
Josh Landes / WAMC

In a look back at the biggest stories of 2020, WAMC has this review of how the Black Lives Matter civil rights movement led to a historic outpouring of support in Western Massachusetts.

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker stands at a podium in front of a marble building with a row of people standing on either side of him
Josh Landes / WAMC

In a look back at the biggest stories of 2020, WAMC has this review of the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on the westernmost county in Massachusetts.

New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu
New Hampshire Governor's Office

New Hampshire's Republican governor said Wednesday that he is canceling his outdoor inauguration ceremony next month because of public safety concerns over  armed protesters who have been gathering outside his home since he issued a mask order.

Fireworks (file)
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Many communities bid Auld Lang Syne with New Year’s Eve festivals across our region.  But the pandemic of 2020 has forced many to rethink how, or if, the celebrations will be held. WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley looks at two communities that have taken different approaches to their traditional celebrations.

photo of Burlington Police logo on a podium
Photo - Pat Bradley/WAMC

An issue that shadowed Burlington, Vermont officials throughout 2020 began at the end of 2019.  As Progressives took control of the City Council, policing issues were targeted. Now the department faces cuts moving into 2021.

A group gathered for a press conference
Paul Tuthill / WAMC

The longest serving Massachusetts House Speaker in history resigned Tuesday, ending a 30-year legislative career and 12 years of leadership.

Vermont Statehouse
Pat Bradley/WAMC

During his regular pandemic briefing this morning, Governor Phil Scott and Vermont officials outlined plans for distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine as it becomes available.

A white woman with brown hair looks into the camera wearing a scarf
Karen Wise /

On Tuesday, Daily Hampshire Gazette Editor-In-Chief Brooke Hauser announced that she had lost her job. Hauser took the position at the 234 year-old publication – the longest running daily newspaper in Massachusetts – in the summer of 2018. In a statement, publisher Michael Moses of Newspapers of New England said Hauser will be replaced by Joan Livingston of the Greenfield Recorder. NNE continues to lay off employees and sell holdings. Hauser spoke with WAMC about her time at the Gazette as she cleaned out her office in Northampton Tuesday.