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New England News

A North Adams fire hydrant
Josh Landes / WAMC

As North Adams, Massachusetts continues to struggle with malfunctioning fire hydrants, the city council heard a presentation on safety infrastructure Tuesday night.

Daguerrotype of Alexander Twilight
Collection of the Orleans County Grammar Schools / Wikimedia Commons Public Domain

A Middlebury artist has been picked to paint a portrait for the Vermont Statehouse of Alexander Twilight.

Vermont Statehouse
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The appropriations committees of the Vermont Legislature took testimony this week on Governor Phil Scott’s proposed 2022 state budget.

A more easily transmissible variant of the coronavirus first found in the United Kingdom is likely in Vermont after wastewater testing in Burlington detected the presence of two virus mutations associated with the variant.

A brutalist brick building sits past an American flag on a pole and a lawn.
JD Allen / WAMC

The North Adams, Massachusetts city council has rejected a proposal to turn a former school building into 75 units of affordable and market rate housing.

Burlington City Hall
Pat Bradley/WAMC

On Town Meeting Day March 2nd, Burlington, Vermont voters will select who they want to lead the city for the next three years. The candidates for mayor have participated in a series of debates focused on policing, public safety, housing and downtown development.

A map of Berkshire Healthcare locations in Massachusetts
Berkshire Healthcare /

The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a grim toll on the nursing homes of Berkshire County. Facilities managed by Berkshire Healthcare like Hillcrest Commons in Pittsfield and Williamstown Commons in Williamstown have reported scores of resident deaths. But now there is some optimism. Spokesperson Lisa Gaudet says the company has completed two rounds of vaccinations in its nursing homes through a federal program administered by CVS and Walgreens, with a third expected to be finished by early March. She tells WAMC Josh Landes that their numbers exceed national averages, but some staffers remain skeptical of the vaccine.

Senator John Reagan
New Hampshire state Senate

A New Hampshire state senator unaware he was unmuted during a virtual hearing has apologized after calling a female colleague a vulgar name.

At the beginning of the pandemic, Burlington, Vermont officials distributed free masks to residents to help prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Now, the city plans to give out more.

people going through a door with a COVID vaccination sign on it.
Paul Tuthill / WAMC


   After a slow start, Massachusetts officials are accelerating efforts to get COVID-19 vaccines into the arms of people across the state. 

A graph shows declining COVID-19 rates in Pittsfield.
City of Pittsfield

A city council COVID-19 briefing by Pittsfield, Massachusetts Mayor Linda Tyer Tuesday led to some confusion over the city’s total confirmed death toll from the pandemic.

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont delivers his virutal budget address Feb. 10, 2021
WAMC screenshot

Defeating COVID-19 tops the priorities in Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont’s two-year, $46 billion budget proposal. The package unveiled Wednesday includes plans to continue rolling out tests and vaccinations while providing interim rate increases for nursing homes.

Vermont Lieutenant Governor Molly Gray
Molly Gray for Vermont/Facebook

Vermont’s new Lieutenant Governor recently kicked off a new discussion series that is intended to bring together experts and advocates on critical topics the state is facing in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. The first topic: broadband.

A stone building with a colonnade sits below a grey sky amid snowdrifts.
Josh Landes / WAMC

The Pittsfield, Massachusetts city council is asking Mayor Linda Tyer to explore using CARES Act funding to invest in COVID-19 related safety measures. Some teachers and students have already returned to in-person education.

A voter puts a ballot in a drop box
Paul Tuthill / WAMC

    The top election official in Massachusetts says many of the changes made in 2020 to make voting during the pandemic safer should become permanent fixtures.

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

The Burlington, Vermont City Council passed a Public Safety Continuity Plan at Monday night’s meeting. But amendments to the proposal fundamentally changed the intent of the mayor’s proposal.



       After a summer barrage of complaints about illegal fireworks, there is a move to toughen a local law in the largest city in western Massachusetts. 

an old brick factory building
Springfield Preservation Trust

     A major housing project that will also preserve a piece of American automotive history has been approved by the City Council in Springfield, Massachusetts.

A new strategic plan for Vermont’s agriculture and food system aims to increase the economic output by 26% and add 5,000 new jobs by 2030.

Old Mill Building on the University  of Vermont campus
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The University of Vermont will freeze tuition for the upcoming school year.

A white man in a white shirt and a red tie speaks in front of microphones and a row of masked onlookers
Josh Landes / WAMC

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker and Congressman Richard Neal held a joint press conference at the State House today calling for additional federal COVID-19 response aid.

Dr. Mark Keroack speaking at podium
Paul Tuthill / WAMC

       As vaccination efforts continue, the winter surge in coronavirus infections appears to be retreating in the largest city in western Massachusetts.

"Ben For Massachusetts"
The Ben Downing Campaign /

The first Democrat to declare a 2022 gubernatorial bid in Massachusetts is a Berkshire County native, prompting both enthusiasm and skepticism back home.

The director of Burlington, Vermont’s Community and Economic Development Office is leaving today to take a job in the Biden administration.

Burlington's CityPlace remains undeveloped in this September 2019 photo
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Burlington, Vermont’s mayor announced a settlement today with the developers of a downtown project that has been stalled for years.

Gov Charlie Baker in a school classroom
Nicolaus Czarnecki / Pool

      The School Committee in Springfield, Massachusetts has given thumbs up to a tentative plan to return to in person learning for the first time in almost a year. 

A black man holding a mic with a face mask and an NAACP sign stands in a sun-dappled grassy park surrounded by people
Josh Landes / WAMC

The Berkshire County chapter of the NAACP says it raised over $60,000 at its annual fundraiser. 

A bearded white man with glasses stands smiling in a suit with a cityscape behind him.
Dalton Lampro / Nick Caccamo

WAMC News has learned that Pittsfield, Massachusetts city councilor Nick Caccamo will not seek a fifth term.

The leaders of the Vermont Senate are decrying the use of a racial slur by a witness during a break of an online meeting of the transportation committee.

Vermont Attorney General T.J. Donovan announces lawsuit against drug distributors
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The state of Vermont will receive over $1.5 million from a multi-state settlement with the global business consulting firm McKinsey over its role in the opioid crisis.