Brexit Gets Real: Prime Minister May Has Triggered U.K.'s Exit From EU

"The Article 50 process is now underway, and in accordance with the wishes of the British people, the United Kingdom is leaving the European Union," British Prime Minister Theresa May said Wednesday, informing the House of Commons that she has begun the formal process of unraveling the U.K.'s membership in the European bloc. May spoke after signing a letter to the EU that affirms the Brexit that voters embraced last June. She said that letter has now been delivered to the president of the...

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File photo / Daily Hampshire Gazette

At least two communities in western Massachusetts could lose federal funding from the Department of Justice. That's if the department follows through on its pledge to cut grant money from cities that do not comply with federal immigration requests to detain individuals suspected of being in the country illegally.

Last week, both Amherst and Northampton landed on a federal list of so-called "sanctuary cities." 

The police station in Pittsfield, Mass.
Adam Frenier / NEPR

The former head of the Pittsfield police union pleaded guilty Monday to stealing more than $200,000 from the organization.

The Berkshire County District Attorney's office said the thefts took place between 2008 and 2015 when Jeffrey Coco was the treasurer and later president of the police union in Pittsfield.

A police investigation concluded Coco wrote checks from a union account to either himself or his wife for personal use. He was fired from his job as a police officer in 2015. 

Gov. Charlie Baker in November of 2016.
Sam Doran / State House News Service

The failure in Washington of GOP  healthcare legislation was welcome news to Governor Charlie Baker. The Bay State Republicans said the bill would've cost Massachusetts about $1 billion a year.

As we do most Mondays, we turn to Matt Murphy of the State House News Service for an update from Beacon Hill. Matt said that even with the failure of the federal legislation, Baker's healthcare headache remains.

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Jazz à la Mode

Ben Webster - King of the Tenors

My Irish-born grandmother lived by admonitions and apothegms. "There is nothing as virtuous as a man without the price." "Paper never refused ink." "A fool and his money are soon parted." Whenever I contemplate Ben Webster, I keep hearing Nana Reney's brogue intone another humbling rejoinder, "When the wine is in, the wit is out." Webster, a sensitive man who was known to shed a tear when sober, was known as The Brute when he was in his cups, and in Ben’s case, that was more often than not....

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National & World News

In Washington, D.C., U.S. Capitol Police say they have arrested an adult suspect after an incident Wednesday in which a driver "nearly struck" police officers and shots were fired.

The officers observed an "erratic and aggressive" driver near the U.S. Capitol on Independence Avenue at 9:22 a.m. ET and tried to carry out a traffic stop, Capitol Police communications Director Eva Malecki said in a statement to NPR.

After seven years of trying, Republicans failed to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act last week.

That doesn't mean the health care drama is over, though. House Speaker Paul Ryan this week told donors that the party is "going to keep getting at this thing," according to the Washington Post.

But whatever Ryan and his colleagues manage to do, plenty could still change in the Affordable Care Act. Last week's failed bill, after all, was only one part of the GOP's plan.

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News Now Podcast

The campus of UMass Amherst.
File photo / The Daily Hampshire Gazette

NEPR News Now Podcast: Pharmacy Frauds, Racist Fliers, Asylum Complications, A No-Protest Protester

On this episode of NEPR News Now: Mixed Verdict For Former Pharmacy Executive Accused In Deadly Meningitis Outbreak ( WBUR ) 'Balancing Act' As UMass, Holyoke Community College Respond To White Supremacist Fliers ( NEPR ) Refugee Nearly Freezes To Death Fleeing To Canada Via Upstate New York Woods ( VPR ) Mount Holyoke Student Makes An Educated Guess About Trump Resisters ( NEPR ) NEPR News Now is a collection of recent features, interviews and commentaries.

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The Short List

U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts reacts when the conversation turns to Senator Mitch McConnell during her annual Springfield Office Hours at City Stage, Monday, March 20, 2017, in Springfield, Mass.
Jessica Hill / The Republican

The Short List: Warren’s Western Swing, Lawmakers Ponder Pot, New UMass Coach A No-Go

What made The Short List this week? Massachusetts U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren was in the media a lot this week, including a long interview on Morning Edition . But in a column, Mike Dobbs said her recent pit stop in Springfield wasn’t enough. The legislative committee considering a handful of changes to the new Massachusetts recreational marijuana law held its first public hearing this week. Voters approved the law through a ballot initiative. One issue is what kind of regulations cities...

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Commentary

Anjelica Jarrett is a senior at Mount Holyoke College.
Kristin Balboni / Mount Holyoke College

Commentator and college senior Anjelica Jarrett says her fellow students are jumping at ways to resist President Trump's policies related to science, health care and immigration. Jarrett says she's also passionate about these issues. But don't expect to see her at any protests.

The day after President Trump was elected, my friends and I gathered outside Mount Holyoke's majestic library. We were joined by students from all over the campus. A lot of people's eyes were puffy from crying. Many of us had been up most of the night.

‘Taking The Risk To Be Myself’

Mar 15, 2017
A debate on a transgender public accommodation bill drew crowds to the Massachusetts Statehouse on June 1, 2016.
Shira Schoenberg / The Republican

The Trump administration recently announced it was withdrawing the protections for transgender students established by President Obama. The decision comes at a tough time for commentator and high school student Jay, who’s known since childhood that he was a boy. The hard part has been trying to convince others that’s who he is.

It’s been obvious since the first day of kindergarten, when my mom dressed me in all pink and I hated it so much. As I saw it, I was the only boy dressed that way. 

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Classical Music

First Listen: The Knights, 'Azul'

Why Azul , one of the finest cello concertos so far this century, had to wait more than 10 years to appear on an album is confounding. It was written in 2006 for one of classical music's most beloved performers, Yo-Yo Ma , by one of today's most popular composers, Osvaldo Golijov . Such are the perennial mysteries of the classical music recording industry. Thanks, then, to The Knights, the enterprising chamber orchestra from Brooklyn, and Warner Classics for finally presenting this...

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More Regional News

File photos / MassLive

Sarno To Trump Officials: 'Reconsider' Proposed Elimination Of Community Block Grants

Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno said he hopes a phone conversation with two Trump administration officials on Wednesday will prompt a reconsideration of a proposed budget cut. President Trump has proposed eliminating Community Block Development Grants [CDBG] Sarno said he pressed special assistants William Kirkland and Justin Clark on why Trump would cut funds he said are critical for the city's economic development projects. “They said, 'Mayor, we've heard the same in unison song from each...

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College Connection

Rachel Maddow at Smith College
Carol Lollis / Daily Hampshire Gazette

Smith College’s Presidential Colloquium Series with Rachel Maddow

Rachel Maddow is a political commentator, author, and host of MSNBC’s Emmy Award-winning The Rachel Maddow Show . She was recently invited to speak at Smith College’s Presidential Colloquium, which “regularly features influential thought leaders in a wide range of fields to share their expertise, offer insights, and inspire discourse on key social, political and global topics.” Maddow spoke about what she thinks the public can expect from President Trump’s time in office and the current...

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Hosted by Susan Kaplan of New England Public Radio, a rotating panel of journalists from Western New England discuss the big stories of the week.

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Words in Transit
Beth Reynolds / NEPR

Words in Transit - Third Culture Kids

Third Culture Kid features stories of acclimation and loss from a Palestinian woman and an Irish woman.

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Words in Transit
Beth Reynolds|Joyce Skowyra / NEPR

Words in Transit - Undocumented II

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