News

Seven members of the Worcester police force trained to join the new mounted unit.
Scott J. Croteau / Masslive

For the first time in more than sixty years, police officers on horseback will soon patrol the streets of Worcester, Massachusetts.

The Worcester police decided to bring four horses into the force because they offer unique advantages. They can help reach places inaccessible by car or bike, including wooded areas in the city's sixty parks. They can also make community policing easier, providing a conversation starter with residents.

What's more, Police Chief Steven Sargent said, horses — or "mounts" — are an effective force multiplier.

Berkshire Bank offices in downtown Pittsfield.
Adam Frenier / NEPR

News this week that Berkshire Bank plans to move its headquarters from Pittsfield to Boston caught some local officials by surprise. But they're hoping the bank's move could still end up being a positive for Berkshire County and its largest city.

The Connecticut Statehouse in Hartford.
Jim Bowen / Creative Commons

A bill that would expand protections for pregnant women in the workplace awaits action by the Connecticut Senate. It cleared the House of Representatives on Tuesday on a 120-30 vote.

Democratic Rep. Liz Linehan said the measure would require businesses to provide reasonable accommodations for pregnant workers, which could include more frequent breaks and the ability to work while sitting. The bill does include an exemption for businesses that would experience "undue hardship" when accommodating a worker.

City Hall in Hartford, Conn.
Heather Brandon / WNPR

The city of Hartford has launched a new program help residents without standard forms of identification.

Hartford City ID is modeled on similar efforts in New Haven and New York City.

The goal is to allow all residents to be able to do everything from getting a city permit to a library card -- and the Hartford Police will accept the ID as proof of identification.

Mayor Luke Bronin said the initiative will help those in a wide variety of circumstances.

Eastbound state route 57 entering Sandisfield, Mass.
John Phelan / Creative Commons

Federal regulators have brushed off a request by both Massachusetts U.S. senators to delay construction of a natural gas pipeline running through Otis State Forest in southern Berkshire County.

Berkshire Bank offices in downtown Pittsfield.
Adam Frenier / NEPR

Berkshire Bank says its planned move to Boston will have little impact on workers at its current headquarters in Pittsfield.

The move to Boston is largely driven by Berkshire's planned acquisition of Commerce Bank, which has 19 branches in central and eastern Massachusetts.

Sean Gray, chief operating officer of Berkshire Bank, said there will be no job losses in Pittsfield and the city will remain an operational center for the bank.

He said moving its headquarters to Boston will get executives closer to regulators, lawmakers and the financial hub of the region.

Former Mass. state Rep. Ellen Story gives campaign advice to Susan Voss, a candidate for the Northampton school committee, as volunteer Didi Firman looks on.
Karen Brown / NEPR

The election of President Donald Trump is inspiring many people to explore a run for public office – especially those who oppose his policies. A new pop-up school in Western Massachusetts – one that teaches skills for social change – is trying to attract potential candidates.

The Senate Chamber at the Massachusetts Statehouse.
S M / Creative Commons

At the Massachusetts statehouse this week, senators will be busy deliberating the Ways and Means Committee's $40.3 billion budget proposal.

Last week, lawmakers filed more than 1,000 amendments to that bill.

Recognizing that lawmakers will want to get out of Boston well before the Memorial Day weekend, we asked State House News Service reporter Matt Murphy just how they plan to plow through the huge pile of amendments.

My Superman

May 19, 2017

 

In this first episode, Carlos McBride, Media Lab Director introduces the Media Lab program and student Tai-lor tells the brutal story of the loss of her father. 

Photo of Emily Dickinson's original plant conservatory, which has now been recreated at the same location.
Emily Dickinson Museum

The Emily Dickinson Museum in Amherst, Massachusetts, this weekend is opening a reconstructed plant conservatory at the house where the poet often wrote about nature.

ARCHIVE: Never Mind The White Dress, Turns Out Emily Dickinson Had A Green Thumb

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