Adam Frenier

Berkshire County Reporter

Adam is based at New England Public Radio’'s Berkshire County news bureau in Pittsfield, where he has been since August, 2015. He joined NEPR as a freelance reporter and fill-in operations assistant during the summer of 2011. For more than 15 years, Adam has had a number stops throughout his broadcast career, including as a news reporter and anchor, sports host and play-by-play announcer as well as a producer and technician.

Adam graduated from UMass Amherst in 2004 with a B.A. in History.

Former Lee Chief of Police Joseph Buffis leaves the Federal Courthouse in Springfield at the close of the court session on June 2, 2015.
Dave Roback / The Republican

Former Lee, Massachusetts, police chief Joseph Buffis lost an appeal this week to have a federal extortion charge thrown out. His lawyer said he's now appealing to the US Supreme Court.

In 2015, Buffis was found guilty of extorting a $4,000 donation to a toy fund he oversaw, and allegedly raided for his own use, from a couple arrested in connection with a prostitution ring.

His attorney, Seth Kretzer, said Buffis can't be guilty of extortion since one of those arrested offered money to make the case go away.

The monument to 16 soliders who died in a military plane crash in Peru, Massachusetts, on August 15, 1942.
Adam Frenier / NEPR

Seventy-five years ago, a military transport plane crashed in a remote section of Peru, Massachusetts, killing 16 of the servicemen on board. The victims will be remembered in a ceremony marking the anniversary, as will the story of how this tiny Berkshire County town rallied to help in the rescue.

Travel writer Rick Steves donated to the campaign to legalize marijuana in Massachusetts, and came to the state to campaign for the ballot question.
Rick Steves' Facebook page / via MassLive

Our panel of journalists looks at the big stories in the news. 

The Massachusetts Statehouse.
File photo / State House News Service

Our panel of journalists looks at the big stories in the news. 

What made The Short List this week?

Pipes waiting to be burried along a stretch of land in Otis State Forest in Sandisfield, Mass.
Adam Frenier / NEPR

Despite ongoing construction and few remaining challenges, the protests continue at the construction site of a natural gas pipeline in southern Berkshire county.

Twenty-two more people were arrested for trespassing over the weekend. Half of them were also arrested at previous protests.

In the past, the district attorney's office has downgraded the charges to a civil penalty.

Dennis Carr of Cummington is among those arrested twice. He said he's somewhat concerned about perhaps facing criminal charges this time around.

Mass. State Treasurer Deb Goldberg testifying before the legislature's Joint Committee on Marijuana Policy, on March 20, 2017.
Sam Doran / State House News Service

Last Friday, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker signed into law changes to the state's voter-approve recreational marijuana law. With this on the books, there's a lot to do before retail sales of pot become a reality next summer. And much of that work will fall on the office of State Treasurer Deb Goldberg.

As part of our regular Monday check-in on Beacon Hill, we asked State House News Service reporter Matt Murphy to describe the next steps for Massachusetts marijuana.

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey.
State House News Service

President Donald Trump Wednesday tweeted that the military will no longer "accept or allow" transgender individuals from serving. And many elected officials  and legal advocacy groups in New England are speaking out on the ban.

The rail platform at the Joseph Scelsi Intermodal Transportation Center in Pittsfield, Mass.
Adam Frenier / NEPR

A study on expanding rail service between Springfield-to-Boston was left out of the final Massachusetts state budget. But lawmakers did OK another rail study, looking at seasonal service between Pittsfield and New York City.

Transportation officials in Massachusetts will look at the feasibility of weekend service between late May and October.

State Senator Adam Hinds, who represents the Berkshires, said this could demonstrate an appetite for regular, year-round trains to and from New York City.

Pittsfield High School is designed to accomodate 1,600 students, but only had about 900 during the last school year.
Adam Frenier / NEPR

One school district for all 15,000 of Berkshire County's school children. That's what an advisory panel of educators, local officials and business leaders is recommending. They commissioned a new study that said this approach could solve a lot of the problems schools are facing.

The former toll booth at Exit 8 of the Massachusetts Turnpike in Palmer.
Adam Frenier / NEPR

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation will study the possibility of putting a new exit on the Massachusetts Turnpike in the western part of the state.

Funding for the review is contained in the budget signed by Governor Charlie Baker Monday.

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