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From left: Steve Nelson of WiredWest speaks while Eric Nakajima, director of the Massachusetts Broadband Institute, listens, during a meeting earlier this year at the John Olver Transit Center in Greenfield.

MBI ‘Last Mile’ overseer Nakajima quits

Friday, February 12, 2016

Eric Nakajima, the man who was to have shepherded the build-out of “Last Mile” broadband to most of Western Massachusetts, has stepped down from his job. Nakajima, who visited most of the unserved and underserved hilltowns this fall and winter to talk about their broadband needs, announced Friday he is leaving his post as director of the Massachusetts Broadband Institute (MBI) effective immediately. However, he will be a temporary adviser on broadband issues for the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, which oversees MBI, during the transition period. In the first week of February, when Nakajima met in Greenfield with Shelburne and Conway town officials, Nakajima said MBI … 0

Turners family road-ready at last: Donations allow Norwoods to buy wheelchair-ready van

Friday, February 12, 2016

TURNERS FALLS — A disabled boy’s life and the lives of his family are now a little bit better thanks to hundreds of donations toward a wheelchair-accessible van. The used 2015 Dodge Caravan was delivered to the Norwood family’s home after months of fundraising through the organization HelpHOPELive, a nonprofit that helps individuals … 0

Montague to negotiate with broadband company to nearly eliminate unserved homes

Monday, February 8, 2016

MONTAGUE — Broadband might finally make its way to the last unserved homes in Montague. Town officials voted on Monday night to enter into contract negotiations with broadband service provider Matrix Design Group to reach almost 98.5 percent of the remaining unserved households in Montague. The town will also seek permission to proceed … 1

Baby, it’s not that cold outside: Franklin County experiencing unseasonably warm weather

Monday, February 1, 2016

GREENFIELD — It doesn’t matter what Punxsutawney Phil does today. Franklin County isn’t seeing the type of winter it is accustomed to. Homeowners and business proprietors likely enjoy not having to shovel, but what does a winter without … 0

Montague Cultural Council awards $4,700 for projects

Monday, February 1, 2016

TURNERS FALLS — The Montague Cultural Council this year has awarded more than $4,700 to 19 applicants. The arts projects funding ranged from the lowest one at $50 to the highest at $400, with an average amount of $253. A dozen applicants didn’t make the cut. The 19 … 0

Montague Notebook

Monday, February 1, 2016

Voter registration ends Feb. 10 MONTAGUE — Feb. 10 is the last day to register to vote or change party affiliations for the March 1 presidential primary. Registration will be held at the town clerk’s office. Office hours will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. For … 0

Erving man leads police on high-speed chase from Springfield to Turners Falls

Sunday, January 31, 2016

After a high speed chase from Springfield to Turners Falls, police apprehended a man driving without a valid lisence on Sunday morning. Authorities cornered the driver, 20-year-old Anthony Fortunato, of Erving after he dodged motor vehicle stops in … 0

Shea Theater plans March re-opening

Friday, January 29, 2016

TURNERS FALLS — A cultural gem in the area’s arts scene, the Shea Theater, will reopen in early March under new management with a Bollywood dance party. After closing for renovations a few months ago, the Shea Theater … 0

MBI to meet with cable towns on broadband expansion options

Friday, January 29, 2016

Over the next few weeks, the Massachusetts Broadband Institute will meet with officials in towns with partial broadband access to talk about “last mile” broadband options through Comcast Cable. The Franklin County towns with partial cable access through Comcast include Buckland, Conway, Northfield and Shelburne. MBI has set … 0

Turners Falls seeks art for mini-park

Friday, January 29, 2016

TURNERS FALLS — Artists who want to make a permanent mark on downtown Turners Falls now have their shot. Sculptors can apply to install a piece in the mini-park on the corner of Avenue A and 3rd Street. … 0

Neighbors: Stone Soup Cafe celebrates four years; attracts people from all walks

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Hello neighbor. Stone Soup Cafe is celebrating its fourth year this year. The unique, pay-as-you-can community meal, which is served at All Souls Church in Greenfield every Saturday at noon. On Monday, Stone Soup Cafe will be the … 0

Pipeline advisory committee requests consultants

Thursday, January 28, 2016

NORTHFIELD — The four member towns of the Franklin Regional Council of Governments Regional Pipeline Advisory Committee have requested that the COG hire a team of consultants to study construction impacts on roads, bridges and other public infrastructure … 0

Letter: A terrible strip

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Let me add my voice to those calling for WuMo to be replaced by something better. I am a big fan of the comics page. I read “Stone Soup” daily — it had decent drawing, and the story kept up my interest. WuMo’s drawing is terrible — every … 0