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Pushback: A great way to aid elderly, disabled with their taxes
06-18-2024 8:04 PM

By AL NORMAN

On July 9, 1998, acting Gov. Paul Cellucci signed into law An Act Establishing A City Or Town Aid To The Elderly And Disabled Taxation Fund. The proposal reached Greenfield 26 years later.Chapter 166 of the Acts of 1998 added Section 3D to Chapter 60...

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Pushback: Fighting for care everyone deserves
06-04-2024 6:56 PM

By AL NORMAN

I met attorney Steven Schwartz in 1972. We were working in Greenfield as VISTA volunteers for Franklin Community Action Corporation. The following year Steven created the Greenfield office of Western Mass Legal Services, and a second office in...


Pushback: Solomon to split marijuana baby
05-15-2024 10:41 AM

By AL NORMAN

A public drama was performed on April 11 in Greenfield City Hall. The script ran for 90 minutes without intermission.Act I: A marijuana cultivator,15 Arch Street, LLC, asks for a “change of use” to add marijuana product manufacturing to their special...


Pushback: Your home’s power plant could save our energy grid
05-01-2024 6:01 AM

By AL NORMAN

Tonight, voters in Wendell will act on a new general bylaw regarding licensing requirements for battery energy storage systems. Last Saturday, Shutesbury voters adopted a very similar bylaw. By voting “yes” on this bylaw, Wendell residents will...


Pushback: Tax fund option helps keep elders in homes
04-17-2024 6:02 AM

By AL NORMAN

There are elderly and disabled individuals in Greenfield who are struggling to pay their property tax bills. At-large City Councilor Wahab Minhas wants to keep them out of the foreclosure pipeline, and in their homes.When property owners fall behind...


Pushback: Canadian power play abetted by state aims
03-19-2024 7:01 PM

By AL NORMAN

Our rural Franklin County landscape has attracted large energy companies — from Tenneco in the 1970s to FirstLight today — seeking to own our woods and rivers to make electric power. Each of these corporations has green-washed their mission....


Pushback: Goodbye, emperors of ice cream
03-05-2024 3:23 PM

By AL NORMAN

Decades before Ben & Jerry’s, the Blake brothers of Springfield slipped some magic ingredient into their ice cream products that stimulated longevity. Pres Blake lived to the age of 106, and his brother Curtis lived to 102. According to Friendly’s...


Pushback: Making a major mess of major development review
02-20-2024 7:01 PM

By AL NORMAN

‘It’s really messy. And I don’t like messy.”Greenfield City Council President John Bottomley was chairing his first council meeting on Jan. 17. Three hours into the meeting, Marianne Bullock, new chair of the Economic Development Committee, wanted to...


Columnist Al Norman: Raising the estate tax on billionaires
02-06-2024 3:57 PM

By AL NORMAN

“The greatest threat to our national security is our nation’s debt,” said Louisiana Republican Mike Johnson in his first speech in November after being elected Speaker of the U.S. House. “Tough decisions will have to be made, but the consequences if...


Pushback: So much wrong with OK for market
01-17-2024 8:05 AM

By AL NORMAN

On Sept. 29, 2021, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey sent a letter to the town of Shutesbury disapproving one sentence from a bylaw passed at their annual Town Meeting. The Shutesbury bylaw allowed associate members of the town’s Planning...


Pushback: The best property tax break for seniors
12-19-2023 4:45 PM

By AL NORMAN

Property tax relief for senior citizens in Massachusetts has never been better. In early October, Governor Maura Healey signed into law a wide-ranging tax relief bill, including a provision more than doubling the refundable property tax credit known...


Pushback: Assault and batteries in Wendell
11-14-2023 2:10 PM

By AL NORMAN

On April 19, 2019, a HAZMAT team was called to an energy facility in Surprise, Arizona. A large metal container was leaking milky white smoke. It was a 2-megawatt battery energy storage system (BESS). According to one account, “Hundreds of the...


Columnist Al Norman: Spouses ought to be paid for care
11-03-2023 5:36 PM

By AL NORMAN

On Oct. 12, state Sen. Jo Comerford, D-Northampton, invited me to testify on legislation she filed to allow spouses to be paid caregivers for the elderly and disabled in the Medicaid program. In Massachusetts, you can hire any friend or relative to be...


Pushback: City flouts high court on ‘home equity theft’
10-17-2023 8:00 PM

By AL NORMAN

Over the past six months, tax collectors in 14 Franklin County municipalities have purchased legal ads in this newspaper announcing their “intention to take” 146 parcels of land/homes for non-payment of taxes. Greenfield had the longest list of...


Columnist Al Norman: Three shots this fall to stay safe and well
10-02-2023 5:22 PM

By AL NORMAN

On Sept. 12, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advised “everyone 6 months and older to get an updated COVID-19 vaccine to protect against the potentially serious outcomes of COVID-19 illness this fall and winter. ” The updated...


Pushback: If a tree falls in Montague, does it make a sound?
09-19-2023 11:34 PM

By AL NORMAN

Citizens on Turnpike Road jammed the Montague Planning Board hearing on Aug. 22, opposing a town plan to rezone 15.6 acres of forest land for an undisclosed Franklin County industrial user. On a 3-2 vote, the Planning Board supported the rezoning.It...


Columnist Al Norman: A game-changer for workers 
09-07-2023 4:22 PM

By AL NORMAN

‘We just got some great news, but Jeff Bezos is going to HATE this.”The president of the Amazon Labor Union (ALU) wrote that on Aug. 28 — almost one year and five months after Amazon workers in a Staten Island warehouse voted to form the first union...


Columnist Al Norman: The ‘unwinding’ of Medicaid: A quiet health emergency
08-23-2023 7:34 PM

By AL NORMAN

On May 11, the federal government announced the end of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE). That announcement — which should have been good news for millions of Americans, instead turned into “a quiet health care emergency,” according to one...


Pushback: A ‘grand compromise’ that wasn’t grand, or a compromise
08-15-2023 5:00 PM

By AL NORMAN

Around midnight on March 20, 2019, the Greenfield City Council voted 9-3 to authorize borrowing for a new library. The Recorder wrote that this ended “weeks of wrangling that culminated by swapping relaxed commercial development rules for library...


Pushback: Greenfield downtown keeps leaking
07-18-2023 8:24 PM

By AL NORMAN

The Benderson company of Buffalo, New York bought 6.7 acres on the edge of Greenfield roughly 20 years ago, behind the Mohawk Trail McDonald’s. At a July 6 state hearing, Benderson presented plans for a 19,482-square-foot Aldi’s grocery store with a...


Pushback: Greenfield’s history of industrial losses 
06-20-2023 10:17 PM

By AL NORMAN

In 1753, Greenfield was incorporated as a separate town, cut from Deerfield cloth. But the industrial connections between these two communities have been interwoven ever since.According to Paul Jenkins, author of “The Conservative Rebel,”...

Displaying articles 1 to 20 out of 26 total.
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