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    1. History lesson: Massachusetts must not retreat from education reforms that drove student achievement (Guest viewpoint) - masslive.com

      History lesson: Massachusetts must not retreat from education reforms that drove student achievement (Guest viewpoint) - masslive.com

      If there’s one lesson we can take from the current debate about updating the Commonwealth’s public education funding formula, it’s the importance of understanding history. For over a decade, as memories of the success of Massachusetts’ 1993 Education Reform Act have receded, state policy makers have increasingly made decisions that reveal lack of awareness of what made it so successful. We must stem that tide if we are to get state education aid right.

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    2. Consumer Demand Is High in Home Improvement — but Skilled Labor Is Elusive

      Consumer Demand Is High in Home Improvement — but Skilled Labor Is Elusive

      With home-improvement demand surging in 2019, contractors say they can pick and choose from available jobs, which isn’t always ideal for consumers, who often have trouble finding a professional who can fit them in. In realty, most contractors would love to take on more jobs — but can’t because it’s not easy to find talent, especially young talent with the potential to grow with a company over the long term.

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    3. Valley Solar Shines a Light on Benefits of Solar Panels

      Valley Solar Shines a Light on Benefits of Solar Panels

      With green-energy usage in homes rapidly increasing, there is no shortage of competition in the solar field. Home and business owners are looking for ways to save money and protect the environment, and with 211 solar installers in the state of Massachusetts, there are plenty of options. This makes standing out even more important for companies like Valley Solar, which installs solar panels for families and businesses alike.

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    4. Sen. Eric Lesser Calls for East-West Rail at Western Mass. Transportation Forum

      Sen. Eric Lesser Calls for East-West Rail at Western Mass. Transportation Forum

      State Sen. Eric Lesser said the biggest step toward unlocking the vast economic potential of Western Mass. is solving the region’s transportation crisis. In a keynote address Friday at the Food Bank of Western Mass. Transportation Forum, the senator outlined a modern transportation network that would finally connect Springfield and its surrounding areas to Boston. “In many ways, Western Mass. has an inverse challenge from Metro Boston. We have a fantastic quality of life; we have a lot to offer,” Lesser said. “Imagine if we had a one-seat ride — 80 minutes — from Springfield’s Union Station to Boston’s ...

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    5. Family Business Center Announces Two Events This Week - BusinessWest

      Family Business Center Announces Two Events This Week - BusinessWest

      The Family Business Center’s (FBC) dinner forum on Wednesday, Sept. 18 at the Log Cabin in Holyoke will address three issues that are critical to every business. The presenters are strategic partners of the FBC, including Ross Giombetti discussing “How to Not Go Off Track with Onboarding,” Lauren Ostberg of Bulkley Richardson on “Cybersecurity Is More Than Virus-protection Software,” and Tim Murphy of Skoler, Abbott & Presser, P.C. on “Your Employee Handbook: Is It a Ticking Time Bomb?”

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    6. A new study finds Massachusetts is the best place to start a business in the U.S. - masslive.com

      A new study finds Massachusetts is the best place to start a business in the U.S. - masslive.com

      Companies looking for an environment where their business can flourish need look no further than Massachusetts according to a new study.  Software engineering company Nulab analyzed data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and reported Massachusetts scored highly on the likelihood of businesses surviving in the first year.  The Bay State was also top for the most stable business timelines over the course of three years.

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    7. Western Massachusetts nonprofit leaders to work with Carly Fiorina in leadership training supported by MassMutual Foundation

      Western Massachusetts nonprofit leaders to work with Carly Fiorina in leadership training supported by MassMutual Foundation

      Carly Fiorina, the first woman to lead a Fortune 500 company, will visit Western Massachusetts again this week to offer leadership training to nonprofits in the region. Unlocking Potential, a foundation founded by Fiorina that works to strengthen leadership in nonprofits, partnered with the MassMutual Foundation to offer the training.

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    8. CRRC announces apprentice program for Springfield rail car plant; first such program in the U.S.

      CRRC announces apprentice program for Springfield rail car plant; first such program in the U.S.

      CRRC MA and the Sheet Metal Workers Local 63 have created a registered apprentice program for mechanical production worker training in rail car manufacturing at CRRC’s mammoth factory in East Springfield. The program at the plant — now building Orange Line subway cars for the T and soon to start work on Red Line cars — is the first apprenticeship program in the U.S. for rail car manufacturing, according to a news release.

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    9. Gov. Baker Appoints Joanne Marqusee to GCC Board of Trustees

      Gov. Baker Appoints Joanne Marqusee to GCC Board of Trustees

      Greenfield Community College (GCC) recently welcomed Joanne Marqusee, president and CEO of Cooley Dickinson Health Care (CDHC), to its board of trustees. One of 11 trustees, she was officially appointed by Gov. Charlie Baker on Aug. 30 and will replace former trustee Elizabeth Sillin. Marqusee has been a respected healthcare leader for over three decades. Before coming to Cooley in 2014, she served as chief operating officer and executive vice president of Hallmark Health, after having spent 15 years at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston as senior vice president. With a master’s degree in public policy from ...

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    10. UMass Amherst Startup a Winner in Massachusetts Tech Transfer Contest

      UMass Amherst Startup a Winner in Massachusetts Tech Transfer Contest

      Ernest Pharmaceuticals, a startup venture based at UMass Amherst’s Institute of Applied Life Sciences (IALS), is one of four companies to win $2,500 from the Massachusetts Technology Transfer Center (MTTC) in a business-pitch poster competition in Boston. This recognizes the groundbreaking young biotech firm as it brings its research on programmed bacteria that deliver anti-cancer treatment to tumors from lab to market. Ernest Pharmaceuticals CEO and bioengineer Nele Van Dessel presented the poster at MTTC’s 12th annual Massachusetts Life Sciences Innovation Day; the company was one among 30 vying for four prizes. She said she and co-founder ...

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    11. Delaney’s Market beer and wine license approved in Westfield; Wilbraham location opens next week

      Delaney’s Market beer and wine license approved in Westfield; Wilbraham location opens next week

      Westfield officials this week approved a beer-and-wine package store license for the Delaney’s Market planned at the Little River Plaza by restaurateur Peter Rosskothen. With another Delaney’s Market at 2030 Boston Road in Wilbraham set to open Tuesday, Rosskothen said he’s nearing his goal of having four Delaney’s Market locations open by the end of this year. He opened the flagship Delaney’s market in the Longmeadow Shops in 2016. The Springfield Delaney’s Market opened at 1365 Main St. in June.

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    12. AIM Names Brooke Thomson Executive Vice President of Government Affairs

      AIM Names Brooke Thomson Executive Vice President of Government Affairs

      Brooke Thomson, most recently vice president of Government Affairs for AT&T and a former senior official with the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office, will become executive vice president of Government Affairs at Associated Industries of Massachusetts (AIM). Thomson is no stranger to AIM. She has served as a member of the its board of directors and executive committee and chaired the board’s government affairs committee for the past year. She replaces John Regan, who took over as president and CEO of the 3,500-member business association in May.

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    13. Mercy Medical Center president Mark Fulco departs after 2 years

      Mercy Medical Center president Mark Fulco departs after 2 years

      Mark Fulco has departed as president of Mercy Medical Center and its affiliates after two years in that role. No reason was given. A hospital spokesperson praised Fulco in confirming his departure and said a new leader “has not yet been identified" but that the regional team of Trinity Health Of New England, of which Mercy is a member, would provide support. “We are grateful for Mark’s leadership and exceptionally strong commitment to our mission during an important period in the history of Mercy Medical Center,” the spokesperson said.

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    14. Bank of America sells shuttered Westfield office to California investor

      Bank of America sells shuttered Westfield office to California investor

      A California investor bought the former Bank of America office at 10 Main St. last month for $186,375. The price, revealed in documents on file at the Hampden Registry of Deeds, is significantly less than the $915,000 assessment the city placed on the property and the $345,000 sale price it brought back in 1992, when the building last changed hands as part of a bank merger. The replacement cost of the 11,000-square-foot bank building, built in 1900, is $1.44 million, according to city tax documents.

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    15. Michael Moran out as head of Baystate Health’s eastern region; Molly Gray will replace him as head of Wing, Mary Lane hospitals

      Michael Moran, president and chief administrative officer of Baystate Health’s eastern region, has resigned effective Nov. 1, Baystate confirmed Wednesday. Molly Gray, vice president of patient care services and chief nursing officer, will replace him, according to a statement from Baystate. Gray started with Baystate in 1988 as a staff nurse in the Wesson Women’s Labor and Delivery Unit.

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    16. People’s United Stresses Local Connections as It Acquires United Bank - BusinessWest

      People’s United Stresses Local Connections as It Acquires United Bank - BusinessWest

      People’s United Bank is no longer the small, Springfield-based institution, then known as the Bank of Western Massachusetts, that made its name three decades ago through a strong emphasis on local commercial lending. And the now-Connecticut-based institution is growing again, with a planned acquisition of United Bank that will push its assets well above $50 billion. But local connections are still key to the People’s United ethos, its Massachusetts president says — and he hopes United Bank customers feel the same way

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    17. MassDOT unveils plans for Holyoke highway project, residents speak out - masslive.com

      MassDOT unveils plans for Holyoke highway project, residents speak out - masslive.com

      Concerned residents had their say Tuesday evening at a public information session on plans by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation to reconstruct the Interstate 91 and Route 141 interchange.  Construction of a roundabout, as well as features intended to improve traffic flow at the intersection of Route 141 (Easthampton Road) and Lindor Heights, would start in the fall of 2023.

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    18. Gov. Charlie Baker has allocated an additional $1 million for State Nonprofit Security Program - masslive.com

      Gov. Charlie Baker has allocated an additional $1 million for State Nonprofit Security Program - masslive.com

      In May 2017 there was a bomb scare at the Jewish Community Center in Springfield highlighting the vulnerability of nonprofit organizations to attacks. Although the threat proved to be spurred community members to act.  Coming under the umbrella of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Nonprofit Security Grant Program was set up to help vulnerable nonprofit organizations like the JCC invest in security to protect themselves against attack.

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    19. UMass Amherst Ranks 24th Among Public Universities in U.S. News Rankings

      UMass Amherst Ranks 24th Among Public Universities in U.S. News Rankings

      UMass Amherst has climbed into the top 25 of the nation’s premier public universities, coming in 24th among the approximately 130 public institutions ranked in the “Best Colleges 2020” guide published by U.S. News & World Report. The Commonwealth’s flagship campus moved up two slots this year. With student success, graduation rates, and other key metrics on the rise, the university continued its ascent as one of the fastest-rising, top-tier public-research universities in the country, advancing from 52nd in 2010 to 24th in 2020.

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    20. Ramon S. Torrecilha: Westfield State University focuses on relevant, lifelong learning - masslive.com

      Ramon S. Torrecilha: Westfield State University focuses on relevant, lifelong learning - masslive.com

      Westfield State University’s strongest points of pride — our 42,000 alumni — speak volumes about Westfield State’s impact and relevance as they enrich communities and strengthen the workforce and economy across Massachusetts.  Further underscoring the university’s relevance is its recently approved strategic plan, a move to a lifelong learning model and an institutional commitment to our community, state and region.

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    21. Wahlburgers groundbreaking at MGM Springfield set for this month

      Wahlburgers groundbreaking at MGM Springfield set for this month

      A year after movie star Mark Wahberg visited MGM Springfield to announce that his Dorchester-bred family would open a Wahlburgers restaurant at the $960 million casino, a date for the ceremonial groundbreaking has been set. Wahlberg brother chef Paul Wahlberg, Springfield Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and MGM Springfield President Michael Mathis will turn ceremonial shovels of dirt Friday, Sept. 20. Wahlburgers will have its food truck there for the celebration.

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    22. SPARK EforAll Holyoke to Celebrate Summer Accelerator Graduates on Sept. 17

      SPARK EforAll Holyoke to Celebrate Summer Accelerator Graduates on Sept. 17

      SPARK EforAll Holyoke will celebrate graduates of its 2019 Summer Accelerator Program and award $5,000 in prize money at its upcoming Showcase & Celebration on Tuesday, Sept. 17 from 6 to 8 p.m. on at Wistariahurst, 238 Cabot St. in Holyoke. Entrepreneurship for All (EforAll) began its second Accelerator Program in the Pioneer Valley this past May, and this second cohort will graduate from the intensive, 12-week program at the Showcase and Celebration ceremony. This cohort will continue to meet with their mentors for the rest of the year and meet with EforAll quarterly to compete for more cash.

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