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    1. Stand for Children Massachusetts literacy information sessions aim to improve state's...

      Stand for Children Massachusetts literacy information sessions aim to improve state's...

      In an effort to get students reading at grade level, Stand for Children Massachusetts is hosting literacy information sessions for parents and teachers across the state this summer. "Despite having some of the best schools in the country, too many Massachusetts children can't read at grade level, and this has lifelong consequences," said Ranjini Govender, executive director of Stand for Children Massachusetts, an organization that focuses on education including literacy, family engagement and more.

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    2. UMass Amherst opens core facilities labs to manufacturers

      UMass Amherst opens core facilities labs to manufacturers

       Edward Leyden of Ben Franklin Design and Manufacturing in Agawam has a customer in Canada who wants him to make a tiny metal part using 3-D printing. "Steel. Using laser beams to print in three dimensions using powdered metal dust. It is where we are going whether we want to or not," Leyden said.

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    3. Campaign Launched for Chicopee Center Project

      MassDevelopment and the City of Chicopee have announced a new campaign through the civic crowdfunding platform Patronicity and the Commonwealth Places initiative. The Chicopee Center Gateway Project campaign will fund downtown beautification efforts in Chicopee, including signature banners, flower planters and other landscaping, and a signature public art bus shelter. This project will build off the momentum of other redevelopment efforts in the city to make Chicopee a more attractive place for residents, businesses, and visitors. “The Gateway project will help downtown Chicopee catalyze local business development and enhance the city’s sense of community by beautifying its streetscape,” said ...

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    4. Pieces Falling into Place for Revival at the Paramount

      Pieces Falling into Place for Revival at the Paramount

      Like all those who have fond memories of taking in movies and shows at the Paramount Theater, Herbie Flores has long dreamed of the landmark’s revival. But nostalgia has never been enough of a force to generate a rebirth. What’s needed is a viable plan, financing, and a vibrant downtown that can fuel such an ambitious venture. Flores, who calls himself “a realist, not a dreamer,” believes the needed pieces to the puzzle are falling into place.

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    5. Baystate Health honored for healthcare innovation

      Baystate Health honored for healthcare innovation

      North Carolina-based health care improvement company Premier Inc. has awarded Baystate Health its 2017 Premier Alliance Excellence Award for being a national innovator in industry practices and in the delivery of cost effective care. Premier, which was created by hospitals who share information and purchasing power to improve patient care and lower costs, selected Baystate from among the partnership alliance of approximately 3,750 hospitals and more than 130,000 other provider organizations. "An industry-leader, Baystate is never satisfied and always looking for ways they can improve," said Susan DeVore, president and chief executive officer of Premier whose insurance subsidiary ...

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    6. Economic Development Strategy Report Available from PVPC

      The Pioneer Valley Planning Commission recently completed the 2017 Annual Update of the Plan for Progress, the region’s Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS). The document presents regional performance indicators of progress in the region and provides a detailed listing of major committed projects of regional significance – from infrastructure and transportation to redevelopment and new construction. The 2017 CEDS is available online (http://www.pvpc.org/plans/comprehensive-economic-development-strategy-ceds), or hard copies can be provided upon request.

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    7. $475,000 fueling battery storage study for Holyoke Gas and Electric Department

      $475,000 fueling battery storage study for Holyoke Gas and Electric Department

      The local utility just got $475,000 from the state to acquire a battery aimed at saving ratepayers money. "Battery storage is changing the conversation around peak demand and (the Holyoke Gas and Electric Department) is excited to be a part of the solution," said Kate C. Sullivan, marketing coordinator at the Holyoke Gas and Electric Department (HGE). The grant from the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) is part of the state's "Peak Demand Management Program." The money will be used to obtain and analyze state-of-the-art battery storage, she said.

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    8. West Springfield scores $150K grant for traffic mitigation related to MGM Springfield

      West Springfield scores $150K grant for traffic mitigation related to MGM Springfield

      The Town of West Springfield has received a $150,000 community mitigation grant to help deal with traffic related to MGM Springfield, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission announced Wednesday. The local funding is part of almost $2 million in mitigation assistance for communities impacted by the casino, which is expected to open in fall 2018. "I'm thrilled," Mayor William C. Reichelt said. "It's our third year in a row getting grant dollars from the Gaming Commission."

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    9. Jobs are growing, so why not wages? MassBenchmarks analyzes the state economy

      Jobs are growing, so why not wages? MassBenchmarks analyzes the state economy

      Massachusetts employers are having a hard time filling open jobs, but demographics, low growth in productivity and competition are keeping wages low. All these factors are also making it hard for households to keep up and depressing state tax receipts, according to MassBenchmarks, a study of the state’s economy issued Wednesday by the UMass Donahue Institute and the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.

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    10. New $5 million Springfield Healthy Homes Program seeks to link construction work, contractors

      New $5 million Springfield Healthy Homes Program seeks to link construction work, contractors

      The city is inviting area contractors to attend a meeting on Thursday at Putnam Vocational Technical Academy on State Street to obtain information about the city's new $5 million Healthy Homes program. The meeting, hosted by the city's Office of Housing, begins at 7:30 a.m., and is intended for contractors, subcontractors and their employees interested in the housing rehabilitation opportunities under the new program, according to the mayor's office.

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      Mentions: Springfield
    11. Depression treatment center opens in North End

      Depression treatment center opens in North End

      The Tuesday ribbon cutting at Achieve TMS East's treatment center for depression in the city's North End came with an applauded announcement. Dr. Thomas J. Bombardier, who is helping the California-based Achieve Treatment Centers open such partnership clinics nationwide, announced the clinic would be dedicated to Sister of Providence Mary Caritas Geary. Bombardier, an ophthalmologist turned businessman, also said he would donate half of his profits from the Springfield location to Providence Ministries Service Network.

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    12. Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno adds support for study of high-speed, east-west rail in Massachusetts

      Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno adds support for study of high-speed, east-west rail in Massachusetts

      With the grand opening of Union Station just celebrated, Mayor Domenic J. Sarno has urged the state House Ways and Means Committee to support a feasibility study of Springfield-to-Boston high-speed passenger rail service. Sarno filed the letter Tuesday with state Rep. Brian Dempsey, D-Haverhill, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, supporting a proposal to add the cost of the feasibility study to the state budget. State Sen. Eric Lesser, D-Longmeadow, is sponsor of the Senate amendment.

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    13. City Council OKs 3rd Racing Mart in Springfield; developer investing $3.5M at former FL Roberts site

      City Council OKs 3rd Racing Mart in Springfield; developer investing $3.5M at former FL Roberts site

      A developer is planning to build a new Racing Mart gas station and convenience store at Taylor and Armory streets as part of $3.5 million investment that includes tearing down the closed F.L. Roberts Sunoco station there. The City Council unanimously approved a special permit for the gas station, store and drive-up service window at 487 Taylor St. Several city councilors praised the developer, Johnny Kayrouz of Armory Street Holdings LLC, saying that two of his other Racing Mart businesses in Springfield are neighborhood assets and well-run. One of the businesses is at Carew and Armory streets and ...

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      Mentions: Springfield
    14. East Longmeadow insurance brokerage grants scholarships to central and Western Mass. students

      East Longmeadow insurance brokerage grants scholarships to central and Western Mass. students

      Continuing a 30-year tradition, the East Longmeadow branch of a global insurance brokerage presented scholarships to five graduating high school seniors from central and Western Massachusetts. All five recipients of the scholarships given out by HUB International New England, a division of HUB International Ltd., plan to enter college this year and study business, as per the scholarship guidelines, a statement from HUB International New England says. Students were offered the scholarships based on their schools' recommendation.

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    15. STCC offers $222,500 to purchase city lots for expanded student parking

      STCC offers $222,500 to purchase city lots for expanded student parking

      Springfield Technical Community Center has offered to buy a string of tax-foreclosed properties on upper Worthington Street from the city for $222,500 under a proposal to convert the site to student parking. The proposal, which was submitted by the Springfield Technical Community College Foundation in response to the city's advertisement for proposals, was the sole proposal received by the city by the June 20 deadline.

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    16. Tanglewood’s $30 Million Expansion Is an Initiative of Note

      Tanglewood’s $30 Million Expansion Is an Initiative of Note

      Audiences have flocked to the Berkshires for Boston Symphony Orchestra’s summertime concerts since 1936, when the musicians offered a three-concert series, under the baton of then-music director Serge Koussevitzky, in a large tent at Holmwood, a storied estate in Lenox. That first series, which would ultimately morph into the world-renowned Tanglewood Music Festival, was attended by nearly 15,000 people. Then, in 1937, when the festival presented its first concert at Tanglewood, a gift to the BSO from the Tappan family estate, it drew the largest crowd to ever assemble under a tent, for an all-Beethoven program. And the ...

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    17. Agawam Is Building a Bridge to a Better Future

      Agawam Is Building a Bridge to a Better Future

      Richard Cohen is now halfway through his 16th year as mayor of Agawam — a tenure marked by four two-year terms, a two-year hiatus of sorts, and then four more terms. (And, yes, he’s seeking a ninth term this fall.) For that duration, if you will, he’s been coping with many of the same issues impacting this community of roughly 29,000, which is technically a city (hence, it has a mayor), but in most ways considers itself a town. In fact, that’s the word you see over the front door of the municipal offices on Main Street ...

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    18. Gov. Charlie Baker, Rep. Richard Neal speak at black tie gala, celebrating reopening of...

      Gov. Charlie Baker, Rep. Richard Neal speak at black tie gala, celebrating reopening of...

      For years, the station sat largely unused, falling into disuse in the 1970s when the popularity of rail travel declined. Yet after a long period of redevelopment it will finally open its doors to the public again.  With $94 million in floor-to-ceiling renovations, the new station has been resurrected, converted into an intermodal transit hub that offers service from Amtrak and Connecticut's commuter rail system to New Haven and New York City, as well as local and long-distance bus service.

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    19. MBI and Comcast sign deal to bring broadband to Montgomery

      MBI and Comcast sign deal to bring broadband to Montgomery

      Comcast received an $805,800 grant from the Massachusetts Broadband Institute to build a cable network in Montgomery, MBI announced this week. Town officials and Comcast still need to sign a cable franchise agreement. If that goes as planned, Comcast estimates it could have its cable network up and running by the end of 2018. Comcast has agreed to reach around 96 percent of the town's premises, or 360 homes and businesses. The arrangement was approved by town officials in April.

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    20. Hospice home opens in Chicopee after 10 years of planning

      Hospice home opens in Chicopee after 10 years of planning

      As the Allard siblings watched, a team of volunteers snipped a purple ribbon in half and officially turned their childhood home into a place where people will be able to live their final days in a home-like atmosphere surrounded by caring people. "It is a tribute to my father. This is what he would have wanted," Paul Allard said. It is also the culmination of a 10-year dream for Ruth Willemain and multitudes of volunteers who worked to create Harmony House, a hospice home where people who cannot spend their last days in their own home can come as an ...

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      Mentions: Chicopee Holyoke
    21. Westfield receives $300K for Turnpike Industrial Park expansion

      Westfield receives $300K for Turnpike Industrial Park expansion

      The City of Westfield was awarded a $300,000 Site Readiness Fund Program grant, from the Baker-Polito Administration, Friday, for the expansion of the Turnpike Industrial Park. According to a news release sent to 22News from the state’s housing and economic development office, Westfield will use the money to fund predevelopment activities to spur private investment at a city owned site next to the current industrial park. “Assisting communities in transforming underutilized property into opportunities for development and job growth continues to be an important component of our economic development strategy,” Governor Charlie Baker stated in the release.

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      Mentions: Westfield
    22. Cohort for the Culinary/Hospitality 9 Week Training Program

      Cohort for the Culinary/Hospitality 9 Week Training Program

      We are getting ready to start our next Cohort for the Culinary/Hospitality 9 week training program and I am again looking for guest speakers to come into the classroom as well as locations that would like to invite us to a site visit.  The last class was very successful with six of the eight already employed and all with our partners that have been participating in these opportunities.  

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    23. Cultural District adding color to downtown Springfield with painted pianos and more (photos) | masslive.com

      Cultural District adding color to downtown Springfield with painted pianos and more (photos) | masslive.com

      Springfield Central Cultural District has been a nonprofit organization for about a year now. Its plan is to make the downtown area more comfortable and fun to walk around.  One of its initiatives is an Aug. 2 pop-up art walk. From 4:30-6 p.m. people can check out art displayed in downtown buildings, attend a jazz concert and even play pianos right outside. All ages are welcome.  Cultural district Director Morgan Drewniany believes art can bring the city together and increase the amount of walking downtown, whether it's people stopping to look at the painted utility boxes or ...

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      Mentions: Springfield
    24. Grand opening celebrations for Springfield's Union Station set for weekend

      Grand opening celebrations for Springfield's Union Station set for weekend

      The grand reopening of Springfield's Union Station will be celebrated with a series of festivities throughout the coming weekend.  Originally built in 1926, the structure saw decline and eventually became unused in the late 1970s after the popularity of rail travel declined. Now, after years of development and $94 million in floor-to-ceiling renovations, the station has been resurrected.

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