1. Articles from Jim Kinney

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    1. ‘We just don’t think it is fair’: Businesses speak out ahead of annual Springfield commercial vs. residential tax argument

      ‘We just don’t think it is fair’: Businesses speak out ahead of annual Springfield commercial vs. residential tax argument

      Springfield officials are deciding how much of the city’s property tax levy — the total amount in taxes it will bill for the fiscal year — will be paid by owners of residential property and how much will be paid by businesses. The city relies on money from taxes on residential property and from businesses in taxes on commercial property, industrial property and what’s called “personal property” owned by businesses, such as tools and equipment.

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    2. Legion Paper plans distribution hub at former Canson Paper plant in South Hadley

      Legion Paper plans distribution hub at former Canson Paper plant in South Hadley

      Legion Paper announced this week that it has opened a new distribution center for its fine art paper business at the former Canson paper converting plant at 21 Industrial Drive. Canson Inc., a maker of fine papers for art and photo printing, closed its plant and laid off 67 people earlier this year as operations were consolidated in Wisconsin. Canson’s owners — Italian conglomerate Fabbrica Italiana Lapis ed Affini S.p.A., or FILA — purchased Pacon Corp. of Wisconsin in 2018.

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    3. ‘With a tournament on the line’ Callaway Golf finishes $40M expansion, adds staff to Chicopee golf ball factory

      ‘With a tournament on the line’ Callaway Golf finishes $40M expansion, adds staff to Chicopee golf ball factory

      Jobs making golf balls at Callaway Golf Ball Operations Inc. in Chicopee come with all the usual benefits plus one unique perk: Company-paid visits to Annie’s Driving Range. If you are going to make golf balls, you must know about golf. “It’s all part of our on-boarding,” said Vincent J. Simonds, senior director, global golf ball operations for Callaway. “I want people to think about the quality and consistency of each ball they make. Is this a ball they would want to put into play on a golf course with a tournament on the line?”

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    4. Smith & Wesson parent company splits in two; firearm maker retains name, will be headquartered in Springfield

      Smith & Wesson parent company splits in two; firearm maker retains name, will be headquartered in Springfield

      Smith & Wesson changed its name to American Outdoor Brands in 2016 as part of a diversification push — the opposite corporate strategy from the one announced Wednesday.Smith & Wesson has has 1,600 employees at its Springfield manufacturing plant. New companies Smith & Wesson Brands Inc., based in Springfield, will encompass the firearms business, and American Outdoor Brands Inc. will include the outdoor products and accessories businesses, which sell everything from pocketknives to saws and gun cleaning supplies. Corporate spokeswoman Liz Sharp didn’t respond to emailed questions Wednesday

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    5. Survey: Western Massachusetts tourism up thanks marketing, Dr. Seuss museum, MGM

      Survey: Western Massachusetts tourism up thanks marketing, Dr. Seuss museum, MGM

      Visitors to Springfield and the rest of Hampden, Hampshire and Franklin counties are more likely to be millennials, wealthier and spending more than they did three years ago, before MGM Springfield and the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum opened.The latest Western Mass Visitor Profile survey results, released Wednesday by the Greater Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau, showed the share of visitors to the region ages 18-24 climbed from 10% in 2013 to 19% in 2019. Visitors ages 25-34 years old increased from 25% in 2013 to 28% in 2019.

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    6. Rep. Richard Neal, quoting Ronald Reagan, makes case for expanding earned income, child tax credit

      Rep. Richard Neal, quoting Ronald Reagan, makes case for expanding earned income, child tax credit

      Research suggests expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Child Tax Credit, like U.S. Rep. Richard E. Neal wants to do, would boost 1.9 million Massachusetts families, giving a quarter of the state’s population tax cuts or refunds averaging $1,820 in 2020. “And the best part about it is that it is an incentive to work,” said Neal, a Springfield Democrat and chairman of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee.

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    7. Springfield Union Station platform nears completion; Amtrak sees record-breaking year

      Springfield Union Station platform nears completion; Amtrak sees record-breaking year

      The refurbished Platform C at Springfield’s Union Station should be completed in three or four weeks, possibly in time for the busy Thanksgiving and Christmas travel seasons, according to the Springfield Redevelopment Authority, which owns and manages the depot. At issue are final touches to the elevator that will bring passengers up from the station’s concourse and pedestrian tunnel to the platforms where they board trains, said Executive Director Christopher J. Moskal.

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    8. CVS opens near MGM Springfield Sunday; developer says it’ll draw shoppers to neighborhood

      CVS opens near MGM Springfield Sunday; developer says it’ll draw shoppers to neighborhood

      CVS opens its $2 million store Sunday in the new Davenport Square on Main Street across from MGM Springfield in the city’s South End. It's a step landlord and developer Charles Irving, president of Davenport Properties, said will help existing businesses and lure new ones to the neighborhood. One criticism of MGM is that it has not, as promised, brought a retail rejuvenation to the surrounding neighborhood.

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    9. Williams Distributing sells Chicopee warehouse and land for $5 million as part of Quality Beverage deal

      Williams Distributing sells Chicopee warehouse and land for $5 million as part of Quality Beverage deal

      Quality Beverage paid $5 million for the Williams Distributing real estate at 880 Burnett Road last month, according to documents on file with the Hampden County Registry of Deeds. In August, officials with both companies announced that Quality Beverage would buy the Chicopee-based beer distributorship — the business and the real estate — for an undisclosed sum.

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    10. End of partnership with US HealthVest could delay plans for Baystate Health psychiatric hospital in Holyoke

      End of partnership with US HealthVest could delay plans for Baystate Health psychiatric hospital in Holyoke

      Baystate Health’s search for a new partner in its quest to build a standalone psychiatric hospital in Holyoke might set the project back three to six months. “But we feel that the plan is a good one,” Baystate President and President and CEO Mark A. Keroack said. “We are committed to finding a partner who can make this happen.”

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    11. Big Y opens two new stores, hires 225 employees

      Big Y opens two new stores, hires 225 employees

      Big Y will open two new Connecticut World Class Market locations — at 656 New Haven Avenue in Derby and 150 Boston Post Road in Milford — on Thursday, Nov. 7, the Springfield-based chain announced Monday. The supermarket chain said it began construction on both the 55,060-square-foot Milford market and 59,502-square-foot Derby location in January. Big Y hired 135 new employees in Milford and 90 employees in Derby.

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    12. Springfield Y opens Tower Square child education center; fitness center expected by end of the month

      Springfield Y opens Tower Square child education center; fitness center expected by end of the month

      As workers stocked supplies Friday in the YMCA of Greater Springfield Learning Center at Tower Square, CEO Dexter Johnson crawled into a cabinet to fix a sink drain. "You have to do what you have to do," Johnson joked. Because on Monday morning — starting before 7 a.m. — 200 youngsters participating in the Y’s educational programs for preschoolers, and before- and after-school programs for older children, will arrive for the first time at the new facility.

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    13. Long-awaited Springfield Innovation Center restoration nears completion; Bridge Street scaffolding to come down next week

      Long-awaited Springfield Innovation Center restoration nears completion; Bridge Street scaffolding to come down next week

      Artisans working nearly four stories above Bridge Street affixed this week the last bits of replacement decorative terra-cotta tile on the soon-to-be-revealed facade of the Springfield Innovation Center. The scaffolding, in place since September 2018, will come down next week, said Chris Russell, executive director of the Springfield Business Improvement District, which is managing the Innovation Center project for owner DevelopSpringfield.

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    14. Hooplandia tournament will inject $12M into Springfield-area economy, visitors bureau says

      Hooplandia tournament will inject $12M into Springfield-area economy, visitors bureau says

      Hooplandia, the 3-on-3 basketball tournament coming to The Big E and the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in June, could mean $12 million in local spending. To put that number in perspective, the 2019 American Hockey League All-Star Classic Game at the MassMutual Center in January pumped $2.8 million through the local economy, said Mary Kay Wydra, president of the Greater Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau.

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    15. Big boost on campus: Massachusetts could offer a match for donations to UMass, public universities, community colleges

      Big boost on campus: Massachusetts could offer a match for donations to UMass, public universities, community colleges

      Donors to endowment funds at state universities and community colleges, including University of Massachusetts campuses, could see their dollars partially matched under a supplemental budget pending on Beacon Hill. "Their money goes further, and who doesn't want their money to go further," said Erica Broman, vice president for institutional advancement at Westfield State University and executive director of the Westfield State Foundation.

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    16. Auctions set for downtown Springfield buildings, including landmark at State and Main

      Auctions set for downtown Springfield buildings, including landmark at State and Main

      Three downtown Springfield buildings, two of them five-story landmarks facing Main Street, are scheduled to be sold at auction Nov. 15. All three are owned by Louis Masaschi and Jeanette Norman Masaschi of JLL Realty — but under different corporate names for each property. This is according to property records kept by the city and by the Hampden Registry of Deeds, cross referenced with corporate records kept by the secretary of state.

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    Balise Motor Sales plans to open new Honda dealership at former Yale Genton clothing store site in West Springfield by May 1 DevelopSpringfield Corp. to offer $10,000 grants to merchants to spruce up storefronts on Main and State streets Springfield visitors' center reopens at new home in Basketball Hall of Fame building Lunt Silversmiths' decision to shut down operations, prompts Greenfield to seek ways to reuse property Temporary seasonal jobs reported in short supply in Western Mass. FloDesign Wind Turbine Corp.-Western New England College partnership gets $1 million in federal funding Big Y supermarkets ask full-time employees to take voluntary layoffs Bradley International Airport faces challenges in tough economic times 'Cash for clunkers' program to be expanded to appliances in Mass. ‘We just don’t think it is fair’: Businesses speak out ahead of annual Springfield commercial vs. residential tax argument Springfield office buildings, including landmark at State and Main streets, don’t sell at auction; now in hands of mortgage lender Legion Paper plans distribution hub at former Canson Paper plant in South Hadley