1. Articles from The Republican Editorials

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    1. Arts, culture key to downtown Springfield revitalization: Guest viewpoint

      Arts, culture key to downtown Springfield revitalization: Guest viewpoint

      In a time when Springfield is trying to re-define itself as a strong and successful city, public officials have recently focused on three topics: improving public safety, expanding educational opportunities, and developing a strong local economy with plentiful job opportunities. These points have since been echoed by local leaders and community councils as the keystone to revitalization. The way I see it, arts and culture address all three of these topics in an interdisciplinary manner that will increase Springfield's safety, marketability, and perception.

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      Mentions: Springfield
    2. Promoting innovation in government: Guest viewpoint

      Promoting innovation in government: Guest viewpoint

      We live in a time when technology is transforming almost every aspect of our lives, from how we shop and travel (Amazon, Airbnb, Uber), to how we communicate and find entertainment (Facebook, Instagram, Netflix). Thanks to mobile Internet, almost all human knowledge is now accessible with a few taps on the Smartphone in your pocket.

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    3. Basketball showcase comes to Springfield: Editorial

      Basketball showcase comes to Springfield: Editorial

      The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association has approved a proposal by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and the Western Mass. Sports Commission. The eight championship games (four each in the boys and girls division), covering all of the divisions based on enrollment size, will be played on March 19, 2016 – all in the city where the game was invented. Two sites are involved – the MassMutual Center (capacity 8,000) and Springfield College's Blake Arena (2,000). The arenas are smaller than Worcester's 14,000 seat DCU Center, but for this particular event, they are suitable and spacious ...

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    4. Springfield teachers among best and brightest: Guest viewpoint

      Springfield teachers among best and brightest: Guest viewpoint

      Last week, I had the awesome privilege of attending the Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation's Excellence in Teaching Awards Dinner at the Log Cabin. To say that I was impressed is an understatement. A Springfield school principal remarked to me upon my arrival, "This is the Oscars of the teaching community!" She was exactly right. I was amazed at the talent of the men and women in that room who are leaders and, dare I say, public servants in education. A number of cities and school districts were recognized and honored, including but not limited to Holyoke, Palmer, East Longmeadow ...

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      Mentions: Springfield
    5. Taking steps to close the skills gap in Western Mass.: Guest viewpoint

      Taking steps to close the skills gap in Western Mass.: Guest viewpoint

      The Pioneer Valley has been a manufacturing hub for over two centuries, starting with the Springfield Armory. But our region is at risk of losing its competitive edge because of difficulty attracting, developing, and retaining a high-quality workforce. The precision manufacturing industry, which makes components for things like jet engines, semiconductors and electronics, is flourishing here in Western Mass., representing more than half of all manufacturing jobs in Hampden and Hampshire Counties.

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    6. A rebuilt Union Station, expanded Boston rail service, will fuel region's economy: Reader viewpoint

      A rebuilt Union Station, expanded Boston rail service, will fuel region's economy: Reader viewpoint

      It is indeed gratifying to see, at long last, the revitalization of Union Station, the last station of a major New England city to be restored to its earlier grandeur, which hopefully will provide Springfield with the opportunity to welcome frequent intercity rail service. The prospect of Union Station becoming an anchor for the North End in terms of business interests certainly is a hopeful one and invites optimism regarding the renaissance of the entire Springfield metropolitan area. A restored Union Station and rail service will complement projects that are now underway, not the least of which is the manufacturing ...

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      Mentions: Amtrak Springfield
    7. Springfield Central Cultural District Public Art Sponsorship Program aims to brighten downtown: Guest viewpoint

      Springfield Central Cultural District Public Art Sponsorship Program aims to brighten downtown: Guest viewpoint

      The Springfield Central Cultural District aims to find innovative ways to support cultural institutions and artists and enliven downtown spaces in our city. These goals are represented in a new public art sponsorship program, which pairs pieces of public art in the district with sponsors in order to raise funds to pay the artists an honorarium for their work. The art available for sponsorship is by two artists whose work currently brightens our downtown, sculptor James Kitchen and painter John Simpson. We are lucky to have these two talented artists working with us, and we look forward to welcoming many ...

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      Mentions: Springfield
    8. Allan Blair's economic leadership served region well: Editorial

      Allan Blair's economic leadership served region well: Editorial

      Allan Blair, who retires at the end of December after 18 years as president and CEO of the business-funded Economic Development Council of Western Massachusetts, has served the community well as the regional leader of these efforts. Due in large part to Blair’s efforts over three decades, Western Massachusetts is known for having the Commonwealth’s most collaborative economic development effort, much of it directly under the umbrella of the EDC. This is not easy work. It’s hand-to-hand combat, usually behind the scenes. But whenever a ribbon is cut, whenever an industrial park is developed, whenever a new ...

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    9. Richard Sullivan's return to Western Massachusetts as head of the Economic Development Council bodes well for the region: Editorial

      Richard Sullivan's return to Western Massachusetts as head of the Economic Development Council bodes well for the region: Editorial

      The Western Massachusetts Economic Development Council has scored something of a coup by “recapturing” Richard K. Sullivan Jr. as its president and CEO. Sullivan will assume the post when Allan W. Blair, who currently holds the post, retires after 44 years in the field of job creation and business development. An energetic leader, a dynamic force who knows Massachusetts inside out, Sullivan will undoubtedly offer fresh and knowledgeable perspectives from his service in Boston, where he has had opportunities to travel internationally as part of the job. His current post is chief of staff for Gov. Deval Patrick. He’s ...

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    10. Viewpoint: CNR Changchun's plan to build facility in Springfield complements bright future for region

      Viewpoint: CNR Changchun's plan to build facility in Springfield complements bright future for region

      The governor revealed that CNR Changchun Railway Vehicles Co. will build a 125,000-square-foot rail car assembly plant and a 33,700-square-foot office building on this East Springfield graveyard of 7,000 good-paying industrial jobs. The factory’s initial work will be to assemble $1.5 billion worth of new cars for Boston’s Red and Orange lines, but the Chinese plan to make this their North American headquarters.

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    11. Editorial: MassMutual's policies continue to win it distinction as an excellent place to work

      Editorial: MassMutual's policies continue to win it distinction as an excellent place to work

      “The MassMutual community is proud of the recognition that our women- and mother-friendly practices have consistently received from Working Mother,” said Deb Palermino, executive vice president of human resources at MassMutual. Anything companies can do to make their environments more hospitable to mothers (and fathers) who wish to work will help boost the earning power and financial stability of families. Offering on-site day care, flexible schedules and generous maternity leave policies allow mothers to re-enter or stay in the corporate work force where they might have been squeezed out by rigid policies. Some of these steps, admittedly, are expensive. Others ...

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    12. Holyoke's Common Capital helps business get new start

      Holyoke's Common Capital helps business get new start

      Common Capital invests in local small businesses – accepting loans from investors for as little as $1,000 to its Community First Fund. According to its website, it assists through consultation and floating loans to small businesses that will create jobs and help build the local economy. Businesses can apply online for loans of up to $50,000, but Common Capital offers loans of up to $300,000. Common Capital invests in a wide array of businesses throughout the valley. Based in Holyoke, it reaches as far south as Springfield, as far north as Greenfield, as far east as Pittsfield.

       

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    13. Editorial: Springfield Tech Foundry to help high school students become innovators

      Editorial: Springfield Tech Foundry to help high school students become innovators

      The brainchild of Delcie Bean, the Springfield Tech Foundry opened its doors to its first class of high school students Monday with a visit from Gov. Deval Patrick timed to the unpacking of their brand new laptops. Operating from ninth floor space at 1391 Main St., the program will train high school students in the soft and technical skills they need to land entry-level jobs in high technology immediately following their year’s worth of training.

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    14. Rail service dream needs to become reality in time for Interstate 91 viaduct construction

      Rail service dream needs to become reality in time for Interstate 91 viaduct construction

      Timothy Brennan, executive director of the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission, has floated a proposal to use those transportation funds to rehabilitate the locomotives and passenger cars needed in order to run commuter trains from Greenfield to Springfield five times a day during the viaduct construction project. Brennan also believes there’s a future for rail service in New England: Seniors and 20-somethings are less interested in cars than those in their middle age, he says, and both younger and older adults find train travel attractive for different reasons. Some companies, he said, in congested metropolitan areas allow their employees to ...

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    15. Editorial: Baystate Health, UMass hospital collaboration healthy move for Western Massachusetts

      Editorial: Baystate Health, UMass hospital collaboration healthy move for Western Massachusetts

      s partisan clashes in Washington continue over the future of President Barack Obama’s signature health care law, two giant health care providers in Springfield and Worcester are thinking about forming a partnership as a key provision of the Affordable Care Act kicks into gear.  On the eve of Tuesday’s launch of a season of enrollment in Obamacare for millions of Americans who will seek coverage on so-called insurance exchanges, Baystate Health in Springfield and University of Massachusetts Memorial Hospital Health Care in Worcester said they plan to collaborate on specialized medical care, research projects and public health projects ...

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    16. Editorial: Bradley International Airport to Europe - on the horizon again

      Editorial: Bradley International Airport to Europe - on the horizon again

      Western Massachusetts companies that do business overseas have high hopes that Bradley International Airport will live up to its name and reinstate its short-lived nonstop service to Amsterdam – or another European city.  During a forum held last week at the Westfield headquarters of heating and air-conditioning equipment maker Mestek, an official of the Connecticut Airport Authority, which took over airport operations from the Connecticut state Department of Transportation on July 1, gave listeners a reason to hope.

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    17. Editorial: State grants light way for stronger Springfield schools

      Editorial: State grants light way for stronger Springfield schools

      “By granting these funds,” said School Superintendent Daniel J. Warwick, “the state is saying they have confidence in the plans the schools have to continue building on the gains they’ve made in the past two years.”  Notably most of the funds are going to elementary and middle schools where it is hoped that a long term strategy can have an effect before students reach high school where poor preparation and lack of study skills reflect themselves in failing MCAS scores and high drop out rates.

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      Mentions: Springfield
    18. Editorial: Summer jobs help teens realize brighter future

      Editorial: Summer jobs help teens realize brighter future

      The Regional Employment Board of Hampden County has announced its goal of setting up jobs for 1,000 young people in Springfield, Holyoke, Chicopee and Westfield. As they seek funding for these programs, they have also urged private business and individuals to pitch in to hire young people with their own money or donate to programs that create employment for teens.

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    19. Editorial: Return of Eastec show boon for Western Massachusetts economy

      Editorial: Return of Eastec show boon for Western Massachusetts economy

      After a one-year hiatus, Eastec, the East Coast’s largest manufacturing trade show, returns to the Eastern States Exposition in West Springfield for a three-day run this week. And that is very good news for the local retail economy.  The Eastec show, sponsored by the Society of Manufacturing Engineers, had been an annual event until 2011 when organizers decided to hold the event only on odd-numbered years.

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    20. Editorial: State grants offer seeds for future development

      Editorial: State grants offer seeds for future development

      Much of the funding will go to the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, as part of a $1 billion investment over 10 years in the state’s life sciences industry. The grants also include $3.8 million to Holyoke Community College for the creation of a Center for Life Sciences there. That space will be devoted to training a new generation of workers for the pharmaceutical, and medical devices industry and the emerging field of bio-infomatics.

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    21. Editorial: Long-stalled Union Station project moving along tracks

      Editorial: Long-stalled Union Station project moving along tracks

      Last week, members of the Springfield Redevelopment Authority were wowed by an architect’s plan to make the architectural beauty shine again. The $83 million plan to renovate and reopen the station on Frank B. Murray Street for train and bus travel calls for preserving its cavernous space and flooding them with natural light from the numerous windows that line its facade.

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