Young people across the country and here in Berkshire County staged a walkout of class Wednesday to demand action on gun violence. More than 3,000 walkouts were planned across the U.S. and around the world, according to organizers. Activists hoped it would be the biggest demonstration of student activism yet in response to last month's massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

Students were urged to leave class at 10am local time for 17 minutes – each minute in representation each victim of the February 14th shooting attack. Not only High School students were committed to this cause. Middle school students in many towns and cities were also taking part in the walkout.

Here in the Berkshires, one example was the Sixth, seventh and eighth-grade students at Richmond Consolidated School. They were planning to take part in the national walkout. Late last month students here in the Berkshires at Taconic High School and Pittsfield High School staged a similar walk out in protest of the Florida school shooting.


Pittsfield’s Mayor Trashes Toter Plan

Pittsfield Mayor Linda Tyer has decided to scrap her proposed “toter” plan. reports the mayor released a statement Tuesday saying the she will no longer be pursuing to overhaul the city’s curbside trash pick-up through the implementation of a toter system. The issue had caused a lot of dismay around the city with many residents voicing concerns about the size of the toters, their ability to move them, and the financials that surround the initial cost to purchase and deliver them. The Pittsfield City Council ultimately rejected the plan and sent it back to the mayor's desk. The toter system had previously failed twice before to receive City Council authorization.

City Council Vice President, John Krol said his main issue with the tote proposal was with the upfront cost to the city. Several councilors wanted to pursue alternatives to the toter system. Earlier this month the city council heard a presentation from Waste Zero, a company that moves municipalities to bag-based "pay as you throw" trash pickup programs.


Water Upgrades To The Tune Of $69 Million Needed In Pittsfield

While much of the Pittsfield City Council’s focus has been on a $74 million upgrade to the wastewater treatment plant, upgrades to the city’s water system are apparently going to be need in the near future. reports that Doug Gove, a consultant with Aecom, reported to the City Council's Public Works subcommittee on Monday that within the next seven years, the water system will need $69 million worth of repairs.

Gove said the city could try to stagger out the repairs over time to ease the financial burden. He also said that in order to do that, the city would need to install another tank near Berkshire Community College. Besides that, the city has an array of projects it will need to do for the system as it is dated.