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Wegman's seeks law change on supermarket alcohol sales

January 31, 2014 03:00 PM

Wegmans in Northborough wants to do what no other supermarket in Massachusetts has done before: sell alcohol to customers both from its shelves and at its café.

But state law forbids anyone with a license to sell liquor as a retailer to also serve it on the same premises.

Wegmans’ solution: Change the law.

“In other states, we can serve alcohol as a complement to the meals we offer customers in our café,” said Wegmans spokeswoman Jo Natale to Globe West in an e-mailed statement. “We would like to be able to offer the same option to our customers in Massachusetts.”

The push by the Rochester, N.Y.-based supermarket chain could have implications between Boston’s western suburbs.

Wegmans’ Northborough store is currently its only on in Massachusetts. But it plans to open locations in Chestnut Hill in the spring and Burlington in the fall. The company has also proposed a new supermarket at a mixed development at the corner of Brookline Avenue and Kilmarnock Street near Fenway Park.

Wegman's representatives first approached Northborough town officials for permission to allow customers to bring their own alcohol to the supermarket’s 300-seat café in October 2012, Natale said. Town officials said their hands were tied.

“The town suggested that we try to reform the law instead,” she wrote to the Globe.

Wegmans’ proposal already has momentum. On January 22, State Rep. Harold Naughton (D-Clinton) filed legislation that would allow a store to sell alcohol both for retail and consumption. His bill is still under review on Beacon Hill.

If the law changes, under current procedures to obtain a license to serve liquor, Wegmans would first seek permission from Northborough officials for a new license. If the local officials approved, the supermarket would then approach the state Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission for the license, said Jon Carlisle, a spokesman for Treasurer Steven Grossman, who oversees the commission.

McGovern pushes bill to help train service dogs for vets

December 6, 2013 08:56 PM
McGovern Pushes Legislation To Help Fund Service Dogs For Veterans (via

By Shujie Leng BU Washington News Service WASHINGTON–Trained service dogs can provide many therapeutic benefits to military veterans suffering from both physical wounds and post-traumatic stress syndrome, Rep. James McGovern, D-Worcester said Tuesday…

Massachusetts hunting, fishing licenses for 2014 available

November 30, 2013 04:48 PM

BOSTON (AP) — The new year is a few weeks away but it’s not too early to think about 2014 hunting licenses.

The Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife says 2014 hunting, sporting, fishing, and trapping licenses will be available for purchase starting on Monday.

They can be purchased at all license vendor locations, MassWildlife District offices, the West Boylston Field Headquarters, and at

Anyone 15 or older needs a license to hunt or for freshwater fishing.

Freshwater fishing licenses for minors ages 15 to 17 are free and can be obtained online.

The department also reminds hunters that all deer harvested during shotgun season must be checked at a check station. Online checking is not available from Dec. 2 until Dec. 14.

Elderly man dies in Shrewsbury fire

November 14, 2013 02:58 PM

SHREWSBURY, Mass. (AP) — Authorities say an 86-year-old man has died in a house fire in Shrewsbury the chief says was difficult to fight because of a large amount of material in the home and a maze-like layout.

Chief James Vuona tells The Telegram & Gazette that resident Richard Hosking had to be rescued by firefighters and died later Wednesday night at the hospital.

His wife, 85,-year-old Anne Hosking, got out on her own but was taken to the hospital for treatment of smoke inhalation and is expected to survive.

He says firefighters who entered the home were hampered not only by thick black smoke, but a large amount of accumulated belongings and a complicated floor layout.

The cause remains under investigation. The state Fire Marshal’s office is assisting.

Diwali celebrations held in Boston

November 4, 2013 05:21 PM

Diwali, a five-day Hindu celebration also known as the "festival of lights," began on Nov. 3 and will continue into the weekend as organizations in Boston hold different events to mark the celebration.

From banquets to fashion shows, groups in the greater Boston area have planned a variety of events where people can join the celebration.

Below are some of the Boston area events. If we're missing an event, add it in our comments section.

Miss India Tristate Contest on Nov. 9
The contest will be held at 6 p.m. at the National Heritage Museum in Lexington.
Go to the website for more information.

Diwali Gala on Nov. 9
8 p.m. - midnight
NetSAP Boston, a group for South Asian professionals, is hosting a Diwali Gala at the Taj Boston Hotel (15 Arlington St.). The event will benefit the Akshaya Patra Foundation, which provides food for school children in India. Tickets are on sale here.

The Festival of Lights on Nov. 10
3 p.m. - 7 p.m.
The United India Association of New England will celebrate Diwali at Newton South High School (140 Brandeis Road, Newton Center) with worship, a fashion show, dinner and a children's fancy dress parade. Entrance is free for members, kids under 12 and participants in the cultural program, fashion show and children's parade. Non-members pay $10.

Diwali Banquet on Nov. 10
4:30 p.m.
Gurjar, the Gujarati Association of New England, is holding a banquet at the University of Massachusetts Lowell Inn and Conference Center (50 Warren St., Lowell). The event has a formal of traditional Indian dress code. Tickets cost $20 for students up to 12th grade, $35 for college students with an ID, $55-60 for regular tickets and $75 for sponsors. To book tickets, call Ramila Thakker at 781-229-2401, Deval Kamdar at 978-409-1350, or Eshani Shah at 781-942-1690.

Diwali Dhamaka on Nov. 17
2 p.m.
The Indian Society of Worcester will celebrate with dances, music and food. Included in the event, which will be held at Marlborough Middle School (25 Union St.) is a dance competition. For members, tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for kids and free for participants. For non members, tickets are $15 for adults, $5 for kids and participants, and all children under 5 enter for free.

Shandana Mufti can be reached at

tags diwali , hindu

Vigil for Puppy Doe coming up in Northborough

November 4, 2013 04:20 PM

Kiya, the tortured pitbull found in Quincy last month, will be remembered in a vigil on Saturday, Nov. 9, when concerned citizens will join in solidarity against animal abusers.

Dubbed Puppy Doe, the young dog was euthanized due to the severity of her injuries. Radoslaw Artur Czerkawski, a Polish immigrant, has since been charged with 11 counts of animal cruelty by the Quincy Police Department.

“The purpose of the vigil is to remind people that this kind of cruelty on animals cannot be tolerated,” said Lyn Gorka, a local animal rights advocate, in a press release. “We want to thank the Quincy Police … I want to have this vigil to remind people that this dog died because of the abuse it took from a monster…and to remind people not to give their pets away free or on Craigsist…give to a shelter when in doubt. "

The vigil will be held in collaboration with Pet Rock Fest, Inc., an annual festival promoting kindness to animals and responsible pet ownership, and artist Cathy Staniunus.

Gorka, Staniunus, animal rights lawyer Heidi Webber, Pet Rock Fest representatives and State Sen. Michael Moore (D-Millbury) will speak at the event, which will be held at Ellsworth-McAfee Park in Northborough at 4:30 pm.

"We all need to be the voice for our animals because they all depend on us and we need to keep them out of harm’s way,” Gorka said.

Shandana Mufti can be reached at

Regional and vocational technical schools would get more money under bill

October 24, 2013 04:39 PM

Regional and vocational technical high schools would be eligible for additional state funding for capital projects, under legislation filed by Sen. Kenneth Donnelly, an Arlington Democrat.

Advocates for the bill (S 228) told lawmakers on the Joint Committee on Education Thursday that regional and vocational technical high schools desperately need the state’s help to fund renovation and improvement projects because it is nearly impossible to get several different towns all to agree to take on the debt.

James Laverty, superintendent at Franklin County Technical School, said his school has done as many renovations as they can over the years without asking the towns for money.

“We will have to go to 19 towns at town meeting with our hat in our hands,” he said.

The odds are stacked against them to get all the towns to approve a large renovation project, Laverty said.

The town of Heath, in Franklin County, has only two students who attend the school out of 500 students. If 70 people in Heath show up at town meeting, and 36 vote no, “the whole project is dead in the water,” Laverty said.

Under the legislation, regional and vocational technical high schools would be eligible for additional reimbursement, which is calculated by the Massachusetts School Building Authority based on a four-part formula. A school district can receive up to 80 percent of the cost of a capital improvement project, and must pay for any remaining share of the cost.

The formula awards percentage points of reimbursement in three mandatory income-based metrics. Regional school districts often have unequal shares for each city or town when improvement costs are allocated, according to Donnelly’s office. The legislation would increase the percentage points awarded in the grant process for regional schools by 10 points, and vocational schools would receive 20 additional points. The goal is lower the costs for cities and towns, according to Donnelly’s office.

If the Legislature offers a “little more” and regional school capital projects can get closer to 80 percent reimbursement from the MSBA, “it would make it a little easier,” Laverty said.

Alice DeLuca, the Stow representative to the Minuteman Regional Vocational Technical High School in Lexington, said vocational and technical high school students are at a disadvantage compared to their counterparts at traditional high schools because their schools cannot renovate and bring in the latest technologies.

State lawmakers need to back up with money the support they voice for vocational and technical schools, she said.

“These schools provide the middle skills that everybody says they want,” DeLuca said.

“The kids who go to vocational schools do not have a nice, new renovated building and they are never going to unless something is done,” she added.

Westbound on the Pike? New tolls are back in Western Massachusetts

October 15, 2013 11:27 AM

The Patrick administration reinstated tolls overnight on the western end of the Massachusetts Turnpike, between Interchange 1 in West Stockbridge and the junction of I-291 at Interchange 6 in Springfield.

The state estimates it will collect $12 million from the tolls, money that by law may not be spent on turnpike construction or maintenance east of Interstate 95/Rte. 128.

The state Department of Transportation says the funds could pay for bridge deck replacement and resurfacing, bridge cleaning and painting, and bridge and culvert repairs, as well as service plazas and maintenance depot roof projects.

Boston Biomedical Associates plans to relocate to Marlborough

October 3, 2013 06:41 PM

The following is a release from the Marlborough Economic Development Corporation

After more than a decade in business, Boston Biomedical Associates (BBA) is set to join one of Massachusetts’ most-thriving biotech communities—the City of Marlborough.

The biotech product consultancy’s owner and president Dr. Lauren Baker made the announcement today at a regional industry networking event, organized by the Massachusetts Biotechnology Council (MassBio).

Speaking to more than 100 members of the region’s life sciences community, Baker said that BBA expects to relocate its Northborough headquarters to Marlborough in April 2014. The company will take up 17,000 sq.ft. of the second floor of 100 Crowley Drive, just off of Fitchburg Street and the I-290 Connector.

"Boston Biomedical Associates is extremely pleased to announce our relocation to the City of Marlborough and 100 Crowley Drive," said Baker. "We chose Marlborough as our new home because this community has a strong reputation of supporting the biotech industry and healthcare companies like ours, and we want to be a part of such a dynamic working environment."

BBA, a MassBio member, will be moving its 52 Massachusetts-based employees upstairs from the corporate headquarters of Park Place International, a healthcare IT services provider with offices across the U.S. and 45 employees in Marlborough.

“I’m pleased that my vision for this building as a local center for the biotech, healthcare and hi-tech industries is taking shape,” said Jon Delli Priscoli, CEO of First Colony Development (FCD), which built and owns the five-year-old building. “I want to welcome Boston Biomedical Associates to Crowley Drive, where they will join our first floor tenants, Park Place International. This new move further strengthens Marlborough’s position as a cluster for the life sciences industry. That’s why I think it is very fitting, and it is my honor, to host MassBio’s Regional Mixer at our state-of-the-art facility.”

The building’s location made it an ideal host for the MassBio Regional Mixer, which was sponsored by the Marlborough Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), BBA and FCD. Massachusetts State Representative Danielle Gregoire, Marlborough Mayor Arthur Vigeant, and MassBio President and CEO Robert K. Coughlin were among the more than 100 people in attendance.

“Massachusetts has been walking the walk on job creation and scientific innovation, and the continued expansion of the biotech industry is proof of that,” said Representative Gregoire. “As our economy continues to recover we, as partners in government, must support growth opportunity in any manner possible and celebrate achievement. We welcome Boston Biomedical Associates and look forward to working with them to ensure the best of our resources are available to their employees, as they begin this pivotal expansion.”

In addition to welcoming BBA to its new home, the MassBio Mixer was intended to showcase the I-495 and Marlborough region as a great place for biotech companies to do business.

“Our latest statistics show life sciences companies continue to expand throughout Massachusetts, bringing good jobs and economic activity to municipalities across the Commonwealth,” said Coughlin. “The City of Marlborough and its elected and business leaders have made all the right moves to position the city as a destination for the industry, and we are excited to see Boston Biomedical Associates recognize that effort and join the community. We will continue to support the growth of the 495 belt as a life sciences hub.”

In December 2012, MassBio upgraded the City of Marlborough to its highest rating of Platinum BioReady® Community, in recognition of the city’s unwavering commitment to foster and host biotechnology companies. In May this year, MassBio publically identified Marlborough as a growing hub for life sciences companies.

“We have set a goal for Marlborough to become the place to be for biotechnology companies,” said Mayor Vigeant, “and we are slowly but surely achieving this goal. We are proud to say that we are creating a dedicated life sciences community by attracting companies of all sizes and specialties. So, while we have larger, nationally recognized companies, like Boston Scientific and Quest Diagnostics, we are also nurturing and supporting the smaller innovators, who are at the heart of this fast-growing industry.

Applications sought for upcoming Miss India and Miss India Teen contest in Lexington

September 21, 2013 02:55 PM

The following was submitted by Ruchika Arora, State Director, Miss India and Miss India Teen-2013

Applications are invited to take part as a contestant in ‘Miss India and Miss India Teen’-2013. The pageant is designed for girls of Indian heritage and has been running in various states in USA for more than 20 years by India Festival Committee of New York. (a non-profit organization).

There is an opportunity for a possible moment of Titles, Tiaras, Sashes, Prizes, lots of pride as an Indian-American. Winner of Miss India category will receive $500 in cash and gift certificates, winner of Teen category will receive other rewards. The awards/recognitions are Winner, Runner up, Miss Viewers Choice, Miss Talented, Miss Photogenic. Winner goes to Miss INDIA USA. There will be one more contestant selected from each state who will also proceed to Miss India USA-2013.

The two categories based on age group are - Miss India (17 to 27 years) and Miss India TEEN (13 to 16 years).

First step is to write an email or call 978-866-8777 for questions. Entries have just opened and they are expected to close soon. Last date to send the application form is October 15, 2013. Please go to website to read and download the ‘Rules, Regulations and General Information’ and the ‘Application Form’. Also, do not forget to read ‘Why Miss India and Miss India Teen’ on the website.

The Glorious day will be November 9th, 2013 and a wonderful show with talented, beautiful contestants and number of performers will be held at National Heritage Museum, Lexington MA. Contestants will participate in Evening Gown and Indian Ethnic Dress rounds. The winner is decided after Question-Answer segment among selected five/seven finalists based on their scores from first two rounds.

It will be a day for all Indian-American girls to feel lots of pride about their heritage and a unique celebration of culture.

Our Inspirations:

“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”


Ruchika Arora

State Director
Miss India and Miss India Teen-2013
(Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire)

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