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Gas spill forces garage teardown as soil, water cleanup continues

Gas spill forces garage teardown as soil, water cleanup continues

By Shawn Cunningham Homeowner Joel Brookes watches each day as trucks haul away more and more contaminated soil from his land following the May 16 tanker accident that spilled 2,500 gallons of gasoline into his garden. At first, the cleanup was a small affair, but as gasoline reached the Williams River on May 21, the […]

Select board hears from residents for, against transitional housing

Select board hears from residents for, against transitional housing

By Shawn Cunningham A small number of Chester residents turned out at the Wednesday, May 21, Select Board meeting to voice concern over a proposal by the Justice Center of Springfield  to buy or rent a four-bedroom house in Chester to serve as transitional housing for inmates being released from the prison in Springfield. Justice […]

Despite objections, Select Board votes Chester officer 3 months insurance after resignation

Despite objections, Select Board votes Chester officer 3 months insurance after resignation

By Shawn Cunningham and Cynthia Prairie Over the protests of a number of town residents, the Chester Select Board Friday night voted to extend three months of town employee health insurance and to pay accrued vacation time to Paul Larochelle as a condition of his resignation from the Chester Police Department. The agreement was negotiated […]

Chester Select Board calls special meeting Friday, May 23, 2014

The Chester Select Board has called a special meeting for Friday, May 23 at 6 p.m. The meeting will be held at Town Hall, 556 Elm St. in Chester. Below is its agenda. 1. LaRochelle Resignation 2. Adjourn

Chester officer resigns after six-month administrative leave

Chester officer resigns after six-month administrative leave

By Cynthia Prairie Chester Police officer Paul Larochelle has sent a letter of resignation to the Town of Chester, in effect ending an administrative leave that began Nov. 18, 2013 following an undisclosed complaint. Local police would not reveal the details of the complaint or the reasons behind the administrative leave. In the meantime, the […]

'The fuel has made the water' - Fire Chief Matt Wilson

‘The fuel has made the water’ – Fire Chief Matt Wilson

On Wednesday morning — May 21 — Joel Brookes was walking his dog Buddy near the Williams River behind his home on Route 11 near Goldthwaite Road. He smelled gasoline and looked down to see – clearly through the polarized lenses of his sunglasses – the sheen of gas pouring out of the bank below […]

Planning board makes a few changes to Chester zoning regs

Planning board makes a few changes to Chester zoning regs

By Cynthia Prairie There were few but nonetheless vocal members of the public at Monday evening’s Planning Commission 90-minute hearing to garner feedback on its proposals that, when approved, will create Chester’s first Unified Development Bylaws. Those bylaws revise and combine zoning regulations, subdivision regulations and flood hazard standards. Following Monday’s meeting, the five-member commission […]

Route 11 followups: Cleanup underway at gas tanker accident site; fire probe continues

Route 11 followups: Cleanup underway at gas tanker accident site; fire probe continues

9 .m. Wednesday, May 21: Gasoline from the accident has begun to reach the Williams River. Chester Fire and Police departments and the Springfield Fire department were on the scene putting down booms, as was homeowner Joel Brookes. The Agency of Natural Resources has been called to the scene. Read the update here. By Shawn […]

Developers outline new plan for Chester town solar farm

Developers outline new plan for Chester town solar farm

By Shawn Cunningham   A new plan for the Chester town solar farm was unveiled Monday morning, as the Chester Select Board and about 10 residents gathered at the Jeffrey well site on Route 103 North to look at  plans for the 500 megawatt solar farm that will be built there – possibly as early […]

AGENDA CHANGE – Chester Select Board meeting for Wednesday, May 21, 2014

The Chester Select Board will meet at 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 21, for its bimonthly public meeting. The meeting will take place at Town Hall, 556 Elm St. Below is its agenda. Agenda for the Chester Select Board 1. Citizen Comments 2. Old Business 3. Adopt Emergency Operations Plan 4. AT&T Lease: Paul Debole 5. […]

A Photo Gallery: Crews work to right tractor-trailer in turnover

A Photo Gallery: Crews work to right tractor-trailer in turnover

All photos by Shawn Cunningham. On the Cover: Damage is evident after the tractor-trailer was righted Friday evening. Here’s the link to the full story. We’ve updated the gallery with photos of crews righting the tractor-trailer Friday evening. Click a photo to launch gallery.

BREAKING: Tanker truck overturns at Route 11; eyewitness hears BOOM, sees sliding truck

BREAKING: Tanker truck overturns at Route 11; eyewitness hears BOOM, sees sliding truck

  UPDATE: 5:27 p.m. Click here for the photo gallery of the day’s events. UPDATE: 12:15 p.m. One school bus will be diverted from route. See bottom of story; UPDATE: 11:45 a.m.; UPDATE: 10:08 a.m.; UPDATE: 9:40 a.m. By Shawn Cunningham These are early reports meant to inform and help residents and drivers navigate throughout […]

Special Chester Select Board meeting on Monday, May 19

The Chester Select Board will be meeting at 9 a.m. Monday, May 19 to tour the site of the town solar farm on Route 103 North across from Trebo Road on the Town Well property. Here is the agenda: 1. Tour Town Solar Farm site; Town well-site on Route 103 North 2. Adjourn

Inmate transitional house proposed; water rates still up in air

Inmate transitional house proposed; water rates still up in air

  By Shawn Cunningham Among several long time discussions – including water rates and the solar farm – Chester’s Select Board heard about a plan to place a transitional housing facility for up to three inmates in a house that is yet to be selected in Chester. Wendi Germain of the Springfield Justice Center appeared […]

An Analysis: Part 4: Chester's proposed bylaws need further changes, enforcement

An Analysis: Part 4: Chester’s proposed bylaws need further changes, enforcement

  This is the last in a series of articles about the proposed Unified Development Bylaws, which revise and combine zoning regulations, subdivision regulations and flood hazard standards. Proposed changes will affect many landowners. At 7 p.m. Monday, May 19, the Chester Planning Commission will meet at Chester Town Hall, 556 Elm St., to hear […]

1822 Field Farm house in Chester destroyed in 'suspicious' early morning blaze

1822 Field Farm house in Chester destroyed in ‘suspicious’ early morning blaze

      By Shawn Cunningham At 4:30 Monday morning, Chester firefighters responded to a house fire at the corner of Blue Hill Road and Route 11 west in Chester.  The fire destroyed the brick and shingle-siding Field Farm, built in 1822 and owned by Ferren and Leah Bratton. Leah Bratton had been the director […]

Chester Police Log for Jan. 21-April 26, 2014

Editor’s Note: The Chester Telegraph Police Log is a sampling of incidents directly from Chester Police reports. We do not identify individual victims of crimes nor those who have been arrested.  Tuesday, Jan. 21, 12:15 p.m. Police assisted the Fire Department in a call for a chimney fire on Popple Dungeon Road that started when […]

Development Bylaws Part 3: Low noise limits, smaller signs among changes

Development Bylaws Part 3: Low noise limits, smaller signs among changes

This is the third in a series of articles on Chester’s proposed development bylaws, which include new zoning, subdivision and flood hazard mitigation regulations. To read the proposed bylaws click here and to see the town-wide zoning map click here. Read the first two articles in this series: Proposed Zoning Districts and Proposed Uses. By […]

GM Honor Society inducts 10 new members

GM Honor Society inducts 10 new members

The Flamstead Chapter of the National Honor Society inducted 10 new members in a ceremony and celebration on Thursday, April 24 at Green Mountain Union High School in Chester. The 93-year-old National Honor Society, with chapters in all 50 states, honors students who have “demonstrated excellence in the areas of Scholarship, Leadership, Service and Character,” […]

Chester Select Board meeting for Wednesday, May 7, 2014

The Chester Select Board will meet at 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 7 at Town Hall, 556 Elm St. in Chester. Below is its agenda. 1. Approve Minutes from April 16, 2014 2. Citizen Comments 3. Old Business 4. Request to use the Gazebo on the Town Green: Laurie Nowlan 5. Halfway House Proposal: Wendi Germain […]

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