Fallout From WMass Lab Scandal Begins

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Fallout From WMass Lab Scandal Begins

(Springfield, MA) — Western Mass may be seeing the fallout of its own state drug lab scandal. Criminal defense lawyer Luke Ryan is seeking all evidence used to prosecute former state chemist Sonja Farak. The Northampton woman faces trial next year for allegedly stealing drug evidence and tampering with samples while working at the crime lab in Amherst. Ryan says he needs the evidence about Farak to defend a Springfield man accused of being a cocaine and heroin dealer. In the Boston area, hundreds of inmates have been set free because of alleged evidence tampering by Annie Dookhan, another former state chemist.

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Making headlines this week


A look at some of this week's biggest headlines and the newsmakers you may have missed.

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Roundabout Proposed for Northampton Coolidge Bridge


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Longer Days A Possibility for Holyoke Schools

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Lengthening of the school day is part of a plan proposed by state officials in their three-year "turnaround" plan for Holyoke's schools, elements of which will be phased in beginning as early as next school year.

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Greenfield Wood Stove Regulation Debate Gets Fiery

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At a town council subcommittee informational forum on the issue earlier this week, one councilor suggested that the town should consider an ordinance imposing minimum air quality standards on home wood burning devices.

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Packard’s Owner Condemns City Council Support for Hotel Unionization

Hotel Northampton workers march to unionize. Courtesy of Jerrey Roberts, Daily Hampshire Gazette

At last night's Council meeting, the owner of Packard's directly addressed City Council President Bill Dwight and Ward 3 Councilor Ryan O'Donnell condemning their choice to march with hotel workers to deliver a message of an intent to unionize, to Hotel Northampton owner Mansour Ghalibaf.