Saturday July 7, 2012

PITTSFIELD -- Gov. Dev al Patrick is establishing a local office so that Berk shire County residents can voice their concerns and question his staffers once a month.

The sessions will begin on Tuesday, July 24, in Room 102 of the state office building on 333 East St. The hours are 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Walk-in hours will take place after regular hours on the fourth Tuesday of every month.

"I’ll be in that office from time to time as well," Patrick told The Eagle. Lt. Gov. Timothy Murray also plans to visit the Pittsfield office to hear from residents directly.

Until now, the administration’s closest regional office has been in Springfield, which Patrick described as "very busy. It’s mostly constituent work Š Having the presence in western Mass achusetts turns out to be really important to people."

He explained that his staffers have received feedback from Berkshire County residents "about having some time when they could just go around the corner, comparatively."

Based on the level of demand, the status of the new Pittsfield office, which is described as a pilot, will be re-assessed in a few months.

-- Clarence Fanto