PITTSFIELD — It’s Memorial Day weekend, and the city is celebrating with events held in the wake of the state lifting nearly all of its remaining COVID-19 restrictions.

Said rules being lifted has paved the way for City Hall, the Berkshire Athenaeum and the Senior Center to return to normal operations starting Tuesday.

While Monday still holds the threat of rain, the city plans to move ahead with its 10 a.m. Memorial Day Ceremony at Pittsfield Cemetery on Wahconah Street, which will spotlight speaker Staff Sergeant P.J. Hunt of the Army National Guard — also airing on PCTV.

And, the rescheduled grand opening community celebration at Westside Riverway Park is happening Monday at 1 p.m. at the new gem in the city’s West Side neighborhood, when all are welcome to join in on the festivities that will feature music, dance and more.

Following the state’s lead, the Board of Health at its meeting Wednesday will rescind local orders that set in place industry safety standards at restaurants.

With restaurants in mind, it’s worth taking a moment, dear reader, to shout out our local hospitality workers, who kept us fed during the pandemic and headed into the historically busy Memorial Day weekend on the heels of the state lifting its restrictions.

The springtime season of budget hearings has passed the mid-way mark, with councilors Tuesday set to take up Mayor Linda Tyer’s $11,721,231 spending proposal for the Pittsfield Police Department. Her plan for next fiscal year allocates $397,002 additional dollars to PPD, a figure likely to raise concerns among the counselors who last year voted to trim police spending.

Also up for council debate at Tuesday’s Committee of a Whole meeting is Tyer’s $8,781,434 proposed budget for the fire department, up $354,476 from this fiscal year, and her $26,400 level-funded request for Emergency Management.

Capping this year’s series of five budget hearings, Wednesday will see councilors take up funding proposals for workers compensation costs, finance and administration, and unclassified expenses — which end up north of $53.8 million including $25.3 million for employee health insurance.

Heads up

Wheels for Wellness is launching on Tuesday. The free ride service by RSPV of Berkshire County will provide no-cost transportation for county residents of any age to medical or social services visits, appointments, fitness classes, therapy and vaccination sites, according to the city. Schedule a ride by calling the initiative’s hotline at 413-395-0109, with rides available weekdays between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. The service is the result of a collaboration between RSVP and Berkshire Community Action Council, Berkshire Fallon Health Collaborative, Community Health Programs, Berkshire Interfaith Organizing as well as Berkshire Health Systems.

Downtown Pittsfield Inc. is developing a plan to help local businesses rebound from the often devastating economic effects of the pandemic, and wants to hear from local business owners about the projects and initiatives they believe would help the recovery. DPI will also present findings from a recent survey of commerce leaders as part of developing its forthcoming Local Rapid Recovery Plan.

Amanda Burke can be reached at aburke@berkshireeagle.com, on Twitter @amandaburkec and 413-496-6296.

Cops and Courts Reporter

Amanda Burke is Cops and Courts Reporter for The Berkshire Eagle. An Ithaca, New York native, she previously worked at The Herald News of Fall River and the Fitchburg Sentinel & Enterprise.