Look Ahead, Pittsfield: Mayor Tyer to deliver last State of the City address of her term

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From new developments to job creation, Mayor Linda Tyer has some things under her hat that she's proud of.

She'll air them during the annual State of the City address, which kicks off 5:30 p.m. Monday at Taconic High School. The traditional January address will be her last before the mayoral election season heats up later this year.

Surely to be highlighted in the presentation: the red carpet her administration laid out for Wayfair, which will soon bring 300 jobs into the city.

The City Council could take a final vote this week on the issue of a police advisory board, during the council's regularly scheduled meeting 7 p.m. Tuesday in Council Chambers. A proposal from Tyer to form the new board, as amended both by councilors and by the local branch of the NAACP's social justice action committee, won support last month from the City Council Committee on Ordinances and Rules, signaling what could be a close to months of debate on the issue of police accountability.

The Pittsfield Police Department will host a recruitment event at Taconic High School at 4 p.m. Tuesday. Members of the department will be on hand to demonstrate equipment and discuss the functions of various units within the department, and at 6 p.m. they'll give a presentation on the process of becoming a police officer.

The department has struggled for years to beef up its ranks and stay ahead of attrition, which leaders have argued would reduce the amount of stress placed on officers and money spent on police overtime. The department had 87 officers as of November, while Police Chief Michael Wynn says best practices say the department should have about 120 officers.

Countdown to cannabis

Marijuana retailers at Temescal Wellness in Pittsfield and Theory Wellness in Great Barrington are preparing for a recreational launch that could come any day now. Both await a final nod from the state to commence sales, and are the only two in the county to have received final licenses.

While the county awaits initial sales, the Pittsfield marijuana market is growing. Pure Botanicals is looking to set up a cannabis cultivation and retail operation at 239 West St., and on Tuesday will ask the city's Community Development Board to approve a site plan for the property. The board will also review a site plan for Pittsfield Investment Group, which aims to put a marijuana retail facility at 531 Dalton Ave. The meeting will take place at 6 p.m. in City Hall room 203.

Both proposals would require final approval from the Zoning Board of Appeals. If granted, they would join seven other Pittsfield marijuana shops in the making.

Heads up

Bridges Out of Poverty, a training program that aims to help community partners better understand cycles of economic instability, reconvenes this week — this time with an eye toward mitigating poverty from an institutional standpoint. The workshop runs from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Thursday at the Country Club of Pittsfield, and those who wish to attend can register online at eventbrite.com.

Don't forget to place your Christmas trees curbside this week if your trash day is Monday or Friday. Residents with other pickup days may have to wait until next week, or take them directly to Covanta or to local farms accepting them. Hungry goats at Hokaneh Farm in Housatonic and Mountain Girl Farm in North Adams would also love to have them.

What's up in Pittsfield? Tell me via email at adrane@berkshireeagle.com, or by phone at 413-496-6296. Follow me on Twitter @amandadrane.

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