Blog - Williamstown, MA
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Starting 3/19, we are temporarily suspending the requirement to use Town trash bags when bringing trash to the Transfer Station. This is valid only for users who currently hold a Williamstown Transfer Station sticker.

We are doing this as a means of reducing the need for unnecessary contact to purchase bags either from Town Hall or other retailers that sell them.

Please note that this relief is intended only for material that would have otherwise gone into a Town trash bag – please continue to reduce and recycle as much as possible.

The Mount Greylock Regional School District  is making a free “Grab and Go” option available for ANYONE IN WILLIAMSTOWN who may need the service at the Williamstown Elementary School for the next three weeks between 9:30 and 10:30 daily. It’s essentially take out, you call them, they’ll prepare the lunch. The meal itself is basically a sandwich, fruit cup, etc. Individuals who are unable to consume cold cuts due to dietary or religious restrictions. You are able to request substitutions when requesting a meal.

The procedure to follow for these meals is;

Call or email the food service department THE DAY BEFORE using the following:

Phone 413.458.9582×1195

Email: lunches@mgrhs.org

Leave a message indicating the number of lunches you need.

You’ll need to leave your name and in order to assist in the planning and preparation, please indicate whether you’ll be accessing the meal over the remaining days-it’s currently slated to end April 6th.

Meals can be picked up at the school’s main entrance on Church Street.

If you need delivery, please note that in your message.

The Spring routine of mailing the 2nd installment of the Real Estate and Personal Property tax bills was well underway prior to the changes impacting our community due to the Covid-19 response.We recognize that this is not an ideal time for some to be receiving these bills given the current uncertainty. While the Town is in a strong financial position, we cannot operate and meet the obligations of funding our schools and Town without sending these bills twice a year. Now, more than ever, we are aware that unforeseen circumstances and hardships can make it challenging to meet these obligations.Should you foresee having difficulty in your ability to make your payment, please contact me to work out an arrangement that may help alleviate the pressures of meeting the deadline. I am happy to work with you to find an approach that can help. It is important, though, that we actually have a conversation prior to the eventual due date. While it is always more pleasant to have these conversations in person, email and telephone are our healthiest options in the near future.

Kind Regards,  

Rachel Vadnais

Treasurer/Collector

Town of Williamstown

31 North St.Williamstown, MA  01267

413-458-9342

rvadnais@williamstownma.gov

News of note from Council on Aging; March 17, 2020.

Happy St. Pats!

Our friends at Stop and Shop recognize that this Coronavirus outbreak has the potential to be very problematic to the senior population. In response to the current situation, they have changed their operational systems starting this week on Thursday to accommodate our older friends and neighbors.

Beginning Thursday March 19th, every Stop and Shop store will be open earlier in order to service customers who are aged 60 and older from 6:00 to 7:30 AM daily. They have made this decision to allow elders the opportunity to shop in a less crowded environment, effectively allowing the process of social distancing to be used. It’s also a time before anyone else enters the building.

 There will be a designated entrance, it will be identified as the door to use for this early  shopping option. In North Adams, the designated entry will be the door on the produce side of the building, or, if you will, the front door on the left.  They will not be checking identification at the door but they ask that the reason for the early opening be respected. Stop and Shop staff do reserve the right to ask anyone who is obviously not an elder to leave the store.

To assist in the facilitation of this process, the Williamstown COA van will be able to bring people to the North Adams Stop and Shop on Tuesday and Thursday weekly starting March 24th and continuing at least until the week of April 6th. Contact the Harper Center at 458.8250 at least before 2:00 PM on the preceding Monday and Wednesday to advise us of your interest.

Additionally, the Mount Greylock Regional School District  is making a “Grab and Go” option available for elders at the Williamstown Elementary School for the next three weeks between 9:30 and 10:30 daily. It’s essentially take out, you call them, they’ll prepare the lunch. The meal itself is basically a sandwich, fruit cup, etc. Individuals who are unable to consume cold cuts due to sodium content are able to request substitutions likely egg salad or something similar.

The procedure to follow for these meals is;

Call or email the food service department THE DAY BEFORE using the following:

Phone 413.458.9582×1195

Email: lunches@mgrhs.org

Leave a message indicating the number of lunches you need.

You’ll need to leave your name and in order to assist in the planning and preparation, please indicate whether you’ll be accessing the meal over the remaining days-it’s currently slated to end April 6th.

Meals can be picked up at the school’s main entrance on Church Street.

Additional food resources as of today, March 17, 2020  include the following;

The Al Nelson Food Pantry in North Adams and the Williamstown Food Pantry at St Patrick/St. Raphael Church are both still open but with different operating strategies to help minimize the risk of Coronavirus exposure. Wednesday March 18th.

The Berkshire Food Project is open M-W-F currently, usual time for them, 12:00-1:00. There will be two meals prepared on Mondays and Wednesdays for take out on Tuesday and Thursday. You can find these take away meals in the breezeway, no access to the building will happen on Tuesday or Thursday.

The Community Bible Church is open this Wednesday, March 18 from 12-2:00. For emergency food needs call the church at 458.5556 or Phyllis Babcock at 663.6094

The FoodBank of Western Massachusetts Mobile Food Pantries are still operating, 10-11:00 in Adams on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday and 10-11:00 in North Adams, 1st and 3rd Fridays. The monthly Brown Bag delivery is cancelled at least for March.

Elder Services Meals on Wheels are still operating and being delivered as usual.

The North Adams Baptist Church will offer take out meals on Saturday March 28th, 11-12:00 only.

Finally, the Salvation Army Food Pantry, they’re in North Adams, operates Tuesday afternoons from 12:30 to 3:00. Receive food at the front door. 

That’s it for today folks. Stay safe out there!

March 16, 2020

Dear Mount Greylock Regional School District Community,

We are writing to give the community an update on the status of our closure and available resources and to remind families about accessing meals over the next three weeks. As was mentioned in the call and letter on Friday, the Mount Greylock Regional School District will remain closed until March 30, 2020. Based on the Governor’s decision last night, we will extend that period and remain closed until Tuesday, April 7. 2020. This decision was made in an effort to limit any potential exposure of our students and staff to the COVID-19 novel coronavirus.

The community recognizes that our families may be challenged to provide nutritious meals for their children during this unexpected time away from school. As such, the Mount Greylock Regional School District will be offering access to grab-and-go lunches Monday through Friday for the next three weeks. Meals will be available for pick-up at the Lanesborough Elementary School and Williamstown Elementary School main entrances between 9:30 and 10:30 each day.  In an attempt to assist the district in planning, you are asked to:

Call or email the food service department the day before using the following:

  • Phone: (413) 458-9582 x1195
  • Email: lunches@mgrhs.org
  • Leave a message that includes the number of lunches you need and which school will be your pick-up location: Lanesborough Elementary School or Williamstown Elementary School 
  • Please identify the student name(s) for whom you are picking up meals.
  • In order to assist us in advance planning, please indicate whether you will be accessing this meal service over the remaining days.

It is our sincere desire to help students feel connected to school and intellectually engaged during the closure, and the Department of Education is expecting schools to provide enrichment resources for students as a means of staying connected with school. However, distance learning programs are not being recognized by DESE as formal time on learning, and to that end schools are not being asked to replicate a regular school day nor course content. As a district, we will provide resources that can be used independently. When able, students may find teachers communicating with families directly about extension activities as well. Please note that these learning experiences are not mandatory and are not credit bearing. However, we encourage students to participate as a way of keeping themselves intellectually engaged. 

If your child currently receives special education services, you will be receiving outreach from the Acting Director of Pupil Services, Patrick Priester, in the coming days. Many of the educational links we have provided will help your child maintain skills during the closure. If you have questions, please feel free to contact Mr. Priester at ppriester@mgrhs.org.

Regarding spring season athletics, please know that the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) has delayed the start of the season to a date to be determined this afternoon. As such, there will be no tryouts for athletic teams until that date. Should this change, you will be notified by Lindsey von Holtz, Director of Athletics and Co-Curriculars.

In closing, these are unprecedented times, and this drastic step is meant to provide reduced exposure for students, staff members, and their families. Please continue doing the recommended actions for maintaining health such as frequent hand washing, social distancing, rest, hydration, exercise and good nutrition. We would like to thank everyone in advance for their anticipated cooperation and understanding as we navigate this challenge. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.

We appreciate everyone’s understanding and patience during this difficult time. If you have any further questions or concerns please contact Superintendent Kimberley Grady (413) 652-5767. 

Click here to review district Frequently Asked Questions or visit the Coronavirus page on the district website at https://www.wlschools.org/page.cfm?p=1137.

Sincerely,

Kimberley Grady, Superintendent

Andrea Wadsworth, Assistant Superintendent of Business and Finance

Robert Wnuk, Director of Operations

Eileen Belastock, Director of Academic Technology

Patrick Priester, Acting Director of Pupil Services

Mary MacDonald, Principal

Jacob N. Schutz, Asst. Principal

Joelle Brookner, Principal

Elea Kaatz, Asst. Principal

Nolan Pratt, Principal 

Tim Sears, Director of Building and Ground

Tammy Jennings, Food Service Director

Adjustments ahead for Town operations.

In response to evolving conditions due to Covid-19, Town Hall will be closed to the public beginning Monday, March 16th. Nearly all services are available online at www.williamstownma.gov, including tax payments and building permits. Alternatively, tax and excise payments, parking tickets and dog license materials can be left in the dropbox outside the front door 24 hours a day. Lastly, all items can be mailed to us at 31 North Street, Williamstown, 01267.


Further, please consider buying at least a 30 day supply of trash bags if you use the Transfer Station. Bags are available at Aubuchon, Wild Oats and Stop and Shop. If you are buying them from the Town, we are implementing a curbside delivery program. You can pull up to the front of Town Hall, call the Tax Office at 413-458-3500, then press 2 to be connected directly. Advise them of your amount and they will be brought to you. Exact change or check is preferred.


If you have any questions about using any of these alternatives or we’ve missed your specific critical need, feel free to contact Town Hall at 413-458-3500 or send an email to comment@williamstownma.gov and it will be routed to the appropriate staff member. We will also be available to set appointments if your request does require an in person presence.
The state has allowed flexibility in conducting public meetings in a manner that does not require physical presence. We are working closely with WIllinet to develop guidance on how that will work. There are no public meetings scheduled in the coming week, allowing us time to work through the details which we will share in advance of a meeting using this format.
We have previously shared posts from our Council on Aging providing specific information about their programming and services. All of their group programs have been postponed indefinitely with individual appointment services continuing. Van service will continue; however, if you have concerns about virus exposure, those questions should be directed to 911 as they have the appropriate safety protocols in place.
Similarly, the Library closed earlier today. As they review operations and interim services, their updates will be available on their web page, the Town’s and each of of Facebook pages.


In addition to the closure of Williamstown Elementary School and Mount Greylock Regional School, and at the guidance of the Williamstown Board of Health, the Youth Center, Pine Cobble and Williamstown Community Preschool will be closed as well.


We recognize that all of these closures can pose a number of challenges. All of us continue to work closely together to review current guidance from state, regional and local officials to develop strategies. This continues to be a quickly moving situation. Please check regularly for updates as our actions continue to evolve. Additionally, we recognize there are consequences we have yet to consider. Please do not hesitate to contact us with questions or concerns.


Our local health systems are providing regularly updated information about Covid-19 and telephone hotlines for more detail.

Berkshire Health Systems

Southwestern Vermont Health Care