Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Candidates for state Senate debate publicly on Wednesday at 7 p.m. at MCLA's Church Street Center

Downing -- not seeking re-election
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. -- The third in a series of debates among the candidates for Massachusetts State Senate for the Berkshires takes place tomorrow (Wednesday, Aug. 17) at the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA).

Democratic contenders are  Andrea Harrington, of Richmond, Rinaldo Del Gallo, of Lenox and Adam Hinds of Pittsfield.  The last faced-off on Aug. 11 at Berkshire Community College.  The primary election is Sept. 8.  Also participating at MCLA on Wednesday will be Republican candidate Christine Canning, of Lanesborough.

North Adams City Councilor Lisa Blackmer has put together the format on behalf of the city's Democratic committee, with moderation provided by the Williamstown League of Women Voters -- so the gathering is non-partisan and will include the GOP candidate as well as three Democrats.  Blackmer says that with the candidates espousing similiar positions on some key issues, she hopes this gathering will focus a bit on how they plan to represent the county.

The event begins at 7 p.m. sharp in the Church Street Center at MCLA and will run until 9 p.m.  Questions will come from the audience and from three blogger-reporters -- Tammy Daniels, managing editor of iBerkshires.com; Jason Velazquez, owner-editor of TheGreylockGlass.com and Bill Densmore, who blogs at greylocknews.com.

Technically the race is for the First Berkshire, Franklin, Hampshire and Hampden District for a seat being vacated by Benjamin Downing, who decided not to seek re-election.