Heard on WCAI's Morning Edition

Communities across the region are doing whatever they can to increase and improve access to addiction services, as the numbers of people addicted to pain pills and heroin appears to be increasing rather than relenting.

On the South Coast, the New Bedford City Council recently sent a letter to six surrounding towns, asking for their help in addressing what's commonly called the opioid crisis. The Dartmouth Select Board took issue with the letter, saying it implied that the towns aren't doing enough.

WCAI

The Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe is using a 5-year federal Health and Human Services grant to develop a strategic plan to tackle addiction issues among its members. The work includes gathering data though detailed community assessments that gauge what people are thinking, doing, and feeling about addiction and other health issues.

WCAI's Kathryn Eident spoke with Hope Shwom, tribal action plan coordinator for the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe, to learn more.

Advocates on the South Coast have launched an effort to make it easier for the homeless to access services.

WCAI's Brian Morris talked about the new program named, "The Call," with Jennifer Clarke, deputy director of Planning and Community Development for New Bedford.
 

Mashpee Public Schools website

The misdemeanor case against Mashpee Superintendent Brian Hyde ended this week when a judge ruled there wasn't enough evidence to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. The judge made this so-called 'directed verdict' despite the fact that it was a jury trial.

Hyde was charged with trespassing and breaking and entering after resident Marilyn King accused him of entering her home without permission last fall during a residency check for her daughter who was re-enrolling in the high school. He apologized in a letter to the editor yesterday.

One of Cape Cod’s most congested intersections is set for a major overhaul.

The state plans to re-design the intersection of Yarmouth Road and Route 28 in Hyannis. The intersection, which is near the Airport Rotary, is notorious for long backups and difficult turning lanes.

WHOI.org

The ship that helped find the wreck of the Titanic and life at undersea hydrothermal vents will soon be operated by the Mexican Navy.

The US Navy transferred ownership of the the Research Vessel Knorr to Mexico late last year as part of the decommissioning process. The ship has been an icon in Woods Hole village for the last year and a half, while officials at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution waited for the government to decide the ship's fate.

Three Harbors Site Assessment document

Nantucket Sound will soon become home to one of a handful of artificial reefs in the state.

Harwich officials worked with the state's fisheries department to select material from the old Harwich High School to make the reef, which will sit in piles along the mostly sandy seafloor. The goal is to attract fish and boost recreational fishing.

WCAI's Kathryn Eident talked with Biologist Mark Rousseau of the state's Division of Marine Fisheries to learn more.

Flickr

Livestock farmers on the South Coast will break ground on a new slaughterhouse in Westport in the coming weeks. The USDA-approved 10-thousand-square foot facility will be able to process cattle, sheep, goats, pigs and other livestock when it tentatively comes online later this year.   

The Southeastern Massachusetts Livestock Association is spearheading the $5 million project. Kathryn Eident spoke with association president Andy Burns to learn more.

capecodfd.com

New Bedford officials are temporarily closing some fire stations at night.

New Bedford currently has ten fire stations, but only enough firefighters to staff nine of them at any given time. In an effort to save money, the city instituted a policy of “rolling brownouts,” where one station may close on a rotating basis on certain days.

At the moment, New Bedford can’t afford to hire any new firefighters, so spiraling overtime costs have forced city officials to extend those brownouts to nighttime hours.

Audobon.org

State wildlife officials are applying for a federal permit to allow more flexibility in managing piping plover habitat on state and town land.

Federal law prohibits any activity that may put piping plover at risk -- the permit would help managers find a balance between protecting this endangered bird and allowing humans access to the beaches the birds nest on. The U.S. Fisheries and Wildlife Service is taking public comment on the state's proposal through February 19th.

 

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