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Drought Conditions Worsen in CT River Valley

On Tuesday, August 9th, MA Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Beth Card escalated the Connecticut River Valley to a Level 3-Critical Drought.

View water conservation tips, continue to follow any local city or town conservation restrictions, and monitor the drought status at: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/drought-status.

Massachusetts Climate Change Assessment: Project introduction and statewide climate impacts

Register for one of four climate conversations to join a statewide conversation on climate change impacts – such as extreme heat and flooding – affecting you, your families, and your community. The MA Executive Office of Energy & Environmental Affairs is hosting these conversations to inform the 2022 Massachusetts Climate Change Assessment. Your feedback will be used to inform how the state prioritizes actions to address these challenges as part of the upcoming 2022 State Hazard Mitigation and Climate Adaptation Plan (for more information and to view the 2018 Plan, visit: https://resilientma.org/home.html)

The 4 upcoming conversation sessions are scheduled for

  • 3/1/22 – 11:30 a.m.
  • 3/3/22 – 1:00 p.m.
  • 3/8/22 – 11:30 a.m.
  • 3/9/22 – 6:00  p.m.

Register for any of the four choices at: https://bit.ly/3JmIu2S

View the flyer: English
View the flyer: Spanish

COVID-19 Data and Updates

For an archive of all the emails sent by the state on re-opening, click here
For a Franklin County data dashboard from the Public Health Institute of Western MA, click here.
For the state’s COVID data page, click here.
For the latest situation reports from the MA COVID Command Center, click here.
For the COG’s COVID Municipal Resources Page click here.
For the COG’s Board of Health COVID Resources Page click here.
For local public health COVID case management contacts (public health nurses), click here. 
For the Region 1 Health and Medical Coordinating Coalition, click here.
For resources and guidance for businesses, organizations, entrepreneurs, and job seekers, click here.

Click here for testing resources

 

 

To read the FRCOG’s Municipal Leader COVID-19 updates:

Millers River Watershed in Critical Drought Condition

Due to five months of below-normal rainfall, Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Kathleen Theoharides declared a Level 3 – Critical Drought in the Southeast Region of the Commonwealth and in the Millers and Charles River watersheds. The other six regions across the state — the Western, Connecticut River Valley, Central, Northeast, Cape Cod, and Islands regions— remain at a Level 2 – Significant Drought.

For more information on the current drought conditions, and technical guidance regarding drought management actions, please visit www.mass.gov/ma-drought-management.

Halloween During COVID: Spooky and Safe!

In response to requests from town administrators and board of health members in a number of towns, the FRCOG has pulled together a Halloween COVID safety poster with tips for both trick-or-treaters and those they visit.

Communities can request hard copies (11×17) by calling 413-774-3167 extension 1 and leaving a message or download it here: FRCOG halloween safety tips poster

Helpful links:

https://www.mass.gov/news/halloween-during-covid-19

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays.html#halloween

How to make a candy chute for safe dispensing of candy.

 

tips for safe trick or treating and celebrating

West Nile Virus and EEE are back! Prevent Mosquito Bites!

Mosquitoes can spread diseases that make you sick. In Massachusetts, mosquitoes can give you eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) virus or West Nile virus (WNV). EEE can cause severe illness and possibly lead to death in any age group. EEE does not occur every year, but based on mosquito sampling, a high risk of occurrence of human cases currently exists.

Outbreaks of EEE usually occur in Massachusetts every 10-20 years. These outbreaks will typically last two to three years. The most recent outbreak of EEE in Massachusetts began in 2019 and included twelve cases with six fatalities. The first EEE positive mosquito sample within the State this season was detected in Orange on 7/2/20 and Wendell 7/6/20. Risk levels remain elevated through to frost.

The best way to avoid both of these illnesses is to prevent mosquito bites.

You can be bitten at any time. Most mosquitoes are active from just before dusk, through the night until dawn.

There are steps that you can take to protect yourself and your family from mosquito bites, and the illnesses they can cause.

Protect yourself from illness by doing simple things:

  • Use insect repellents any time you are outdoors
  • Wear long-sleeved clothing
  • Schedule outdoor activities to avoid the hours from dusk to dawn during peak mosquito season
  • Repair damaged window and door screens
  • Remove standing water from the areas around your home

See a video from DPH on EEE here: https://youtu.be/VekccoVW6aQ

For more information, including current maps of risk levels and findings of EEE and WNV in Massachusetts see https://www.mass.gov/mosquitoes-and-ticks or contact Regional Public Health Nurse Lisa White for more information at 413-665-1400 x 114.

 

FRCOG is hiring!

Would you or someone you know like to join our team?

Please check out the positions available here by visiting our Employment Page!

 

What is the state of emergency preparedness in Franklin County?

The Emergency Preparedness Program, with input from selectboards, town administrators, police, fire, emergency medical services, public health, and emergency managers, has completed its report on the state of emergency preparedness in Franklin County. The “Emergency Preparedness Program Future Plans” chapter, beginning on page 15, outlines how FRCOG Emergency Preparedness staff will focus their efforts over the next five years. Thank you to everyone who took part in this process. We couldn’t have done it without you!