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Border toll controversy, west-east rail, climate impacts

NEPM reporter and guest host Adam Frenier and panelists discuss comments by Massachusetts Transportation Secretary Monica Tibbits-Nutt on potential plans for state border tolls. This idea received backlash from governors of bordering states and was quickly shut down by Gov. Maura Healey; we dig into the potential impacts of border tolls on local communities.

Western Massachusetts representatives continue to push for a west-east rail, touting it as a huge economic opportunity for the region. We deliberate the plans for construction and the potential impacts of a new railway.

And, amid a changing climate, we’ll look at what some local homeowners are doing to floodproof their homes. Plus, what are the negative environmental impacts of solar farms? State Rep. Angelo Puppolo said that removal of trees for a 16-acre solar array project may affect the area’s groundwater.

Panelists include Steve Fox, UMass Amherst senior lecturer and former Washington Post reporter; Payton North, Reminder Publications executive editor; and NEPM reporter Caitlin Reardon.

Adam joined NEPM as a freelance reporter and fill-in operations assistant during the summer of 2011. For more than 15 years, Adam has had a number stops throughout his broadcast career, including as a news reporter and anchor, sports host and play-by-play announcer as well as a producer and technician.