More rural communities are struggling to provide services for their residents. Which is why the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission is providing governmental services to 43 communities including Blandford where one employee is serving as the town’s interim administrator.
Some of these rural communities are losing population, so the PVPC is trying to get these communities to work together. The Commission secured a $100,000 grant to hire an economic director shared by Blandford, Russell, Montgomery, Chester, Middlefield, and Huntington.
PVPC Executive Director Tim Brennan told 22News, “Whether it’s to chase a grant, which is funds they might not otherwise get alone, whether it’s to provide [information technology] support services… in a way, we’ve become, like, a general store.”
PVPC offers services ranging from accounting to animal control. The governmental services they provide are only temporary until a municipality is able to fill the position.
The PVPC’s biggest project to date is the I-91 rehabilitation project, where the organization was responsible for gathering federal and state funding.