Governor Charlie Baker has announced that the statewide travel ban has been lifted for Berkshire, Franklin, Hampshire, and Hampden Counties for local and I-91 traffic only, effective immediately. The travel ban remains in effect for the entire length of the Massachusetts Turnpike, Interstate 90, and for Barnstable, Bristol, Dukes, Essex, Middlesex, Nantucket, Norfolk, Plymouth, Suffolk, and Worcester Counties with only essential workers, healthcare and human service professionals and others specifically exempted, permitted to travel. The travel ban will be lifted based on road conditions and the advice of emergency response officials.

Governor Baker has signed an Executive Order allowing for the enforcement of a statewide travel ban effective at midnight. The following exceptions shall exist for the ban and all drivers are encouraged to remain safe and use their best judgment:

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Governor Baker announced a statewide travel ban effective at midnight on Monday 1/26. As of 12PM (noon) on Tuesday, 1/27, the travel ban has been lifted for Berkshire, Franklin, Hampshire, and Hampden Counties. The travel ban remains in effect for the entire length of the Massachusetts Turnpike (Interstate 90). For details and exceptions, see: http://1.usa.gov/1EMQtzl. We will post when the remaining areas of the Travel Ban are rescinded.

Massachusetts is experiencing a severe and potentially historic storm, complete with snow measured in feet, damaging winds, and serious coastal flooding. A corridor of heavy, wet snow is expected in southeast MA (east of I-95) where temperatures will near 32 degrees, making for heavy wet snow. Elsewhere, colder temperatures (teens and 20’s) will make for fluffier snow. Snowfall totals are expected to reach over 20 inches across much of the Commonwealth, with pockets of 30+ inches possible. The Cape and Martha’s Vineyard will see 12+ inches.

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By Eric Durr

Soldiers, with the 642nd Aviation Support Battalion, New York Army National Guard, arrive at the Cheektowaga Fire Training Center in Cheektowaga, N.Y., Nov. 19, 2014, in support of Operation Lake Effect. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo directed the mobilization of more than 240 National Guard Soldiers and Airmen from area units to assist local authorities with snow removal and traffic control as regions of western New York received more than six feet of snowfall in just 72 hours, Jan. 26.

LATHAM, N.Y. -- As blizzard warnings were being issued for the Northeast, the New York National Guard put 260 Soldiers and Airmen on duty to assist in New York's response to the storm, Jan. 26.

Army and Air National Guard units on Long Island, in New York City, and in the Hudson Valley were ordered to mobilize their initial response forces. Meanwhile the 204th Engineer Battalion -- headquartered in Binghamton with elements in the Hudson Valley and New York's Southern Tier counties -- was directed to send snow-moving equipment and personnel to Long island.

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by Eric Durr

Soldiers with Joint Task Force Empire Shield work with members of the FDNY EMT during a major blizzard Jan. 26, 2015. The storm, believed to be one of the most powerful in recent history, managed to shut down all NYC airports, subways and other forms of public transit. The soldiers were on hand to provide support to first responders in case of a major emergency. (New York Air National Guard/Staff Sgt. Christopher S. Muncy/Released)

NEW YORK- The New York National Guard had 394 Soldiers on duty this morning as New York City, Long Island and the lower Hudson Valley entered the second day of a three-day weather event.

New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo called out the National Guard troops Monday, Jan. 26, as part of a coordinated New York State response to a blizzard hitting parts of the northeast today.

Weather forcasters had predicted a massive storm.

The governor declared a state of emergency on Monday, Jan. 26 and banned travel on major roadways Monday night. The New York City and regional transit systems were also shut down.

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Washington, D.C. – Verizon has agreed to a $5 million settlement to resolve a Federal Communications Commission inquiry into the company’s failure to investigate whether rural customers could receive long distance or wireless calls to landline phones. The inquiry, led by the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau, centered on whether, over a period of many months in 2013, Verizon failed to investigate evidence of low call answer rates to 26 different rural areas across the country. Verizon will pay a fine of $2 million and will implement a compliance plan in which it commits to spend an additional $3 million over the next three years to improve call completion to rural areas across the country.

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WASHINGTON — United States Congressman Michael Grimm plead guilty at the federal courthouse in Brooklyn, New York, to aiding and assisting the preparation of a false tax return. Since 2011, Grimm has served as a member of the United States House of Representatives representing New York’s 11th Congressional District, which includes the borough of Staten Island and parts of the borough of Brooklyn, in New York City. When sentenced, Grimm faces a prison term of up to three years. In connection with his guilty plea, Grimm also agreed to pay restitution to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance, and the New York State Insurance Fund (NYSIF).

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