Sen. Elizabeth Warren addresses Western MA leaders - CBS 3 Springfield - WSHM

Sen. Elizabeth Warren addresses Western MA leaders

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NORTHAMPTON, MA (WSHM) -

U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren made her way to Western Massachusetts on Saturday afternoon, as she was the keynote speaker for the annual conference for the Hampshire and Franklin regional councils of governments.

The event was by state Sen. Stan Rosenberg.

The conference, which has been in existence for 24 years, is a chance for the leaders of Western Mass communities to get up to speed on what's happening on Beacon Hill and beyond.

Warren said the federal government plays a key role when it comes to local government.

"The federal government has no business coming in and telling the localities how to run things, but they can be a good partner in helping things happen," said Warren. "This is about partnerships. The best way to have partnerships work is when partners get together. They talk to each other and get a chance to hear each other's concerns."

Warren cited wireless communication in Western Mass and the planned return of Amtrak to Greenfield as two ways their partnership works.

Rosenberg told CBS 3 that one of the goals of the conference is to allow information to flow in both directions and not just have the local leaders listen to what the speakers have to say.

"Most of the communities out here are small, rural communities," said Rosenberg. "Their needs, values and ideas are often in conflict with the big cities and suburban communities where so much of the policy work is being driven. It's a tremendous opportunity to make sure our voices are heard."

Along with Warren, speakers on Saturday included state lawmakers who covered topics like water infrastructure, municipal pension reform and green energy.

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