Sunday, April 23, 2017

Franklin Residents/Taxpayers, you'll be tested on this

Aside from the budget, this is the single most important document that every Franklin resident and taxpayer should be familiar with. After the only operational override passed in 2007, there was another attempt in 2008 that failed. One of the outcomes of the failure was the establishment of the Long Range Financial Planning Committee. 

The committee began with representatives from the Town Council (3), School Committee (2), and Finance Committee (2). In December 2010, it was reformed as a committee completely made up of 'citizens' - that is residents with no other direct board membership.

Vision The Long Range Finance Committee is a citizen advisory group tasked with helping citizens and Town officials better understand Franklin’s long-term financial outlook and the various courses of action available to secure Franklin’s financial future. 
Mission The Committee will achieve this vision by (i) evaluating and reporting on the Town’s five-year financial projection, (ii) assessing the nature and potential magnitude of the Town’s significant financial risks, particularly those that give rise to a structural deficit, and (iii) recommending steps to close the gap between future expected revenues and expenditures in an effort ultimately to achieve fiscal sustainability.

The Committee produced their final report in June 2012. Since that time, the Town Administrator has been updating the long range financial plan each year.

The current report was just posted to the Town of Franklin webpage and is copied here for your reading pleasure.

The introduction from Town Administrator Jeff Nutting:

"Each year we look into the crystal ball and try to project the long term fiscal health of the community. We look at trends over the last five years, adjust for one time issues or "bumps" in the road and then try to predict the fiscal future. Looking ahead a couple of years is not that difficult while projecting five years ahead is a "best guess' of what may affect local government beyond the "normal revenue and expenses" We do not know today how the economy, Federal and State budgets, changing demographics, growing population, unknown mandates, health care, etc. will affect our fiscal health in the future. 
We do know that: 
• Our population has increased from 29,738 in 2001 to over 34,000 in 2017 and it will continue to increase. Currently there are over 800 potential housing units under construction, in the "pipeline or proposed by developers with more to come. 
• Health care costs continue to be a concern. 
• Our unfunded retiree health insurance obligation is $93,000,000 (2015). 
• Our unfunded pension liability is $41,346,000 (2016). 
• The FY 18 School budgets will use one time revenues to balance the budget and beyond that they will have few reserves left. 
Franklin is in generally good financial shape today but we will continue to struggle to maintain high quality school and municipal services given the fiscal constraints that we operate under.
I believe we can continue a "level service" budget in fiscal year FY 18. The trend suggests that in FY 19 we will need to use school and town reserves to maintain services. 
Starting in FY 20 the forecast strongly suggests we will face service cuts and/or a tax increase. 
While many departments would like to add employees to better serve the citizens the available revenues leave very few options for expanding the work force with recurring revenues. 
In order to have trne fiscal stability there would need to be a great deal of change in Federal and Sate laws and regulations that drive up the cost of doing business. I do not see any political will to make major changes for the foreseeable future. 
We will continue to do are very best on behalf of all the citizens of Franklin to maintain a high quality of life while trying to control costs to the taxpayers."

Long Range Financial Planning Committee Meeting notes for their 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 sessions can be found in the meeting archive

The 5 year financial plan published in 2012

Information provided to candiates for the Town election in Nov 2011

road sign on Pleasant St is rather appropriate for this posting, the financial plan contains many hazards
road sign on Pleasant St is rather appropriate for this posting, the financial plan contains many hazards

FHS softball rally to win 3-2; boys lacrosse win 9-5

From Hockomock Sports, we share the results of the FHS spring sports action on Saturday, April 22.

Softball = Franklin, 3 vs. Bridgewater-Raynham, 2 – Final

– Trailing 2-1 heading into the bottom of the seventh, the Panthers rallied for a pair of runs to walk off with a win against the Trojans. Jackie Cherry led the inning off with a single and courtesy runner Anna Balkus advanced to third on sacrifice bunt from Olivia Haba. Balkus came home to tie the game on a wild pitch. Rachel Cousineau drew a walk, Ally Shea singled and both advanced a base on a wild pitch. Olivia DiGiacomo then delivered the game-winning hit with a base hit. The Panthers scored their first run in the fifth inning when Cousineau knocked in Tara Hartnett (2-for-3), who led off with a double. Cherry earned her first career win in the circle for the Panthers.

Boys Lacrosse = Franklin, 9 vs. Masconomet, 5 – Final

– Junior Eric Civetti netted a hat trick and had one assist while classmate Kyle McInery found the back of the net twice with one assist as Franklin rolled passed Masconomet. Senior Packie Watson scored twice to round off the Panthers’ attack. Junior Connor O’Rourke made 12 saves in net while sophomore Jacob Alexander lost just one face off all game, albeit due to a false start.

For the remainder of the results around the Hockomock League on Saturday

FHS Panthers
FHS Panthers

Take the Story Walk at DelCarte

The Story Walk should be a good way to stretch your legs today and explore a book and the open space. Yes, the playground is closed for now. It should re-open in June but in the meantime, the trails are still open and the short green trail is used for the Story Walk.

A collaboration between the Library and Recreation Dept the Story Walk spreads a children's book along a trail.

Exercise, read and explore as you go.

I captured the story walk in photos on Saturday to share here.

The story is "The Friend Ship" by Kat Yeh

DelCarte - Story Walk - 2017

Saturday, April 22, 2017

FHS girls lacrosse tops Andover 11-6

From Hockomock Sports we share the results of the spring sports action on Friday, April 21.

Girls Lacrosse = Franklin, 11 vs. Andover, 6 – Final

– The visitors scored the first goal of the second half to cut the deficit to two (6-4) but Franklin rattled off five straight goals to stretch the lead to 11-4 with just under three minutes to play. Sophomore Annie Walsh led the offense with four goals and one assist while freshmen Erin Walsh had two goals and two assists and Kelsey MacCallum recorded a pair of goals. Head coach Kristin Igoe Guarino said Dana Lewandowski and Grace MacCallum both played well on defense, each grabbing two groundballs and a draw control. Freshman Gianna Cameron had eight saves in net for the Panthers.

For other results around the Hockomock League on Friday

FHS Panthers
FHS Panthers

Reminder: MBTA will use a bus for the Franklin Line to Norwood Depot

Shuttle buses will replace Franklin Line service between Forge Park/495 and Norwood Depot Stations on Saturday, April 22nd and Sunday April 23rd, due to Guild Street Bridge Replacement in Norwood.

Due to Guild Street Bridge Replacement, buses will replace all trains between Forge Park/495 and Norwood Depot Stations in both directions on the following dates:

- Saturday April 22nd, 2017
- Sunday April 23rd, 2017

Customers should allow additional travel time anticipating delays of approximately twenty (20) minutes.

The following stations will be affected:

  • Norwood Depot
  • Norwood Central
  • Windsor Gardens
  • Walpole
  • Norfolk
  • Franklin/Dean College
  • Forge Park/495

Last updated: Apr 21 2017 11:22 AM
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Seen from the Franklin train: the pre-built portion of the bridge to be used as the replacement  is over there on the right. The train is on the bridge to be replaced
Seen from the Franklin train: the pre-built portion of the bridge to be used as the replacement 
is over there on the right. The train is on the bridge to be replaced

Youth Sports Got You Crazy? - Apr 27

Kids’ sports can bring out the best in our children. It teaches them to be team players, to work hard and be disciplined and to make healthy lifestyle choices. But sometimes, do you feel that the demands of youth sports can take over? What are we gaining and what, if anything, are we missing out on?

Please join us for an informative panel discussion about youth sports in our modern suburban culture and how it impacts all of our families. What can we learn from each other – and the Bible – about how to balance our lives and prioritize our goals?

Two of our featured panelists will include: Former Patriots Offensive Lineman Matt Light and Former NHL Player and Director of Ronan Power Skating Ed Ronan

When: Thursday 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
Where: New England Chapel

Brought to you by Pulse and Family Ministries @ NEC


Former Patriots Offensive Lineman Matt Light and Former NHL Player and Director of Ronan Power Skating Ed Ronan
Former Patriots Offensive Lineman Matt Light and Former
NHL Player and Director of Ronan Power Skating Ed Ronan

Registration form

Strawberry Stroll Registration Now Open for Businesses and Organizations

Franklin Downtown Partnership 
9 E. Central Street, Franklin, MA  02038

The Franklin Downtown Partnership is currently organizing the 15th annual Strawberry Stroll, set for Thursday, June 8, from 4 to 7 p.m. downtown, rain or shine. Crafters, community groups, businesses and entertainers are all welcome to participate.

If you would like to be involved please fill out this Registration Form and send it to the FDP office today! Participation for members is FREE!  Non-members should include $75 to purchase booth space. Interested in being a member? Here's our Membership Application.

Important form due dates:
By May 19 -- to be included in the event handout 
By May 25 -- to avoid a late fee 
After May 25 -- registration must include a $25 late fee
After May 31 -- no forms will be accepted 

If you have any questions, please email event co-chair Beth Wierling at

Sponsor our Strawberry Stroll with a sponsorship!

Businesses are welcome to sponsor the Stroll. 
Dean Bank is the Platinum sponsor for this event and will serve up the event's famous Strawberry Shortcakes. 

For more information about the FDP and sponsorship contact the office at

Franklin Downtown Partnership, 9 E. Central St., Franklin, MA 02038

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Constant Contact

MBTA: Commuter Rail Schedule Change in May but NOT for Franklin Line

Spring 2017 Commuter Rail schedules go into effect on Monday, May 22. 

Schedules are now available online at

  • Schedule changes have been made to the Newburyport/Rockport, Haverhill, Fitchburg, Providence/Stoughton, and Worcester lines.
  • The Worcester Line schedule includes service to the new Boston Landing Station.
  • There are no schedule changes on the Lowell, Needham, Franklin, Fairmount, Middleboro/Lakeville, Kingston/Plymouth, or Greenbush lines. These schedules are only being re-printed without severe weather train designations.
  • Paper schedules for all lines will be available at South Station, Back Bay, and North Station in May.

Last updated: Apr 20 2017 09:42 AM

Click here for more information:

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MBTA: Commuter Rail Schedule Change in May but NOT for Franklin Line
MBTA: Commuter Rail Schedule Change in May but NOT for Franklin Line