Thursday, December 31, 2015

Residents invited to help Franklin Federated reach fundraising goal

Franklin Federated Church nears $500,000 Restoration Campaign Goal

Church is asking the community to help close the fundraising gap


Just over a month after launching a capital campaign dedicated to funding substantial repairs and updates to its historic buildings, the Franklin Federated Church is closing in on its $500,000 goal.

As of December 28, $485,515 had been pledged to the campaign by church members and friends, to be paid over the next three years. More than $113,500 in contributions have been received and work has begun on several much-needed projects.

We are excited to be so close to achieving our goal," said campaign co-chair Allan Sawyer. "At this point, we are asking the community to help us get there." Campaign co-Chair Tom Pfeifle added that "the Franklin Federated Church is a tangible symbol of Franklin's history, providing a continuous link to the town's origins."

Situated on the southwest corner of the town common at 171 Main Street, the church has long been an important center of activity in the town. Meals on Wheels uses the kitchen, Temple Etz Chaim uses the sanctuary for high holidays, and Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts and various support groups also meet there. The church hosts a popular annual yard sale and a Christmas concert, and has opened its doors in times of need, such as following the vigil for Lexi and Sean Munroe on Franklin Common.


Franklin Federated Church
Franklin Federated Church

The congregation is a Welcoming and Affirming congregation, meaning that all people are invited to be a part of the mission and ministry of the church. The congregation supports organizations locally and around the world, such as the Franklin Food Pantry, the Santa Foundation, New Hope, the Boston Grow Clinic and Church World Service.

In keeping with the Franklin Federated Church's mission to give back to the community, a portion of the funds raised will be donated to the New Hope RESPECT programs. The RESPECT programs reach out to, and help restore, families in our community that are broken down by violence.

Franklin residents who have benefited from using the building over the years are invited to consider helping with the restoration effort. Contributions can be made via the website: ffcrestoration.weebly.com or checks made out to Franklin Federated Church can be mailed to Franklin Federated Restoration Campaign, 171 Main St., Franklin, MA 02038.

The church's history is entwined with the town's founding. The First Congregational Church was formed in 1738, when it broke off from the Congregational Church of Wrentham. This effectively marked the beginning of the Town of Franklin, which had previously been considered the West Precinct of Wrentham. The First Congregational Church joined with the First Baptist Church in 1941, forming the Federated Church. The two congregations had begun worshiping together after the hurricane of 1938 destroyed the First Baptist Church's building on School Street.

The current church building, constructed in 1895, features a sanctuary with a high vaulted ceiling, exposed wooden beams and large stained glass windows. The church building needs substantial work to repair damage from age and the elements, and to improve the accessibility and functionality of the space. Some necessary improvements include replacement of the heating system, work to both roof and foundation to stop the incursion of water, and the installation of upgraded fire safety and electrical systems. The parsonage, which sits next to the church and which was built in 1868, is also in need of new heating and drainage systems. The parsonage houses the pastor, Rev. Charley Eastman, and his family.

Franklin Federated Church is affiliated with the United Church of Christ and the American Baptist Churches, USA.

For more information, contact the campaign co-chairs: Allen Sawyer, allen.sawyer@comcast.net or 508-346-3120; and Tom Pfeifle, nashpfeifle@gmail.com or 508 361-1954.

Annual Report - 2015: Police Department


I would be remiss if I did not thank the members of the Franklin Police Department for their fine work throughout the year. Once again, were it not for the hard work and dedication our Police Officers have for their jobs and the Franklin Community we would not be hailed as one of the Safest Places to Live in Massachusetts for the 2015 Year. This by the way is the third such distinction in as many years.

It goes without saying that you, the Community Members and Residents of Franklin play a very large part in this distinction. The phrase “voluntary compliance” comes to mind. The meaning is just that and it is a credit to all of you who live, work and travel through our Community. Town Government also plays a significant role in the designation as a “Safest City”. The decisions at the government level affect each and every one of us daily. There are those who may criticize, but the proof is in the pudding, Franklin is a fine community to live and raise your family in. We offer any number of extracurricular activities for our young people and with the most recent forming of our Opioid Abuse Coalition, Franklin has shown its willingness and concern to address the more serious issues faced by society today.


Police Station - 911 Panther Way
Police Station - 911 Panther Way

I’ve learned many things since becoming your Chief of Police. First and foremost is that there are more often than not three sides to any given story and that it is na├»ve to believe that any one person can satisfy or make everyone happy. I speak not only for myself but for my police employees as well, men and women that I work very closely with on a daily basis. We face head-on the challenges of trying to always “get it right”; something I say to you in all confidence that we do very well. To think differently of your Police Officers is a disservice.

If you have a question, complaint or misunderstanding I encourage you to call my office @ 508-440-2709 and we can have a discussion that will answer all of your questions so you may have a better understanding of the police department’s mission and position.

The dynamics of our Society have made us realize that arrest and detention is not the one and only answer for society’s ills. Don’t get me wrong because there are those incidents in which arrest and detention are the only answers, but to that end we need to listen, seek out appropriate resources for those in trouble and point them in the right direction. Policing has become much more of an “Outreach” style of profession as opposed to the old days of strictly being a Law Enforcing profession and that balance can oftentimes be very difficult. As we move forward time and experience will tell us if this approach has been a turn for the better.

I thank you all once again for a challenging and rewarding year as Chief of Police.

Respectfully submitted,

Stephan H. Semerjian
Chief of Police



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"Prior to November 1 of each year, the Town Clerk shall cause to be prepared and made available to the inhabitants of the Town an annual report for the preceding fiscal year which shall include: the annual Town budget, the reports of all Town officers, the records of all Town Council bylaw amendments and resolutions, an abstract of births, marriages and deaths, and the wages, salaries, or other compensation of all Town employees." [Added 5-2-2012 by Bylaw Amendment 12-681]


Shared from the full and complete PDF version of the Town of Franklin Annual Report for 2015


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For additional info on the Police Dept visit their page on the Town of Franklin website

Follow the Police Det on Twitter  https://twitter.com/franklinpolice



Sir Robert Peel 's Principles of Law Enforcement - 1829 (PDF)

Both FHS hockey teams close out 2015 with loses

In the last competition of 2015, the boys hockey team lost in the finals of the Mount St Charles Tournament and the girls hockey team lost to Westwood.
Thanks to Hockomock Sports for the results to share here.

FHS Panthers
FHS Panthers

Boys Hockey


  • Franklin, 2 vs. St. Joseph, 4 – Final



Girls Hockey


  • Franklin, 1 @ Westwood, 5 – Final



For the remainder of the results around the Hockomock League on Wednesday
http://www.hockomocksports.com/wednesdays-schedule-scoreboard-123015/

Annual Report - 2015: Department of Planning & Community Development


The Department of Planning and Community Development (DPCD) maintains a professional staff that provides the Town of Franklin with a wide array of planning services. DPCD’s mission is to plan and implement comprehensive policies and initiatives that work to fulfill the land userelated goals of the people of Franklin. We make every effort to maintain the character of the community while enhancing its economic vitality.

DPCD’s activities and services include, but are not limited to, comprehensive planning economic development, subdivision plan, site plan and conservation plan review, historic preservation, downtown revitalization, zoning bylaw and subdivision regulation development, brownfields redevelopment, affordable housing, open space and wetlands preservation, public transportation, transit oriented development, and sustainable development including use of smart growth and low impact development concepts. The Department regularly identifies and sources funding for various community development projects and activities. DPCD balances its approach to these initiatives through long-term planning and public participation.

Department Personnel

The DPCD’s staffing reflects the diverse skills needed to complete the many activities and roles the Department participates. DPCD’s staff consists of the following:

  • Bryan Taberner, Director
  • Beth Wierling, Town Planner
  • George Russell, Conservation Agent
  • John Allen, Program Coordinator
  • Kathy Celorier, Conservation Secretary and Administrative Assistant


The DPCD manages an Intern Program to assist DPCD staff and other Town departments with administrative and technical assistance. The work performed by DPCD interns is extremely important to the Department’s productivity. Interns work on a wide range of community development and economic development issues.


Support of Town Boards, Commissions and Committees

DPCD personnel provide staff support to several boards, commissions and committees, including the Planning Board, Conservation Commission, Design Review Commission, Technical Review Committee, and the Town Council’s Economic Development Sub-committee. Approximately 60 to 65 percent of the Department’s total staff hours are utilized on Planning Board and Conservation Commission related issues. In addition, DPCD staff occasionally provide professional technical assistance to other public entities including Town Council, Zoning Board of Appeals, and various ad hoc committees including the Town’s Master Plan Committee.

Site Permitting and Guidance

DPCD is not a permit granting authority; its function during the permitting process is to integrate laws, regulations and plans with the Town’s goals to ensure that the best interests of the Town and its residents are served. DPCD personnel organize and attend meetings, provide technical assistance, offer professional opinions, and guide developers, businesses and residents through the Town’s various permitting processes.


Conservation

DPCD provides support to the Conservation Commission, as provided by MGL Chapter 131, Section 40. Conservation Staff, specifically the Town’s Conservation Agent, is responsible for speaking for the Conservation Commission when they are not present (see separate Conservation Commission Report). Although not a permit authority, the Conservation Agent does have limited police powers to regulate already approved Conservation Commission activities, stop unauthorized activities and to promote and develop the natural resources of Franklin and its wetlands, streams, brooks, ponds, lakes and watersheds. In addition, Conservation staff provides administrative support and reviews applications being presented to the Conservation Commission, as well as provides professional support to other Town Boards, Commissions and Departments.

Comprehensive Planning and Zoning

DPCD is responsible for traditional land-use related activities including updating the Town’s plans, and amending and creating zoning bylaws. A description of zoning and land use issues worked on by DPCD during the 2015 fiscal year is summarized below. During the 2015 fiscal year DPCD worked on amendment of several sections of Franklin’s Zoning Bylaw. This included Zoning Amendments 14-42, 14-743 and 14-744, which were needed to correct references and inconsistencies in the Town’s Zoning Bylaw. As a result of public meetings and a response to a Request for Proposals for sale and development of the Pond Street property, DPCD developed and submitted to Town Council Zoning Amendment 14-745, which added multi-family housing by special permit to the Office Zoning District. Since Town Council adopted the Town’s updated Master Plan in 2013, DPCD staff has worked towards implementation. During FY15 DPCD provided Town Council with an update summarizing the status of the Master Plan’s implementation.

The Town held a Zoning Workshop in March 2015 to review potential zoning changes, including Actions proposed within the 2013 Master Plan; issues discussed included the Neighborhood Commercial Zoning District; Senior Village Overlay District; Commercial I Zoning District; Multi-family Zoning; and Accessory Dwelling Units. DPCD was tasked with developing a zoning map amendment, which would allow multi-family housing in an
industrially zoned area along Dean Ave. A map amendment has been drafted and will be before Town Council for consideration during July 2015.

Planning and Implementation of Community Development and Economic Development Projects

Each year the DPCD works on many community and economic development initiatives. The Department develops strategies, proposes policies, bylaw changes and Town Council resolutions, manages projects, and seeks grants in efforts to balance Franklin’s community livability and its economic viability. DPCD encourages responsible community development that meets the goals and objectives of the Town’s various planning documents, and the State’s Sustainable Development and Smart Growth Principles. Some of DPCD’s more important recently completed or ongoing projects and initiatives are summarized below. Regional Planning. DPCD attends meetings and works on various regional planning issues with a variety of regional organizations, including Metropolitan Area Planning Council, the Southwest Area Planning Committee, I-495/ MetroWest Corridor Partnership, and the I-95/495 South Regional Technology Economic Target Area’s Coordinating Council. In addition, the DPCD occasionally supports the initiatives of other regional organizations including the Franklin Bellingham Rail Trail Committee, Friends of the SNETT, the MetroWest Tourism and Visitors Bureau, and a workforce development advisory committee established by Employment and Training Resources in Framingham.

Downtown Revitalization

For several years the Town of Franklin has made revitalization of Downtown Franklin a major focus and has worked to improve the Downtown in a variety of ways. The revitalization of Downtown Franklin must be carefully planned to ensure that improvements positively impact the entire community. During the 2015 fiscal year DPCD worked on several projects related to implementation of the Franklin Center Plan, which was developed in 2002 and 2003 to provide Town officials with a vision and basic strategy for revitalization of Downtown Franklin.

One component of the Franklin Center Plan is Cultural Uses. The issue of cultural economic development has been a focus for DPCD in recent years. During FY14 DPCD worked with the MetroWest Tourism and Visitors Bureau and Franklin Downtown Partnership to develop a brochure map of Downtown Franklin; the map was printed and distributed in the first quarter of FY15. 

During FY15 DPCD continued to work with the MetroWest Tourism and Visitors Bureau on a variety of cultural economic development marketing activities. In addition, DPCD provided limited assistance to the Franklin Cultural District Committee, which is a group of individuals and organizations that are attempting to create a State designated Downtown Franklin Cultural District. 

A cultural district is a specific geographical area that has a concentration of cultural facilities, activities, and assets. It needs to be walkable, easily accessible, easily identifiable to visitors and residents, and serve as a center for cultural, artistic and economic activity. The goals of a Cultural District are to encourage business and job development, attract artists and cultural enterprises, establish the district as a tourist destination, preserve and reuse historic buildings, enhance property values, and foster local cultural development.

The Town of Franklin’s Downtown Roadway and Streetscape Improvement Project is an integral part of the Town’s strategy for Downtown revitalization. The improvement project includes improvements to the traffic pattern of Route 140 in the Downtown Franklin area,
installation of interconnected traffic signals with emergency preemption system, period lighting, traffic calming devices, resetting curbs where needed, ADA compliant sidewalks, resurfacing of streets, and landscape improvements and street furniture. The Project represents a substantial public investment in the Downtown’s future and economic viability, and is expected to spur on private investment. Construction of this important multi-year project began in 2014.

early on a December morning along West Central St
early on a December morning along West Central St

During the first half of FY15, DPCD provided substantial technical assistance towards implementation the Town’s Franklin Solar Challenge. The initiative is similar to the state’s Solarize Mass program, which provides discounts to encourage residents and small business owners to install solar panels. Public meetings were held in the first quarter of FY15 to inform and educate the public. 

During the second quarter of FY15 DPCD worked with a group of residents to obtain the services of a solar panel installation contractor, SolarFlair, who began installing solar panels late in the 2014 calendar year; the more people ordering a solar panel installation the better the unit pricing. As of June 2015 SolarFlair had already signed solar panel installation contracts for well over 100 kW of capacity.

Tax Title Properties 

As in past years, DPCD again worked with other Departments assessing the Town’s Tax Title Properties. Each year recommendations are developed for a number of these properties, and DPCD submits the work to the Town Administrator and Town Council for consideration.

DPCD works regularly on a wide range of economic development projects and programs, and is one of DPCD’s top priorities, second only to providing excellent administrative and technical assistance to the Town’s boards, commissions and committees. Potential benefits to the Town from successful implementation of DPCD’s Business Retainage and Attraction Initiatives are significant. These efforts focus on increasing the value of Franklin’s commercial and industrial tax base, filling the Town’s empty and underutilized industrially zoned buildings, and attracting the right mix of companies to the community.

As part of DPCD’s efforts to market the Town of Franklin, DPCD staff develops press releases, economic development marketing brochures, and various economic development advertisements for industry periodicals. During FY15 DPCD focused much of its efforts on the life sciences/biotechnology industry. Towards the end of the fiscal year DPCD staff began working with professors and students from Dean College and the Franklin Downtown Partnership’s Executive Director on development of a marketing program for Downtown Franklin. The project includes developing a distinct Downtown Franklin "brand", marketing and graphic materials, and a related implementation strategy, in attempts to attract customers and visitors to ensure the Downtown's economic viability during the construction of the Downtown Improvement Project.

In partnership with MassDevelopment and the Massachusetts Office of Business Development (MOBD), DPCD developed and manages the MassDevelopment - MOBD - Town of Franklin Business Visitation Program, which is intended to make local research and development and manufacturing companies in Franklin aware of State technical assistance programs and financial resources that can be made available to further their development, and to raise awareness of DPCD as a resource for local businesses. In addition, DPCD works regularly with MOBD, MassDevelopment, and other agencies in efforts to attract the right mix of companies to Franklin’s industrial and commercial areas.

Franklin is part of the I-495/95 South Regional Technology Economic Target Area, and as such can offer businesses looking to start up or expand in Franklin one of the most attractive incentives a Massachusetts community can offer a business, a Tax Increment Finance Agreement. 

The Town of Franklin supports the use of this local tax credit for a wide range of development projects, including projects that create a significant number of livable wage jobs for Franklin residents, support innovative technology, and result in redevelopment of empty or underutilized industrially zoned properties, or development of new facilities. Once a business negotiates a tax increment finance agreement with the Town of Franklin it may qualify for a state investment tax credit for qualifying tangible/depreciable assets, as well as other significant tax incentives.

Working towards redevelopment of town-owned properties is a regular DPCD activity, and continues to be a high priority. During FY2014 DPCD developed a Request for Expressions of Interest (REI) for future redevelopment of 150 Emmons Street, site of the former Municipal Building. The Town’s goals for this important parcel are “Redevelopment of the site into a key gateway into Downtown Franklin, which will maximize short-term and long-term benefits to the Town and its residents. 

Expressions of Interest were due during the first quarter of FY15, which influenced the development and distribution of a Request for Proposals (RFP) for sale and reuse of the property, which included demolition of the former municipal building. Proposals in response to the RFP were due during December 2014. One Proposal was received, and the Proposer/Developer began performing due diligence activities; a final Purchase and Sale agreement will likely be executed in FY16.

Also during 2015 DPCD continued to work with other Town staff, consultants, and the EPA to move forward redevelopment of the Town’s “Nu-Style” Property. The Nu-Style Property at 87 Grove Street consists of two parcels totaling 1.2 acres. The property is contaminated with a variety of hazardous materials. Demolition of the main NuStyle building was completed within FY13; demolition was required in order to access and analyze soil and water under the building to assure that the full extent of soil and water contamination is known. 

Preparing the site for redevelopment is expensive, and DPCD has sought funding and technical assistance from a variety of sources in recent years. DPCD secured EPA technical assistance to assess the quality of ground water at the Nu-Style site; several monitoring wells were drilled and two rounds of water samples were analyzed. In addition, the EPA performed indoor air quality assessment activities in an adjacent privately held building to assure contaminated soil and ground water on the Nu-Style property is not negatively impacting adjacent properties. Building II, a smaller dilapidated mill building on the back of the Nu-Style property became the focus of DPCD efforts during the second half of FY15.

DPCD will continue to undertake a wide range of community and economic development projects, programs, and planning initiatives that will keep the Town’s goals and objectives current and representative of Franklin’s needs and desires. DPCD is proud of its accomplishments and welcomes public input on all of its efforts to improve the quality of life for the residents of Franklin.

Respectfully submitted,
Department of Planning and Community Development Staff.

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"Prior to November 1 of each year, the Town Clerk shall cause to be prepared and made available to the inhabitants of the Town an annual report for the preceding fiscal year which shall include: the annual Town budget, the reports of all Town officers, the records of all Town Council bylaw amendments and resolutions, an abstract of births, marriages and deaths, and the wages, salaries, or other compensation of all Town employees." [Added 5-2-2012 by Bylaw Amendment 12-681]

Shared from the full and complete PDF version of the Town of Franklin Annual Report for 2015


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Additional info on the Dept of Planning and Community Development can be found on their webpages


  • Open Space and Recreation plan is being updated

http://town.franklin.ma.us/Pages/FranklinMA_Planning/openspaceplan


  • Pond St will likely see another RFP (and oddly not mentioned in the summary above)

http://town.franklin.ma.us/Pages/FranklinMA_Planning/pondrfp


  • The Downtown Improvement Project is scheduled to completed in 2016

http://town.franklin.ma.us/Pages/FranklinMA_Planning/dtimprovement


  • What do you find the Master Plan? the current and prior one can be found here

http://town.franklin.ma.us/Pages/FranklinMA_BComm/Masterplan

Senator Ross: December 2015 State House Update



Senator Richard J. Ross, State House Update, December 2015
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State Senator Richard J. Ross (R-Wrentham) proudly serving the Norfolk, Bristol and Middlesex District.

State House
Room 419
Boston, MA 02133

Ph: 617-722-1555
Fax: 617-722-1054
Email:richard.ross@masenate.gov
Dear Friends,

Now that the year is coming to a close, we can reflect on the great progress we have achieved on the state level. With the leadership of Governor Charlie Baker, we will continue to move the Commonwealth in the right direction.

Please read my e-newsletter for information on the work my Senate colleagues and I have done over the past 12 months.

What is your New years Resolution for the Massachusetts Legislature in 2016? What issue do you hope gets addressed? Your thoughts are critical to the Commonwealth's success, so let me know by clicking here.


Sincerely,
The Massachusetts Senate entered 2015 with a goal of tackling many key issues head on. Committed to collaboration and shared leadership to get things done, we passed significant pieces of legislation aimed to better serve our constituents. These areas included:
  • Protecting taxpayers
  • Reforming our transportation system
  • Combating the opioid epidemic
  • Supporting children & families
  • Increasing transparency
  • Preserving our environment & resources
Ensuring my constituents have a government that is both effective and transparent is very important to me. This year was a busy one, but there is still much more ground we need to cover in 2016 concerning our public records, final opiate legislation, and countless others. The full list of Senate accomplishments can be found here.

I look forward to hearing your feedback as to what your priorities are for the second half of this legislative session.
      
You can read the full newsletter View this email in your browser

MBTA: New Year's Eve Schedule Update - Franklin Line notice

On New Year's Eve the Commuter Rail will operate extra service on the Franklin Line. Please visit mbta.com/events for modified schedules. 
Train 731 (11:50 pm outbound) will depart South Station at 12:45 am and an extra train, making all stops to Forge Park/495, will depart South Station at 1:45 am. 
No bicycles will be allowed on board inbound trains from 10 am - 6 pm and on outbound trains after 4 pm on New Year's Eve. All Commuter Rail trains will be free after 8 pm on New Year's Eve. The last train of the evening may be held beyond its scheduled departure time as needed. 
Last updated: Dec 30 2015 10:54 AM 
Click here for more information: http://www.mbta.com/events


the Franklin stones at the Franklin/Dean station
the Franklin stones at the Franklin/Dean station

Christmas Tree Collection Days - week of January 11


Christmas Tree Collection Days

Week of January 11, 2016

On Your Regular Trash Day

put tree out with the trash on your day during the week of Jan 11
put tree out with the trash on your day during the week of Jan 11

This was shared from the notice on the Town of Franklin page

In the News: robbery suspects being searched for


Police are searching for two suspects involved in a robbery at a local bank Wednesday morning. 
The incident occurred at Middlesex Savings Bank inside the Franklin Village Shopping Center. 
According to Chief Stephan Semerjian, police are searching for a dark-colored Volkswagen sedan, most likely a Passat or a Jetta, that fled the scene.
Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)
http://www.milforddailynews.com/news/20151230/franklin-police-searching-for-robbery-suspects


NECN also has a report here
http://www.necn.com/news/new-england/2-Suspects-Sought-in-Bank-Robbery-Franklin-Massachusetts-363907241.html

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Representative Roy Hosts a Community Conversation with Seniors

Representative Jeffrey N. Roy (D-Franklin) is hosting a community conversation with senior citizens to discuss issues that impact their lives and to provide information on the various state programs available to them. Area seniors, their loved ones, and caregivers are invited to the event that will take place on Friday, January 15, 2016 at 10:30 a.m. at the Franklin Senior Center, 10 Daniel McCahill St, Franklin, MA 02038.

Roy's special guest for the event is State Representative Denise C. Garlick (D-Needham), the House Chair of the Joint Committee on Elder Affairs. Garlick, who is also a registered nurse, will speak about the $3.5 billion dollars allocated to the Executive Office of Elder Affairs and MassHealth for senior programs. Aside from MassHealth, Garlick will address other funded initiatives including homecare and nursing homes, prescription drug assistance, council on aging funding, protective services, elder housing, and nutrition programs.

Community Conversation with Seniors
Community Conversation with Seniors

In addition to the presentation, Roy and Garlick will field questions and take feedback on what areas need improvement. Attendees will also be given surveys to submit anonymously, which ask about access to transportation, ability to afford basic necessities and healthcare, senior employment opportunities in the community, and availability of senior housing. The survey results will help the Committee on Elder Affairs set priorities for the coming year in an effort to serve elders more effectively.

"We are looking forward to listening to the issues, needs and concerns of the seniors in the community in order to plan for the future," said Rep. Roy. "Expanding access to elder programs is something myself and Representative Garlick explore regularly, and it is our hope that this community conversation will be provide additional data and input to inform the decision-making at the state level. I have had the pleasure of meeting with the seniors for the past three years and I am delighted that the House Chairman of the Joint Committee on Senior Affairs is coming to Franklin to further these discussions."

"Twenty years from now the majority of people in Massachusetts will be 60 years old or older," said Rep. Garlick. "We have to make sure that the resources we have are meeting the needs. I'm coming to Franklin to get feedback from seniors on whether what we are doing is enough or whether we need to do more in certain areas."

All seniors are welcome, with a special invitation to seniors from Rep. Roy's district of Franklin and Medway. Any questions or concerns can be directed to Rep. Roy's State House office at (617) 722-2020. You can also stop by Room 527A in the State House, or email his aide Chris at Christopher.Yancich@MAhouse.gov.

Annual Report - 2015: OPEB Trust Committee


The Town Council approved an OPEB* Trust Committee in Fiscal year 15 to manage the funds set aside for the Town’s OPEB unfunded obligation of approximately $90,000,000.

This obligation is for current and future health care cost for town and school retirees. Communities across the Commonwealth face similar problems funding this obligation. While the town is doing its best to fund this obligation it will not be achieved unless state laws are changed to ease our future obligation.

The Trust Committee met on several occasions and decided to invest with the Commonwealth’s PRIT fund to get the higher rate of return on our investment that allowed by law if the town was managing the funds. Our initial allocation into the account will be over $1,800,000.

We will continue to make requests of the Town Council to continue to fund the Trust to help meet our obligation.

Regards,

  • Jeff Nutting
  • Susan Gagner
  • Miriam Goodman
  • Peter Lounsbury
  • Greg McNeille
  • Treasurer, James Dacey



The full recent auditor's report on the OPEB obligation can be found here

Franklin's Town Common on a summer day
Franklin's Town Common on a summer day

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"Prior to November 1 of each year, the Town Clerk shall cause to be prepared and made available to the inhabitants of the Town an annual report for the preceding fiscal year which shall include: the annual Town budget, the reports of all Town officers, the records of all Town Council bylaw amendments and resolutions, an abstract of births, marriages and deaths, and the wages, salaries, or other compensation of all Town employees." [Added 5-2-2012 by Bylaw Amendment 12-681]

Shared from the full and complete PDF version of the Town of Franklin Annual Report for 2015



Related posts on OPEB


  • Live reporting on the Town Council meeting in Nov 2015 when the Auditor came to present

  • What is Franklin doing?

  • Needham is touted as a 'best practice' on OPEB


Other Post-Employment Benefits (OPEB)

FHS boys basketball and hockey post wins

The FHS boys basketball team beat Algonquin, the boys hockey team topped Mount St Charles and will play in the championship game of the Mount St Charles tournament.

The FHS wrestling team competed in the big two-day tournament in Lowell.
"Considered the Grand Daddy of them all, the 49th annual George Bossi Lowell Holiday Wrestling Tourney will draw teams from all over New England and beyond. Some 70+ teams will converge on the Tsongas Areana for what some have called “The High School Midlands of the Northeast”."
FHS Panthers
FHS Panthers


Boys Basketball


  • Franklin, 77 @ Algonquin, 72 – Final 

– For the second straight game, freshman Jay Dieterle led the Panthers in scoring with 22 points. Franklin had five players reach double figures with Connor Goldstein adding 15 points, Paul Mahon scoring 12 points and Kevin Gill and Josh Macchi each scoring 10 points.


Hockey


  • Franklin, 1 @ Mount Saint Charles, 0 – Final 

– Jeremy Miller scored with 35 seconds left in overtime to give the Panthers the win. Franklin will play St. Joseph Collegiate (NY) on Wednesday in the championships game of the Mount St. Charles Holiday Faceoff.


Wrestling


  • Lowell Tournament (Canton, Foxboro, Franklin) 

– Foxboro’s Matt Kelley lost a close 1-0 decision in the finals at 126. Franklin’s John Miller was 4th at 220.
For complete bracket results you can visit the tournament webpage
http://thelowellholidays.com/


For all the results of Tuesday's action around the Hockomock League
http://www.hockomocksports.com/tuesdays-schedule-scoreboard/

Annual Report - 2015: Cultural Council


Franklin Cultural Council began 2014-2015 concluding the extremely successful Ladybug Project, which enabled over 50 local artists and businesses to participate in a publicly accessible and popular exhibit that was steered ably through the summer by previous FCC Chair Claire Griffin. The council saw the project through to its fruition in October 2014 when the FCC hosted a public event celebrating ‘Ladybug Spots’ and had all the ladybugs on display together in one place for the last time.

Mrs. Griffin’s chairmanship of the FCC was completed in October 2014, and was celebrated at the reception which was generously hosted by The Franklin Art Center. At a subsequent event held at the Franklin Municipal Building, State Representative Roy and Senators Ross and Spilka were in attendance to present one of the Ladybug sculptures to The Town of Franklin as an ongoing reminder to residents and public servants, of the power of petition to local, state and national government in defense local Heritage and the development of Arts, Sciences and Culture within the increasingly urbanized community.

The FCC would like to acknowledge the assistance into the fall of 2014, of Claire Griffin, Chair 2013/2014, Kathy Ginley 2011/2015 Secretary, Marybeth Fraser 2011/2014 Treasurer, Rev. Bob Johnnene 2013/2014, Janet Norman 2011/2014, Cat Colson 2013/2014 and Beth Simon. 2015 brought a change in leadership and new members to the FCC. The Town Franklin Cultural Council is currently represented by:- Kai Olsson Chair, Teresa Burr, Anne Knapp, Justin Haslett, Gia Podobinski, Ian Kabat, Madison Weber and Karen Wellerson-Juhl.

In October 2014 the council solicited local groups to submit grant applications for FCC funding. At its December meeting FCC Members reviewed 73 grants and voted to fund 38 programs. At our annual allocation meeting in Franklin, funding was approved at the same level as in the previous year. In total the sum of $7172.00 was distributed amongst thirty-eight applicants including The 4th of July Coalition, Concerts on the Common, Horace Mann Middle School, Live Arts, various Franklin Public School PCC’s and more. On June 24th, the Cultural Council honored the 2014-2015 award recipients, at a special reception hosted by The Franklin Art Center. Amongst others in attendance were Town Administrator Jeff Nutting, Town Clerk Debbie Pellegri and State Representative Jeff Roy.

The FCC would like to note that on numerous occasions and at various similar events, its members have taken opportunity to inform our local and State Representatives of the widespread popular demand by individuals and cultural organizations for an increase in funding for community events in the area. We would like to also acknowledge that our local and State Representatives are aware of these community aspirations and work diligently to address public concerns.

The FCC is presently reviewing proposals for a sculpted structure to honor local schoolmistress Palma Johnson and her 1974 2nd Grade Kennedy Elementary School class, who instilled “Ladybug pride” from the classroom to the State House and back to the town of Franklin. The FCC will also continue to review various projects should unencumbered funds become available at the conclusion of the FY15 fiscal year. We will continue to report the results of upcoming cultural requirement surveys to the Massachusetts Cultural Council.

Respectfully submitted,

Kai Olsson 
FCC Chairman


Franklin Cultural Council banner
Franklin Cultural Council banner
For more about the Cultural Council find their page on the web
http://town.franklin.ma.us/Pages/FranklinMA_BComm/cultural


The ceremony at the Municipal Building was recorded and photos can be found here
http://www.franklinmatters.org/2015/02/fm-109-delegate-ladybug-lands-in.html

Ladybugs on Parade at the Town Common August 2014
http://www.franklinmatters.org/2014/08/ladybugs-on-parade.html


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"Prior to November 1 of each year, the Town Clerk shall cause to be prepared and made available to the inhabitants of the Town an annual report for the preceding fiscal year which shall include: the annual Town budget, the reports of all Town officers, the records of all Town Council bylaw amendments and resolutions, an abstract of births, marriages and deaths, and the wages, salaries, or other compensation of all Town employees." [Added 5-2-2012 by Bylaw Amendment 12-681]


Shared from the full and complete PDF version of the Town of Franklin Annual Report for 2015