Friday, February 22, 2008

Town Council Meeting 2/13/08 Summary

Ad-hoc Recycling Committee creation and appointment (audio)

Downtown Partnership presention (audio)

Q&A following Downtown Partnership presentation (audio)

additional portions of the meeting will be posted (with the exception of the video by the Downtown Partnership; the music is copyrighted and should not be rebroadcast without royalty payment)

Q&A Downtown Partnership

Tow Council meeting 2/13/08

Franklin Town Council in a Q&A session on the Downtown Partnership presentation

Councilors Zollo, Doak, Mason, and Vallee. Town Administrator Jeff Nutting also provides input.

Time: 12 minutes, 48 seconds

MP3 File

Ad-hoc Recycle Committee

Town Council Meeting 2/13/08

The Franklin Town Council creates the Ad-hoc Recycling Committee and approves the appointment to the committee.

Time: 4 minutes, 23 seconds

MP3 File

Franklin Downtown Partnership

Town Council meeting 2/13/08

The Town Council hears from Lisa Piana and the Downtown Partnership goals and objectives.

Time: 11 minutes, 29 seconds

MP3 File

Thursday, February 21, 2008

On the same page - Thursday 7:00 PM

On the same page, originally uploaded by shersteve.

Thursday, February 21 at 7PM

Immigration Then. Historian and author James Johnston and historian Robert D'Attilio present a view of what America was like during the first great wave of immigration in the early part of the twentieth century. Mr. D'Attilio's specialty centers on the Sacco and Vanzetti case.

In the news - martial arts

Getting their kicks

By Joyce Kelly/Daily News staff

When Grandmaster Chang Nam Kang decided to open a tae kwon do school in Massachusetts, he said he sought a community where people value education and "really want to better themselves."

Kang, who said he served as a bodyguard for the president of South Korea and an international referee for the World Taekwondo Federation, decided Franklin was the perfect town for his Mu Han martial arts school.

"This area is focused on education, and martial arts takes a lot of time and dedication. Without discipline and patience, you won't continue. This is for people who really want to better themselves," said Master Jin Oh, who will run the school with Kang.

"To me, this is a good location, because people here want to develop and build themselves," Oh said.

At Mu Han, which means "infinite, unlimited," Kang will act as the lead instructor of tae kwon do, a Korean martial art, and Oh, a sixth-degree black belt and instructor in Attleboro trained in both tae kwon do and kung fu, will also teach. Both learned their art in Korea, their homeland.

Yes, there will be a celebration this 4th of July! You can help!

Fourth of July Coalition seeking volunteers

By Joyce Kelly/Daily News staff

There is no question whether the town's Fourth of July celebration tradition will continue this year, said Michael A. Walker-Jones.

"We're going to make it happen," said Walker-Jones, chairman of the Democratic Town Committee. He has been informally leading the Fourth of July Celebration Coalition steering committee with Michael Kelly.


read the full article here.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Pirelli Rink

"At 8:18 p.m., all the shouting, banging and stomping at Veterans Memorial Skating Rink halted.
Young men in blue and white uniforms skating in circles and slamming pucks at their goal lined up, facing their opposition in silence. For a few brief moments, only the sound of bagpipes honoring fallen soldier Robert Ryan Pirelli could be heard. 
Following Gov. Deval Patrick's approval Friday, the town renamed the arena last night at the final Panthers home game of the season in memory of Staff Sgt. Pirelli, a former Panther hockey player who was killed by enemy fire in Iraq last year."
Read the full article in the Milford Daily News.(subscription maybe required)

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

On the same page - discussion

On the same page - discussion, originally uploaded by shersteve.

David Park and Khadija Hassine were deep in discussion during the Tuesday evening get together as part of the Library program "On the Same Page" facilitated by Margaret Ellis.

The immigrant experience in America was one of the themes in the book, Dark Tide: The Great Boston Molasses Flood of 1919 by Stephen Puleo.

What did the recent immigrants have to say about their time here?
  • "here in Franklin, it is like a big family, everyone knows somebody"
  • "my new 'mother' is downstairs"
  • "life is too busy here, all work, work, work"

How did they pick Franklin?

Most acknowledged that the reputation of the school system was the key reason. The location of the commuter rail and the safety of the area were two other prime reasons.

What were difficulties they found here?
  • "too many forms, they ask the same questions so many times"
  • "making friends, they found neighbors very helpful but those who could be friends had not enough time"
What were differences they found here?
  • "so easy to drive here, back in my country it requires much more skill"
  • "lives are so independent here, in my country life is more centered on the family"
  • "time is so important here, everyone is so busy. I can hear: I have not seen him in two months. Back home, that is not possible."
The Franklin area immigrants represented a diverse collection of countries, from our northern neighbor Canada to Bulgaria, India, Morocco, Poland, and Vietnam.

What could be done

The residential property tax crisis around MA is growing daily. The Commonwealth has some help (possibly) coming our way. Wouldn't it be nice if some of our Federal tax dollars could be put to use?

Consider this:

All the more poignant as we prepare our taxes prior to April 15th.

Many thanks to Ronni Bennett for the link.

In the news - Pirelli Rink, Georgia-Pacific leaves

Town to dedicate rink to fallen soldier

By Joyce Kelly/Daily News staff

FRANKLIN - The Panthers will surrender the ice tonight to let local dignitaries dedicate Veterans Arena Skating Rink to 29-year-old Staff Sgt. Robert R. Pirelli, a soldier killed in Iraq and one-time Franklin High hockey player.


Georgia-Pacific to shutter plant

By Aaron Wasserman/Daily News staff

FRANKLIN - Georgia-Pacific, the global paper products company, will close its packaging facility here in the coming weeks and lay off about 100 workers, it confirmed yesterday.


Tough times ahead - Jeff Roy

Jeff Roy, Chairman of the School Committee closes his posting on Tough Times Ahead
But, no matter how you look at it, we are in for yet another bumpy ride. The School Committee will be discussing the budget scenarios beginning on February 26. We urge you to tune in and follow the progress of the budget discussions that will impact your school system.
Read the full posting on the School Committee blog

In particular, there is some really good work done depicting the money the Commonwealth returns to each community as colors on the map of Massachusetts. Very effective.

Franklin, we should thank our lucky stars for having it as good as we have had for so long.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Stepping Showcase - Dean College 2/23/08 8:00 PM

As part of Dean College's celebration of Black History Month, the group will hold its first Stepping Showcase Saturday night.

Doors open at 8 p.m. Saturday and dancing begins in the Multipurpose Room at 8:30 p.m. The event is open to the public and free of charge.

Performances by the Suffolk Step Team, In The Mak'n Step Squad, University of Bridgeport and Fontbonne Academy will also be featured at the event.

From the Milford Daily News

In the news - destination downtown

Downtown Franklin expected to become a 'destination'

By Joyce Kelly/Daily News staff

FRANKLIN - By the time the Franklin Downtown Partnership finishes its work in three to four years, downtown will be a "destination" rather than a place for "one-stop shopping."


Sunday, February 17, 2008

Franklin Schools: At the Break; a letter from Ed Cafasso

Hello everyone!

I hope you are preparing to enjoy winter break week! I just wanted to drop you a short note with an update on a few important school issues.

First, a programming note… If you are in the mood for a date with your spouse that contributes to a great cause, the Horace Mann Middle School PCC is sponsoring a Spring Social on Saturday, March 1, at the Franklin Elks from 7:00 p.m. to 12:00 a.m. This is a fun event that always offers top shelf, silent auction bargains.

As an added bonus, this year’s social will feature live performances from School Committee Chairman Jeff Roy's band, “Keep Your Day Job.” Tickets are $25 person, which includes a nice hot dinner buffet. A cash bar also will be available. For more information, contact Maureen Roy or Barb Mershimer. I look forward to seeing you there!

Now on to business… If you are as concerned about the future of Franklin High School as I am, I urge you to tune-in to or attend the School Committee meeting at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 26. Representatives of KBA Associates, our architectural design consultants, will be on hand to talk about options for renovating the current facility or building a brand new one on the site. We are also moving closer toward the naming of a citizens committee for the project. That too is likely to be a topic of discussion at the meeting.

If you need to refresh yourself on the challenges with the current FHS building, you’ll find the old feasibility and conditions reports on the Superintendent’s web page

The Committee is also moving into a new budget season and, as usual, the scenarios are not pretty. It will cost us more than $4.1 million to maintain the current level of school services in the fiscal year that begins July 1. That’s the price of predictable price increases for contractual pay raises, health insurance, utilities, etc.

However, town officials are projecting that only $800,000 in new revenue will be available to the schools. That leaves a $3.3 million funding gap that will not be easy to close without what Supt. Ogden calls “seriously painful cuts,” particularly to teaching staff who comprise 90% of our annual budget.

I’ll send out a FY09 budget update email following the Committee meeting on the 26th. You can find background on budget and fiscal issues on the School Committee web site

At this week’s School Committee meeting, Franklin Police provided an update on their efforts to put in place a lockdown emergency plan for each of our schools. These types of preparations are an unfortunate reality of life in the 21st century, underscored by the tragic news out of University of Illinois this week. Police officials have approached the issue with professionalism and smart thinking. They stressed that are eager to come to any PCC meeting to outline their approach and answer parent questions.

I hope you have a pleasant week. I saw the first robin of the year the other day and heard a cardinal singing, confirming that spring will indeed get here eventually.

As always, please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns. I am happy to add or remove any one from the mailing list for these updates.

Ed Cafasso

Delux Tux - relocated after fire

Did you notice?

Delux Tux has relocated this week into the space that had been MelDiva's but sitting empty since MelDiva's closed in January 2007.

Delux Tux had fire
in their original location on the evening of Super Bowl Sunday.

Where in Franklin? #31

Where in Franklin? #31, originally uploaded by shersteve.

Here is the next picture in the series "Where in Franklin?"

Guidelines for playing can be found here.

Have fun!

Where in Franklin? Answer #30

Where in Franklin? Answer #30, originally uploaded by shersteve.

The correct answer to picture #30 is the Franklin Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Center locater on Chestnut St.

If you thought that is what the answer would be but were shy and did not actually respond, then you can at least sleep well tonight knowing you were right.

Will you know the next picture? Stay tuned!

Franklin Police Association has begun their annual fund-raiser

The Franklin Police Association has begun our annual fund-raiser. We have employed All-Pro Productions to run our fund-raising campaign. After months of careful review and recommendations from other Unions, the Association has selected All-Pro to conduct solicitations. As in the previous years, we have stressed to All-Pro that we expect nothing but professionalism and courtesy to the citizens of our community, as the Officers here strive for.

Over the years, through donations made by businesses and citizens of Franklin, we have been able to return that back to our community. We will continue to support all community organizations, and the citizens who live here. This has been and is the primary concern of the Officers in the Franklin Police Association.

On April 18, 2008 at the Milford Sheraton Ballroom, we are hosting a comedy night with 4 of Boston’s top comics. The doors open at 6:30pm and the show will start at 7:30pm. This event is an 18 and over event. Tickets are available at the door the night of the event. We look forward to seeing you all there this year for a great show. Come down and have some laughs with your Police Officers.

You can also visit the Police Association blog here