Tuesday, December 22, 2009

2009 Annual Report of the Town Administrator

From the 2009 Town of Franklin Annual Report. This is available in a printed version at the Municipal Building or online at the Town website here.

You will recall, in recent years, Franklin was named in Fortune – Small Business Magazine, Money Magazine, and Family Circle as among the best places to live and raise a family and start a business. This past year, Franklin did not make it into any major publications. You might think that your town government is resting on its laurels, but the real truth of the matter is, 99% of what we do right goes unnoticed. It is something that we, as administrators, local elected officials, and employees struggle with on a continual basis. How do we let the citizens know about what we do on a daily basis that goes unnoticed?

Today’s citizens have busier lives than ever before. As long as the trash gets picked up every week, the water flows when you turn on the faucet or flush your toilet, and your kids come home from school with good grades and have recreation and cultural activities to participate in, everything is just fine. You get your tax bills and utility bills and you pay them and you think to yourself, life in Franklin is good.

We need you to know that there is so much more that makes those things and others happen.
This past year, the town sold the property at the corner of King Street and Rt 140 known as the Four Corners School for 2.5 million dollars. After paying the debt on the property, 1.5 million dollars is available to fund capital projects and a vacant property will be back on the tax rolls. We continue to replace older water and sewer pipes and resurface roads paid by the water and sewer fees. We adopt financial efficiencies as opportunities arise. This year the town assumed the care of the school facilities and grounds. The town now maintains all town buildings and grounds and the schools can focus on education. We negotiated the regionalization of some services with the Town of Medway. Regionalization is difficult to achieve, but in the long run serves both communities well and reduces costs. Currently, we are, on a limited basis, sharing a recreation director and programs with Medway and our Library Director is servicing both Franklin and Medway and that allows Medway’s citizens to utilize our library facilities and our citizens to utilize their facilities. In a remarkable example of cooperation and sacrifice, all of Franklin’s town and school employees volunteered to forego their raises this year to save fellow employees’ jobs.

In a public/private collaboration, The Franklin Veterans Memorial Foundation commissioned an Iraq/Afghanistan memorial for the Town Common that was dedicated on Memorial Day, 2009. The ceremony was attended by hundreds of Franklin’s citizens and was a memorable tribute to all of Franklin’s veterans and in  particular, two of our sons who were killed in action: Lance Corporal Shayne Cabino, and Staff Sgt. Robert Pirelli.

We continue our mission to make available affordable housing opportunities for senior citizens and families in Franklin in developments such as Eaton Place and Meadowbrook Heights, senior developments, and Franklin Heights and Brandywine Village, family residential developments.

We constantly review and update our website to provide you with up to date information that we think you want and need to know. We publish a quarterly Municipal Services Guide that is mailed to every household and contains information on what is happening in Franklin, coming events, recreation opportunities, and helpful hints, and articles from various town departments.

These are just a few examples of what we routinely do. We will continue this work and we will develop new ways to share our good deeds with you so that you can continue to be proud of your community, even when it doesn’t make major publications.

It is my pleasure to submit my annual report for your review, and please feel free to write, e-mail, or stop by with any questions, concerns, or comments.

Respectfully submitted,

Jeff Nutting
Town Administrator

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