Saturday, December 10, 2011

Attention: Reward for lost cat

Hi Steve,
I was wondering if you would consider posting about my lost cat? I understand if it's not the right forum, but I am out of my mind with worry and I am reaching out to anyone in Franklin (Freecycle has graciously posted my message):

Black with greenish/yellow eyes
No collar
Answers to "Sal"
Last seen around 248 Pleasant St., Franklin, on December 8.

He is exclusively an indoor cat - he has no idea what to do outside. If you see him, please call me at 508-541-4431 or email me at: If you can take him in and keep him safe, I would be eternally grateful.


Thank you,
Kelly Stenstrom

In the News - Big Y, break-ins, zoning

Cops: Teens steal steel from Franklin’s Big Y site

Five charged in Bellingham break-ins

 - will this help to resolve the Franklin break-ins?

Casino towns face zoning obstacles

 - zoning bylaws are critical to a community. Franklin is gearing up to revise their 'Master Plan' and you have the opportunity to participate. Contact the Town Administrator to express your interest.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Blinking - Sat Dec 10, 7:30 PM

Dean College School of Dance presents its first annual Guest Artist Series -- BLINKING features a multi-media contemporary choreographed dance exploration of tiny movement and light created by Providence resident Jamie Jewett and his company LOSTWAX – recently voted Rhode Island’s best dance company.

“We are thrilled to have Jamie here at Dean, not only as part of our faculty but also as part of our Guest Artists Series,” says Deb Nunes, Dance Program Director. “The dramatic relationship between the performers in BLINKING and the digital cinematography come together for a truly imaginative experience. We encourage students and local residents to take advantage of the opportunity to witness amazing artistry in their own back yard.”

Dean College - show time!

Tickets are available online via the Dean College website or at the door.

Franklin Police: Chief Semerjian

The Franklin Police Dept published their own notification on Chief Semerjian's swearing in ceremony on Wednesday. As there were many folks in the room, the photos show a different angle.

Chief Semerjian

The notification also includes the historical listing of the 10 police chiefs for Franklin, MA:

History of Chiefs of Police
1. Anthony Connor, 1904-1907
2. John W Nickerson, 1907-1908
3. W H Ballard, 1908-1914
4. Feeman G Knowlton, 1914-1936
5. Walter Burke, 1936-1939
6. Joseph W Cataldo, 1940-1951
7. Arthur C Pellegri, 1951-1980
8. Lawrence P Benedetto, 1980-2003
9. Stephen T Williams, 2003-2011
10. Stephan H Semerjian, 2011

Note: email subscribers will need to click through to Franklin Matters to view the document

Note: to subscribe to receive your own alert or news from the Franklin Police, you can do so on the Franklin website here

ECDC - Application Information

The Francis X. O’Regan Early Childhood Development Center (ECDC) is an integrated preschool program operated by the Franklin Public Schools and is accredited by the National Academy of Early Childhood Programs. The program is designed for children who are three to five years old. Parents and community involvement is an integral part of our preschool program. Additional information on the application process and lottery can be found in the attached document:


Note: email subscribers will need to click through to Franklin Matters to view the document.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Live reporting - closing

Congratulations to Stephen Williams
Taught some civics classes at FHS, very good

Dellorco - the new parking lot lights are not working yet

Roy - Extreme Makeover has a session on bullying, Frankklin students helped and were featured in the effort

motion to adjourn; passed 8-0

Live reporting - Legislation

1. Resolution 11-69: Appropriation – Norfolk County Agricultural High School – FY 2012
removed from agenda

2. Resolution 11-70: 2012 Town Council Meeting Schedule
adjusted to be weds after Thanksgiving, motion to accept as amended, passed 8-0

3. Bylaw Amendment 11-667: Amendment to Chapter 139-14, Sewer System Map -2nd Reading
motion to accept, passed 7-0-1 (via roll call, Dellorco abstained)

4. Bylaw Amendment 11-668: Amendment to Chapter 179-9.1, Water System Map -2nd Reading
motion to accept, passed 8-0 (via roll cal)

Live reporting - License renewals, Master Plan

(five minute recess)


– Annual Alcoholic Beverages Licenses Renewal
motion to renew licenses for 2012, passed 8-0
3 licenses being held

Maplegate Country CLub
one other

– Elements of Master Plan
Bryan Taberner
working for almost 2 years now on elements of the overall plan
remaining work is with the action items
goals and policy sections are open and important
there is also an implementation plan
community services is also a section
open space recreation

Key now to create a committee
various other boards have representation, would like to get Town Council and community representation for the remainder of the work to be done
subcommittees can be devised, not a critical number ot have but should be workable
2 councilors volunteered thus far
call for citizens, contact Jeff Nutting's office

DPW, Jim Estabrook

Jeff Roy interested in the strategic plan component

Live Reporting - Town Council

Present: Mercer, Dellorce, Kelly, Powderly, Vallee, Pfeffer, Bissanti, Roy
Absent: Jones

– October 5, 2011, October 26, 2011, Executive Session - November 16, 2011
motion to approve, passed 8-0 as amended

– This meeting is being recorded by Verizon, Comcast, and Franklin Matters
Senior Outreach Committee will be reformed for this session and function as before

Working session on Dec 14th open to public



- Design Review: Adrianna Kelly
motion to ratify appointment, passed 8-0

- Swearing in of Chief of Police, Stephan Semerjian
Sworn in by Town Clerk, Debbie Pellegri


retiring Chief Steve Williams and new Franklin Police Chief Semerjian


Chief's wife does the honors of pinning the new Chief (MDN photographer gets a close up)


Tis the season

Seasonal display greets you as you enter the Franklin Municipal Building

Franklin Municipal Building entrance

Remember: 12 Days of Donating

Franklin Food Elves '12 Days of Donating' Campaign underway

The Franklin Food Elves and the Downtown Partnership have launched the "12 Days of Donating" food drive to benefit the Franklin Food Pantry. The launch occurred at the third annual Holiday Stroll on Thursday, December 1.

The charitable community service group's goal is to collect 1,200 pounds of food and $1,200 in 12 days to benefit the Franklin Food Pantry. The campaign will run through December 12. The Elves have placed bins at six downtown locations where people can drop off non-perishable food items.

According to the Franklin Food Pantry, more than 1,000 residents use its services. Recent Census data shows the need is greater; more than 3,000 Franklin residents, or 9% of the town's population, are struggling. That need increases in winter due to the cost of heat.

If the Food Elves reach their goal and collect 1,200 pounds of food, participating businesses pledge an additional $1,200 in matching funds. Franklin Food Elves co-founders Melissa and Cameron Piana and the FDP hope that the community will support the Food Pantry by helping them reach this goal. What will 1,200 pounds and $1,200 do for Franklin? 1,200 pounds of food can provide 923 meals to those in need. The $1,200 can provide an additional 6,000 meals.

Look for food donation bins at these locations:
• Franklin Downtown Partnership office, 9 East Central Street
• Jane's Frames, 11 East Central Street
• Printsmart Office Supplies, 20 East Central Street
• Berry Insurance, 9 Main Street
• Dean Bank, 21 Main Street
• Dean College, Campus Center

For more information about the Franklin Food Elves and the "12 Days of Donating" campaign, please contact the Franklin Downtown Partnership at or at (774)571-3109. For more information about the Franklin Food Pantry and what items are needed, please go to their website,

“It was really disturbing to me"

The college does not intend to expel any other students, Chalk said, but Deputy Police Chief Stephan Semerjian said his department will press charges against some of those involved in the attack. 
“There’s a lot more to do,” Semerjian said, adding that the incident remains under investigation and that detectives are trying to contact the students. “I would say they are all Dean students. We do know who they are.” 
Neither the college nor police released identities of those shown on the video or those expelled.
The Friday assault was caught on camera and posted online Monday. It shows a group of young men circling a fellow student and laughing as another student intimidates and repeatedly punches him, then takes his shoes.

Read more:

Monday, December 5, 2011

What is Franklin's Master Plan?

For those who follow Franklin Matters on Facebook, you may recall the discussion around the recent article on the Big Y construction.

In response to some of the comments I wrote:
The Town has little to do with "waiting". That is all between the landowner and the buyer. Once a permit is applied for, there is a time line to be followed. If the project fits within what has been zoned for the space there is little the Planning Board can do to deny it. The opportunity for us to really have our say is when the 'Mater Plan' is revised. That is supposed to happen soon (actually overdue, but that's another story)

And Central MA Home Search wrote:
I agree with the above comment. A Planning Board's jurisdiction lies only in determining if the project is consistent with the zone in which it's proposed. Reasonable requests can be made during the project review, but denial based on opinion of a 'need' for the project is not in their power. On the plus side, there will be some healthier competition for the larger supermarkets...

The current Master Plan for Franklin was finalized in 1997 and can be found on the Planning and Community Development webpage here

The update guideline document (shown below) has an outdated time line but the process of updating the Master Plan should still be accurate.


The Cult of Lego

As a place cited for being good to raise a family, there must be a few sets of LEGOs around. Perhaps this would be a good holiday gift idea for the LEGO fan you know.

Cult of Lego Trailer from John Baichtal on Vimeo.


Sunday, December 4, 2011

Town Council - Agenda - Dec, 7, 2011

– October 5, 2011, October 26, 2011, Executive Session - November 16, 2011

– This meeting is being recorded by Verizon, Comcast, and Franklin Matters



- Design Review: Adrianna Kelly
- Swearing in of Chief of Police, Stephan Semerjian


– Annual Alcoholic Beverages Licenses Renewal

– Elements of Master Plan


1. Resolution 11-69: Appropriation – Norfolk County Agricultural High School – FY 2012
2. Resolution 11-70: 2012 Town Council Meeting Schedule
3. Bylaw Amendment 11-667: Amendment to Chapter 139-14, Sewer System Map -2nd Reading
4. Bylaw Amendment 11-668: Amendment to Chapter 179-9.1, Water System Map -2nd Reading





– Negotiations, Litigation, Real Property, as May Be Required


The full set of documents for this meeting agenda as published are available here (PDF)

"a transparent process based on real budget limitations"

"It really is the way of the future," Franklin Superintendent Maureen Sabolinski said of interest-based, or collaborative, bargaining. "It really is the way to negotiate for the 21st century, especially in times of minimal resources." 
Interest-based bargaining requires training, and forces both teacher unions and a town's school officials to decide which issues to address during negotiations together, rather than coming to a negotiating table with set lists of demands. 
The result, said Boston-based negotiations trainer Mary Ellen Shea, is better relationships between towns and unions, and significant and even money-saving changes to contracts.

Read more:

In October, the Boston Foundation released a report on interest-based bargaining:
The report, Toward a New Grand Bargain: Collaborative Approaches to Labor-Management Reform in Massachusetts, presents a new, collaborative approach to the bargaining process in place of the current, adversarial tone of contract negotiations. This latest report in the Understanding Boston series was released at an Understanding Boston Forum at the Boston Foundation on Oct. 19, and featured a panel discussion by  labor union, school and Patrick Administration leaders.
Click through to this page to download the report and view a video panel discussion of the report findings.

Mall Santa Musical (video)

Sunday. Likely you have some shopping scheduled

Maybe to the Mall?

Maybe there'll be a Santa!

Way to go ImprovEverywhere!

Whole Foods - 5% day benefits Hockomock Area YMCA

Whole Foods Market Bellingham has selected the YMCA Healthy Futures Initiative for their Community Giving or 5% day, on Monday December 5th from 8 AM – 9 PM. Five percent of the day’s net sales will be donated to the Hockomock Area YMCA Healthy Futures Initiative to reduce inactivity and poor nutrition in the fifteen communities served. 
In Massachusetts 1 in 3 children are overweight or obese and 3 in 5 adults fall into those categories. Research now is showing numbers are rising in our youngest kids too. It is imperative that we partner together to improve the health of our children such as through this upcoming Whole Foods Market 5% Day, helping ensure that we can meet all the needs within our communities.

“Our YMCA is committed to improving the health of kids and families by making the healthy choice the easy choice. The Healthy Futures Initiative strives to support the community through the development of programs, projects and policies that create sustainable change,” says Lauren Marciszyn, Youth and Community Wellness Director.

We hope many people will show their support by saving their shopping for Monday, December 5th and participate in the various activities scheduled throughout the day.  
Activities include free classes for youth ages 1 – 4 years old between 10 AM – 12 PM, shopping while you dine from 12 – 2 PM for all who provide a shopping list (lunch must be purchased), and an Elegant Evening with Ming Tsai from 6 :30 – 8 PM. The Elegant Evening features massage therapists, hears, make-overs, tastings and an appearance by Ming Tsai.

More information can be found at special events or directed to

Finance Committee - Agenda - Dec 6, 2011

The agenda for the Finance Committee meeting scheduled for Tuesday, Dec 6, 2011.

FinCom Agenda 20111206