Thursday, January 24, 2013

Annual Report 2012 - Dept of Public Works (DPW)

The Department of Public Works provides a wide range of services to the residents of Franklin. It is organized into seven (7) Divisions:
1. Administration
2. Engineering
3. Highway and Grounds (including Highway Maintenance and Construction, Central Motors, Snow and Ice Control Parks, Town and School Grounds Maintenance and Forestry/Insect Control)
4. Water (including ground water withdrawals, water treatment and distribution)
5. Sewer
6. Solid Waste and Recycling (including the operation of the Beaver St. Recycling Center)
7. Street Lighting

The major functions of the Administrative Division include developing capital projects, long range planning, intergovernmental relations and compliance, grant writing, processing various private construction permits, drain layer licenses, purchasing, budgeting, accounting and payroll, and multiple forms of utility billing.

Capital Projects
The Administrative Division in conjunction with Engineering and the operating divisions develop major capital projects.

The PWED (Public Works Economic Development) portion of the downtown project (Depot, Emmons and Dean Streets was completed in the Fall of 2011. The project provides a glimpse of the type of work planned of the downtown corridor.

The design of the downtown corridor continued throughout the year. The object of this work is to improve traffic flow through the downtown area and create an area that expands pedestrian access and is business friendly. This project will provide two-way traffic on Route 140 and will include the burying of utilities, period lighting, planters, sidewalks, brickwork, curbing and parking improvements in addition to an improved transition with Dean College. A major design milestone, the 25% public hearing was held in June. It is anticipated that this work will commence Summer 2013.

Although there is limited State and Federal funding, design work continues on Pleasant and Lincoln Streets, and survey work was undertaken on Grove Street. The DPW continues to design and construct long-range projects over the next three to four years. Progress on specific capital construction projects is outlined in subsequent portions of this report.

It is important to note, that many of these projects are performed by existing staff members and save significant amounts of money by avoiding the need to contract out these services. The process of planning, designing, permitting and constructing these projects is an arduous task that requires a great level of coordination and cooperation between DPW divisions and other state, municipal and federal departments.

Grant Writing
The Town received a $20,000.00 grant to offset the cost associated with the purchase compactors to increase the recycling rate at the Beaver Street Recycling Center.

Much of the credit for the Town’s success in obtaining highway funding and other grants goes to the Town’s legislative delegation, including Rep. Jim Vallee, Sen. Scott Brown, Sen. Karen Spilka and Congressmen James McGovern.

Permits and Long Range Planning
The Town of Franklin, along with the towns of Bellingham and Milford, were the only three communities in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts placed under a Residual Designation Authority (RDA) by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to mitigate phosphorus loading in the Charles River Basin. It is estimated the Town of Franklin may need to spend upwards of $135 million to implement all the measures that EPA feels would be required to meet phosphorus reductions.

DPW staff members have been working in conjunction with the Towns of Bellingham and Milford, State and Federal officials in conjunction with private land owners and business representatives to oppose this action based upon the unnecessary economic hardship it would create for the community. The EPA has  acknowledged our concerns and we continue to wait for a final permit. The Town of Franklin also continues to oppose the implementation of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Phase II and pending Phase III Storm Water Permit for Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4) as required by the EPA. Phase II required the Town to highly regulate and monitor storm water throughout the Town at a
significantly increased cost. Phase III is projected to include increased regulatory requirements and cost even more. The Department will continue to refine and improve adopted regulations and practices to improve the Stormwater in Franklin while minimizing the associated costs.

Long range planning is critical in the area of Public Works and must be accomplished consistently in order to ensure that the Town water, sewer and roadway infrastructure can support the needs of our residents. The Town Master Plan, 1993 Water Distribution System Study, Sewer System Evaluation Study and the Sewer System Master Plan studies have provided detailed and valuable information that is used to steer our  construction and capital planning efforts.

In October 2001, the DPW commissioned an update to the 1993 Water System Master Plan. This plan identified approximately $40M in water system needs from which a 20 year, $20 million dollar (20/20) plan was devised for improvements. The 20/20 plan allowed the Town to address the most critical needs identified within the system study. With 20/20 funding executed, the Town Council authorized additional funding for water line replacement and the improvement of roadways on sections of Lincoln, East, West, Daniels, Summer, Lewis, Cresent, Anthony, Carmine Streets and Conlyn Ave. This work will commence next year and is expected to be completed within the next four years.

The DPW has continued to work with both DEP and the Massachusetts Department of Recreation and Conservation to facilitate the final closing and capping of the Beaver Street Landfill Site. The Town of Franklin has continued to work with other area Towns and conservation groups towards insuring that regional water supplies are protected.

Solid Waste and Recycling Collection Program
The single stream automated solid waste and recycling program was successfully implemented. This program has been extremely successful in reducing costs, improving recycling rates and providing greater convenience for users. Additional improvements have been made to the Beaver St. Recycling Center by allowing the acceptance of additional recyclable materials.

Hails and Farewells
With all the losses of the previous year, the DPW was able to hire three new employees to work on the “Crew”. They include Mr. Tony Brunetta (Highway), Mr. Jacob Standley (Grounds) and Mr. Derek Adams (Grounds). All three gentlemen were raised in Franklin and have been an excellent addition to the Department. Additionally, Mr. Michael Maglio was hired as the Assistant Town Engineer.

With gains, there are always losses. This year was once again a difficult year for the DPW; many outstanding employees retired or pursued other job opportunities. All these employees were a pleasure to work with and will be sorely missed.

Mr. Antony Mucciarone worked for the Department for over 36 years! Starting as summer help, Tony finished his career as the Deputy Director of Operations. He spend the majority of his time in DPW as the Water and Sewer Superintendent where he was considered a leader in field. I personally cannot thank Tony
enough for all support and mentoring.

“Hollywood!” Ms. Faith Falarity worked for the Town of Franklin for 20 years. She held a myriad of positions in Town working in the Treasurer’s Office, Human Resources and Recreations and finally Public Works and her kindness and wit will be missed by all.

Mr. James Esterbrook, the GIS manager who worked for the Town for almost four years is pursuing career enhancement opportunities in the private sector. His youth and willingness to assist will be greatly missed. I want to thank all of them for their years of service and wish them success in their retirement and/or all future endeavors.

As the Director, I as always owe many thanks to my staff that make this whole department work and serve all residents in a timely manner. Everyone is committed to providing extraordinary service to the Town in the most cost-effective manner possible.

The Town Engineer Mr. William Yadisernia, Office Manager Mrs. Linda Feeley, Deputy Director of Operations Mr. Deacon Perrotta, Highway and Grounds Superintendent Mr. Carlos Rebelo, and Engineering Aide Mr. Warren Groth are all dedicated professionals that put in so much extra time and effort to make this Department a success. The Town and I are very fortunate to have such talented individuals
to work with.

I would also like to thank, Paula Juarez, Sandy Wedge, and Lynn Marchand who support the Administration Division. These individuals respond quickly and with courtesy to thousands of requests for assistance and information throughout the year.

Continued thanks go to Mr. Christopher White, the Town’s Solid Waste Coordinator. Even though his position is a part time one, he gives his heart and soul and spends much of his personal time to insure that the solid waste and recycling program is a success.

I would especially like to thank the “Crew” and the mechanics that work out of the DPW garage. These are the ladies and gentlemen that are not always seen but provide the day-to-day services that are all too often taken for granted. They pump, treat and deliver safe drinking water, they care for parks and ball fields, and they maintain the roadways, repair and sustain all Town and School vehicles and handle all our wastes. They are always available, day and night, working long hours to assist in any emergency situation whether it is snow removal, water breaks, sewer backups, wind/lightning storms, flooding and many others. They are all
extremely professional and dedicated to their jobs. I cannot thank them enough.

Respectfully submitted,

Robert A. Cantoreggi II
Director of Public Works

Linda Feeley
Office Manager

Additional information on the DPW activities can be found on their webpage

Published by the Town Clerk, this comes from the 2012 Annual Report

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