Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Live reporting - Master Plan

Jeff Roy provides an overview of the changes from the comment period and then reads the introduction to the final version of the report. (copy to be provided later)

Dear Fellow Residents 
We have long known that Franklin is a community committed to high-quality education and the superb delivery of public services. It is part of what drove us all here to live, work, and raise families. Indeed, our community has been recognized by Family Circle magazine as one of the Top 10 places to raise a family, is at the top of the 100 safest cities to live according to Neighborhood Scout, and was recently ranked 10th among the Top 100 places to live and launch a business by CNN/Money. Once a busy hub for the production of straw bonnets back in the 18th and 19th centuries, Franklin has diversified tremendously since then and hosts a 360-acre industrial park, a single tax rate for businesses and residents, trails for hikers and bikers, two commuter rail stations, and two exits off I-495 that offer easy access to Boston,
Worcester, and Providence, RI. 
Committed to continuously improving the quality of life for everyone in our community, Franklin has developed—over many months and with input from a wide array of constituencies—a vision for its future as well as goals, principles, and a plan to support and implement that vision. This undertaking, encompassed within these pages, is a comprehensive Master Plan that seeks to ensure that the Town of Franklin can continue to meet its current and ongoing economic, social, and environmental needs without compromising the future for succeeding generations. 
We began with a vision of Franklin as a vibrant community that supports the arts, non-profit organizations, higher education, and businesses in an atmosphere that allows growth and prosperity, while at the same time conserving our heritage, natural resources, and history. Also, we are committed to building on and celebrating that uniqueness as a community, maintaining the quality of life that is our strength and competitive advantage. 
This Master Plan is a blueprint for our future that will help to guide our choices and decisions as a Town. It is a report to the community that sets forth a policy framework to guide town decision makers in the future, and it advances an action agenda to achieve the town’s vision. Indeed, it is a plan for smart growth that balances preservation of our exceptional natural and cultural heritage and our quality of life with the pursuit of new and exciting opportunities for economic growth. 
The Plan was designed, in part, to fulfill the requirements of Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 41, §81D, for the development of municipal comprehensive or master plans. Citizen participation was crucial to its development, and it will be vital to its implementation over the next five to ten years. Aside from the invaluable knowledge that residents bring to the planning process, citizen participation is the only way to ensure that both majority and minority perspectives will be heard, evaluated, and accounted for as the Plan evolves. It is a “living document” which is meant to address and respond to the goals and aspirations of the community for the course and direction of our town. 
The implementation tool included within the Plan is vital to its success. The goals and objectives can, in many instances, be measured by comparing actual performance with the quantitative targets included in the implementation component of the Plan. We trust that the Town’s decision makers, guided by an Implementation Committee, will use this as a structure for acting upon our recommendations. We realize that the goals, objectives, and actions outlined in this Plan are ambitious and comprehensive, but they were created to address the desires, needs, and concerns of the residents of Franklin. 
We have all enjoyed the opportunity to serve Franklin over the past two years, and we offer this Master Plan with our best wishes and intentions. We stand ready to help and assist with its implementation and look forward to continued success and good fortune for our friends and neighbors in Franklin.
signed - very truly yours
Jeffrey N. Roy
Master Plan Committee Chair

The document and sections thereof, can be found here

Thanks to the Planning Dept and their hard work, we could not have delivered this without their help.

Pfeffer - referring to the use of the term 'work force housing' the emphasis on the term is contrary to the way Franklin has grown. there is a recommendation to increase funding. No one would disagree with that but I have trouble with this phrasing.

Roy - we did spend time discussing this, the term is standard in the planning arena. It may be misunderstood. It is a term of art that we felt should remain in their. It is not to lower the quality. I do agree with you that where the money will come from is an issue. I have read multiple annual reports and I have one on my desk where the citizens are asking about where they are going to come up with funding for schools. These goals are lofty. The decisions will be left to you as leaders for this community. It is not a statement of what we are going to do, it is a goal. I appreciate your input. We felt it was important.

Motion to accept, passed 9-0

Vallee - We will set up a committee to work the actions

No comments:

Post a Comment