Saturday, February 23, 2019

Watch "The disarming case to act right now on climate change | Greta Thunberg" on YouTube

Worth a few minutes of time (actually about 11 minutes)

"Now we're almost at the end of my talk, and this is where people usually start talking about hope, solar panels, wind power, circular economy, and so on, but I'm not going to do that. We've had 30 years of pep-talking and selling positive ideas. And I'm sorry, but it doesn't work. Because if it would have, the emissions would have gone down by now. They haven't. And yes, we do need hope, of course we do. But the one thing we need more than hope is action. Once we start to act, hope is everywhere. 
So instead of looking for hope, look for action. Then, and only then, hope will come."

Franklin Annual Report - 2018: Conservation Commission

The Franklin Conservation Commission is responsible for promoting and protecting the natural resources of Franklin and protecting the town’s watershed resources. A large part of the Commission’s attention is directed to administering Massachusetts and Franklin wetland protection laws and regulations. Those laws and regulations require Commission permits to work in or within 100 feet of a wetland, in the 100 year flood hazard zone or within 200 feet of a perennial stream.

The Commission comprises seven volunteer residents appointed for three year terms by the Town Administrator. The current members of the Commission have diverse professional experience related to environmental science, biology, engineering, and project management. Because of their different backgrounds, each commissioner is able to offer a different perspective during the review of applications for a wetland permit that ultimately benefits Franklin.

Franklin has continuously been well represented at the annual conference of the Massachusetts Association of Conservation Commissions in March, with Commissioners attending classes and workshops and talking with other Commissioners from across the state as well as lawyers, ecologists and engineers active in conservation.

The Commission continues to work on the DelCarte Area (aka the Franklin Reservoirs) off of Pleasant Street. There are a series of seven structures (six dams that had been originally used for cranberry farming and a stone wall that beavers had dammed) along Miller brook thru the 100+ acre DelCarte Area. The Commission retained the services of ESS, Inc. to undertake an ecological study to ascertain the flora and fauna viability in the pond and develop a long term management plan. 

This study, completed in the winter of 2015-6 has for the first time given the town a comprehensive understanding of exactly “what is there” and has developed a management plan to help keep the area viable as a true recreational jewel. The first phase of the Plan’s recommendations, the treatment of invasive plant species was undertaken in the spring/summer of 2017 and phase two will be undertaken in the spring/summer of 2018.

The Commission has requested additional Capital Improvement funds to help implement the next phases of this study in 2018-2019 as well as funds to implement the ADA recommendations under the master plan developed for DelCarte by Mass Audubon. This later plan was presented to the Commission in the fall of 2017.

The Commission will undertake improvements to the DelCarte Recreation Area in the late summer/early fall of 2018 to bring access to the trails and the water bodies up to ADA standards and the improved the overall aesthetics of the area. The Commission applied for a 2018 Recreation Trails grant to also offset the cost of ADA improvements in the DelCarte Recreation Area.

The Commission collects application fees for all permits that come before them. These fees paid for, among other things, the studies on the DelCarte recreation area and thus allowed the Commission to truly understand the issues facing the town in maintaining this area for quality recreation.

Notice of pond treatment at DelCarte
The Commission has also initiated a comprehensive study of the beaver population and associated issues within the pond area to come up with best practices to prevent irreparable damage to the pond ecosystem and surrounding private properties. The results have been received and are being evaluated by the Commission.

Since the last annual report, the Conservation Commission has received 61 permit applications to work within areas under their permitting jurisdiction.

The Commission also issued 30 certificates of completion for various projects and granted extensions to allow projects to finish.

In late April, the Commission conducted the third annual clean-up days at the DelCarte Recreation area. The event was also attended by a number of citizen volunteers who lent valuable assistance and manpower in helping to maintain this valuable town resource.

The Commission completed studies on Chapter 61, 61A & 61B parcels within the town as well as a study on all Commission-managed town-owned land. These studies can be used by the town’s decision makers to better understand the implications of purchasing or not purchasing property that becomes available and how to best manage properties or parcels already owned by the town. Recommendations on some of the parcels currently managed by the Commission have been made to the Town Council.

The Commission also completed a study of all land under its management jurisdiction. This will allow the Commission to better evaluate how to manage these parcels and to determine if any additional parcels should be under Commission jurisdiction or if some should in fact not be and to make appropriate recommendations to the Town Council.

The Commission has developed a series of standard operating procedures and educational snippets, which are posted on the Commission’s website, to help the citizenry understand some of the rationale behind the Commission’s operations and procedures.

The Commission would like to draw the attention of the Town’s residents to the many protected natural areas in the Town and the opportunities for passive recreation they enable:
  • The DelCarte Area, with parking off of Pleasant Street, has improved walking trails through woodlands along a series of ponds. Two canoe launches and an above-water boardwalk that completely connect the trail system have been installed;
  • The town forest has access off of Summer Street and trails thru woodlands and across Uncas Brook.

Other trail areas, not under the jurisdiction of the Commission include:
  • Indian Rock has good access off of both King Phillip Road and Lost Horse Trail with walking trails through woodlands near two large vernal pools and to the top of historic Indian Rock; The trails in this area were improved in the spring as part of an eagle scout project;
  • The Metacomet Land Trust owns several pieces of protected land, notably the walking trails off of Bridle Path and The Lady Bug Trail near JFK school;
  • The Franklin State Forest is accessible off of Grove Street and Forge Hill Road and boasts an extensive network of walking and ORV trails;
  • The SNETT trail goes all the way to Douglas. There is a Town parking lot off of Grove Street. The Trail section from Prospect Street into Bellingham has been reconstructed by the Dept. of Conservation and Recreation;
  • The expansive marsh near Interstate 495 exit #17 is the US Army Corps of Engineers Natural Valley Flood Storage Project, preserved to protect against downstream flooding in the Charles River basin. That marsh is along Mine Brook, the largest stream in town, draining about half of Franklin, starting at the extreme south end of Franklin, passing underneath Washington Street, Beaver Street, 495, Grove Street, West Central Street, 495 again, Beech Street, and Pond Street before finally meeting the Charles River on the Medway border

Other significant streams in Franklin include Shepards Brook, Miller Brook, Uncas Brook and Bubbling Brook. Lake Populatic is part of the Charles River, the other navigable ponds in Franklin are Spring (Green’s) Pond, Beaver Pond, and Uncas Pond, the last two of which are listed as Great Ponds by Mass DEP.

The Commission would also like the town residents to be aware of the potential tax savings of M.G. L. Chapter 61 (forest land), 61A (agricultural land) and 61B (recreational land). Such programs are designed to benefit the land owner via reducing the tax burden as well as to preserving and maintaining the quality and quantity of environmentally sensitive and natural areas within the commonwealth.

Conservation Commission Members:
William Batchelor , Chair
Tara Henrichon, Vice Chair
Jeff Livingstone Staci Dooney
Paul Harrington Jeff Milne
Angela Gelineau

Respectfully submitted,
William Batchelor, Chair

You can read the full Annual Report for 2018 online

The archive of prior year annual reports

invasive plant species visible at DelCarte
invasive plant species visible at DelCarte

Earth Day 2010

Activities coordinated by Dave Dobrzynski as part of the Charles River Watershed Cleanup 4/24/2010

Earth Day 2010

Or go directly to Flickr

On this date: Feb 23, 2011 - Long Range Financial Planning Committee meeting

I did live reporting from the Long Range Planning Committee meeting on Feb 23, 2011:

Live reporting - Long Range Financial Planning Committee

Present: Doug Hardesty, Deb Bartlett, Craig DiMarzio, Graydon Smith, Sue Rohrbach, Steve Whalen,
Absent: Jeff Nutting, Orrin Bean, John Hogan,  Ken Harvey, Tina Powderly

Approval of minutes - postponed to next meeting
Action items - none

Metrics and benchmarking - Steve Whalen (Vice Chair, Town Council)

background, research analyst for an investment banking firm
drawn in by a comment made by J Nutting at a meeting sometime ago; "a town's budget is a reflection of their values"
started collecting data, started with a map and filled in data for the communities around us
The DOR site is a tremendous source of info, so much data is available
came up with 30 communities
walking through the info on his comparison worksheet
color coded communities by single versus split tax rate
we have a low tax rate compared to other communities with either a split or single tax rate
we are 21st in comparison on the average tax bill (of the 30)
we are 26th on relative tax burden which is a comparison of tax rate to community wealth
we rank 28th in percent of local property tax contributing to the total community revenue
we rank 1st in the percent of state aid contributing to the total community revenue

Continue reading about the meeting and the introduction of the community comparison

The five year forecast the Committee put together and completed (in 2012) has been updated and re-issued each year as part of the budget cycle.

The initial 2012 report:

The FY 2018-2022 version can be found here

On this date: Feb 23, 2011 - Long Range Financial Planning Committee meeting
On this date: Feb 23, 2011 - Long Range Financial Planning Committee meeting

Friday, February 22, 2019

Franklin Annual Report - 2018: Board of Assessors

Interim Revaluation
The interim revaluation of all real and personal property in the Town of Franklin was completed Fall 2017 in preparation for Actual Fiscal Year 2018 3rd quarter tax bills. Following is a brief review of that achievement.

Data Collection
Sixteen years have now passed since we installed the real estate valuation and assessment administration software developed by Patriot Properties, Inc. Because our start-up data was from a different form of valuation system and most of our data had not been refreshed in nearly ten years, it was necessary to complete a town-wide data recollection program prior to finalizing the FY 2005 valuations. Patriot Properties was hired for this task. Over the past 13 years, our appraisal staff has performed the on-going property exterior measuring and interior inspecting for all real estate classes. Such reviews are done for the Department of Revenue (DOR) required cyclical program, as well as for building permitted changes, pre-appraisal and abatement verifications.

Field Review
In addition to individual property on-site review, field reviews are required periodically to check for obvious data accuracy and consistency. This driveby review provides another level of assurance that when valuation schedules are applied, the results will be “Fair and Equitable”.

Commercial/Industrial/Apartment Valuations
Annually there are analyses of sales data as well as income & expense market data. The Board contracted Patriot to work with our Director to establish an income approach to value for each property. All requirements of the Massachusetts Department of Revenue were met through final approval of the FY 2018 valuations.

Sales Analysis
The majority of the sales analysis was completed by September 2017, and the interpretation of sales continued through the next two stages of valuation. The town-wide program resulted in a valuation system that was applied uniformly throughout the town, while reflecting all the adjustments warranted individually and by neighborhood, to result in “Full and Fair Cash Values” as per Massachusetts General Law.

Value Generation
A system of valuation was established based on valid property sales and where applicable the income approach to value. These schedules concluded from the market were then uniformly applied to all taxable and exempt real property.

Final Value Review
Final reviews were completed in preparation for the DOR review. These include studies of various computer-generated reports to check for value consistency, final field checks required, and for DOR documentation and its analyses.

DOR Review & Final Approval
Any on-site and statistical reviews by the DOR took place from April to September 2017. The appraisal staff provided files, generated property records, answered questions and addressed any concerns. At the conclusion of the DOR review, we were granted approval authorizing public disclosure.

Public Disclosure
The DOR approved valuations were available for disclosure to the property owners. While the administrative staff provided property record cards and general data reviews, the appraisers conducted informal hearings on valuations.

Personal Property
Business assets and those of utilities are reviewed for valuation as taxable Personal Property. For seventeen fiscal years we have engaged the specialized services of Real Estate Research Consultants (RRC) in the discovery and valuation of these accounts. These services have served us well, resulting in DOR approval and consistently defendable valuations. Also, considerable new growth has been certified annually. Additionally, the RRC Personal Property Software installed in our office has benefited us. The personal property valuation formulas are very straightforward, and the administrative capabilities have met our needs.

Classification Hearing & Tax Commitment
Following some discussion and a few presentations relative to single versus split tax rates, the Council approved a single tax rate at $14.65 per $1,000 of taxable value as calculated by the Board for all property classes. The tax commitment and mailing were timely for an actual 3rd quarter tax bill.

Abatement Reviews
Upon mailing of the tax bills and on or before the due date of the first actual bill, property owners have an opportunity to file an Abatement Application on the basis of overvaluation or misclassification. 61 abatements applications were filed of 11,524 taxable accounts, or just under 6/10ths of 1%. Generally those with merit were resolved through our conducting a complete on-site exterior measuring and interior inspection. Usually a valuation discrepancy is the result of a data error or as a result of an inspection appointment not being arranged and thus the property data having been “estimated”.

Technology Improvements
In addition to our state-of-the-art software for the valuation and administration of both real and personal property, Cartographic Associates, now CAI Technologies of Littleton, NH has continued to maintain the digital/GIS-mapping program it first completed for us for FY 2005. Following aerial photography and planimetric (physical features) mapping, CAI constructed cadastral tax maps (depicting parcels) through the use of over 5,000 plans and over 15,000 deeds. These new maps are continuously in our process of reconciliation with our property records for consistency in both parcel inventory and land area. With the support of Town Administrator Jeff Nutting and the Town Council, we have capacity in our Patriot software to link and utilize the maps with our assessment data file. In addition, for the past thirteen years we have provided our tax maps on the web for the benefit of both the Town staff and the general public.

Appraisal & Administrative Staffing
The use of automation has minimized the former heavy burden of traditional data processing. Due to this and numerous other office improvements, the Town approved our Staff Restructuring Plan. We have adjusted our administrative support staff to Board Secretary Anne Covell who is responsible for continuing to improve our service to the public at the counter and by phone. She focuses her efforts on providing and reviewing public records, Motor Vehicle Excise Tax Commitments and Abatements, Exemption Applications, the general and specific support to the Appraisal Staff and any other assignments as required. She continues to train in various administrative duties and computer applications. We thank Anne for her diligence in 38 years of service to the Board. The Appraisers have made special efforts in the development and implementation of usable written instructions for the assessing office procedures and for MUNIS financial software applications. These instructions were developed consistent with all Mass. General Law and DOR requirements.

We thank Kevin W. Doyle, Director of Assessing for his diligence especially as Director beginning following his first two years here. He has overseen the completion of all our work these past seventeen fiscal years, six full revaluations and eleven interim years of market adjustments. We also acknowledge the support work of Appraiser David Ruberti since July 2005 and of Appraiser Peter Mooney since August 2004. Our Director received his Massachusetts Accredited Assessor (MAA) in 1990 and the MAAO Wilson Award in June 2013. Within the past eleven years both Appraisers completed their designation required education and experience, being granted their MAA designations and maintaining the periodic recertification required.

Town Revenue Enhancements
In addition to meeting all state requirements as well as daily office oversight, the Director and Appraisers have achieved many additional improvements to benefit the Town taxpayers. One such is the efficiencies built into the Motor Vehicle Excise Tax Commitment and Abatement processes in conjunction with the new MUNIS tax software installation. These excise taxes represent about 5 million dollars in locally raised annual revenue, or about 6.3% of locally raised tax revenue. We assure the citizens that like real and personal property, taxes on these are assessed and abated appropriately and uniformly for the maximum benefit of all. Registry of Motor Vehicles’ automation aided the Director and Appraisers to further enhance revenue in assessing dealer and repair plate registrations. As well, with the automation improvements of the Environmental Police, this professional staff successfully developed a new annual revenue stream in the identification and assessment of excise taxes on boats principally situated in the Town of Franklin.

On-site Periodic Property Reviews
Because we have initiated the cyclical property remeasurement and re-inspection program acceptable to the Massachusetts DOR, we continue to make various public information efforts to assure property owners have advance information about this on-going program. Briefly, please note that the purpose of these property visits is to verify that the correct data is being used in the determination of valuations to achieve “full and fair cash value” in accordance with Mass. General Law Chapter 59. The Board appreciates the general public’s cooperation in its efforts to serve all property owners of all property types to assure fair and uniform values.

Your Elected Board of Assessors
Before entering the performance of his/her duties, each Assessor upon election has taken the oath of office specific to assessors. Massachusetts General Law has provided that because the DOR Commissioner of Revenue has regulatory oversight of assessing in every city and town, the Commissioner likewise determines the training requirements for the assessors and any assistants. At this time, the Commissioner has determined Course 101, including the Classification Training Workshop, meets the minimum requirements. All three assessors have completed these and have been certified as such by the Commissioner of Revenue. The Board looks forward to continuing education opportunities offered by the MA DOR and the professional associations, the Massachusetts Association of Assessing Officers (MAAO) and the International Association of Assessing Officers (IAAO). The assessors have attended seminars and workshops to broaden and reinforce their understanding of property tax law.

In particular, the Board has focused on current and possible future tax relief and deferral options for Franklin’s elder citizens. To that goal following meetings of the Town Senior Outreach Committee, last fall the Board, its Staff and the Office of the Council on Aging continued a broad-based effort to reach seniors. This resulted in successfully providing tax relief (exemption) information to additional seniors who owned and occupied their homes. Also, with the valued assistance of Veterans’ Agent Dale Kurtz, special efforts were made to identify veterans and their surviving spouses entitled to state exemptions, much of it reimbursable to the Town. We look forward to continuing to work with him in supporting our veterans.

All these efforts are consistent with the Board of Assessors commitment to meet its challenges as key Town Financial Team members to the benefit of all the citizens of the Town of Franklin. The Assessing Department is now officially a part of the Franklin Finance Division headed by newly hired Finance Director Christopher Sandini who also serves as Comptroller, replacing Susan Gagner who we wish well in her retirement. Also retiring was Treasurer-Collector Jim Dacey with whom we worked cooperatively over these past 2 decades and we wish him well in his retirement. We welcome Kerri Bertone as the new Treasurer-Collector and look forward to cooperative and productive work with Kerri into Franklin’s future.

As we write, the Board of Assessors and its Staff are preparing to finalize the Real and Personal Property Appraisal files for the Fiscal Year 2019 Interim Year Update subject to DOR review and Final Approval.

Respectfully submitted,
W. Ken Norman, Chairman of the Board
Christopher K. Feeley, Assessor, Clerk
Donna Greenwood, Assessor, Member

Franklin Board of Assessors

You can read the full Annual Report for 2018 online

The archive of prior year annual reports

Franklin Annual Report - 2018: Board of Assessors
Franklin Annual Report - 2018: Board of Assessors

Harlem Wizards in March 2009

Family fun at Tri-County. Harlem Wizards played the Sullivan Rockets in a fund raiser for the PCC in March 2009. Yes, this I think was the first visit of the Wizards. They have returned for several years as a fund raiser for the Franklin Education Foundation (FEF).

Harlem Wizards

or go directly to Flickr

On this date: Feb 22, 2010

On this date: actually juggling a day since I hadn't published on 2/21/09; here in 2010, I did a weekly summary for the prior week (published on 2/21/10).

Yes, back in the day, I experimented on how to deliver the info and for a period of time I did a weekly summary. This gives a look at the week that was in 2010. Remember when?

"The winter school break is ending, the Olympics are underway, let's just take about ten minutes to keep current with what matters here in Franklin, MA as the week ends February 21, 2010  
In this session I’ll go back to cover the Town Council meeting on Wednesday, Feb 10. In particular, their decision to reduce the annual curbside solid waste and recycling fee and implement minor increase to fees for Beaver St and to handle specific large items.  
Time: 12 minutes, 48 seconds"

The single stream system we use today was introduced in July 2010. It has been a great success. Yet, it was looked upon as a major head ache and fraught with problems and issues in the run up to the implementation.

Franklin trash and recycle bins or totters
Franklin trash and recycle bins or totters

Franklin Police add therapy dog

Chief Thomas J. Lynch is excited to announce the addition of a Police Therapy Dog to the Department. Therapy dogs are used to comfort people who have been involved in a trauma, or stressful event. They can also help de-escalate situations, and bring a calming presence to a scene.

The 3 month old golden retriever named “Ben Franklin”, will work within the Community Services Division. In addition to responding to calls for service, Ben will regularly visit the schools, senior center, and community events.

Chief Lynch said “There are only a few communities in Massachusetts so far that have embraced therapy dogs as a way to engage, and serve the public. We are proud of the efforts made by the Community Services Division, under the direction of Lieutenant Mark Manocchio, to bring this program online. We see Ben as being a public face of our Agency, and a symbol of our commitment to use all available resources to better serve our residents.”

Ben’s training is being generously donated by Masterpeace Dog Training of Franklin.

Franklin Police add therapy dog
Franklin Police add therapy dog

Thursday, February 21, 2019

It is time for your turn

Now it is time for your turn!

You come here often. You see what I do on Facebook.

I share an article, share a photo.

Something about Franklin that matters to me and that I hope will help you understand a little more of what goes on around town. There is much good that does go on. Good news doesn’t get headlines unfortunately.

I will be away for a couple of weeks and while that is not unusual, this time I don’t expect to have internet access to be able to keep tabs on what is happening while I am away. Or to keep posting on Facebook.

So this is time for your turn.

Be bold, share something that matters to you on what is happening around town.

Share a photo.

If you follow high school sports, share what’s happening to the FHS teams as reported by or Tri-County via their Twitter feed or one of the newspapers.

Be bold, do good.

It is time for your turn
It is time for your turn 

Franklin Annual Report - 2018: Town Clerk’s Office

The Town Clerk’s Office is dedicated to providing friendly, professional service to all citizens. I am extremely proud of how well my staff performs and responds to the demands of the office. Please stop by and say hello!

This past year has been another exciting one! I am very pleased and proud to announce my assistant Nancy Danello and I have completed an extensive 3 year program at the New England Municipal Clerks Institute and Academy towards obtaining our CMC certification.

I hope our residents are as pleased as I am with the convenience and ease of our online software. This has been a convenient way for the public to request and purchase birth, death and marriage certificates. This improvement has also been a great success for our dog owners who need to license a new dog or who must renew their yearly dog license. These document requests and payment options are available online anytime of the day, 7 days a week. To use this service, visit the town website at and follow to the Town Clerk’s Department.

The total population for FY2017 Census is now 33,871.

Welcome to our New Residents
We continue with our welcome letters to all new residents. Along with a census form, we also send voter registration applications at this time to encourage voter participation: We invite all new residents to stop by the Clerk’s office… it’s a nice way to meet their Town officials and be introduced to the Municipal Building and the many services that are offered here in Town. If you’d like a Voter Registration Form sent to you; just call 508-520-4900 or email ( you may also register online at (

A total of 275 businesses were opened or renewed in Franklin during 2017. We wish them the best of luck. All non-incorporate/DBA businesses, according to MGL, shall register with the Town Clerk prior to commencing business. This certificate is valid for four years at a charge of $40.00. Banks will send their customers to us before allowing them to open a business account. This helps us to keep our records updated. We follow up with telephone calls as a reminder!

Underground Storage Tanks/Hazardous Material
Underground storage of gasoline permits are a total of 14 and 17 hazardous material permits. No new certificates have been filed with this office by the Fire Department during 2017.

Planning /Appeal Board Applications
All applications and decisions are permanent record and may be researched at any time through the Town Clerk’s office. Elsewhere in this report you will find our index of applicants/decisions during the year 2017.

Code of Franklin
The Town of Franklin Code Book is maintained and updated through this office, both in hard copy, and on the web at This book contains all the rules, regulations, by-laws and acts of the Town.

Town Clerk Directory
Our Directory of Town, State and County Officials booklet is available here in the Clerk’s office. This booklet has been a very useful tool to employers, committees, managers and residents. Other publications available in the Clerk’s office are Subdivision and Zoning Regulations and Maps, Resident Listing Books.

Record Retention Schedule
I have continued to keep our records in the best possible order as mandated through the Secretary of State’s office. All of our books are bound, microfilmed and stored in the Town Clerk’s vault each year. This is the history of Franklin and its’ residents and I take pride in maintaining a filing system that continues the safety of each volume.

Vital Records
Certified records of birth, deaths and marriage records are available through the Clerk’s office. They are copied on safety paper at a charge of $10.00 for the first copy and $5.00 per additional. As a note, when you need a copy of your birth record, remember that it is always filed in the town where your mother was living at the time of your birth, the hospital community and the Office of Vital Records in Boston, MA. You can order online on the town clerks web page through Viewpoint.

Dog Licensing
We have over 4,049 registered dogs in Franklin. Dog registration is a State Law requirement. Dogs are required to be licensed to be sure that they are up to date on their rabies vaccinations. Dogs should be licensed at 6 months and older. Licenses are $20.00 (altered) $30.00 (non altered) due by April 1st of each year with a late fee of $30.00 added to the tag fee after April 1st. Residents with (4) or more dogs need to acquire a kennel license through ZBA.

I’m sure you will agree that our office is certainly a very busy one! We find so often that people will call our office first for information when needing assistance and we always welcome their calls and will try to assist them or send them in the right direction. It’s nice to know that people feel comfortable calling or visiting the Clerk’s office for assistance.

I would like to thank my staff, Nancy Danello, Assistant Town Clerk, Michelle Marek, Assistant Election Administrator and Susan Merullo, Administrative Assistant for their dedication and commitment. I would also like to thank the department managers and their staff for their support throughout the past year.

Respectfully submitted,
Teresa M. Burr
Town Clerk / Election Administrator
Notary Public / Justice of the Peace

You can read the full Annual Report for 2018 online

The archive of prior year annual reports

Franklin Annual Report - 2018: Town Clerk’s Office
Franklin Annual Report - 2018: Town Clerk’s Office

Autism & Creating a Fulfilling Life for the Family and Child with Special Needs - Feb 28

Autism & Creating a Fulfilling Life for the Family and Child with Special Needs

Join us as we welcome author, journalist, public speaker and special needs parent Susan Senator. Susan is the mother of three boys, the oldest of whom has severe autism. Using her experiences and speaking from the heart, Susan speaks about the impact that autism has had on her family. She has authored books including: Making Peace with Autism, Autism Adulthood, and The Autism Mom's Survival Guide. Susan speaks around the country and maintains a blog and website,

When: Thursday, February 28 at 7:00 PM
Where: Third floor Training Room of the Franklin Municipal Building, 255 East Central Street, Franklin, MA.

This event is free and open to the public.

If you have any suggestions for workshops or social events for the kids, please send us an email at


Franklin SEPAC: Autism & Creating a Fulfilling Life for the Family and Child with Special Needs
Franklin SEPAC: Autism & Creating a Fulfilling
Life for the Family and Child with Special Needs

Gallery 218 - the K-12 Art Gallery

Gallery 218 was the K-12 Art Gallery for Franklin Public Schools at the old FHS building. These photos were from one of the shows featuring art from alumni (including my daughter - Allie)


or go directly to Flickr

On this date: Feb 21, 2009 - energy efficiency

In 2009, I find I did skip posting on 2/21/09, and shared the Milford Daily News article about energy efficiency steps being taken by Franklin on 2/22. These energy efficiency steps are being continued today.
"Michael D'Angelo, the facilities director for the schools and the town, takes pride in Franklin taking the lead in using technological advances early in the game. 
"We were doing it before it was popular," said D'Angelo, who is constantly researching ways to make the schools as energy-efficient as possible - he's currently eyeing the installation of solar panels three years down the road, when he says they will be cost-effective."
Read the post in the archives for 2/22/09

Franklin was named a "green community" in 2018. One of the reasons it took so long to get named is we were already too efficient to qualify for the state designation.

Franklin Green Community recognition event - Jun 7, 2018
Franklin Green Community recognition event - Jun 7, 2018

Franklin Police complete ONE MIND pledge

The ­­­­­­­­­­Franklin Police Department is pleased to announce that they have completed a pledge they took to improve their response to those suffering from mental illness in their community. The pledge is part of an initiative called the One Mind Campaign started by the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), a 30,000 member professional association for law enforcement that provides training, technical assistance, and recruitment services. To join the One Mind Campaign, law enforcement agencies must pledge to implement four promising practices in a 12-36 month period to ensure successful future interactions between police officers and persons with mental illness.

In the law enforcement community, mental illness has become a common focus, with some departments estimating that as many as 20% of their calls for service are related to mental health declines. Chief Thomas J. Lynch made the decision to join the International Association of Chiefs of Police’s One Mind Campaign because the need to better our interactions with those suffering mental illness was being seen in daily response to calls for service.

In completing the One Mind Pledge, the Franklin Police Department established a sustainable partnership with a local mental health organization, developed and implemented a model policy to address officers’ interactions with those affected by mental illness, and ensured that all of their officers received some type of mental health awareness training, with at least twenty percent of the department completing the more intensive Crisis Intervention Training. 

The 40-hour Crisis Intervention curriculum is designed by local agencies to train a team of specialized officers to respond to calls that involve individuals with mental health disorders such as depression or intellectual disability. The curriculum includes education on various de-escalation techniques as well as live role-play scenarios of officers responding to persons who need mental health assistance.

Other initiatives that the Franklin Police Department has pursued in response to the needs of the community include the Jail Diversion Program, which brought in a Masters level mental health clinician as a co-responder with police officers on calls for service related to mental health problems.
Franklin Police complete ONE MIND pledge
Franklin Police complete ONE MIND pledge

Chief Lynch stated: “I’m proud of my officers for being partners in this pledge not just because it was a Departmental goal to improve our response to these types of calls, but because we have the genuine opportunity to better serve our community. Police officers by nature want to help people. Giving our officers the skills to better serve all aspects of our population only serves to create better outcomes for all involved.”

For more information about the One Mind Campaign, please visit the IACP’s website: A list of all agencies who have taken the pledge is also available there.

Health Connector for Small Business Presentation Offered in Franklin

The Franklin Downtown Partnership and the Milford Regional Chamber of Commerce are hosting a presentation by the New England Business Association titled "Health Connector for Small Business: An Informational Session" on Tuesday, March 5 from 8 AM to 9:30 AM. The session, which is free and open to the public, will be held in the Campanella Board Room of Dean College’s Campus Center, 99 Main St., Franklin.

Health Connector for Small Business
Health Connector for Small Business
The presentation will explain the new Massachusetts Health Connector shopping platform for small business. The platform makes it easier for small businesses to offer health insurance to their employees. Employers can choose from a variety of plans by multiple providers.

Pre-registration is required. Register online at Contact Sophia at or 781-890-9070, ext. 221 with questions.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Franklin Annual Report - 2018: Town Administrator

The Town Administration works with the Town Council together to improve the quality of life of our residents. We are diligent in balancing the budget and keeping an eye on the Town’s future needs and maintaining its assets.

Accomplishments in FY18 include:
The Town has created an Agricultural Commission. After many interviews seven great candidates were selected with five being full members and two associates.

In January 2018 Franklin was designated as a Green Community from the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources and was awarded a grant of $183,000 in June of 2018.

The Town went out to bid twice for municipal aggregation for bulk purchasing of electricity to lower rates for citizens however we did not get good rates and will continue to pursue.

We created a Town Budget webpage with helpful resources such as how the budget process works, Operating and Capital budgets, and Fiscal forecasts. A balanced budget was submitted to the Town Council and was approved. We have received five year Capital plans from all departments including the Water And Sewer Enterprise fund. Having long term Capital plans prevents larger costs down the road.

LED Street light conversion contracts were executed and set the table for a fall 2018 install

As part of our expansion of customer service we have expanded our Viewpoint Online Permitting System and will continue adding new applications throughout the year to make for a more convenient process.

Subsidized Housing Inventory, is still over 10% with 11.89% of our housing stock considered affordable by State law.

We continue to update the Town’s website to make information easily accessible for the public. All Agendas and Minutes of all boards and committees are web-based and continuously updated. These can be found on the boards and committees’ pages on our website. You can follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube for News and Announcement as well as visiting our website at

The Town hired Finance Director/Comptroller, Christopher Sandini to replace retired Comptroller, Susan Gagner.

The Town Administrator’s Office has moved the Passport Acceptance Office and the Affordable Housing Office from the third floor to the first floor to better convenience the applicant. You can apply for your passport by appointment on Monday, Wednesday or Friday.

We have reorganized The Board of Health, Planning, Building, Inspections, and Conservation Departments combining them into one office to better serve our customers.

The Towns Safety Committee worked with representatives from each department and MIIA representatives and earned $70,000 in insurance premium savings and was recognized by Massachusetts Municipal Association (MMA) as a leader in preventing risk in the workplace through employee training programs.

Franklin Bends the Trend by working with Insurance Advisory Committee to keep insurance rate increases for employees to a minimum, The Town has changed Health Insurance Carrier to Harvard Pilgrim and now also offers a Qualified High Deductible Health Care Plan.

The Town also received a $10,000 loss control grant for preventative maintenance. This grant will be used towards a program that will schedule routine maintenance tasks that will prevent larger, costly repairs in the future. In turn will save on costs and improve safety, reliability and conservation of assets.

Worked with the Recreation Director to secure $200,000 in grant money for King Street Memorial Park renovations. This grant will go towards new basketball courts, pickleball courts and a playground.

The Town received a grant from the State of $50,000 to expand the Veterans Memorial Walkway on the Town Common.

Our goal is to deliver high quality customer service while keeping costs under control. There will be difficult challenges to our budget in the coming year; but you can be assured that the Town Administration and Town Council will work together to solve budgetary issues.

It is my pleasure to submit the annual report of the Town Administrator for your review, and please feel free to write, email, or stop by with any questions, concerns, or comments.

Respectfully submitted,
Jeffrey Nutting, Town Administrator

You can read the full Annual Report for 2018 online

The archive of prior year annual reports

Franklin Annual Report - 2018: Town Administrator
Franklin Annual Report - 2018: Town Administrator

Grand Opening of the Franklin (MA) Senior Center on 11/11/07

From the photo archive - the grand opening of the Senior Center was held on Nov 11, 2007.

Senior Center

or view at Flickr

On this Date: Feb 20, 2008 - Pirelli Arena dedicated

We shared the news on this date in Feb 2008:
"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."

From the archives on this day, 2/20/2008

Sgt Pirelli is also in the recognized in the archives in 2009 when the Iraq/Afghanistan monument is dedicated with his name inscribed

Franklin Historical Museum: Sunday Speaker, Franklin's birthday party

The Land where the Sun comes up First … The March edition of our Second Sunday Speaker Series features Benjamin Roine on the topic of Native American History. 

Roine’s presentation will discuss Native Peoples and Cultures of Massachusetts and Southern New England. Roine’s history will cover from ice age hunters to the myriad of groups that resided in the area when Europeans first made contact with them. 

Explore the initial period of colonization and the ‘Middle Ground’ that existed between the Native peoples and European Colonists. We cannot truly consider our history unless we learn about the people that lived on the lands where we now live. Join us Sunday, March 10 at 1:10 PM and discover more about the people that walked these lands before us.

Join us for our annual Birthday Party for the Town of Franklin. Incorporated March 2 1778 during the American Revolution, Franklin celebrates its 241st birthday this year. Each year, every resident of the town, born on March 2nd is invited to the museum to share their birthdays. 

The event is open to the public and all are welcome for cake. Invited guests are entered into a drawing for a special prize. Join us Saturday, March 2 at 11:00 AM to help celebrate the town.

The museum is located at 80 West Central Street, we are wheel chair accessible and always FREE. The Second Sunday Speaker Series and the Town’s Birthday celebration are sponsored by The Friends of the Franklin Historical Museum.

Franklin Historical Museum: Sunday Speaker, Franklin's birthday party
Franklin Historical Museum: Sunday Speaker, Franklin's birthday party

Reminder: Ski Trip Planned - Saturday, March 2, 2019

Lifelong Community Learning has announced a March 2 ski trip to Bretton Woods, NH. Participants will enjoy a day on the slopes without thinking about the driving. 

Transportation will be provided by a chartered motor coach departing Franklin High School parking lot at 5:30 AM and will depart Bretton Woods at 4:30 PM to return home. Individuals under 18 years of age must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

For more information, and to register, go online to and click on Community Learning-Special Events. 

You can also call Lifelong Community Learning at 508-613-1480.

Lifelong Community Learning is a program of the Franklin Public Schools Lifelong Learning Institute, dedicated to providing diverse and enriched education and experiences for all area residents and children – a resource for all ages.

NOTE: If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Brenda Reed at 508-613-1483 or email at

Get a copy of the Flyer

Saturday Ski Trip Planned - March 2, 2019
Saturday Ski Trip Planned - March 2, 2019