Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Gov Baker: Prep for Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) (video)

Governor Charlie Baker and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito today joined Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Kathleen Theoharides, Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Monica Bharel and local officials to highlight steps the Commonwealth is taking to prepare for Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) this year. Preparedness measures include ongoing and increased surveillance testing, an updated public awareness campaign, and mitigation efforts such as larvicide, spraying, and horse vaccination. The Administration also highlighted its recently-filed legislation that would authorize a coordinated, proactive, statewide approach to mosquito control activities.
Video link = https://youtu.be/Po7IX-j7IBc

New DPH mosquito and tick web page
https://www.mass.gov/mosquitoes-and-ticks





Health Director Cathleen Liberty talks about EEE in January
https://www.franklinmatters.org/2020/01/fm-196-cathleen-liberty-franklins.html

and more recently about tick borne diseases in May
https://www.franklinmatters.org/2020/05/fm-271-franklin-health-director.html


Gov Baker press release
https://www.mass.gov/news/baker-polito-administration-highlights-eee-preparedness-measures


THE BLACK BOX Outdoor Concerts to Begin THURSDAY

The shows will take place in the venue's parking lot. 

Masks and social distancing are required in the lobby; typical gathering in the lobby is currently not allowed. 

Two people will be allowed at a time in the rest rooms; please wait six feet apart if there is a line. 

Table groupings will be limited to six. 
Patrons are asked to purchase tickets for their table group in one transaction. 

Patrons will only be seated with family or those with whom they are comfortable socializing. 

Advance ticketing and payment encouraged. 
The Bar will be table service only. 
Shows are one hour.

THE BLACK BOX Outdoor Concerts to Begin THURSDAY
THE BLACK BOX Outdoor Concerts to Begin THURSDAY

St John's Episcopal Church - Outdoor Service - July 12

St John's Episcopal Church to re-gather for Outdoor Worship THIS Sunday, July 12th

Bring your own chair and mask for worship on our front lawn.

See you Sunday at 10 AM. We'll still be live streaming on Facebook, as well.


St John's Episcopal Church - Outdoor Service - July 12
St John's Episcopal Church - Outdoor Service - July 12


Purchase Your FY21 Recycling Center Permit and Pre-Pay for Item Drop Off


The Recycling Center is open regular hours for full services. No cash or checks will be accepted.

All residents who wish to use the recycling center for item drop off will need to go online prior to pay the required fee(s). 

The online payment portal for recycling fees is on our Viewpoint site. https://franklinma.viewpointcloud.com/categories/1078 If you do not have a Viewpoint account, please follow the instructions to create one.

A printed slip detailing the fees paid will be required to show proof of payment at the Recycling Center.

No material that includes a fee will be accepted at the Recycling Center without prior payment online with printed receipt.

For a
copy of materials accepted, fees and hours at the Recycling Center and Curbside costs: https://www.franklinma.gov/sites/g/files/vyhlif591/f/news/recycling_center_and_curbside_fees_fy21.pdf

For additional information please call 508-553-5500, leave a message and someone will promptly call you back.

Please observe social distancing guidelines.


https://www.franklinma.gov/recycling-solid-waste/news/fy-20-recycling-center-permit-expiration-extended-july-31-2020
https://www.franklinma.gov/recycling-solid-waste/news/fy-20-recycling-center-permit-expiration-extended-july-31-2020



Southeastern MA Veterans' Service Officers Association $500 Scholarship!

Veterans and Family Members Apply Before July 31, 2020

Please find the application for the scholarship here https://www.franklinma.gov/sites/g/files/vyhlif591/f/uploads/scholarship_application.pdf

The Southeastern Massachusetts Veterans’ Services Officers Association (SMVSOA) will grant a $500.00 scholarship to be used to help defray education expenses if the following criteria is met:
  • Applicant is a Veteran, the spouse or widow of a Veteran, the child of a Veteranor the grandchild of a Veteran–DD214 required for verification
  • The Veterans’ Service Officer who is sponsoring the nomination is a current member of the SMVSOA
  • Application must be typed and submitted by hard copy; email not accepted
  • Application to include a letter of recommendation from a teacher, guidance counselor or employer
  • Official high school, trade school or college transcript
  • Application is post marked by July 31 of the current year and mailed to Lisa Potts, 210 Central Street, Hingham, MA 02043

Southeastern MA Veterans' Service Officers Association $500 Scholarship!
Southeastern MA Veterans' Service Officers Association $500 Scholarship!

Franklin Residents: Job Opportunity - Stormwater and Environmental Affairs Superintendent

Job Opportunities

To apply for a vacant position, please submit a resume and cover letter to apply@franklinma.gov.  Please put the job title in the subject line of your email.  

If you do not have a resume, you may send a completed Application for Employment instead.


To receive notifications of all job opportunities in the Town of Franklin, subscribe here (https://www.franklinma.gov/subscribe).

Franklin Residents: Job Opportunity - Stormwater and Environmental Affairs Superintendent
Franklin Residents: Job Opportunity - Stormwater and Environmental Affairs Superintendent

Franklin Residents: Community Outreach Hearing - 164 Grove Street - July 16

Community Outreach Hearing - 164 Grove Street
PharmaCannis Massachusetts Inc. (dba Verilife)

Subject: Proposed Marijuana Establishment
Date: 7/16/2020
Time: 6:00pm - 7:00pm
Location: Online via Zoom at the following web address https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87564277718

Presented by:​ PharmaCannis Massachusetts Inc. (dba Verilife)
Proposed address for retail establishment:​ 164 Grove St, Franklin MA 02038

There will be an opportunity for the public to ask questions. To join the online community outreach meeting enter the above listed web address into the address bar at the top of your internet browser and follow the listed instructions on the provided website.



For additional info on the company, visit their webpage https://www.verilife.com/ma

From the Cannabis Control Commission
https://mass-cannabis-control.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/MPL-EXECUTIVE-SUMMARY-PHARMACANNIS-v3.pdf

Shared from the Town of Franklin page
https://www.franklinma.gov/legal-notices/agenda/community-outreach-hearing-164-grove-street-0

Franklin Residents: Curbside Pickup Updates at the Franklin Public Library


Curbside Pickup Updates at the Franklin Public Library

Curbside Pickup Updates! Patrons can place holds online or by phone. When placing holds by phone, there is a limit of five holds per call. 

Inter Library Loan is now available! You are able to place holds on items throughout the Minuteman Library Network. Search our catalog at find.minlib.net

Once you receive a text or email that your items are ready, visit the Library at the School Street entrance between 10:00 AM and 1:00 PM. Monday through Saturday to pick them up! 

In the event of rain, items will be available under an awning near the door. The Library will still be closed to the public, but staff will be available to answer questions by phone and email 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM Monday through Saturday. Please call us at 508-520-4941.

Starting Monday, July 13, Curbside Pickup hours will be extended to 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday through Saturday. Additionally, staff will be available by phone 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday through Saturday.

Franklin Residents: Curbside Pickup Updates at the Franklin Public Library
Franklin Residents: Curbside Pickup Updates at the Franklin Public Library

Town of Franklin: July 2020 E-Newsletter

The Town of Franklin Coronavirus Information Portal (https://www.franklinma.gov/home/pages/coronavirus-information-portal) is available on our homepage and is updated frequently to provide our residents and business owners with the latest information and resources. 

Find Franklin specific data, including Department Updates and Procedures (https://www.franklinma.gov/sites/g/files/vyhlif591/f/uploads/department_protocols_covid_19_13.pdf) under the "Town of Franklin News" (https://www.franklinma.gov/home/pages/town-franklin-news-and-alerts) button. 

We recently added a "Reopening Resources" (https://www.franklinma.gov/home/pages/reopening-resources) button to house information related to Governor Baker's four phase reentry plan.


  • Find the full newsletter online at the Town of Franklin page
https://www.franklinma.gov/home/pages/newsletter-portal

Town of Franklin: July 2020 E-Newsletter
Town of Franklin: July 2020 E-Newsletter

Plastic Bag Prohibition - effective date delayed

In late March, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker banned reusable bags and lifted local bans on plastic bags at grocery stores and pharmacies as part of his administration's steps to limit the spread of the Coronavirus. 

To comply with this order the Town of Franklin is delaying the start of the plastic bag prohibition which was originally slated to go into effect July 1st, 2020. 

The Plastic Bag Prohibition will go into effect when the Governor lifts the ban on reusable bags, once the ban is lifted the Town will send out a notification with a formal start date for the plastic bag prohibition to begin. 


Shared from the Town of Franklin page:
https://www.franklinma.gov/home/news/update-plastic-bag-prohibition

Plastic Bag Prohibition - effective date delayed
Plastic Bag Prohibition - effective date delayed

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Franklin Annual Report 2019: Human Resources Department

From the Franklin Annual Report 2019:

Fiscal Year 2019 was a very busy year for the Human Resources Department. The Town continued to experience our “retirement boom” with the departure of Fire Chief Gary McCarraher, former Deputy Fire Chief Paul Sharpe, and of course, the retirement of our fearless leader, Jeff Nutting, after 18 years as our Town Administrator! The show must go on, even without these valued employees, and we are lucky to have Town Administrator Jamie Hellen and new Fire Chief James McLaughlin and Deputy Chiefs Joseph Barbieri and James Klich stepping up to lead us for the foreseeable future.

The Police Department kept us very busy this year with a few retirements as well as the implementation of a new schedule in the Patrol Division. We are now one of a handful of communities in Massachusetts that offer a (“4&4” schedule. The schedule allows our officers to work four (4) ten (10) hour days and then take four (4) consecutive days off. Although the schedule officially started in FY20, we spent a significant portion of FY19 preparing for this adjustment, including adding additional Patrol Officers to the Police Department. As a result of the new schedule and a few other personnel changes, we hired 7 new Patrol Officers and promoted 2 Officers to Sergeant in just one fiscal year.

As a result of the retirements and other movement within the Fire Department, we appointed a new Chief, 2 Deputy Chiefs, 3 Captains, 2 Lieutenants and 5 new Firefighter/Paramedics in FY19 (and the first week of FY20 since Chief McLaughlin started on July 8, 2019).

Between July 1, 2018 and June 30, 2019, the Town also hired a Conservation Agent, an Archivist, an Administrative Assistant in the Town Administrator’s Office, a Clerk the Treasurer’s Office, a Clerk in the DPW, 2 Assistant Youth Services Librarians, 2 Library Assistants, a Town Electrician, 3 Custodians, and 2 Heavy Motor Equipment Operators at the Department of Public Works, and part-time employees in Recreation and the Senior Center. Like in years past, we hired about 30 students to work full-time at the DPW and in Facilities for the summer. These employees were instrumental in getting our schools and school grounds ready for the 2019-2020 school year.

As in years past, Jeff Nutting, Jamie Hellen and I worked closely with the Finance and HR teams from the Franklin

Public Schools and the Insurance Advisory Committee to try to contain the cost of health insurance. We currently provide health insurance to approximately 1200 employees and retirees from both the Town and Schools on our plan. Even a small increase in health insurance premiums can have a huge impact on the total budget.

For the second year in a row, the Town offered a qualified high deductible health insurance plan through Harvard Pilgrim Health Care to our active employees. If an employee moved from the traditional HMO to the high deductible HMO plan, they could save money on the monthly premium in exchange for a slightly higher deductible. This plan change saved the Town money, so we shared some of the savings with the employees by depositing money into each employee’s Health Savings Accounts (HSA). During the open enrollment period, we had 21 additional employees join the High Deductible Plan, bringing our numbers up to about 40 Town employees. These employees saved the Town an additional $19,000. This figure does not include the savings realized by people who joined the plan in FY18 or the additional savings achieved by the School Department. We have received very positive feedback from employees who have joined the high deductible plan and hope that we can continue to experience these savings in future years.

We worked closely with the Human Resources Department for Franklin Public Schools to offer a “Benefits Fair” during our open enrollment period in April. We invited representatives from Harvard Pilgrim and our other insurance vendors to set up tables to provide benefit information to our employees. We had a great turnout and employees were very pleased to have the opportunity to gather additional information and ask questions.

It was a very busy and challenging year, but HR Administrator Sandy Golebiewski and I both enjoyed it. It is very exciting to be part of the hiring team and it has been a pleasure getting to know our new employees and welcoming them to the Town. We look forward to another year of serving the employees and retirees of the Town of Franklin.

Respectfully submitted,

Karen M. Bratt
Human Resources Director


Download your copy of the Annual Report
https://www.franklinma.gov/town-clerk/files/town-franklin-annual-report-2019

Visit the Human Resources Dept online  https://www.franklinma.gov/human-resources

Franklin Annual Report 2019: Human Resources Department
Franklin Annual Report 2019: Human Resources Department

Reminder: We’re Virtual - Kids’ Corner Cooking Camp – Grades 4-7

Registration is open for Virtual Kids’ Corner Cooking Camp – Grades 4-7. Classes will run from Saturday, July 18 through Saturday, August 22

Participation is open to individuals in Franklin and the surrounding region towns.
Originally an after-school and summer camp program, Kids’ Corner Cooking Camp with Sandhya Jain, has shifted its current program to entirely online using Google Meet. These interactive Kids’ Corner cooking classes are set up to show kids (Grades 4-7) how to prepare fun offerings for their family. 

The weekly, one-hour lessons are educational, entertaining, and designed to empower students in the process. And the recipes are healthy and delicious.
For more information, go to www.FranklinLifelongLearning.com and click on Lifelong Community Learning. Or call Lifelong Community Learning at 508-613-1483.

ABOUT US: 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.

We’re Virtual - Kids’ Corner Cooking Camp – Grades 4-7
We’re Virtual - Kids’ Corner Cooking Camp – Grades 4-7

"Talking the Blues" - Reflecting on Black Lives Matter

Todd Monjar and Jim Derick discuss their thoughts surrounding the killing of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement


You can listen to this show on Franklin Public Radio, wfpr.fm anywhere via your browser or at 102.9 on the local Franklin FM radio dial.

Thursday = 11:00a/2:00p/8:00pm Talkin’ the Blues – Jim Derick
Exploring the music of the great Blues tradition

Saturday = 5:00p Talkin’ the Blues – Jim Derick
Exploring the music of the great Blues tradition


Audio link = https://www.podbean.com/ew/pb-ma4tu-e0105e



Monday, July 6, 2020

Franklin Annual Report 2019: Purchasing Office

From the 2019 Franklin Annual Report:

Over the past year, the Purchasing Office has made a concerted effort to modernize the Department while also assisting Department Heads with a number of significant projects. These projects include a continued focus on improving the Town’s overall utility based infrastructure.

PROCUREMENT CHANGES
The Purchasing Office continues to oversee the implementation of various improvements in the way vendors can access bid documentation. One of the more significant advancements is the change we made to the distribution of plans & specifications. Vendors no longer need to wait for the bid packages to be mailed, emailed, or picked in person. With the web based platform, vendors can download the entire bid package from the Town website, thus improving the accessibility of the documents while at the same time cutting municipal costs in a number of areas.

This change has been very well received, particularly by those doing business with the Town. The upgrades have also further reinforced our continued approach to modernizing the way procurement is handled.

FUNCTION AND OBJECTIVES
The function of the Purchasing Department is to assist other departments in obtaining the highest quality of services and supplies for the best price, all while remaining in compliance with applicable procurement laws. Our objective is to promote fair, prompt and courteous consideration to all suppliers; and observe the highest ethics in all transactions and correspondence.

Respectively submitted: 

John Bugbee
Chief Procurement Officer 
Town of Franklin

Download your copy of the 2019 Annual Report
https://www.franklinma.gov/town-clerk/files/town-franklin-annual-report-2019

Visit the Purchasing Dept online  https://www.franklinma.gov/purchasing

Franklin Annual Report 2019: Purchasing Office
Franklin Annual Report 2019: Purchasing Office

"Talking the Blues" - Epic Blues - Apr 30, 2020

What makes a song "Epic". Jim Derick ad Todd Monjar explore some of their favorite "Epic" songs of all time... with some surprising cover artists.


You can listen to this show on Franklin Public Radio, wfpr.fm anywhere via your browser or at 102.9 on the local Franklin FM radio dial.

Thursday = 11:00a/2:00p/8:00pm Talkin’ the Blues – Jim Derick
Exploring the music of the great Blues tradition

Saturday = 5:00p Talkin’ the Blues – Jim Derick
Exploring the music of the great Blues tradition


Audio file = https://www.podbean.com/ew/pb-ekupv-db5f59



Sunday, July 5, 2020

Franklin Annual Report 2019: Planning Board

From the Franklin Annual Report 2019

The Planning Board, as established by MGL. Ch. 41 sec.70, is responsible for 
“…making plans for the development of the municipality, with special reference to proper housing of its inhabitants.” 

The Board is charged with administering the State’s Subdivision Control Law (MGL. 41 Ch.81K) and the local subdivision rules and regulations (Chapter 300). The Board makes recommendations to the Town Council on Zoning By- Law amendments and may at its own discretion adopt new subdivision regulations. The Board is also designated as the permitting authority for various site plan and special permit submittals under the Town’s Zoning Bylaw (Ch. 185). The Board receives recommendations from the Design Review Commission on building design, elevation, and signage for commercial site plan permits, and from the Conservation Commission on wetland related issues, and works closely with the Planning & Community Development and Public Works Departments.

In FY2019, the Planning Board reviewed and issued decisions for several projects throughout the year. One major project the Planning Board approved was a Hotel located at 725 Union Street. The Site Plan and Special Permit proposes a major development, includes 5-story hotel with 100 rooms, indoor pool and associated paved access drive, landscaping, lighting, utilities and stormwater infrastructure.

The Planning Board reviewed and approved a 35,000 sq/ft Marijuana Cultivation building at 105 Constitution Blvd for the use of growing and processing of non-medical marijuana.

The Planning Board received a submittal of a 57-single family subdivision located on Prospect Street. There was also several large scale solar farms proposed on Spring Street, Upper Union Street and Summer Street. Solar farms are permitted through the Planning Board with a Special Permit and Site Plan application.

The Planning Board voted to endorse (5) five 81-P ANR plans, and accepted four (4) Form H - Certificate of Completions. Acceptance of a Form H indicates all work has been completed according to Site Plans or Subdivision Plans previously approved by the Planning Board. The Planning Board also approved (17) seventeen Special Permit applications including the Hotel, Marijuana Cultivation, Solar Farms, a Brewery with Tasting Room and a Distillery. The table below is a summary of Planning Board Activity during the 2019 Fiscal Year.

The Planning Board held public hearings on several proposed Zoning Bylaw changes including changing setbacks for poultry in residential zones and building height changes in the Commercial zone. The Planning Board has also reviewed and recommended a new zoning district, known as Mixed Business Innovation zoning district, which consisted of several properties near the downtown. The new zone allows for more mixed use business and retail, gearing towards the smaller business owners. The Board continues to help property owners make the desired changes and improvements to their properties while fostering responsible growth and development in the Town of Franklin.

The Planning Board typically meets twice a month on Mondays at 7:00 PM in the Municipal Building. All Board meetings are open to the public, and are televised via Community Cable Access.

Planning Board Membership
The Planning Board consists of five members and one associate member. The associate member participates in all hearings but only votes on Special Permits if one of the members is unable to act. The Board members are elected and serve 4-year terms. 

Below is a list of current Planning Board members:
Anthony Padula, Chairman 
Joseph Halligan, Vice Chairman 
John Carroll, Clerk
Gregory Rondeau 
William David, 
Rick Power, Associate Member

Respectfully submitted, 
Anthony Padula, Chairman


Download your copy of the Franklin Annual Report for 2019
https://www.franklinma.gov/town-clerk/files/town-franklin-annual-report-2019

Visit the Planning Board online  https://www.franklinma.gov/planning-board

Franklin Annual Report 2019: Planning Board
Franklin Annual Report 2019: Planning Board

"Talking the Blues" - High Energy Blues - Apr 29, 2020

Jim Derick and Todd Monjar talk high energy blues in this episode

You can listen to this show on Franklin Public Radio, wfpr.fm anywhere via your browser or at 102.9 on the local Franklin FM radio dial.

Thursday = 11:00a/2:00p/8:00pm Talkin’ the Blues – Jim Derick
Exploring the music of the great Blues tradition

Saturday = 5:00p Talkin’ the Blues – Jim Derick
Exploring the music of the great Blues tradition


Audio file = https://www.podbean.com/ew/pb-kybek-db5fb0


Saturday, July 4, 2020

Franklin Annual Report 2019: Finance Committee

Annual Report Of The Finance Committee: Year In Review - 2019


Our fiscal year, July 1, 2018 thru June 30, 2019, began with budget adjustments and transfers as detailed in Resolution 18-59. Primary reasons were higher than expected revenues and consolidation of departments. The committee approved unanimously a motion to recommend passage to the Town Council. We also were informed by the Town Administrator that the risk management study had been completed. No major exceptions were noted.

During the year the committee met 5 times. Four of those meetings were focused on the FY 2020 budget process, with the result being unanimous approval of a projected
$129.40M operating budget for the town. The budget allows for the town to provide services at the same level as FY 2019. Approximately $385K will be transferred from the budget stabilization account to balance the overall FY 2020 budget.

The long term financial plan continues to project financial challenges over the next several years. While our town continues to provide excellent services with little increase in resources, our reserve levels continue to be challenging. A concerning indicator is shown in the Franklin Public Schools need to draw on their reserves at an unsustainable pace. Housing units are growing and the impact on the school budget will need to be monitored on a regular basis.

A highlight of the budget was a reduction of 3% in the Police department while adding 5 additional officers to the force. Additionally, the Library budget was funded to ensure certification is retained.

I’d like to take the opportunity to thank my fellow committee members for their ongoing dedication to continued improvements and the financial well being of our town.

Respectfully submitted, 
Michael Dufour
Chairman, Franklin Finance Committee


Download your copy of the Annual Report
https://www.franklinma.gov/town-clerk/files/town-franklin-annual-report-2019

Franklin Annual Report 2019: Finance Committee
Franklin Annual Report 2019: Finance Committee



Budget Hearing #4 - 6/04/20

audio = https://www.franklinmatters.org/2020/06/franklin-ma-finance-committee-budget_55.html
notes = https://www.franklinmatters.org/2020/06/finance-committee-budget-hearing-4.html

Budget hearing #3 - 6/02/20

audio = https://www.franklinmatters.org/2020/06/finance-committee-budget-hearing-3.html
Notes = https://www.franklinmatters.org/2020/06/franklin-ma-finance-committee-budget_6.html

Budget hearing #2 - 5/28/20

audio = https://www.franklinmatters.org/2020/05/fm-279-finance-committee-budget-hearing.html
Notes = https://www.franklinmatters.org/2020/05/finance-committee-recap-budget-hearing.html

Budget hearing #1 - 5/27/20

audio = https://www.franklinmatters.org/2020/05/fm-280-finance-committee-budget-hearing.html
Notes = https://www.franklinmatters.org/2020/05/finance-committee-recap-budget-hearing.html

"Talking the Blues" - Ana Popovic - Mar 26, 2020

Jim Derick and Todd Monjar talk the blues of Ana Popovic  (http://anapopovic.com/home)

You can listen to this show on Franklin Public Radio, wfpr.fm anywhere via your browser or at 102.9 on the local Franklin FM radio dial.

Thursday = 11:00a/2:00p/8:00pm Talkin’ the Blues – Jim Derick
Exploring the music of the great Blues tradition

Saturday = 5:00p Talkin’ the Blues – Jim Derick
Exploring the music of the great Blues tradition


Audio file = https://www.podbean.com/ew/pb-z78td-d84551


Friday, July 3, 2020

Franklin Annual Report 2019: Conservation Commission

From the Annual Report 2019:

Franklin Conservation Commission is responsible for promoting and protecting the Town of Franklin’s natural resources, and protecting the Town’s wetlands resources.

The Commission is comprised of seven volunteer residents appointed for three year terms by the Town Administrator. Current Commission members 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.

The Department of Planning and Community Development provides administrative and technical support to the Commission.

Franklin has continuously been well represented at the annual conference of the Massachusetts Association of Conservation Commissions each 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.

Permitting of Work Within or Adjacent to Wetlands Resources

The majority of the Commission’s attention is directed to administering Massachusetts and Franklin wetland protection laws and regulations. Those laws and regulations require Conservation 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.

During the first quarter of FY19 the Commission voted to amend Franklin Conservation Commission Regulations to allow the Conservation Agent to authorize projects that require a speedy approval due to possible threat to safety, or projects that are barely within the Conservation Commission’s jurisdiction. This new process has resulted in applicants quickly receiving permission to perform projects such as hazardous tree removal, construction of porches, decks, and patios, or gaining access through jurisdictional areas to non-jurisdiction activities without being required to attend a Conservation Commission meeting. The new regulations have resulted in a streamlined permitting process, allowing small projects to quickly move forward. During FY19 the Conservation Agent reviewed and administratively approved 16 minor buffer zone applications.

During FY19 the Conservation Commission received 50 permit applications to work within areas under their permitting jurisdiction. In addition the Commission issued Certificates of Compliance for previously permitted projects, and granted permit extensions to allow projects to finish.

Some of the more interesting project applications before the Commission during FY19 include Amego Incorporated’s Lite House Commons on Washington Street, the Southern New England Trunkline Trail (SNETT) tunnel under Prospect Street, and two large scale solar farms.

DelCarte Conservation Area

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 2015-2016 has given the Town a comprehensive understanding of exactly “what is there” and includes a management plan to help keep the area viable as a true recreational jewel. The first two phases of the plan’s recommendations, the treatment of invasive plant species was undertaken in the spring/summer of 2017 and 2018. The Town appropriated Capital Improvement funds to help implement the next phases of this study in 2018-2019. The pond’s invasive species will again be treated throughout the summer of 2019. In addition the funds are being used to implement the ADA recommendations under the master plan developed for DelCarte. This plan, developed for the Town by Mass Audubon was presented to the Commission in the fall of 2017.

The Commission began to 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 improve the overall aesthetics of the area. This portion of the improvements was completed in the spring/summer 2019.

A concrete pad was constructed for the picnic pavilion that will be installed in the upcoming fiscal year as one of the improvements outlined in the Delcarte Property Land Management Plan.

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.

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 after being evaluated by the Commission it was decided that any action on the beaver population was cost prohibitive.

In late April, the Commission conducted its fourth annual clean-up day at the DelCarte Recreation area. The event was attended by many citizen volunteers who lent valuable assistance and manpower in helping to maintain this valuable Town resource.

Other Conservation Areas and Trails

The Commission would like to draw the attention of the Town’s residents to the many natural areas in 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.
  • 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; trails in this area were improved 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 boasts an extensive network of walking and ORV trails;
  • The Southern New England Trunkline Trail (SNETT) starts at Grove Street in Franklin, and goes all the way to Douglas State Forest. The Trail section from Prospect Street into Bellingham was recently reconstructed by the Mass Department of Conservation and Recreation; plans to construct a tunnel under Prospect Street have been approved.
  • Charles River Meadowlands. 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, Interstate 495, Grove Street, West Central Street, I-495 again, Beech Street, and Pond Street before finally meeting the Charles River on the Medway border.
  • 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 Massachusetts DEP.

The Commission would also like Franklin’s 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.

In recent years the Conservation Website has been reworked to be more user-friendly and now provides more information about filing types and procedures. 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.

Conservation Commission membership and staff underwent substantial change during FY19 with Commissioners Tara Henrichon and Angela Gelineau leaving, and Alan Wallach and Brandon Rosenberg being appointed to the Commission. In addition, Conservation Agent George Russell retired, and Jennifer Delmore came on board as the new Agent. Please visit our website for additional information: www.franklinma.gov/conservation.

Currently Franklin Conservation Commission consists of the following members: William Batchelor, Jeffrey Milne, Staci Dooney, Paul Harrington, Jeffrey Livingstone, Braden Rosenberg, and Alan Walloch.

Respectfully submitted, 
William Batchelor, Chair


Download your copy of the Annual Report
https://www.franklinma.gov/town-clerk/files/town-franklin-annual-report-2019

Franklin Annual Report 2019: Conservation Commission
Franklin Annual Report 2019: Conservation Commission

THE BLACK BOX presents Ayla Brown - July 10

THE BLACK BOX, the region’s premiere concert, theater, and event venue, has announced outdoor weekend concerts throughout the month of July in the theater’s parking lot. The shows will be presented in a one hour format with two seatings at 6:30 and 8:30 pm. Tables will be socially distanced and masks will be required when patrons enter THE BLACK BOX building to access the box office, restrooms, and bar. Table groupings will be limited to six.

Country singer Ayla Brown will take the outdoor stage on Friday, July 10 at 6:30 and 8:30 pm. This concert schedule is contingent upon Reopening Massachusetts Phase 3 beginning on July 6th. The box office for this show will open when the Phase 3 start date is officially announced by Governor Baker.
Ayla Brown - July 10
Ayla Brown - July 10

From parachuting with the Army Golden Knights jump team, lighting up the scoreboard for Boston College Basketball, or acting as a main correspondent for national news programs, Ayla Brown is no stranger to the spotlight. Most recently, she has been named as the Morning Show Co-host at Country 102.5 in Boston. Jonathan Wier and Ayla Brown can be heard weekdays from 5:30 to 9am on WKLB-FM. 

Musically, Ayla has released two full length albums Heroes & Hometowns and Let Love In both to critical acclaim and her new single, “Label,” is available on all digital platforms. Brown, an alumna of the Franklin School for the Performing Arts, was also a finalist on nationally renowned television program American Idol, and she continues to utilize her vast repertoire of talents while advancing her already successful and illustrious career.

Tickets will be available at www.THEBLACKBOXonline.com or by calling 508-528-3370. THE BLACK BOX is located at 15 W. Central St. in downtown Franklin.

"Talking the Blues" - The Rolling Stones - a Blues Band - Jan 20, 2020

Jim Derick and Todd Monjar talk about The Rolling Stones - a Blues Band in this episode

You can listen to this show on Franklin Public Radio, wfpr.fm anywhere via your browser or at 102.9 on the local Franklin FM radio dial.

Thursday = 11:00a/2:00p/8:00pm Talkin’ the Blues – Jim Derick
Exploring the music of the great Blues tradition

Saturday = 5:00p Talkin’ the Blues – Jim Derick
Exploring the music of the great Blues tradition


Audio file = https://www.podbean.com/ew/pb-4jhu9-d84546



Thursday, July 2, 2020

Purple Heart Day - August 7, 2020

Join us for a ceremony honoring Franklin Purple Heart Recipients!

National Purple Heart Day is observed on August 7 each year. The Veterans Services Office will recognize Franklin Purple Heart recipients at a ceremony on the Town Common on Friday, August 7 at 5:30 PM prior to the Concert on the Common.

Along with 90 other Massachusetts communities, Franklin recognizes and honors recipients of the Purple Heart medal which is presented to members of the U.S. military who have been wounded or killed by enemy forces. Created by General George Washington in 1782 and reestablished by General Douglas McArthur in 1932, the Purple Heart medal is the nation's oldest military decoration. 

Please call the Franklin Veterans Services Office at: (508) 613-1315 if you or a family member (residing in Franklin) is a Purple Heart recipient and would like to be added to our database.

Purple Heart Day - August 7, 2020
Purple Heart Day - August 7, 2020

Franklin Annual Report 2019: Town Clerk

From the Annual Report for 2019

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.

HISTORY TOWN CLERK OFFICE

The office of town clerk is probably one of the oldest in municipal government. It appears in the Bible in the Book of Acts, Chapter 19, and verse 35 written in A.D. 58. A search of other early written records would no doubt reveal other instances in which mention of this office appears. In Massachusetts, town clerk was one of the earliest offices established in colonial towns although the title itself may not appear in the earliest records. The settlers were well aware of the importance of keeping accurate written records of their agreements and actions including grants of land, regulations governing animals, the collection of taxes and the expenditure of town funds. If your town records date back to the first half of the 17th century, you will probably find that a person was given the specific duty of writing down town orders and will see many entries in the record which include the words “It is ordered by the inhabitants,” or some similar words. Indeed, in Massachusetts, the town clerk was one of the earliest offices established in colonial towns.

ONLINE SERVICE

Our online service continues to be a success!! 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, seven days a week. To use this service, visit the town website at www.franklinma.gov and follow to the Town Clerk’s Department.

NOTARY SERVICE

The Town Clerk’s office provides Notary services as a courtesy. Residents seeking Notary Services should call the Town Clerk’s office prior to their visit to ensure that the Notary is available. The following guidelines will be followed in the provision of Notary Service: - Notary Services are available during the normal business hours and are not available in the fifteen (15) minutes prior to the time of closing. - Notary Service is provided on a first-come, first service basis - A valid, government- issued photo identification is required of any customer seeking Notary Service - The document(s) CANNOT already have been signed nor dated - All signers must be present at the time of notarizing - The Notary is stating they have witnessed the document being signed by the individuals present - Notary Service is not available for deeds, mortgages, wills, living wills, living trusts, codicils or depositions. - Certain public documents cannot be copied and notarized. For more information, visit our website.

POPULATION

The total population for FY2019 Census is now 34,693. The following are some past population figures that have been reported over the past years.


1981
17,304
1989
22,045
1997
28,594
1982
17,333
1990
22,674
1998
28,928
1983
17,187
1991
23,982
1999
29,306
1984
17,302
1992
24,756
2000
29,738
1985
17,500
1993
24,963
2001
29,897
1986
19,253
1994
25,213
2002
30,198
1987
20,105
1995
26,721
2003
30,522
1988
21,009
1996
27,325
2004
30,944
2005
31,274
2006
31,629
2007
32,003
2008
32,223
2009
32,878
2010
32,862
2011
32,810
2012
33,092
2013
33,186
2014
33,490
2015
33,590
2016
33,761
2017 
2018
34,693




 
Year Population (As of January)

2017 - 33,905

Find the full report online at

Department Spotlight on the Town Clerk
 
Franklin (MA) Population and Annual Growth percent 1981-2018
Franklin (MA) Population and Annual Growth percent 1981-2018