Saturday, November 7, 2020

Franklin, MA: Finance Committee - Agenda - Nov 9, 2020

Finance Committee 
Meeting Agenda & Meeting Packet 
November 9th, 2020
6:30 PM

Agenda

1.    Call to Order
2.    Public Comments
3.    Approval of Minutes

a.    June 4, 2020
b.    October 6, 2020

4.    FY21 Budget Update

a.    Amended Budgets for Town Clerk Department & Recreation Department consideration for approval
b.    Budget Stabilization consideration for approval

5.    Adjourn
 

Agenda doc
 

To watch or listen:


For active participation:


 
Franklin, MA: Finance Committee - Agenda - Nov 9, 2020
Franklin, MA: Finance Committee - Agenda - Nov 9, 2020

 

Franklin Residents: How To Get A Library Card

Apply for a Franklin Public Library Card Online!

If you have never had a Minuteman library card, please complete the form below to get a 6-month Minuteman library card. Then visit a Minuteman public library convenient to you, within 6 months, to complete the library card application. When you pick up your card you must present a photo ID and proof of address.


Please sign up using a valid email address. Your temporary barcode and username will be emailed to you.  Visit https://library.minlib.net/selfreg


Your temporary number allows you to:

  • Login to My Account and establish a password.
  • Use state-provided online research databases within Massachusetts only.
  • Place up to 5 requests on Books, DVDs, CDs, etc. in the Minuteman Catalog for pickup at a Minuteman library.
  • Use our Digital Catalog.

How to complete the registration:

  • Pick up your full service library card at a Minuteman public library of your choice within 6 months.
  • After 6 months, temporary accounts, including item requests, are deleted.
  • Please mention that you have already registered for a temporary card and bring your temporary library number or a copy of the confirmation email.
  • When you pick up your card you must present a photo ID and proof of address. 
Download a copy of this for reference

 

Franklin Residents: How To Get A Library Card
Franklin Residents: How To Get A Library Card


FREE Haircuts for Vets on Veterans' Day - Wednesday, Nov 11, 2020

Sport Clips Haircuts in Franklin

Sport Clips Haircuts of Franklin, a haircare salon that specializes in men's and boys' haircuts, will offer free haircuts on Wednesday, November 11 to all active duty U.S. service members and veterans with valid proof of service.  The salon is collecting donations throughout November for the VFW's "Help a Hero" Scholarship Fund and will donate $1 for every haircut service provided on Veterans' Day. Sport Clips Haircuts is located on Route 140 in the plaza next to Restaurant 3.  Call: (508) 440-5870 to make an appointment.

Here's a list of Covid-19 safety measures the salon is taking to keep staff and clients safe:

  • Face masks are required by all clients and staff members. 
  • All stylists are required to wear gloves and eye protection (in addition to masks).
  • All barber capes, towels, etc. are laundered after each use. 
  • All surfaces are sanitized (e.g. kiosks, barber chairs, shampoo bowls, etc.) are fully sanitized after each use. 
  • Infrared thermometers are used to take all client and staff member temperatures each day. 
  • Our barber chairs are at least 6 feet apart.
  • We've also installed plexiglass barriers between adjacent barber chairs and shampoo pools for added safety.
  • Our reception area only contains 6 chairs kept 8-10 feet apart. Everyone else is requested to wait outside until their stylist is ready to serve them. 
  • We employ the latest technology so that clients can check-in online and can be notified via text message when their stylist is ready for them. 
 

Visit Sport Clips Haircuts in Franklin online  https://haircutmenfranklinma.com/

Visit Sport Clips Haircuts in Franklin online
Visit Sport Clips Haircuts in Franklin online


“What we heard from the governor today is a complete disconnect”

 From the Milford Daily News, articles of interest for Franklin:

"Gov. Charlie Baker, along with health and education officials, on Friday detailed an expectation that schools across the state should have students attending in-person learning and that most of the 351 cities and towns should strive to have students in classrooms full time.

The announcement was made alongside a major revision to the state’s weekly COVID-19 risk map, which has been tied to state guidelines for school and business safety policies. Under the new methodology, which adds population as a factor, the number of communities in the “red” or “high-risk” category will decline from 121 last week to 16 on the map that was scheduled to be published Friday evening.

Baker, Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders and education officials on Friday cited various pieces of research that found that in-person learning does not lead to increased transmission of the virus. While about 450,000 public school students attended in-person classes last week, Baker said there were only 252 confirmed cases among those students and staff.

“We continue to see too many communities with students learning in remote-only models,” Baker said. “Not being in school poses significant risk for kids, both related to COVID and related to other health concerns — like depression, anxiety and others. In Rhode Island, students learning remotely tested positive at a higher rate than students attending classes.”

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required) 
 

From CommonWealth Magazine we share an article of interest for Franklin:

"THE BAKER ADMINISTRATION on Friday ramped up pressure on the roughly 23 percent of school districts teaching remotely to return to in-person classes by releasing new metrics that downgraded the risk of COVID-19 in most communities and issuing new guidance suggesting hands-on teaching is safe even in hot-spot areas.

Gov. Charlie Baker said the evidence is clear that in-person teaching is safe. He noted cases in public schools declined this past week and Catholic schools statewide, many of them in high-risk areas, have seen few infections.

“Data collected from school districts across the US, of which we now have several months’ worth, shows schools can open and operate safely in person,” he said.

 “We know nothing can take the place of in-person instruction,” said Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Commissioner Jeff Riley. “The time to get kids back to school is now.”
Continue reading the article online 
 
 

With rejiggered COVID-19 map accounting for population, many MA communities move out of red zone

From CommonWealth Magazine we share an article of interest for Franklin:

"WITH THE NUMBER of Massachusetts communities considered high-risk for COVID-19 growing at an alarming rate, the Baker administration on Friday changed the metrics it uses to set risk levels and cut the number of municipalities designated as red by 87 percent.

The administration had been using a one-size-fits-all system for determining whether a community was low (gray and green), moderate (green), or high (red) risk based on the average number of cases per 100,000 people over the previous two weeks.

On Friday a new system was rolled out that lumps communities into three different groups based on population size and then measures risk for each group using different metrics – the number of overall cases in smaller communities and a combination of cases per 100,000 and the positive test rate (positive cases divided by total tests) in the larger ones. Even the cutoff for the red, or high-risk, designation was raised from 8 to 10 cases per 100,000 people.

Using the new metrics, the number of red communities plummeted, falling from 121 a week ago to 16 on Friday. The number of moderate risk yellow communities increased from 76 to 91 and the number of low-risk gray and green communities jumped from 197 to 244."

From the Milford Daily News, articles of interest for Franklin:

"One day after unexpectedly delaying the release of a weekly COVID-19 risk map, Massachusetts health officials revealed that the next edition of the map will be adjusted for the population of the state’s cities and towns.

Administration officials revealed the first revised map with the new calculations Friday afternoon.

Since the first edition of the map, the Department of Public Health has categorized communities into four color groups — gray, green, yellow and red — based primarily on the average daily rate of new virus cases per 100,000 people over a two-week period.

But only a handful of the state’s 351 cities and towns have a population greater than 100,000. Nearly half have populations smaller than 10,000."

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)
 

Town of Franklin, MA: Department procedures updated

Please find the latest information about the Town of Franklin Department procedures here  https://t.co/0uyVzmRAum  or

This can be found on our Coronavirus Portal under the Town of Franklin News tab  https://t.co/uweS6kiz06  or https://www.franklinma.gov/home/pages/town-franklin-news-and-alerts


Town of Franklin, MA: Department procedures updated
Town of Franklin, MA: Department procedures updated


Franklin Line: Shuttle bus to Walpole on weekends through Nov 22

Walpole – Forge Park/495 = September 12 – November 21, weekends
Shuttle buses replace trains between Walpole and Forge Park/495 to allow for work on the Franklin Line Double Track project.
Learn more about the Franklin Line Double Track project

Franklin Line: Shuttle bus to Walpole on weekends through Nov 22
Franklin Line: Shuttle bus to Walpole on weekends through Nov 22


Friday, November 6, 2020

FM #383 #shopFranklin Sarah Mabardy - 11/04/20 (audio)

FM #383 = This is the Franklin Matters radio show, number 383 in the series.

This shares my discussion with #shopFranklin’s organizer Sarah Mabardy. Our discussion was conducted via conference bridge to adhere to the ‘social distancing’ requirements of this pandemic period.

This is the start of sharing the conversation Sarah and I have around how to help the small businesses of Franklin. We have some thoughts, you may too. If you have questions, ideas, or suggestions, feel free to reach out to Sarah or myself.

The recording runs just about 26 minutes, so let’s listen to my conversation with Sarah   Audio file = https://www.hipcast.com/podcast/HBR24G0S


-----------

Facebook page for #shopFranklin: https://www.facebook.com/groups/shopFranklin
 
#ThinkFranklinFirst reason referenced about keeping dollars local    https://www.franklinmatters.org/2020/10/town-of-franklin-ma-when-you-spend.html  
 

--------------

We are now producing this in collaboration with Franklin.TV and Franklin Public Radio (wfpr.fm) or 102.9 on the Franklin area radio dial. 

This podcast is my public service effort for Franklin but we can't do it alone. We can always use your help.

How can you help?

  • If you can use the information that you find here, please tell your friends and neighbors
  • If you don't like something here, please let me know

Through this feedback loop we can continue to make improvements. I thank you for listening.

For additional information, please visit Franklinmatters.org/

If you have questions or comments you can reach me directly at shersteve @ gmail dot com

The music for the intro and exit was provided by Michael Clark and the group "East of Shirley". The piece is titled "Ernesto, manana"  c. Michael Clark & Tintype Tunes, 2008 and used with their permission.

I hope you enjoy!

------------------

You can also subscribe and listen to Franklin Matters audio on iTunes or your favorite podcast app; search in "podcasts" for "Franklin Matters"

 
Facebook page for #shopFranklin
Facebook page for #shopFranklin

FM #382 Town Council candidate KP Sompally - 10/27/20 (audio)

FM #382 = This is the Franklin Matters radio show, number 382 in the series.

This shares my interview and discussion with Town Council candidate KP Sompally. Our discussion was conducted via conference bridge to adhere to the ‘social distancing’ requirements of this pandemic period.

Franklin, MA voters should be aware that there will be a special election (per Town Charter) to fill the seat recently vacated by Eamon McCarthy Earls. He left at the beginning of Sept to enter law school in Virginia. The special election is scheduled for Saturday, December 5, 2020 to meet the 90 day requirement of the Charter.

All candidates are asked the same set of questions to allow Franklin voters to make an informed comparison.

FM Q - By the way of introducing yourself to the Franklin voters, what is your Franklin story?

My Wife and I have lived and raised our family in Franklin for 12 years, having benefited for all of the reasons why I moved here: a safe community with blue ribbon schools, preserved open space with parks, hiking trails, and sporting fields, most importantly a small-town culture offering vibrant and enrichment events, activities and programs.

FM Q - What degree of development do you feel is appropriate for Franklin and how would you balance the need for affordable housing with the need to avoid congestion, some of which we already have?

Two of the most pressing problems for Franklin are housing affordability and traffic congestion. But there is an approach to both problems that could lead to significant improvements at low cost and relatively quickly. It involves developing transit-oriented centers in conjunction with inclusionary zoning.

This form of development gives priority to housing affordability and low car use. It does so by requiring a certain proportion of permanently affordable housing and dwellings without car parking, but with strong access to local facilities. Travel is mainly by walking and public transport.

At the same time, introducing a special rate on land, similar to existing council rates based on land values, and eliminating stamp duty on property transactions would make the market more efficient, reduce budget impacts and support infrastructure provision.

These measures will in no way completely solve our problems. But they would help increase Franklin's supply of affordable housing and reduce road congestion.

FM Q - The Community Preservation Act is on the November ballot, what do you think of it?

Adoption of CPA, helps preserve open space and historic sites, create affordable housing, and develop outdoor recreational facilities while providing opportunities for tourism, jobs and housing. This revenue is combination local contributions and state matching funds, many of our neighboring towns have already adopted this. We should move swiftly on this

FM Q - The Town Administrator suggested in 2019 that Franklin needed to consider an override measure.  The pandemic hit, that didn’t happen. The water rate and trash/recycling rate increased. Stormwater utility fee is up for consideration for implementation on/about July 2021. And yet, the operational budget both school and town side of the budget is challenged. How do you approach this financial situation?

Given our present budgetary condition, it is critical to consider it. As you mentioned this measure was in consideration last year. I don’t think the situation has changed.

FM Q - What do you say to the voter who asks: Why should I vote for you?

Franklin has been subject to Break in’s and vandalism in the last few years, this is becoming a big concern for many residents I worked with affected families in the past, I will work to bring a fresh, new perspective with a wide range of personal and professional experiences that will contribute greatly to the growth of our Franklin.

I understand how a team works and the council is just that as a team, needing diverse leader to represent this community.


FM Q - Anything else to add that we did not cover?

I continue my deep commitment to maintaining Franklin ’s ‘small town atmosphere and outstanding quality of life’

The pandemic is affecting all of us, including businesses and Town government. No one is untouched by the totality of recent events. The combined health and economic crises have created significant challenges.

Top Priorities are:

  1. Protect our small-town atmosphere
  2. Maintain fiscal responsibility with balanced budget, high reserves
  3. Preserve our open space
  4. Keep Franklin the Safest Community in Massachusetts
  5. Promote a thriving downtown and our overall business community
  6. Locally controlled planning and housing needs
  7. Expanded services to seniors
  8. Improved parks and fields.
  9. Continue addressing the impacts of COVID-19.


I am confident that our future looks bright and a carefully guided safe return to economic and health prosperity lies ahead.

The recording runs just about 11 minutes, so let’s listen to my conversation with KP  Audio file = https://www.hipcast.com/podcast/HWPZVqnS


-----------


Facebook page:
https://fb.me/kpforfranklin
 

--------------

We are now producing this in collaboration with Franklin.TV and Franklin Public Radio (wfpr.fm) or 102.9 on the Franklin area radio dial. 

This podcast is my public service effort for Franklin but we can't do it alone. We can always use your help.

How can you help?

  • If you can use the information that you find here, please tell your friends and neighbors
  • If you don't like something here, please let me know

Through this feedback loop we can continue to make improvements. I thank you for listening.

For additional information, please visit Franklinmatters.org/

If you have questions or comments you can reach me directly at shersteve @ gmail dot com

The music for the intro and exit was provided by Michael Clark and the group "East of Shirley". The piece is titled "Ernesto, manana"  c. Michael Clark & Tintype Tunes, 2008 and used with their permission.

I hope you enjoy!

------------------

You can also subscribe and listen to Franklin Matters audio on iTunes or your favorite podcast app; search in "podcasts" for "Franklin Matters"

FM #382 Town Council candidate KP Sompally - 10/27/20 (audio)
FM #382 Town Council candidate KP Sompally - 10/27/20 (audio)

FM #381 School Comm DTFA Info Session 11/04/20 (audio)

FM #381 = This is the Franklin Matters radio show, number 381 in the series.

This session shares the Franklin, MA Davis Thayer Facility Analysis Subcommittee
Community Information Session held on Wednesday, Nov 4, 2020. The meeting was conducted via conference bridge to adhere to the ‘social distancing’ requirements of this pandemic period.

Quick Recap:
  • With info gathered, they can update their five step process, they are currently in Phase 2
  • Overview of the highlights of the facility analysis report and presentation as covered in the prior School Committee meeting 10/27/20
  • Discussion of possible timeline for the next steps
  • Survey out for community input

The show notes contain links to the meeting agenda and to the presentation document.

The recording runs about 1 hour and 15 minutes, so let’s listen to the Community Information Session of Nov 4, 2020. Audio file = https://www.hipcast.com/podcast/HNlJ58nS



--------------

Survey link = https://www.franklinps.net/district/pages/dt-facilities-analysis-survey

Agenda doc https://www.franklinps.net/sites/g/files/vyhlif4431/f/agendas/agenda_dt_facanalysiscommunitypresentation_11.4.2020.pdf

Comprehensive Facility Analysis presentation doc
https://www.franklinps.net/district/school-committee/files/facilities-analysis-presentation-10-27-20

Facility Assessment report doc
https://www.franklinps.net/district/school-committee/files/facilities-assessment-report

My notes from the meeting
https://www.franklinmatters.org/2020/11/davis-thayer-facility-analysis_5.html  

--------------

We are now producing this in collaboration with Franklin.TV and Franklin Public Radio (wfpr.fm) or 102.9 on the Franklin area radio dial. 

This podcast is my public service effort for Franklin but we can't do it alone. We can always use your help.

How can you help?

  • If you can use the information that you find here, please tell your friends and neighbors
  • If you don't like something here, please let me know

Through this feedback loop we can continue to make improvements. I thank you for listening.

For additional information, please visit Franklinmatters.org/

If you have questions or comments you can reach me directly at shersteve @ gmail dot com

The music for the intro and exit was provided by Michael Clark and the group "East of Shirley". The piece is titled "Ernesto, manana"  c. Michael Clark & Tintype Tunes, 2008 and used with their permission.

I hope you enjoy!

------------------

You can also subscribe and listen to Franklin Matters audio on iTunes or your favorite podcast app; search in "podcasts" for "Franklin Matters"

 

FM #381 School Comm DTFA Info Session 11/04/20 (audio)
FM #381 School Comm DTFA Info Session 11/04/20 (audio)

FM #380 Board of Health Mtg - 11/04/20 (audio)

FM #380 = This is the Franklin Matters radio show, number 380 in the series.

This session shares the Board of Health meeting held on Wednesday, Nov 4, 2020. The meeting was conducted via conference bridge to adhere to the ‘social distancing’ requirements of this pandemic period.

Quick Recap:

  • Motion to approve prior meeting minutes passed via roll call vote 3-0
  • Motion to grant waive on leaching field/Title 5 specifications to create a working system passed by roll call 3-0 vote
  • Manicure establishment regulation to be subject of a future public hearing before removing the regulation as it is duplicative with what the State already does
  • Updates on recruiting for future clinic in process; building at 27 Winter condemned, proceedings appreciated by Franklin Police
  • No questions from committee on Gov Baker’s updates to COVID-19 restrictions, facial covering requirements, etc.

The show notes contain links to the meeting agenda and the Board of Health page.

The meeting runs about 28 minutes, so let’s listen to the Board of Health meeting for Nov 4, 2020.   Audio file = https://www.hipcast.com/podcast/HZVHmPRK


--------------

Meeting agenda:
https://www.franklinma.gov/sites/g/files/vyhlif591/f/agendas/agenda-11-4-20_revised.pdf

Board of Health page  https://www.franklinma.gov/health-department

My notes from the meeting
https://www.franklinmatters.org/2020/11/board-of-health-nov-4-2020-meeting-recap.html 

--------------

We are now producing this in collaboration with Franklin.TV and Franklin Public Radio (wfpr.fm) or 102.9 on the Franklin area radio dial. 

This podcast is my public service effort for Franklin but we can't do it alone. We can always use your help.

How can you help?

  • If you can use the information that you find here, please tell your friends and neighbors
  • If you don't like something here, please let me know

Through this feedback loop we can continue to make improvements. I thank you for listening.

For additional information, please visit Franklinmatters.org/

If you have questions or comments you can reach me directly at shersteve @ gmail dot com

The music for the intro and exit was provided by Michael Clark and the group "East of Shirley". The piece is titled "Ernesto, manana"  c. Michael Clark & Tintype Tunes, 2008 and used with their permission.

I hope you enjoy!

------------------

You can also subscribe and listen to Franklin Matters audio on iTunes or your favorite podcast app; search in "podcasts" for "Franklin Matters"

 


 

The week ahead for Franklin events: Nov 6 - Nov 12, 2020

Help stuff a truck on Saturday, take a walk with Alice on Sunday, and make a birdfeeder on Monday.


Saturday, November 7
9:00am -  St John's: "Stuff a Truck"
 
Sunday, November 8
12:30pm -  FPAC presents "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland"
 
Monday, November 9
7:30pm -  FCC: “Making Tiny Room Birdfeeders” with Betsy Miller
 
Tuesday, November 10
9:00am -  wfpr.fm: Pamela Hines – Jazz Journey
12:00pm -  wfpr.fm: Pamela Hines – Jazz Journey
 
Wednesday, November 11
 Veterans Day
9:00am -  Franklin Community Garden: Maintenance Day
10:00am -  wfpr.fm: "The Wonderful World of Wine" – Mark/ Kim
1:00pm -  wfpr.fm: "The Wonderful World of Wine" – Mark/Kim
7:00pm -  wfpr.fm: "The Wonderful World of Wine" – Mark/Kim
7:30pm -  Let's Laugh Today is Free
 
Thursday, November 12
10:00am -  wfpr.fm: "Frank’s Music" – Frank Falvey
11:00am -  wfpr.fm: "Talkin’ the Blues" – Jim/Todd
1:00pm -  wfpr.fm: "Frank’s Music" – Frank Falvey
2:00pm -  wfpr.fm: "Talkin’ the Blues" – Jim/Todd
8:00pm -  wfpr.fm: "Talkin' the Blues!" - Jim/Todd
 

 

 
If you have an event to add to the calendar, you can use the form to submit it for publication:  https://forms.gle/oPdi8X3ZbHHyrHzo6
 
Community Calendar
Community Calendar

Franklin Residents: Town Council Goals midterm update as of Oct 30, 2020

October 30, 2020

 
Memorandum

To:    Town Council
From: Jamie Hellen, Town Administrator
Chrissy Whelton, Assistant to the Town Administrator

Re: Town Council 2020-2021 Goals Update

I have attached a status update on the Goals set forth in January for the two years legislative session.

As you can see, the town departments and Administration have made substantial progress on these goals despite the pandemic. In fact, when I reviewed the list and saw how much was complete or close to complete, I couldn't believe it.

As the goals were approved 2 months prior to the pandemic, the staff also put a list of COVID- 19 big picture accomplishments at the bottom. I would be remiss if I did not take this chance to express my deepest gratitude to every single member of the Town of Franklin staff (municipal and school). Their bravery, innovation, dedication and commitment to excellence has been one of the best professional experiences of my career. To date, the Town has done an incredible job managing COVID-19 for a community our size. The coming winter will present new challenges, but we have the BEST team of employees and I am certain everyone will continue to rise to the occasion during this challenging time.

I am happy to answer any questions you may have and look forward to the discussion.
 
Town Council Meeting 2020 and 2021 Goals Town Council Workshop January 8, 2020


Fiscal

●    Approval of Annual Capital Improvement Plan -- FY20 and FY21

o    Status: Approved FY20 Capital Plan. FY21 “On Hold” pending financial outlook. To be discussed November 18th at TC meeting.

●    Approval of a balanced Operating Budget -- FY21 and FY22

o    Status: Approved FY21 budget. Update at November 18th TC meeting. The Town will not need to amend its approved FY21 budget form June.

●    Establish Ad Hoc Subcommittee to evaluate stormwater fee analysis

o    Status: Completed. Waiting time for presentation analysis to the full Council.

●    Determine Water rate increase for FY20/FY21, notably for the water treatment plant and wells loan package

o    Status: Complete. Approved water rates.

●    Determine Sewer rate increase, if needed, for FY20/FY21

o    Status: Sewer rate increase not needed due to the savings and efficiencies at the Charles River Pollution Control District.

●    Seek new borrowing capacity for municipal and school building capital improvements and sidewalks

o    Status: Complete. $15 million capital authorization.

●    Discussion on the Community Preservation Act

o    Status: Complete. On November 3rd ballot.

●    Discussion on Trash & Recycling account

o    Status: Not needed at this time. Likely Spring 2021 review.

●    Continue to ask for OPEB solutions with state officials

o    Status: Discuss at a future legislative update. Difficult to see how this is a priority in the near future for state leaders.

●    Explore new revenue options, generally

o    Status: Always on the look, never done looking for ways to
▪    The Town Administrator negotiated 3 new solar tax agreements worth approximately $200,000 in new revenue in 2021/2022. Also negotiated 800 households to get a 15% reduced electricity bill if they sign up for the solar credits.
▪    The Town Administrator worked with the Planning Board to approve two cannabis retail stores will generate new revenues in 2021/2022
▪    Revised ambulance rate chart to help fund four new paramedics.


Economic Development – To the EDC

●    Revise Solar Bylaw in Residential districts

o    Status: Complete.

●    Continue Lot Line “Clean ups” around town

o    Status: Completed 4 lot line clean ups. Two more are in process. Almost complete with larger proposals. 2021 will see us get into parcel specific lot line changes.

●    Present Economic Profile to the Town Council

o    EDC to evaluate or implement ideas based off of the recommendations in the final report
o    Status: Complete/In progress. Report complete and presented. EDC implementing recommendations. 5 Listening business sessions.

●    Nu-Style (Grove Street) options

o    Status: Reviewing state and federal grant options. Preparing a new procurement strategy.

●    Zoning Changes

o    Master Plan Update before the Council -- Expected June/July 2020
▪    Status: Complete.
o    Draft and Adopt state Affordable Housing Plan
▪    Status: In progress. Municipal Affordable Housing Trust had its first meeting in 6 months recently and looks to have them monthly to get back on track.
o    Inclusionary Zoning bylaw proposal to stabilize the Town’s Affordable Housing Inventory with the state to ensure we maintain 10% affordable housing stock and preserving local zoning
▪    Status: Postponed as COVID-19 hit and real estate market seems uncertain at the moment.
o    Residential 5 and C-1 density
▪    Status: See Inclusionary Zoning above.
o    The Franklin Crossing Neighborhood District rezone
▪    Status: No progress.

●    Ferrara Parking Lot Lease for continued commuter rail and free municipal parking in downtown

o    Status: Complete.

●    Review and cleanup Marijuana Overlay District

o    Status: No progress; not the right time to review. Will consider after the market settles. EDC prioritized this later in the session.

●    MBTA parking Lot in Downtown

o    Status: No progress.


Facilities

●    Approve borrowing authorization for 5-year facilities capital needs

o    Status: Complete. $15 million capital authorization.

●    Future of Old South Meeting House

o    Status: Completed study. Cost to rehab is approx $1.1 million.

●    Review Police Station space – Look to FY21 Capital Plan to invest in the
$150,000 study and Council discussion

o    Status: On hold due to capital plan on hold and drop in free cash revenue.

●    Transfer/Recycling Center improvements when land transfer complete

o    Status: Completed a new shed for staff. Finalizing land swap. See below.

●    Apply for Cultural Facilities Fund grant to restore Historical Museum cupola and refurbish Museum basement with proper preservation storage

o    Status: Archivist looking to apply in January 2021.

●    Note: COVID-19 has also afforded our Facilities staff some additional time to clean the backlog of capital projects, including some larger projects:

o    Completed the Parmenter School improvements, including canopy;
o    Completed the Keller-Sullivan HVAC (we added in UVGI, too);
o    Completed the security improvements at HMMS;
o    Made significant progress on the Public Safety fiber transition; and
o    Made progress on the HMMS drainage issues.


DPW

●    Implement StormWater Plan Division -- Establish Utility bylaw, establish Ad Hoc committee and evaluate stormwater fee & credit system

o    Status: Ad Hoc Stormwater committee completed its work. Discussion at TC meeting later in Winter.

●    Prioritize Road Funding annual appropriation in the operating budget

o    Prioritize $650,000 line item town budget, per Town fiscal Policy
o    Status: On hold. Budget.

●    Continue Implementing the Water Main 5-year plan

o    Status: Completed FY20 water main projects, notably Lincoln Street.

●    Construct Water Treatment Plant & Wells 3&6. FY20 will require a water rate hike to pay for the loans
o    Status: Treatment plants and wells are making huge progress; on budget and on schedule.
●    Present future options for Beaver Street interceptor

o    Status: Completed a feasibility study with 3 alternatives. The furthest the Town has even made on this project. Next steps are to cost out the options and present to the TC in the winter.

●    Continue sewer system infrastructure improvements

o    Status: On hold during COVID-19 any new expenditures.

●    Fund sidewalk plan for Beaver Street/Washington Streets -- find a funding source

o    Status:
▪    Sidewalk on Beaver Street is funded for a portion.
▪    Washington Street on hold -- need funding source.

●    Consider a long-range sidewalk master plan.

o    Status: On hold.

●    Note: Grove Street/Washington Street - Approval of an authorization to reconstruct the intersection of Grove Street and Washington Street with a new light, bike lanes, new pavement and so forth. Town applied for a $2.25 MassWorks grant. Also have a dedicated revenue source to pay for this project if not awarded the grant. Design to begin in early 2021.

Recreation/Open Space

●    Continue to invest free cash into our parks and fields each year.

o    Beaver Street Course and Nason Street Tot lot are priorities for 2020-21
o    Status: Capital investments on hold.
o    Status: It is important to note the generous donation and construction of the new courts at Fletcher Field were built during this pandemic.

●    Purchase Open Space as may be available

o    Status: None available to date to buy.
▪    I am talking to a landowner regarding 50+ acres of riverfront to the Charles River under an APR.
▪    The Town Council and Town Administration have more than doubled the cash in the Open Space Stabilization front.
▪    The Town is still far behind on open space investments.

●    Finalize and begin to implement pedestrian Franklin Greenway Network --

o    Approve Complete Streets Policy, develop and finalize plan
o    Status: Staff have a Complete Streets policy draft. Future TC meeting in Winter.

●    Take over Concerts on the Common in 2020 and move to Friday nights and add family movie nights on the Common

o    Status: Complete. We hope to add more to this program post-COVID-19.

●    Continue to implement 2016 Open space/recreation plan

o    Status: See notes above.

●    Continue supporting SNETT trail development and other trail projects

o    2020 Prospect Street tunnel will be built by the state
o    Status: Complete. Tunnel is now complete!

●    Continue on Delcarte improvements

o    remediate weed and fish issues, etc
o    complete capital improvements at Delcarte
o    Status: 2021 is hopefully the last round of treatments and then will reevaluate. 2020 treatments were still applied despite COVID-19.


Community – Generally

●    Continue to accept Public Ways

o    Status: We have two more street acceptances prepared. Awaiting guidance from the Registry of Deeds. Hopefully start the process in January 2021.

●    Implement “Green Community goals” - apply for competitive grants in 2020

o    Status: Complete. Received a grant for electric vehicles and electric vehicle charging stations at Municipal Building and Library.

●    Revise Demolition delay bylaw with Historical Commission and Building Commissioner

o    Status: On hold. 2021 hopefully.

●    Implement “Master Plan” recommendations at the Historical Museum

o    Status: Exhibits subcommittee was established prior to COVID-19.
o    The Jim Johnson “Great Room” should be completed and installed within a few weeks.

●    Begin process to decommission Spring Street from 140 to the new solar field on Spring Street through the state park with Town Attorney

o    Status: 2021.

●    Successful Cable contracts negotiation with Comcast -- expires October 2020

o    Status: In progress. Chrissy and I are finishing negotiations and hope to have an agreement before the Council in December.

●    Finalize 3-year Collective Bargaining cycle - Spring of 2020

o    Status: All contracts are complete and successful.

●    5G bylaw

o    Status: In progress. Meeting with Special Cable Counsel to review draft bylaw next month. We hope to have a proposal in early 2021.

●    Implement Electric Aggregation, when appropriate -- last bid December 2019

o    Status: Complete. Town received a .107 rate for 3 years and with 100% renewable wind energy to continue our commitment to green energy, vehicle savings residents on their electricity costs. The current rate is 1 ½ cents/kw less than the active national grid rate.
 

Civic Engagement (NEW)

●    Research the potential for a “Citizen’s Academy” course for citizens

o    Status: On Hold.

●    Research the ICMA Citizen Satisfaction Survey through the National Citizen Survey and National Research Council

o    Status: On hold.

●    Continue to update and reinvent the Town website, social media accounts and consider implementing a TOF podcast (Soundcloud/ Anchor)

o    Status: Ongoing and in progress. Increased media, social media and communications presence with a Town Instagram acct, Historical Museum Instagram acct, and a series of interviews with the Town Administrator on Anchor.
o    “Think Franklin First” Business campaign will begin Fall 2020.

●    Expand E-Permitting and online payment options

o    Status: Complete. Added Board of Health and added new features to address COVID-19 challenges (eg outdoor licensing)


Presentations/Discussions (tentatively/confirmed scheduled dates)

●    Community Preservation Act - February 5 (scheduled) COMPLETE
●    Housing Authority w/ Lisa Audette - February 12th (confirmed) COMPLETE
●    Transitional Assistance - February 12th (confirmed) COMPLETE
●    Economic Profile Study -- March/April (pending delivery of final report) COMPLETE
●    MECC Regional Dispatch -- May 6th 2020 (confirmed) COMPLETE
●    Department Presentations: Land Use & Permitting Departments -- June 2020 COMPLETE
●    Master Plan midway Update -- June/July 2020 COMPLETE
●    Charter Review Discussion - Late 2020 ON HOLD 2021

Thoughts/questions/ideas from Town Councilors

●    Approve Snow Removal bylaw on sidewalks

○    Status: Complete. Added Board of Health and added new features to address COVID-19 challenges (eg outdoor licensing)

●    Animal Control Presentation (presentations & discussions) COMPLETE
●    Evaluate Fire Department substation and training center (Facilities) ON HOLD
●    Fisher Street superfund site (community- generally)

○    Status: EPA Continues to clean up the site. Suspended as of COVID-19.

●    Recycling Center Land Swap at Beaver Street (DPW)

○    Status: In progress. We have a proposed solution. Awaiting time to do a full legal review. Expected completion early 2021.

●    Review BioTechnology Bylaw (EDC) ON HOLD. Later EDC priority.
●    Survey DPW to see if we have new well opportunities (DPW) No progress.
●    EV Charging Stations (Facilities) COMPLETE
●    Revise Over 55 Overlay, including open space requirement (EDC) No progress
●    Monitor MBTA Land in Franklin Crossing & rail bed line to SNETT (Open Space)
○    Status: On going.
●    No Place for Hate Resolution Pledge (Community) COMPLETE
●    Monitor Mixed Innovation Business District (EDC) In progress.
●    Emergency Management Policy Discussion (Presentations/Discussion) Power Outage conversation complete. Future presentation from Fire Chief.
●    Review and Prioritize Historical Commission List of Historic Homes (Community) No progress
●    Vehicles & Procurement Presentation & Discussion (Finance) COMPLETE
●    Analyze Food requirement and closing hours for restaurants (EDC) On hold


COVID-19

And if this was not enough progress, I have added in a COVID-19 section as this was not anticipated when the goals were approved:
●    Consistently ranked as one of the lowest infection rates for cities and towns above 30,000 population.
●    To date, the Town staff have been very safe and have not had a large cluster affect town services, town buildings, programs employees or citizens. The Town’s staff have been very safe and committed to keeping everyone safe.
●    Received approximately $ 2.4 million in federal grant money (CARES Act, FEMA) and have applied for an additional 2.1 million in federal grant money.

○    4,000 new Chromebooks.
○    All PPE has been paid by the federal government.
○    Installing cutting edge UVGI (ultraviolet technology) on the Municipal Building and High School starting this week. Phase 2 bids are in for the campus schools, Library, Senior Center; expected to be done by December 31st. 2021 will see us work to finance and complete the remaining buildings in Town with UVGI.
○    Purchasing special air purifier units for remaining schools and classrooms.

●    Received $90,000 in Micro-enterprise competitive grant funds for Small Businesses in Franklin with 5 or less employees to alleviate some of the burden the COVID pandemic has brought to their business.
 
●    Successful implementation of the Outdoor Dining Licensing for many restaurants in town.
●    Implementing a 25% fee reduction for local restaurants in 2021.
●    Successful retrofit of the Council Chambers for in person meetings with Franklin TV. Franklin is now a model on how to conduct in person meetings.
●    Successful recreation department supervised summer programs
●    Online and in person innovative Senior Center outreach and programs
●    Comprehensive social media and website portal for COVID-19 information for citizens and staff.
●    Exceptional customer service for citizens and businesses navigating COVID-19

Find the PDF copy on the Town of Franklin page

 

Town Council Goals midterm update as of Oct 30, 2020
Town Council Goals midterm update as of Oct 30, 2020