Thursday, March 4, 2021

Recap of Town Council meeting Mar 3, 2021 - train station discussed, appt to ConComm approved, ambulance fees approved

Quick Recap:
  • appointment to Conservation Commission approved, all committees/board now with full compliment of appointments
  • Erin Rogers of Senior Center talks about the tax work off programs available from the State and from Franklin
  • discussion on the condition and future of the downtown MBTA train station and exercise in futility. parking an issue downtown, apparently due to zoning changes made that can be/should be reviewed again
  • vaccine not available for local clinic per State, teachers were added to eligibility as of Mar 11, 2021

Photos captured during the meeting and shared via Twitter can be found in one album

As with most meetings in this pandemic period, I took my notes via Twitter during the meeting reporting in real-time via the virtual session.

The Twitter hashtag can be found online  #TC0303

  • Real time reporting about to begin for Town Council meeting #tc0303 
  • Meeting opens, Chair runs thru the standard protocol statement on meeting conduct #edc0303 a small group at opening.
  • #edc0303 meeting is announced for phone callers  One (member) remote, other 8 in Chambers
  • #tc0303 (yup, 2nd time tonight used prior meeting to tag a tweet, oops) no citizen comments
  • Motion to approve Jan 3 minutes, second, Chandler announces that the minutes are in great order, compliments to Judy L for doing them. Passes 9-0 via roll call. Motion on Feb 17 minutes
  • Second, passes via roll call 9-0, #edc0303 appointment to conservation commission, Bissanti recuses, motion and second, after tonight, all vacancies are now full. Passes 8-0-1 1 recused (Bissanti)
  • No hearings, no license transactions; moving to presentations, Erin Rogers from Senior Center on the tax work off program, if taxes are more than 10% of income, if renter and taxes more than 25% of income. Need to file with state, meet income guidelines. #tc0303
  • #tc0303 anything we can do to help residents with their taxes, talk to their accountants and to the senior center for the form. If people qualify for this, they should also apply for the DPW for a credit against the water, sewer, etc. Storm water if it comes, may would need to
  • Suggestion for something on the webpage for assistance available. #tc0303 clarification, you can do both it is not double dipping. State program is one and there is also the Franklin program.
  • Other than web page, send elsewhere (i.e. newsletter) as some seniors don't go to the website. #tc0303 legal ads we spend 40K annually with Milford Daily News, also appearing as PSA with Franklin TV. webpage takes you right to DOR page and info
  • #TC0303 moving to downtown Franklin MBTA station and parking lot. Was on evaluation and goals, a paper trail was included in the meeting docs. Kudos to Frank Falvey who has been a persistent advocate for addressing this item see page 17 
  • Maps of the station from package  #tc0303
  • Continuing discussion on the station, a frustrating situation. This is a T issue and with pandemic they are in lots of trouble with revenue. #tc0303
  • They are extending the line double track and going around the station. Also would need to take care of the bridge
  • If you're in for a penny, you're in for more than a pound. #tc0303 we offered to but it from them, and they turned us down. Zoning changes recently increased parking requirements downtown and there is no space available. "This like beating a dead horse"
  • #tc0303 lighting is brutal, and the bike racks are always full, can't they add some?
  • Best opportunity may be the transit oriented development the Legislation that was recently passed called for.
  • Let's think of the downtown and consider changing the zoning when the guidance Jamie mentions comes out. #tc0303 
  • Budget meeting 3/17 at 6 PM, EDC just met tonight. Some things coming to council for consideration. Draft of business guide reviewed. Coming soon
  • Moving to legislation for action, second reading #tc0303 for ambulance service fee adjustments for this year.  Motion and second, vote via roll call (BLS basic life support, ALS advanced life support.) 9-0
  • #tc0303 next up Quarterly PEG funds, the flow through of cable fees to Franklin TV per MGL, as an approved transaction motion, second, passes via roll call 9-0 (Bissanti not going to yell at cable tonight)
  • #tc0303 St Patrick's day serving dinner to seniors via the curbside cafe. Make reservations! Phase IV part 1 the library will be opening March 22, incredible innovation, popular curbside pickup; COVID school staff eligible as of Mar 11, schedule via portal
  • No local clinic anytime soon, legislative delegates advocated but we're not getting supply. #tc0303 insufficient doses available in March to meet requirements. Per Gov Baker's press release. Happy to answer questions.
  • Moving on. #tc0303 consensus on addressing downtown zoning now
  • Kudos to the sports teams, great work! Great to hear of the town's work on a national podcast. Buses moved from former Kegan space to use King St until the Panther Way property is ready, helping the schools
  • Yesterday was Franklin's birthday, and it wasn't noticed. 3/2 is the birthday. 243 years young. 
  • Agendas and packets for CPC will be online #tc0303 excited that the library will be open. Don't let the guard down, we are almost there.
  • Thanks to the community for doing what it takes, numbers are down, keep it that way. #tc0303 motion to adjourn, second, passes 9-0 
  • That is all for tonight, thanks for following, catch you next time!

train station discussed
train station discussed

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