Friday, September 3, 2021

Recap: Town Council Meeting - 09/01/21 - Police new hires & promotions, public hearing completed, executive session on Chap 61a property

Quick Recap:
  • 2 police promotions and 2 new hires were recognized and sworn in. The department is staying within their number and backfilling as folks retire or move on as has been noted during the year
  • Public hearing on downtown zoning proposal completed but action on the Legislation was deferred pending study being done on overall zoning
  • new Superintendent, Karen McGuire, of Tri-County came to present and start building the relationship
  • Executive session held on 215 Prospect St, property appraisal required in next 30 days as it may move from Chap 61A
As with most meetings in this pandemic period, I took my notes via Twitter during the meeting although this time, reporting live from the Council Chambers.
The Twitter hashtag can be found online  #tc0901 
Agenda doc (including connection info) ->  

Photos from the Police promotion and swearing in section of the session can be found
  • I am getting ready for the Town Council meeting coming up at 7 PM - #tc0901 - agenda and connection info ->
  • Council chambers filling up, the local power outage has been resolved (no details on what it was but it appears to have  had a quick fix)! #tc0901 NationalGrid map updated to show the outage clear
  • tech difficulty, will be live via Zoom, no cable (recorded for broadcast later) #tc0901
  • copy and paste this URL into your browser: ○ Call-In Phone Number: Call 1-929-205-6099 and enter Meeting ID # 895 3685 0696 --Then press # #tc0901
  • Chair Mercer updates on meeting broadcast status; #tc0901 Citizen Comments - Nancy Danello, Town Clerk - updates on the forthcoming election, Nov 2. Sep 14, papers due, Sep 30 withdrawal date; Oct 1, ordering the ballots - then the applications for absentee ballots
  • J Callaway-Tripp - speaking on trash rate increase, all the fees have increased and stormwater is still possible, $8 is a lot for some; "you have no idea on how many it hurts" #tc0901 "the problem is not everyone is being represented"
  • comment via Zoom user - Jackie M - compliments on the minutes, Q on omissions from the minutes, things were not included in the comments? is this general procedure? re: liquor license for Dean. is it like a court reporter?
  • some non-residents attempted to interrupt, they were cleared. #tc0901
  • Town Admin - Jamie Hellen -"There is an archive of the recordings, available, not required to do something like a stenographer does as the recordings are available" #tc0901  per Attny Cerel, this is more than what is required, not to be a verbatim of discussion
Proclamations and recognitions
  • moving to proclamations and recognitions - promotions and new hires for Police Dept  
  • Sgt Palmieri promo to Sgt #tc0901 photo coming later
  • Jack Flynn, Promotion to Detective, #tc0901  photo to be added
  • Patrick MacDonald, New Hire Introduction & Ceremonial Swearing in  #tc0901 photo to be added
  • Victoria McVicar, New Hire Introduction & Ceremonial Swearing in  #tc0901 photo to be added
Public Hearing
  • moving to the public hearing on the zoning bylaw; parking downtown, Planning Board did not approve this; J Calloway-Tripp speaking on the measure. #tc0901 "Franklin the traditional village center" she exceeded her time allowed
  • Bissanti - shame on the Council for letting the C1 zone go. The hearings were held, no one was speaking up. The FDP were fighting for this for years, and where were they. Hamblen - came out of the business listening sessions open to the public #tc0901
  • MAPC will do a zoning study on potentially recommend other changes. Hamblen recommends waiting until that comes back before changing. #tc0901 Mercer, we did authorize the MAPC to do the study, the hearing was kept, the action item was removed from the agenda.
  • Bissanti - in defense of the EDC, we spoke for this at length, we are getting torpedoed, folks are not understanding the change for the bylaw and implications of those changes #tc0901
  • Bissanti - Maybe the EDC is not the best for the zoning discussions. Frongillo - waiting for the study is wise, the studies do recommend we keep parking off the main downtown streets; Planning Board approval is not required for what we need to do. #tc0901
  • the downtown projects were State and Federal funded for the revitalization, all the work in streetscape work did improve the pedestrian traffic and allow for better traffic flow as well as Fire response to north end, 90 sec improvement #tc0901
  • Jones, our responsibility ends at the sidewalk, the property owners control more of that than we do. #tc0901 motion to close public hearing, moved, seconded, passes 8-0
  • Karen McGuire, new Superintendent of Tri-County Voc, here to provide intro, meet/greet, etc.
  • offers 16 career and technical programs in addition to adult ed, looking for input from stakeholders. what are the challenges. this has been an unprecedented year of challenges #tc0901
Subcommittee reports
  • Subcommittee reports - EDC - meeting before the next Council meeting, wayfinding signs one item on the agenda #tc0901
Legislation for Action
  • Legislation for Action - a. Resolution 21-50: Gift Acceptance - Veterans’ Services, $400  - motion to approve, second, passes 8-0  #tc0901
  • next up ->  b. Resolution 21-51: Cable Funds in Support of PEG Service and Programming per MGL Ch. 44,
  • §53F3/4  (a quarterly transaction) motion to approve, seconded, passes 8-0  #tc0901
  • next up - c. Resolution 21-52: Budget Stabilization Policy  #tc0901 motion to approve, second, passes 8-0  back ground on the 'rainy day fund' provided by Jamie Hellen, this proposal came from the FinCom after discussion over several meetings
Town Administrator Report
Councilor Comments
  • Q on plan for Maple Hill? yes, still needed for future #tc0901 local tax exemption for disabled veterans, as a local option; revisiting policy on half-mast flag status; Lincoln St is done, (now folks are going faster) 9/11 flag status reminder sent, TA Hellen will be away
  • reminder: Sep 10th, zucchini races at the Farmers Market; 9/11 ceremony at Fire Dept; Pellegri -thanks to Rep Roy for arranging the Senator Warren visits to the Library and the Town Common, ashamed of the protestors behavior, didn't need to ruin the event
  • Planning Board did start moving forward on the Housing Plan, we disagree on how to resolve it, but we at least recognize it is a problem Franklin needs to face; looking forward to using 'complete streets' going forward. #tc0901
  • Bissanti - people need affordable housing, #tc0901 
  • Jones - thanks for the Police/Fire coming for the promotions and swearing in ceremonies; Overdose Awareness Day Aug 31 - 2104 flags laid out on Town Common for those who passed during 2020 in MA.
  • Dellorco - thanks to the Councilors for coming to the vigil last night
  • Mercer - thanks also to those who came out last night, SAFE is doing good work for our community, they need to be thanked. #tc0901
  • a. Considering the purchase, exchange, lease or value of real property, because an open meeting
  • may have a detrimental effect on the negotiating position of the Board. will reconvene to open session when complete; via roll call vote passes 8-0 #tc0901
Return to Close meeting
  • returning to open meeting from Executive session, Zoom being re-opened, should commence momentarily  #tc0901 (approx. 40 mins in executive session)
  • we're back live... #tc0901
  • report from Exec Session, receipt of statement of intent to convert Chap 61A; 215 Prospect St - this starts a long process, contract with an appraisal of the property required, that is all the info we have, updates as the process proceeds  #tc0901, motion to adjourn, passes 8-0
Audio recording of meeting to be available in couple of days


Victoria McVicar, New Hire Introduction & Ceremonial Swearing
Victoria McVicar, New Hire Introduction & Ceremonial Swearing In

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