Saturday, September 4, 2021

FM #597 - Town Council Quarterbacking - 09/01/21 (audio)

FM #597 = This is the Franklin Matters radio show, number 597 in the series. 

This shares my conversation with Town Council Chair Tom Mercer. This is one of a series of conversations meant to provide a recap of the prior Council meeting. Akin to one of the many sports post-game analysis broadcasts we are familiar with in New England,  this would be a discussion focused on the Franklin Town Council meeting of September 1, 2021: 

  • ok, what just happened? 

  • What does it mean for Franklin residents and taxpayers?

We cover the following key topics


a. Police Department:

i. Nick Palmieri, Promotion to Sergeant

ii. Jack Flynn, Promotion to Detective

iii. Victoria McVicar, New Hire Introduction & Ceremonial Swearing in

iv. Patrick MacDonald, New Hire Introduction & Ceremonial Swearing in


a. Richard Johnson, Conservation Commission  


6. HEARINGS - 7:10pm

a. Zoning Bylaw Amendment 21-874: Amendment to Ch.185 Section 21 Parking, Loading, and Driveway Requirements proposed change to minimum parking requirements in Downtown Commercial and Commercial I zoning districts.



a. Karen Maguire - Superintendent of Schools, Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical School


Executive Session

Chap 61A for 215 Prospect St

The show notes include links to the meeting agenda and associated documents.

Our conversation runs about 29 minutes, so let’s listen in to my quarterbacking session with Tom Mercer.

Audio file ->


Agenda doc (including connection info) ->  


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

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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!


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FM #597 - Town Council Quarterbacking - 09/01/21 (audio)
FM #597 - Town Council Quarterbacking - 09/01/21 (audio)

Franklin Cultural District Quarterly Partners Meeting - Sep 13

Good Morning,

The Franklin Cultural District Committee will be holding our September Quarterly Partners meeting on Monday, September 13th at 7:00 p.m. Once again we will be meeting via the Zoom platform. At this meeting the committee will update you on the latest grant opportunity from the Massachusetts Cultural Council. Lily Rivera, the town's new Marketing and Communications Specialist for the Town of Franklin will also be joining us. Below you will find the link for this meeting. I will send along the agenda at the beginning of next week.

The Cultural District Committee is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Cultural District Partners Meeting
September 13, 2021 07:00 PM

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 825 4099 9611
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+13017158592,,82540999611# US (Washington DC)

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        +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)
Meeting ID: 825 4099 9611
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We hope you all have a wonderful Labor Day weekend and we look forward to seeing you all on 
Monday, September 13th.


Nancy Schoen
Chair, Franklin Cultural District

Franklin Cultural District Quarterly Partners Meeting - Sep 13
Franklin Cultural District Quarterly Partners Meeting - Sep 13

"It Happens Here: Franklin The Home Of The First Public Library In America"

 CBS Boston did a spot on Franklin recently:

"The oldest, continuously operating public library in America is in Franklin, a town that has its own theme song! 
“The name of the town on the original paperwork is Exeter. Somewhere between leaving Franklin and arriving at the State House of Massachusetts in Boston, they crossed out the name Exeter and wrote in the name Franklin. So that is how we got our name, and we don’t know who did it,” says Vicki Earls, Head of Reference Services at the Franklin Public Library. 
While we don’t know who did it, we do know why – to impress Benjamin Franklin, who had just gained support from France for the American Revolution. But the town expected Franklin to reciprocate. 
“Someone got the idea, we don’t know, who of approaching Franklin and telling him the honor that was bestowed upon him, and would he want to contribute something to this newly founded town,” Earls explained. “They requested from Franklin a bell. They were building a new meeting house and a bell was crucially important because that’s how you gathered citizens.”

Strive to Thrive: a program for "siblings of family members with mental health needs"

The Survive to Thrive Sibling Support Group is offered for youth who have siblings with mental health and behavioral health challenges living in the home. Ben Speaks’ knows the wide-ranging impact that mental health issues can have on families, and looks to serve as a resource to youth that are impacted by the stigma, volatilities, and demands placed on families. 

Siblings of family members with mental health needs may experience challenges and disruptions in their own emotional growth and development. This group will provide these youth with a nurturing environment to share their unique experiences of having a sibling with mental health needs, engage in empowering and fun expressive activities, and develop their own skills and resources, so that they may thrive in face of the challenges that they and their families encounter.

What is the Sibling Support Group?

Group is open to youth ages 11-14 years old, living in MetroWest Massachusetts, who have siblings that struggle with mental health and behavioral health issues living in the home.

Group sessions will include opportunities for both open and themed discussions, expressive art activities, age appropriate learning about mental health challenges and their impacts on families, and empowerment skills to enhance emotion regulation and effective communication.

This program will be conducted virtually via ZOOM meetings. A reliable internet connection will be required. We will send all virtual meeting links and information via email after registration.

10 weeks - 1.5 hours each week (No group will be held September 16 due to Yom Kippur)

Facilitated by Bretton Torkelson, Psy.D., Judy Giovangelo, Michael Giovangelo and Penny Young; Members of the Ben Speaks’ Board of Directors.

Cost: This program made possible through grants and sponsors. Thank you to Rockland Trust, ADM Cleaning Services, Penny Young, Judy Giovangelo, Jim McCusker & Nicole Kittredge.

Visit for more information & to sign up.

Download flyer as reminder to follow up or share with someone ->


Strive to Thrive: a program for "siblings of family members with mental health needs"
Strive to Thrive: a program for "siblings of family members with mental health needs"

Agricultural Committee meeting scheduled for Sunday to work on zucchini race

Franklin Agricultural Committee Meeting 
September 5, 2021
2:30 P.M.

1. The Agricultural Committee will meet at the Agway store on Cottage St. to work on the track for the “great zucchini” race. 
2. Work will consist of assembly, needed maintenance, and disassembly.

Zucchini races return to the Farmers Market - Sep 10, 2021
Zucchini races return to the Farmers Market - Sep 10, 2021

Franklin Public Library Closed on Labor Day - Sep 6. 2021

Franklin Public Library Closed on Labor Day

The Franklin Public Library will be closed Monday, September 6th for Labor Day.

Shared from ->

Franklin Public Library Closed on Labor Day - Sep 6. 2021
Franklin Public Library Closed on Labor Day - Sep 6. 2021

Savers Clothing Donation Drive starts Saturday, Sep 11

FALL 2021
We can't thank you enough for your support of our last Savers Drive. We hit a record in poundage and aim to do it again!!

We are collecting your gently used clothing, shoes, accessories & linens. The Greater Attleboro Area Council for Children will receive cash from Savers for every pound donated. No donation is too small!

So grab a bag and clean out some of your closet or two!

Collection dates:
Saturday, Sept 11th, 9-11am
Sunday, Sept 19th, 9-11am
Saturday, Sept 25th, 9-11am
Saturday, Oct 2nd, 9-11am
Sunday, Oct 3rd, 9-11am
Sunday, Oct 17th, 9-11am
Saturday, Oct 23rd, 9-11am
Saturday, Oct 30th (final date), 9-10am

Contactless drop off available. Simply put your items in your trunk, drive up to the building at Door D (off Prospect St), pop your trunk and a volunteer will empty your vehicle for you.

Unfortunately, we cannot accept any small kitchen/houseware items, sport equipment, toys or books for this collection drive.

Please bring your donations to us at 135 County Street, Attleboro. No drop offs directly to Savers please because we won't receive the credit.

Thank you for your support! 

We have many other events coming up.

Click here to visit us on the web and find out more about other upcoming events.

Thank you for all you do to make our community a better place!

Attleboro Area Council For Children | 4 Hodges Street, Attleboro, MA 02703

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Friday, September 3, 2021

Franklin's Event Outlook: Sep 3 - Sep 9, 2021

"I can see clearly now, the rain is gone,
I can see all obstacles in my way
Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind
It's gonna be a bright (bright), bright (bright)
Sun-Shiny day."


Friday, September 3
2:00pm - Farmers Market
3:30pm - Kids craft activity by Library Youth Services

Saturday, September 4
10:00am - Historical Museum (always free)

Sunday, September 5
1:00pm - Historical Museum (always free) 

Monday, September 6
Labor Day - Library and Town offices closed for holiday

If you have an event to add to the calendar, you can use the form to submit it for publication:

The Town meeting calendar is found
The School district meeting calendar is found
Community Calendar
Community Calendar

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