Showing posts with label civil discourse. Show all posts
Showing posts with label civil discourse. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Non-toxic social network alternatives to Facebook

I had the good fortune to participate in a couple of Good Experience Live (GEL) Conferences in 2005, 2006, and 2007. Mark Hurst is an insightful engaging thought leader. He continues to write and broadcast on tech topics. HE is the owner founder of the Creative Good agency.

His Good Report has a post on 'non-toxic social networks'. This is one place where we can look at what he shares and explore the options to replace Franklin Matters on Facebook. Stay tuned as we explore. If you have any experience with what is listed, please feel free to share via email or comment.

"Here's our favorite non-toxic social network: Mastodon.

Why: Today's giant social networks make money on surveillance, manipulation, and amplification of toxic content. If you're tired of the garbage on Twitter and Facebook, head over to Mastodon: a decentralized, non-corporate network of Twitter-like servers. Without the constant need to monetize "engagement," Mastodon provides a more civil, low-key platform for posting and networking. And it's free.

(On Mastodon, follow Good Reports founder Mark Hurst:"

Mark's Good Report also has a listing on RSS Readers to add to what I shared yesterday.

For those interested in a deep dive into my archives, here are the collected writing for each of the GEL Conferences in (the links should still work although the webpages has been dormant for years).

Non-toxic social network alternatives to Facebook
Non-toxic social network alternatives to Facebook 

Wednesday, September 8, 2021

"These groups weaponize the very openness of government to undermine government"


“The backlash” begins an opinion piece in Newsweek by Parents Defending Education outreach director Erika Sanzi, and these may be the most accurate two words published by those who are attacking “wokeness,” gender studies, and Critical Race Theory. The sad fact is that white backlash has a proven record of effectiveness in American politics and it is once again being employed in the service of right wing corporate interests. The end product desired has less to do with CRT than with spreading disruption, fear, and chaos across America’s most important democratic public institution, schools.

According to the Washington Post, as of June 24 CRT (a theory developed in law schools and not well known among most Americans) has exploded on Fox News. The term was heard on Fox only 132 times in 2020 but has been mentioned 1,860 times this year, escalating month by month. The narrative is that grassroots parents groups have discovered the threat CRT poses to their children in schools and have arisen organically across the country to form local parent groups, a movement noticed and captured by websites and the powerful Fox News. The truth is that of an oligarch-funded and coordinated campaign using time tested techniques.

Follow the Money

Over the past five years I’ve been following “education reform” groups created by billionaire investors with names like Families for Excellent Schools, Massachusetts Parents United, and National Parents Union which have presented diversity as their public face while attacking teachers. So when I saw the launch of Parents Defending Education on March 30 I took note because it follows a different path: white backlash aimed more at school boards, superintendents, and principals. The first thing to do when evaluating these groups is always, follow the money. "

Saturday, April 24, 2021

Earth Day conversation starters for Franklin

Via Cobi Frongillo: 

"Some thoughts on this Earth Day to get our brain's turning on opportunities for local advocacy..."
Shared from Facebook: 

Thursday, March 18, 2021

"We should think about public safety the way we think about public health"

"Reimagine safety
A project of the Editorial Board, in conversation with outside voices."

"But the fiercest and potentially most consequential debate is over mounting a more fundamental response to these tragically familiar incidents. The discussion has been dominated by disagreements over the meaning and merit of “defunding the police.” Some interpretations of the provocative slogan are concerning, but as we wrote over the summer, the mantra is helpful as shorthand for an essential truth: We need to reimagine public safety.

Today, community activists and law enforcement officers who see eye to eye on precious little agree on this: We rely too much on the police. From the proverbial cat stuck in a tree to an armed hostage crisis, police are the first port of call for a dizzying array of dilemmas. In the words of a former Dallas police chief, “Every societal failure, we put it off on the cops to solve. Not enough mental health funding, let the cops handle it. … Here in Dallas we got a loose dog problem; let’s have the cops chase loose dogs. Schools fail, let’s give it to the cops. … That’s too much to ask. Policing was never meant to solve all those problems.”
Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

A good pre-read before participating in the Community Conversation scheduled for March 24 on Police Reform
For info on the Community Conversations: Police Reform visit:
"We should think about public safety the way we think about public health"
"We should think about public safety the way we think about public health"

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Pantherbook: "many students feel that the topic is ignored by the town’s residents"

"For anybody who hasn’t already seen Jame’s Fredrick’s video “A Roundtable Discussion of Racism in Franklin,” it’s definitely worth a watch.

The video documents a discussion organized by Diversity Awareness Club President Ndoumbe Ndoye and Town Council Member Cobi Frongillo, where many FHS students of color met together to share their experiences growing up in predominantly white Franklin. 

Students recounted times when they had been insulted or felt unwelcome in their community because of the color of their skin.

Students have experienced both overt racism, such as use of racial slurs and hate speech, and more casual and ingrained racism."

Learn more about the discussion that raised awareness of racism in Franklin here:

Direct link to the video on YouTube:

Sunday, February 7, 2021

National news -> "Seditionaries: FBI net closes on Maga mob that stormed the Capitol"

"As prosecutors from the House of Representatives prepare to present their case against Donald Trump at his impeachment trial next week for incitement of insurrection, supporters who heeded his call on 6 January to “fight like hell” and went on to storm the Capitol Building are finding themselves in far greater legal peril.

The trial that kicks off in the US Senate on Tuesday could lead to a further vote that would permanently debar Trump from holding office in the future. By contrast, the mob of fervent Maga acolytes who broke into the US Capitol following an incendiary rally headlined by Trump could face prison for up to 20 years.

One month after the events which left five people dead including a US Capitol police officer, there is no sign of the Department of Justice and FBI letting up in their relentless pursuit of the insurrectionists. In the past week alone there have been arrests of alleged rioters in Seattle, Washington; Las Vegas, Nevada; Corinth, Texas; Garner, North Carolina; and Marion, Illinois."
Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

Saturday, January 30, 2021

FHS A World of Difference: 1 minute video - how perspectives matter

FHS A World of Difference (@Franklin_AWOD) tweeted  on Fri, Jan 29, 2021:
"Happy Friday everyone! Here is a short, 1-minute lesson taught by a World of Difference Member that you can do right now to illustrate how perspectives can differ! "
View the video =


Thursday, January 28, 2021

A message from the Diversity Awareness Club ...

January 26, 2021

To the Franklin Community:

Three weeks ago, an act of domestic terrorism shocked and saddened the American people and left many shaken by the explicit displays of racial, ethnic, and religious hatred. In the days following this attack, members of the Diversity Awareness Club at Franklin High School met to discuss their feelings and to unite in one voice against the dangers posed by white nationalist groups and their enablers. This letter represents that united voice.

It is impossible to entirely separate this event from current political divisions; however, the Diversity Awareness Club believes that a stand against hatred is fundamental and not political - it is American and not Republican or Democratic. We are convinced that the majority of Donald J. Trump’s political supporters reject these acts as well. Nonetheless, we believe it is important for all Americans to reflect deeply on the unique pain experienced by people of diverse racial and religious backgrounds. More than just an attack on democracy, this insurrection made plain the ongoing threat that extremist groups pose to racial and religious equality in the United States.

Below are the unedited voices of the Diversity Awareness Club members. We ask that you take the time to consider their perspectives. They are your classmates, your students, your neighbors, and your fellow Americans.

…”The terrorisms shown at the Capitol resurfaced many of the feelings I’d know when I was younger. The same fear, disgust, and sadness for our country was back. Not only had people committed acts of hate, but they had gotten away with it in a way that people of color wouldn’t have been able too.”- Mia Story

...“In school we barely learn about the history of slavery and the roots of racism. This affects our everyday lives because if we were educated on topics like this, then it would make people more comfortable using their voice, instead of just agreeing with whatever Trump has to say. This man is abusing his power and getting all his followers to do what he says. He encouraged what happened at Capitol Hill and people still think this is okay. This was an act of terrorism, this was not a protest. But when people do peaceful protests to try and save lives they get shot with rubber bullets and burned with tear gas. It is a pure image of racism in America.” - Shay Kilroy

... “The riot at the Capitol should not come as a surprise to anyone. Trump has been abusing his power for 4 years, encouraging hateful extremist groups to behave with malice and violence. Trump told the groups that stormed the Capitol that he loved them. That’s messed up.” - Ji-Yann Chin

... “The people who stormed the Capitol are filled with hate, and it should not be tolerated. I am scared for what could happen in the future; I should be able to do my schoolwork instead of having to be worried about myself, or someone I love getting hate crimed, but sadly this is what it is like being a teenager in America.” -Darby Nicholson

... “One of the most appalling things seen at the capitol in my opinion was that a confederate flag entered that building. This is the first time since the civil war that a confederate flag has ever got into that building. People fought and died so that flag would never be on Capitol Hill, now not even a week goes by in 2021 and that hateful flag entered the building.”- Julia Atwood

... “Allowing such aggressive, unnecessary “protest” with not nearly as much resistance from law enforcement as Black Lives Matter was met with made me angry, and upset, and many other overwhelming emotions that I did not know what to do with.”- Sofia Chouinard

... “Although one of my teachers did bring it up and we did discuss a bit about how insane and stupid the riot was, all the other teachers stayed quiet. I feel that more teachers should have brought it up because of the amount of pain it caused to others. The racism, anti-semitism, these are real problems and not talking about them will not just make them magically disappear.”

... While there is so much wrong with the riots, and so much to say about them, the anti-semitism is what affects me most personally. Knowing that so many people across the country believe in and act violently on the behalf of anti-semitic rhetoric has always been upsetting and scary. But actually seeing people storm our nation's Capitol building and outwardly expressing that they want me, my family, and people of my ethnicity dead, was literally horrifying. And seeing the sitting president condone those actions was even scarier.

“The riot that took place in the Capitol was a disgrace to the democracy that America stands for. The Pro-Trump rioters believe in making America great again, supposedly support the blue lives matter movement but their actions clearly proved that they are not capable of following the laws which go against the American constitution and they also harmed many capitol police officers”.  -Amulya Chirravuri

“So the most important thing we have to do now is face these problems. We have to fight for the liberty and equality that our country is supposed to stand for. We have to choose to move forward, as a town, as a state, and as a country. The riots last Wednesday only showed a small portion of what is to come, and the potential dangers it can provide to our country if untouched. We must do better.”


The Diversity Awareness Club remains committed to working with the superintendent and members of the school administration in order to help stop the spread of racism and discrimination and to create a safer environment for minorities entering Franklin Public Schools.

Parents, teachers, and students, we ask for your support in making this community a better and safer environment for all students and families.

Thank you,

Diversity Awareness Club Members of Franklin High School

Shared from Twitter:

PDF version of the text:

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

“listening deeply enough to be changed by what you learn"

Sustained dialogue (SD). This sounds like something that would need to happen constructively to work through some difficult conversations. It is. 
"The Sustained Dialogue Institute helps people to transform conflictual relationships and design change processes around the world. We define dialogue as “listening deeply enough to be changed by what you learn.” 

"SD is a unique change process which (1) focuses on transforming relationships that cause problems, create conflict, and block change; and (2) emphasizes the importance of effective change over time. 
Since transforming relationships requires an ongoing effort, SD gradually develops over a five-stage process. This multistage approach serves as a guidepost for SD programs and for those in conflict to create sustainable change in their relationships and communities."
Find out more about the Sustained dialogue approach
Find out more about Sustained dialogue

“listening deeply enough to be changed by what you learn"
“listening deeply enough to be changed by what you learn"

Sunday, December 20, 2020

Nikki Giovanni: "We find the song in the darkest days"

From the New York Times:
"Over the course of her 52-year career, Nikki Giovanni has written 12 children’s books and eight nonfiction books, and she has released 10 spoken word albums. But the genre for which she is best known is poetry.

When you flip through a stack of her 19 collections (it’s a tall stack), you find her face, still radiant and smiling at 77, staring back at you from the covers. This is an unusual choice for the jacket of a poetry book, but Giovanni is the rare poet whom a good number of people will actually recognize — a distinction that is all the more noteworthy considering how long it has been true.

She was name-checked in the 1980 Teena Marie song “Square Biz,” featured in the Afropunk Festival in Brooklyn in 2016, and both seen and heard reading her poem “Dream” last fall in a campaign ad for Joseph R. Biden Jr. It was 1972 when Ebony magazine first called her “a personality, a star.” Her staying power over half a century comes from a stream of acclaimed work, her proclivity for a punishing schedule of tours and readings, and a fearlessness born of not caring what foolish people think.

“The best thing you can do for yourself is to not pay attention,” Giovanni said during a video interview from her home in Christiansburg, Va."
Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

Listen to a wonderful interview with Nikki Giovanni and Neil Pasricha

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Town Council meeting Feb 12, 2020 - recap

Quick summary:

  • Plastic bag prohibition finally approved
  • Zoning changes to reduce solar farms introduced
  • Zoning changes on continuation of plot line clean up first hearing
  • Transitional assistance and homelessness discussed
  • Municipal aggregation deal announced (effective Nov 1, 2020)
  • First discussion on 'civil discourse pledge'

Audio segment on municipal aggregation

Audio segment on 'civil discourse pledge'

Audio segment on Transitional assistance and homelessness

Additional details can be found in my notes recorded live during the meeting

  • Live reporting: Town Administrator's Report through Closing


  • Live reporting: Legislation for Action


  • Live reporting: Housing and Transitional Assistance


  • Live reporting: Town Council - Feb 12, 2020


    Town Council Chair Tom Mercer with proclamation recognizing the FHS student for their work on the plastic bag prohibition
    Town Council Chair Tom Mercer with proclamation recognizing the FHS student for their work on the plastic bag prohibition

    Tuesday, March 10, 2020

    Town Council recap - MArch 4, 2020

    Walter Zinchuck, the oldest Franklin resident, 102 years young, received the Boston Post Cane

    The resolution on Civil Discourse passed after much discussion.

    Municipal aggregation was confirmed as happening in November 2020. You can opt out of it. Why? If you already ahve a long term electrical contract or already have solar panels... For the rest of us, we get to see a savings with green energy (wind power) and a rate of 10.5 cents/KWH for three years. More to come on this as the Sep/Oct time frame when mailings to all the residential customers will be sent. In the meantime, more info can be found on the Colonial Power page for Franklin

    The first look at the budget for Fiscal Year 2021 was presented showing a deficit of $3.5M which will need to be resolved before passing a balanced budget by June 30,2020.

    From the meeting I created two audio files to listen to meeting segments:

    • Audio segment on Civil Discourse

    • Audio segment on FY 2021

    Actions Taken

    My notes reported live during the meeting
    • Live reporting: Town Administrators Report to Closing
    • Live reporting: Legislation for action
    • Live reporting: Civil Discourse Discussion
    • Live reporting: FY 2021 Budget Update
    • Live reporting: Municipal Aggregation
    • Live reporting: Town Council - March 4, 2020

    Walter Zinchuck, the oldest Franklin resident, 102 years young, received the Boston Post Cane
    Walter Zinchuck, the oldest Franklin resident, 102 years young, received the Boston Post Cane

    Sunday, March 8, 2020

    In the News: Firefighters serve seniors traditional Irish meal; some residents don't like the civil discourse pledge

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

    "St. Patrick’s Day came early to the Franklin Senior Center on Friday, as members of the Fire Department spent lunchtime serving plates of corned beef and cabbage, with potatoes and carrots, to a few dozen seniors.

    Although the Lenten season has begun, Catholics in the group had no need to worry about enjoying the classic St. Patty’s day meal instead of sticking with fish and vegetables.

    Firefighters had that covered.

    “Maybe next year we’ll try not to plan it on a Friday during Lent,” said firefighter/paramedic Doug Perro, going on to quip, “However, we talked to Father Brian (Manning, of the Parish of St. Mary), so you get a special dispensation ... if you’re over 59.”
    Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

    "That’s what the Franklin Fire Department is all about."
    "That’s what the Franklin Fire Department is all about."

    "A civil discourse pledge has upset dozens of residents who say the Town Council is targeting free speech rights when it comes to their – and certain councilors’ – online activity. One resident has even suggested it’s a violation of the U.S. Constitution.

    While the proposed pledge originally stated that a councilor’s participation on certain social media channels could violate the Massachusetts’ Open Meeting Law statute, a crowded meeting room applauded as council Chairman Tom Mercer suggested a slight amendment to the pledge toward the end of Wednesday’s meeting.

    On Wednesday, councilors approved the Civil Discourse Pledge, Resolution 20-14, which was originally drafted by Town Administrator Jaime Hellen and the Town Council. The resolution follows a series of related administrative actions, starting in 2018 with harassment training for all municipal employees, said Hellen in a memorandum dated Feb. 7.

    Designed as an aspiration for the town to make everyone in the community feel welcome, the amended resolution was approved, 6-2-1. Councilors Andrew Bissanti and Eamon McCarthy Earls were opposed, and Matt Kelly abstained."
    Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

    The audio file for the citizen comments and the civil discourse discussion can be found here

    Saturday, March 7, 2020

    FM #218 Town Council - Citizen Comments and Civil Discourse Pledge Discussion/Vote (audio)

    FM #218 = This is the Franklin Matters radio show, number 218 in the series.

    The Town Council meeting of Wednesday, March 4, 2020 featured multiple citizens comments and then the discussion on Resolution 20-14 - the Civil Discourse Pledge.

    At least one topic was really not related to an agenda item and hence appropriate for raising here. Many of the other citizen comments ultimately seemed related to the item scheduled for discussion later in the meeting.

    For the ease of the listener, the whole citizen comments segment is included, with brief bit of music to provide some space, and then the meeting segment on civil discourse begins and runs to completion.

    The resolution passed by a 6-yes, 2-no, and 1-abstain vote with a couple of minor textual clarifications via amendment. 

    The proposed text is included here

    My notes from the meeting are linked to also
    • Citizen Comments

    • Civil Discourse Pledge

    When the final text is available, we’ll add that link as well.

    The citizen comment segment runs about 17 minutes. The civil discourse segment runs about an hour and twenty-five minutes.  The total recording runs an hour and 47 minutes

    We are now producing this in collaboration with Franklin.TV and Franklin Public Radio (

    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
    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"

    Boy scouts from Troop 126 lead the overflow crowd at the Town Council meeting in the "Pledge of Allegiance"
    Boy scouts from Troop 126 lead the overflow crowd at the Town Council meeting in the "Pledge of Allegiance"

    Thursday, March 5, 2020

    Councilor Melanie Hamblen's remarks on the Civil Discourse Pledge

    Thanks to Councilor Hamblen for sharing the copy of her remarks made at the Town Council meeting March 4, 2020:
    "It is obvious that there has been a gross mis-understanding about the civil discourse pledge and I would like to say a few words:

    The pledge is not a personal attack on anyone one of us (believe me I know what one is) It is a statement that the council as a whole, no matter who is on it - rejects discrimination and bullying and is committed to supporting an inclusive community.
    The pledge does not, in any way take anyone’s rights away. It does not stop the council for taking concerns from employees and citizens, it states that we will do so with respect for all involved.

    The pledge is NOT, I repeat, Not a waste of time or efforts. It is a statement to the community, whom we serve, that we want everyone to be treated with respect and feel welcomed.

    Do not believe that this has been brought up because of ONE incident.

    If you think that life in Franklin is perfect for everyone living here, then you are refusing to even think about other people’s reality - the people that we all represent.

    I am going to ask you to do something for me- set aside yourself for a moment and let’s walk in someone else’s shoes:

    It’s a beautiful day, like yesterday, you are getting ready to go to the playground and have fun with your family, 

    But you stop and think, what will I do if someone yet again yells “death to Muslims” at you.

    Or your child comes home crying because his friends were laughing at him telling him at school that he is going to have to go back to Mexico, and he was BORN IN THIS COUNTRY!

    Or maybe your child is called a “thing” to your face just because she has a learning disability.

    Or you get spit at and have derogatory insults shouted at you, just because of the person you love.

    Or you hesitate to go into your place of worship because you are afraid someone full of hate will hurt you and your family.

    We are elected officials, we represent the town of Franklin 24/7 everywhere we go.

    We represent everyone in this town and the fact that people are afraid and feel unsafe everyday is NOT OK.

    It is not OK that our citizens are afraid to tell us how they feel, and afraid to live normal lives. This pledge can help people feel a little at ease. 

    It is a reminder to try to be kind, that other people experience different things than we do. 

    It reminds us to be the type of leader who will not sit idly by when people in our community feel unsafe.

    This pledge will reassure our community that we stand with them and that we will protect them.

    I could just bow to the pressure and give up and slide back into the community and hide, but there are people who cannot afford such comfort because of the color of their skin or who they love or where they worship and I will stand with them. And because it is the best thing to do for ALL of Franklin."

    • The resolution ended up passing by a 6-2-1 vote with Councilors Chandler, Hamblen, Pellegri, Dellorco, Mercer and Jones YES; Earls, Bissanti NO, and Kelly abstained.
    My notes reported live during the meeting
    Boy scouts from Troop 126 lead the overflow crowd at the Town Council meeting in the "Pledge of Allegiance"
    Boy scouts from Troop 126 lead the overflow crowd at the Town Council meeting in the "Pledge of Allegiance"

    Wednesday, March 4, 2020

    Live reporting: Civil Discourse Discussion

    resuming from recess at 8:21

    A. Capital Budget Subcommittee
    no meeting

    B. Budget Subcommittee
    met earlier, meeting recording to be made available in couple of days

    C. Economic Development Subcommittee
    March 18 meeting scheduled

    Resolution 20-14: The Town of Franklin Civil Discourse Pledge (Motion to approve Resolution 20-14 - Majority Vote)

    motion, after long delay seconded by Chair (for purposes of discussion)
    (if there had not been a second, then the item would have stop there)

    this resolution follows a series of actions as outlined in the memo and supported documents
    training session set for March 10 for all department heads
    later this year for all employees
    mirroring the ethics laws with re-upping every 2 years

    was part of the Council's goal list from January

    Hamblen - misunderstanding
    a statememt for the council as a whole
    does not take away anyone's rights
    does not attack anyone
    is asks for respect for all opinions
    it is a statement to the community that we serve
    if you think of life in Franklin as perfect, then you are missing the point
    these are things that happen in Franklin, they are not made up
    that folks are afraid is not okay
    this pledge can help people feel at ease
    I could bow to pressure and go back to the community
    but I can not, I will stand with them

    Dellorco - if I want to talk with someone at the DPW does this change that?
    Cerel - no, this does nothing to that, those are already cover by what is and has been in place
    for years

    Pellegri - read through this so many times
    we are all brought up with these things
    I think we have been welcoming
    What did we possibly do? Come to me and tell me what I haven't done

    Bissanti - thank you Melanie for your statements, you clarified things
    I don't need to be told how to behave
    I consulted with my own attorney
    "I appreciate the world according to Melanie"
    I got on the Council to help people

    Earls - thank all my fellow councilors for some excellent remarks
    while many view it as a nice thing, it suggests there is a line in the sand

    Kelly - between SchCom and TC for last 11 years, I am upset at the way this played out
    social media lite up when it 'was pushed down the road'
    I want to remind everyone of the oath of office we took in November
    "to serve with respect and integrity"
    this is how I live and serve
    we have a 3.5M budget gap. the CPA will cost us more
    potential increase on water/sewer rates, storm water fee coming
    there are employees here concerned about their jobs, and the $3.5M gap
    at the end of the day, I always do my best, it doesn't add up to what I believe in
    I don't think the need for the pledge is here and yet, I have been bullied more getting me to vote for or against this

    Jones - I am not, nor will I label myself as a victim, it is a restraint that I don't want
    story of kickback when he was young, best decision was to stay quite until the boss signed off on the hours required for his license; if had known some of us had reported him, he was irate, I was held at gunpoint in Haiti
    honor, dignity, respect - three key words
    I don't have to make because they are core parts 
    last thing anyone should do is look for an excuse to be divisive

    Chandler - I'll be quick, some many have made good points
    who would be against it?
    this is all redundant, I follow this every day

    Mercer - I guess the only one who hasn't spoken is me
    there is nothing that I don't live by
    I have not slept for the past 48 hours trying to think about how to run this meeting
    everybody lives by these
    this was drafted  by own Town Administrator, town counsel and administrative help
    it is disappointing to me and my fellow councilors that it has come to this
    we are doing the best we can do, we do respect each other
    there has been so much misinformation about this legislation since day one
    Section 3 - everybody had a problem with "possible"
    Section 4 - I would add if 5 councilors commented, then it is a violation of open meeting law
    I did meet with every councilor one at a time, to go through this
    without fail, only one councilor needed to review it more
    I looked at this as a global statement of global issues facing society todfay
    times have changed since I grew up as a kid
    what are we doing with this, we are re-emphasizing statements we live by
    I find it disheartening that there was so much disinformation out there about this
    nothing in here is not already in Charter, rules, etc
    I did meet with the interfaith council per previously scheduled coincidentally
    a lot of the help (homeless, shelters, etc.) and for sure this resolution came up
    there are tough times, tough votes to make but it is important

    I think it was drafted well, it is misunderstood a lot
    please come to every meeting
    we want you to have the facts, not fiction

    Pellegri - that is for all of us to consider, my note said vote no, but after all that was said I get to change my vote

    Dale Kurtz Bald Hill Drive
    I am conflicted by what I was hearing
    everyone said they live by this, this is asperational
    are you going to be here 5 years from now, our community is changing
    it should be tweaked, but is should be how we lead our departments, how we lead our community
    one of our clients moved from here to another town, she moved because she could not get along with her neighbors due to her accent
    this is for us, to set the example aspirationally
    I would be willing to assist with this
    I am disappointed Councilors did not second this for discussion

    Lisa Camuso, Forge Hill Road
    I have see your social media and if this passes you'd have trouble
    your fearing a mute point, it is called the Constitution
    I am not here to complain about it, I am here because it made me a beast
    yes, I will come to meetings

    John Currier, Elm St
    recently employeed with DPW, it blows me away that we are spending so much time on this
    you can spend your time so much better on other things

    Maura Fields, Pine St
    Troop 126 leader
    part of the Eagle requirement had scouts this evening
    this has been the best meeting ever to talk with them about

    Ted Cormier-Ledger, Ashbury Dr
    thanks for all the remarks tonight
    it was very reassuring that we want to protect all our citizens
    we saw the no place for hate signs, the cultural district
    many people have brought forth problem and nothing is being done about it
    we want to set this standard so it will not be tolerated any longer
    about decency and civility

    Kaye Kelly, Conestoga Way
    I appreciate all the training that Jamie is bringing forward
    I am happy that folks want to live this day to day
    some of the disconnect is online, Facebook is an ugly place to be in Franklin
    it is welcoming for our town
    Franklin has garnered a lot of interest

    Carol O'Neil, Coles Road
    there is something else that we need share tonight
    Ted's 9 year old was crying and worry that his father would be hurt coming tonight, he came anyway, but not without some security
    his son is doing better now

    Teresa Shea
    sorry to use the phrase 'snowflakes'
    don't say I am not accepting, we have the no place for hate meetings
    we have people in this town who are hurting
    So I was offended that you would be expected to sign something that you are doing already

    amendment to the motion offered by Mercer
    Sec 3 add "if 5 councilors were to comment on a post, it would be a violation"
    Sec 4, city boards, committee, departments ...
    motion and second, vote 8-0-1 (1 abstention)

    vote on motion as amended, 6-2-1
    earls, bissant no, kelly abstain

    thanks to all for coming tonight

    Sunday, March 1, 2020

    Franklin, MA: Town Council - Agenda - March 4, 2020

    Agenda for Meeting Date March 4, 2020

    a. This meeting is being recorded by Franklin TV and shown on Comcast Channel 11 and Verizon Channel 29. This meeting may be recorded by others.

    a. Citizens are welcome to express their views for up to five minutes on a matter that is not on the agenda. The Council will not engage in a dialogue or comment on a matter raised during Citizen Comments. The Town Council will give remarks appropriate consideration and may ask the Town Administrator to review the matter.

    a. February 5, 2020

    a. Boston Post Cane Award

    - None Scheduled

    6. HEARINGS 
    - None Scheduled

    - None Scheduled

    A. Municipal Aggregation

    B. FY21 Budget Update

    A. Capital Budget Subcommittee

    B. Budget Subcommittee

    C. Economic Development Subcommittee

    Resolution 20-14: The Town of Franklin Civil Discourse Pledge (Motion to approve Resolution 20-14 - Majority Vote)

    Resolution 20-15: Appropriation of Cable Funds in Support of PEG Service and Programming per M.G.L Ch.44, §53F3/4 (Motion to Approve Resolution 20-15 - Majority Vote)

    Zoning Bylaw Amendment 20-853: Zoning Map Changes on or Near Pleasant, Chestnut, and Brook Streets - Referral to the Planning Board (Motion to Refer Zoning Bylaw Amendment 20-853 to the Planning Board - Majority Vote)

    Zoning By-Law Amendment 20-849: Changes to Ground-Mounted Solar Energy System Use Regulations, And Use Regulations Schedule Updates- Second Reading (Motion to Adopt Zoning Bylaw Amendment 20-849 - Two Thirds Majority Roll Call Vote)

    Zoning By-law Amendment 20-850: Zoning Map Changes On Or Near Highland, Maple and Lincoln Streets- Second Reading (Motion to Adopt Zoning Bylaw Amendment 20-850 - Two Thirds Majority Roll Call Vote)

    Zoning By-law Amendment 20-851: Zoning Map Changes On Or Near Oak Street and Dailey Drive - Second Reading (Motion to Adopt Zoning Bylaw Amendment 20-851 - Two Thirds Majority Roll Call Vote)




    Collective Bargaining
    I request a motion that the Board vote to convene in Executive Session for the purpose of discussing strategy with respect to collective bargaining, because an open meeting may have a detrimental effect on the bargaining position of the Board.

    a. Resolution 20-16: Ratification of the Memorandum of Agreement Between the AFSCME Local 1298, Council 93, Public Facilities Maintenance Employees and the Town of Franklin (Motion to Approve Resolution 20-16 - Majority Vote)


    The agenda and associated documents can be found at the Town of Franklin page

    The agenda can also be found in a single PDF file


    • Two-Thirds Vote: requires 6 votes
    • Majority Vote: requires majority of members present and voting
    Franklin Public Library entrance at night
    Franklin Public Library entrance at night