Showing posts with label planning. Show all posts
Showing posts with label planning. Show all posts

Saturday, February 26, 2022

Make it easier: "We humans are organisms, so we do what they do"

As we get into the discussion about what downtown Franklin should be like, we can consider the axiom of biology Jarrett Walker talks of in this article: 

"Induced demand is the observed fact that if you make something easier to do, people will do it more.  For example, if you create new capacity for cars in a place where travel demand is high, the result is more cars.  If you build more capacity to “fix congestion”, you end up back near the same level of congestion you had before.

After decades of observing this pattern, most people, including many road-building authorities, are still reluctant to face what this means.  Part of the problem, surely, is that we’re presenting induced demand as an observed discovery, allowing us to perform quarrels over data, research methods etc.

But induced demand isn’t just an observed fact.  It’s also an axiom of biology, so we are as sure about it as we are of the facts of math.  This means we don’t really need to be doing this experiment over and over, just as we don’t need to keep measuring circles to be sure of the value of pi."
Continue reading the article online

Sunday, December 19, 2021

NEW HOPE, Inc. CEO Issues Statement On Alleged Domestic Violence Homicide Murder In Franklin, MA

Marcia Szymanski, CEO, New Hope Inc. offer condolences to the family of the Shirley Branco Owen who was murdered on Friday, December 17, 2021. New Hope also is able to offer support to family and friends of Ms. Owen.

In response to yesterday’s alleged domestic violence homicide in Franklin, the police were able to apprehend the suspect, Ms. Owen’s ex-husband, thus there is no danger to the community at-large.  

New Hope, Inc.’s Executive Director and President, Marcia Szymanski, issued a statement to inform the community about services available to them. New Hope, Inc. provides domestic violence services to 41 communities, including Franklin.  New Hope has offices in both Attleboro and Milford to assist survivors of domestic violence with safety planning, obtaining restraining orders, and other legal protections to ensure their safety. These services are free of charge.

New Hope President and CEO, Marcia Szymanski, stated, “We want to inform the public that New Hope has a 24-hour, toll-free hotline available to survivors and witnesses to violence, as well as to concerned family members, friends, co-workers and neighbors who may need support.  Our hotline is 1-800-323-HOPE (4673), and we encourage anyone who may be in need of our services to call and get help.”

New Hope, Inc.’s domestic and sexual violence services include the  24-hour hotline (1-800-323-HOPE), two emergency shelters for survivors fleeing violent homes, counseling services for adults and children, a supervised visitation center where non-custodial parents can visit in a safe supervised setting with their children due to domestic violence and other issues, court-based legal advocacy to help survivors obtain restraining orders, safety planning, an intimate partner abuse education program, education/outreach services.  

New Hope, Inc. is a registered 501 (C) (3) non-profit organization, whose mission is “To create communities free from violence and exploitation.”  For more information, visit  


Find out more about New Hope and their work. Listen to the recent episode of The Topic with Franklin Health Director Cathleen Liberty and Marcia Szymanski  =>

Friday, November 26, 2021

50+ Program December Special Event - Networking - Dec 16, 2021

50+ Job Seekers in MA Statewide Networking Groups

This free program is available through a grant from the Massachusetts Council on Aging (MCOA) and the Executive Office of Elder Affairs

Special Event: Networking

Thursday, December 16 -> 2 - 4 PM

Networking is not asking for a job or asking whether someone knows of a job. It is the building of mutually beneficial relationships. How does one do that?


Special Guest: Diane Darling

Renowned speaker, instructor, author, and leadership coach specializing in professional networking strategies.

At this session you will learn how to:

  • Identify and develop mutually beneficial relationships
  •  Ensure your network is in place before you need it
  • Succeed at networking , even if you are an introvert
  • Turn conversations into opportunities.


Why you should attend: Studies show most jobs are landed via networking, but most people still don't know how to network effectively. 

Diane Darling is a master networker. Listen to her and you will significantly enhance your networking efforts and augment your odds of landing  a job sooner.


Start your journey towards self-realization, re-invention and transformation.

Register in advance for this meeting:


Our next special event will be a recruiter's roundtable on January 20th

50+ Program December Special Event - Networking - Dec 16, 2021
50+ Program December Special Event - Networking - Dec 16, 2021

Friday, November 5, 2021

Town of Franklin awarded $75,000 grant for zoning audit "with a substantial public engagement process"

MA EOHED (@MassEOHED) tweeted Thu, Nov 04, 2021:
The Baker-Polito Administration recently awarded a total of $1M through the #OneStop to 16 communities for technical assistance related to land use, including help with the development of a Master Plan, Housing Production Plan, and Zoning Review & Updates.  or  or
This appears to be the grant talked of being applied for that would fund the downtown zoning analysis. 

  • Franklin, $75,000
  • The Town will complete a zoning audit with a substantial public engagement process, and develop zoning bylaw amendments to modernize and update their zoning bylaw.  The Proposed Project will assure Franklin’s Zoning Bylaw reflects current best zoning practices and planning concepts and increase economic activity and the number of affordable housing units in the project area.
Franklin awarded $75,000 grant for a zoning audit
Town of Franklin awarded $75,000 grant for zoning audit

Sunday, October 24, 2021

Citizen Planner Training Collaborative's schedule announced

The Citizen Planner Training Collaborative’s Webinar Series 2021, designed for citizen and professional planners in Massachusetts, will run from Nov. 10 through Dec. 16.

Registration is open for the 10 workshops, which range from “Roles and Responsibilities of Planning Boards and Boards of Appeals” to more specialized information such as fair housing laws. Each workshop is sponsored by a regional planning agency, and anyone may attend.
The workshop schedule is as follows:
• Fair Housing Laws: Nov. 10
• Fair, Defensible Land Use Decisions: Nov. 15
• Adopting and Revising Rules and Regulations: Nov. 17
• Drafting Zoning Amendments: Nov. 18
• Adopting and Revising Rules and Regulations: Nov. 23
• Introduction to Subdivision Control Law/ANR: Nov. 29
• Fair, Defensible Land Use Decisions: Dec. 2
• Roles and Responsibilities of Planning and Zoning Boards: Dec. 7
• Special Permits and Variances: Dec. 15
• Use of Design Review: Dec. 16
Via MMA - for more info including how to register,  or go directly to the CPTC page to register ->

Sunday, October 10, 2021

Franklin, MA: School Committee - Agenda - Oct 12, 2021

Franklin School Committee 
October 12, 2021 - 7:00 PM
Municipal Building – Council Chambers 

I. Routine Business
A. Review of Agenda
B. Citizen’s Comments
In the spirit of open communication, “the Committee will hold a public participation segment (also called Citizen’s Comments) about matters not related to an agenda item at the beginning of each regular School Committee meeting. The Committee will listen to, but not respond to any comment made…. A Committee member may add an agenda item to a future meeting as a result of a citizen comment…. The Committee will hear public comments related to an agenda item when the Chair deems appropriate during the Committee meeting. Topics for discussion during the meeting must be limited to those items listed on the Committee meeting agenda for that evening…. ” - from Policy BEDH

C. FHS Student Representative Comments
D. Superintendent’s Report
II. Guests/Presentations
A. Safety Presentation – Lucas Giguere, Asst. Supt.; Ryan Augusta, AP FHS

III. Discussion/Action Items
A. Superintendent’s Goals 2021-22
The Chair recommends approval of the Superintendent’s Goals for 2021-22 as detailed.   and

B. MASC Resolutions
I recommend adoption of the MASC Resolutions as follows:
1. Resolution 1: Dedicated Funding For Schoolbased Clinics And Services
2. Resolution 2: Homework Gap And Wifi/Internet Access
3. Resolution 3: IDEA Full Funding Act
4. Resolution 4: Recess
5. Resolution 5: Zero-Tolerance Policies
6. Resolution 6: Alternative To MCAS
7. Resolution 7: School Committees And Receivership
8. Resolution 8: Electric School Buses
9. Resolution 9: Prohibiting The Use Of Native American Mascots

C. Policy First Reading
I recommend moving policy GCF - Professional Staff Hiring to a second reading as discussed.
D. Policy Elimination
I recommend elimination of policy GCD - Professional Staff Vacations and Holidays as discussed.

IV. Discussion Only Items
A. Back to School Status Update – October 8, 2021

V. Information Matters
A. School Committee Sub-Committee Reports (e.g. Ad Hoc Supt. Evaluation, Budget, Community Relations/Public Schools Advocacy, Policy, Transportation)
B. School Committee Liaison Reports (e.g. Joint PCC, Substance Abuse Task Force, School Wellness Advisory Council)

VI. New Business
A. To discuss any future agenda items

VII. Consent Agenda
A. Approval of Minutes
I recommend approval of the minutes from the September 28, 2021 School Committee meeting as detailed.
B. Athletics Gift
I recommend acceptance of the following Athletic Department gifts totaling
$6,669.82 as follows:
1. $328.12 All American Publishing (Supplemental Supplies)
2. $441.70 All American Publishing (Supplemental Supplies)
3. $5,900.00 MIAA, Inc. (Supplemental Supplies)

VIII. Payment of Bills Dr. Bergen

IX. Payroll Atty. Pond-Pfeffer

X. Executive Session
Pursuant to M.G.L. c. 30A, §21(a)(3) to discuss strategy with respect to litigation as an open meeting may have a detrimental effect on the litigating position of the public body and the chair so declares.

XI. Adjournment 

slide on the process for safety from the Safety Presentation
slide on the process for safety from the Safety Presentation

Friday, July 9, 2021

Community Conversations - Housing and Race - July 14

Community Conversations - Housing and Race
 Housing and Race
The Franklin Area Against Racism group (FAAR) is holding the second segment of its Community Conversations series, this time on Housing and Race next Wednesday, July 14th at 7:00PM. 

We invited Jim Johnston (longtime Franklin resident and historian), Bryan Taberner (Franklin Director of Planning and Community Development), and Jesse Kanson-Benanav (Executive Director of Abundant Housing MA) to discuss how how Franklin's housing policies and practices have fostered socio-economic inequities and worked to reduce diversity in the community.

Zoom info contained in the image

Background on Jesse Kanson-Benanav

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

The Housing Production Plan comment period is closing Friday June 25, 2021

Have you sent in your comments yet?

Sections of the plan were shared here in advance of the first public hearing at the Municipal Affordable Housing Trust meeting (June 2, 2021).

Housing Production Plan sections
  • The Introduction to the **2021 Town of Franklin - Housing Production Plan - Public Review Draft**
  • Executive Summary: ** 2021 Town of Franklin Housing Production Plan (HPP) ***
  • Plan Development and Public Participation ** 2021 Town of Franklin - Housing Production Plan - Public Review Draft **
  • Comprehensive Housing Needs Assessment ** 2021 Town of Franklin - Housing Production Plan - Public Review Draft **
  • Strategies for Affordable Housing Production ** 2021 Town of Franklin - Housing Production Plan - Public Review Draft **
  • Find the full copy of the Housing Production Plan
  • Info on the public comment period

Meeting notes and audio links

Municipal Affordable Housing Trust meeting (audio with link to recap)

Economic Development Subcommittee meeting (recap)

The Housing Production Plan comment period is closing Friday June 25, 2021
The Housing Production Plan comment period is closing Friday June 25, 2021

Thursday, April 15, 2021

Franklin Downtown Partnership Coordinating the 2021 Harvest Festival - Oct 2, 2021

The Franklin Downtown Partnership (FDP) is forging ahead with planning the 2021 Harvest Festival based on the decrease in COVID-19 cases and the planned widespread vaccination by the fall. The FDP is optimistic that the town can resume its Harvest Festival this year on Saturday, Oct. 2 with a rain date of Sunday, Oct. 3, 2021.

Held every autumn, with the exception of last year, the Harvest Festival draws thousands of people to the closed-off streets of downtown Franklin to enjoy community, entertainment, food, art, kids activities, and more. 

“With recent developments with increased vaccine accessibility, a number of FDP members and people throughout the community are seeing some light ahead,” said Scott Martin, president of the Franklin Downtown Partnership Executive Board. “Knowing how we all want to be together again, and how much people want to return to the kind of events that bring our community together, our FDP will move forward with planning our Harvest Festival for the first Saturday in October.”

The Strawberry Stroll, normally held in June, has been canceled for 2021 but the FDP is looking forward to hosting it again in 2022!

The Franklin Downtown Partnership is a nonprofit, 501©3 organization made up of more than 350 business owners, community leaders and residents working to stimulate economic development downtown and create a positive impact throughout the area.


Planning underway for Franklin Harvest Festival - Oct 2
Planning underway for Franklin Harvest Festival - Oct 2

Friday, April 2, 2021

Town of Franklin: Job Opportunities - Part-time Office Asst; DPW and Facilities summer positions; and others

Job Opportunities

To apply for a vacant position, please submit a resume and cover letter to  Please put the job title in the subject line of your email.  

If you do not have a resume, you may send a completed Application for Employment instead.

To receive notifications of all job opportunities in the Town of Franklin, subscribe here .

Shared from:


Town of Franklin: Job Opportunities - Pert-time Office Asst; DPW and Facilites summer positions; and others
Town of Franklin: Job Opportunities - Pert-time Office Asst; DPW and Facilities summer positions; and others


Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Cultural District planning session for ArtWALK - Mar 25, 7:00 PM

The Franklin Cultural District Committee has begun planning for the upcoming ArtWALK Celebration which will be held on the weekend of June 11th - 13th. This Thursday, March 25th at 7:00 p.m. the committee is inviting all of our Cultural District Partners to join us in our first collaborative planning meeting. The meeting will be held via the zoom platform. Below you will find the  zoom link for this meeting.

The Cultural District Committee is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
Cultural District Committee, Cultural District Partners Event Planning Meeting
March 25, 2021 7:00 PM 

Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 833 8736 8806

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    +13017158592,,83387368806# US (Washington DC)
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Meeting ID: 833 8736 8806
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Attached you will find the agenda for the meeting. 

As we look forward to this event,  we hope that all of our partners will take part in the planning
by joining one of the working groups. We will discuss these groups at our meeting on Thursday.

We hope to see you all there.

Nancy Schoen

Chair, Franklin Cultural District Committee 

Cultural District planning session for ArtWALK - Mar 25, 7:00 PM
Cultural District planning session for ArtWALK - Mar 25, 7:00 PM

Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Artists and creatives should respond to this survey!

The Metropolitan Area Planning Council, in partnership with the Town of Franklin, City of Beverly, City of Boston, and Town of Arlington, is collecting data from artists and creative workers to help municipalities respond to impacts of COVID-19 on artists, arts organizations, creative activity, and civic life. 

Please take five to ten minutes to fill out our survey to help the arts thrive in our region! We’ll use the results to assess the effect of COVID on artists and creative organizations and to create strategies for local governments to help.  

To learn more about the project visit

Action =>  Artists and creatives can respond to the survey

Artists and creatives should respond to this survey!
Artists and creatives should respond to this survey!

Saturday, January 16, 2021

EDC 'Listening Session' - Jan 13, 2021 - Recap - Franklin's housing discussion starts

Quick Recap:
  • While this was the last of the 'listening sessions' the bulk of the meeting time was spent presenting an overview of housing in Franklin. The presentation was insightful and will be shared when made available.
  • Housing is one of the the key issues Franklin faces. The discussion will include the data points of this presentation, the demographics from the School study, the Market Study done by MAPC (from which these 'listening sessions' were started), and the realities of the post-pandemic world ahead of us. Keeping civil discourse with multiple threads and trying times will be a challenge but the end goal is required. Franklin needs to determine what it's housing goals will be.

For the time being photos of the slides shared during the meeting are all that is available. The doc is not part of the meeting agenda, nor if it has since been posted to the Town page, I have not found it. Once I do, I will share. Photos can be found in one folder:

The audio of the meeting will be shared soon.


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

  • Swivel seat to do listening session starting now. #edc0113
  • Chair Melanie Hamblen opens meeting, runs thru the protocol statement as normal. #edc0113 Frongillo new member to subcommittee (replacing Chandler). Jones and Bissanti complete the 4 Council membership. Jamie touts the grant process deadline Friday
  • #edc0113 Economic Development legislation on Gov Baker's desk for approval. Bryan Taverner to review presentation on housing for Franklin.
  • #edc0113 housing slides and population slides (can't share all, will find doc to share - eventually)
  • More slides #edc0113
  • Getting to discussion on the legislation, not yet signed by Gov Baker; zoning change would be simple majority for Franklin 5 not the current 6 votes required. #edc0113 tenants right to purchase would be interesting for/if Franklin if chosen
  • After Council comments, question raised on how do you address the small business side and get better rents as many of them are too high. If the business can't afford, that would affect the residents affordability too. #edc0113
  • Could use a 'maker' or incubator type space for start ups, does require land/building owner to be willing to participate. #edc0113 new growth not likely to happen if affordability is mandated to be part of it, takes away their profit. Could renovate existing space
  • Residential complex downtown was all presold, to downsizers. Condo folks do want to walk to the restaurants downtown. Not much downtown now in pandemic. #edc0113 supply chain issues due to COVID, development in another Community shd be done now but due to supply issues
  • Inclusionary zoning was introduced for cities like Boston to invent development of private residence/condos Franklin at this time and foreseeable is not a good fit for this, numbers also speak to no rush to do something as we should be good thru 2030 #edc0113
  • Low income units are in shortage here and all other Communities around the state. Affordable housing is a higher market rate than low income, two separate needs, can't confuse them #edc0113 terms are important. Work force housing is another slice of affordability
  • "the rent for an affordable apartment is not really affordable" #edc0113 need to keep terms separate in that 'affordable' is a state housing designation and not to be confused with what 'affordable' is when used an adjective that is relative to each individual circumstance
  • Consensus is to get the housing plan done, there are many problems and that may require multiple solutions to address. Need to define the problems (or problems), agree on terms to be used, and then continue the discussion. #edc0113 motion to adjourn, via roll call 4-0
  • That's all for tonight, been a long one. Time for a walk and fresh air. Catch you next time #edc0113 
EDC 'Listening Session' - Jan 13, 2021 - Recap - Franklin's housing discussion starts
EDC 'Listening Session' - Jan 13, 2021 - Recap - Franklin's housing discussion starts

Monday, January 4, 2021

Interesting bits from the "Hazard Mitigation Plan 2020 Update"

To help your reading of the hazard mitigation plan, I have in my own reading captured some interesting tidbits. What do you find?

Other interesting bits (and where found):

  • "Notably, 25% of Franklin’s population lives alone, and 50% of those living alone are over 65 years old." (p13)
  • "Franklin relies on local groundwater sources for all of its public water supply" (p13)
  • "Although Franklin is not a coastal community, information on sea level rise is included as an important trend that has implications for the regional economy, and considering that Franklin is on the MBTA Commuter Rail line, and a number of local residents commute to jobs in Boston." (p25)
  • "Flooding was the most prevalent natural hazard identified by local officials in Franklin" (p30)
Did you know 46% of the land in Franklin is forest?
  • that 27.2% is residential?
  • that 10.6% is wetland?
  • that only 5.3% is classified as industrial/commercial
Check out the land use table on page 55 (Table #26)


The Hazard Mitigation Plan  2020 Update can be found online:


Interesting bits from the "Hazard Mitigation Plan  2020 Update"
Interesting bits from the "Hazard Mitigation Plan  2020 Update"

Sunday, October 11, 2020

Town Council Meeting Recap - Oct 7, 2020

Quick Recap:
  • CPA promoted during Citizens Comments
  • Two more sets of lot line clean ups approved by Council; sewer extension approved for single family residence
  • Citizen comment via landline phone added later as broadcast of number did not allow time to dial and address a comment. Question was effectively following up on a study of the DPW workforce and why there were so much turnover (and recently acknowledged 5 openings being filled). Study is being worked not received yet.
  • Presentation and discussion on Planning and Community Development Dept, which includes work by Planning Board, Zoning Board of Appeals, Design Review, Technical Review and Conservation Commission (see agenda doc for link to presentation)
  • Meeting broadcast was interrupted with loss of sound just as they moved into the Legislation for action section. Apparently, the laptop in the Chamber lost connection and no audio was broadcast either live stream or Zoom (it controlled the Zoom session). Did return approximately 20 minutes later with some disconnected audio, then it seemed to synch properly to close out the meeting
  • Light for intersection of Grove and Washington coming (yah!), plans for rework all along Grove St talked of, timeline TBD.
  • Study of South Meeting House received and to be posted to web site
  • Drought status is worsening
Photos captured during the meeting and shared via Twitter cen be found in the 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  #tc1007
  • Getting ready for the next meeting; Town Council up at 7 PM, agenda and connection info in doc here… #tc1007
  • Multiple options to watch/listen to meeting; Comcast channel 11 or Verizon channel 29, also live streamed from town of Franklin page… as well as the Zoom info in doc linked earlier #tc1007  oh, and you can call in via phone as well!
  • #tc1007 Meeting opens
  • Citizen comments used by two Franklin folks to talk about the Community Preservation Act on the November ballot as ballot question #3. Webinar coming Oct 15 at 7 PM send email to or visit for info #tc1007
  • Opening 2 hearings for lot line changes more in the series of clean up. #tc1007 parcels were in multiple zones and being moved to a single zone. No material impact to current owners (had my own lot line cleaned up previously)
  • Clarification questions on reading the map and which way the zone changes would go. One question was for a lot not part of this set of changes #tc1007 only changes the lots split, if lots weren't split not part of the change. Q on mixing changes, attorney approves this use case
  • #tc1007 single family house with failing septic, had been here previously (Sep) looking for a private extension for the one house; hearings closed
  • Reopening citizen comments for one who dialed via phone but couldn't do so fast enough to get into that section of the meeting. Comment on the study of the DPW mentioned previously: 5 open positions. Will the study be available?  #tc1007
  • Bryan Taberner of Planning and Community development here to do  presentation on their work #tc1007
  • Support conservation and planning issues, #tc1007 Planning Board elected positions
  • Lots of variety in applications submitted #tc1007
  • Q to clarify some of the categories
  • Q on who does the inspection of these plans and approvals, contracted with Beta to do so. #tc1007 Beta's report comes back thru channels for decision. Q on bond holding process re: enforcement for subdivision yes, site plan no
  • Attny Cerel comments on the covenant process for the subdivisions, various methods of surety (cash, etc) #tc1007 pros, cons and things change overtime with the market place
  • There are a few problem areas that remain unresolved. #tc1007 Jen Delmore, conservation agent takes this part of the presentation
  • #tc1007 clarification on types of work covered and required for ConCom
  • ConCom has an open position, looking for a volunteer. Design review commission support provided by dept. Covers all sign requirements. #tc1007 makes recommendations to Planning Board
  • #tc1007 Q when dealing with a franchise (Wendy's, etc) how do they handle them? Are their hands tied? Attny Cerel to weigh in on this in absence of others who may be out due to power outages around this evening
  • Comprehensive planning, zoning bylaws, master plan review should be started in 2023 for approval in 2025 or so. Hazardous plan in review with MA before going to FEMA, will ultimately require Town Council endorsement #tc1007
  • #tc1007 (just photos)
  • SNETT trail tunnel almost complete, 'complete streets' project coming #tc1007  use of TIFs is great, three used so far Hamilton, Cold chain, and Tegra Medical...
  • Detail doc on master plan updates
  • #tc1007
  • Oops, just lost audio from meeting on both live stream and Zoom session #tc1007  (08:15 PM)
  • Meeting continues so they are not aware of our no sound status #tc1007
  • FYI the chamber lost connection and are working on it. #tc1007 (08:25 PM)
  • 5 minutes recess called #tc1007
  • They're back albeit with gaps in the audio more than a normal voice pause, phrases being missed. Oh well. We'll do what we can #tc1007  (08:33 PM)
  • Picking up with the authorization for fixing the intersection at Grove/Washington Sts (yah!) #tc1007 revenue from the cannabis companies coming would help to pay for this work, check the details in memo
  • Did apply for MassWorks grant for repaving of Grove St up to Kenwood Circle, need to get this and other pieces together to do the work in 2021. #tc1007
  • Still in drought and additional measures coming to help conserve water supply. #tc1007 museum may open before election. Should get an update each meeting.
  • We are in a drought, it could get really serious, forecast doesn't show help coming soon. #tc1007
  • Could we talk with Nationalgrid again, power outages are becoming frequent? #tc1007
  • Comments DPW study is being worked coming shortly, been worked. Flag policy reached tonight for 9/11 .
  • Museum holiday Ornaments for sale this weekend, drive by purchase at museum. Fund raiser for museum #tc1007 3 families affected by the fire on Peck/Winter st a stubborn blaze to fight
  • Compliments for fire department and response from local community
  • FEF fund raising via many smaller events as the basketball game can't be played #tc1007 SAFE Coalition busy as addiction is increasing during covid-19
  • Executive session to be entered and not return to open session #tc1007 motion passed 8-0, redo vote via roll call. Still 8-0


Town Administrator Jamie Hellen with an update during the Town Council meeting
Town Administrator Jamie Hellen with an update during the Town Council meeting

Monday, October 5, 2020

Franklin, MA: Town Council - Agenda - Oct 7, 2020

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.
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.

September 16, 2020

- None Scheduled

- None Scheduled

6. HEARINGS - 7:10 PM  
a. Lot Line #4: Zoning Bylaw Amendment 20-858, Zoning Map Changes on or Near Beaver and Oak Streets
b. Bylaw Amendment 20-859: Sewer System Extension at 100 Daniels Street

- None Scheduled

    a. Planning and Community Development Department presentation: Bryan Taberner, Jen Delmore
        i. DPCD Department Presentation
        ii. Master Plan Update Materials

a. Capital Budget Subcommittee
b. Budget Subcommittee
c. Economic Development Subcommittee

Resolution 20-58: Request for special legislation regarding the authority for the Town of Franklin, acting through the Franklin Town Council, to grant a wine and malt beverages not to be drunk on the premises, alcoholic beverages license in excess of the Town’s quota to Madd Deli, Inc. D/B/A Dacey’s Market (Motion to Approve Resolution 20-58 - Majority Roll Call Vote)

Resolution 20-59: Authorizing the Borrowing of Money to Pay Costs of Washington and Grove Streets Intersection Improvements (Motion to Approve Resolution 20-59 - Two Thirds Majority Roll Call Vote)

Resolution 20-60: Gift Acceptance - Police Department, $200 (Motion to Approve Resolution 20-60 - Majority Roll Call Vote)

Zoning Bylaw Amendment 20-858: Zoning Map Changes on or Near Beaver and Oak Streets - Second Reading (Motion to adopt Zoning Bylaw Amendment 20-858 - Two Thirds Majority Roll Call Vote)

Bylaw Amendment 20-859: Sewer System Extension - 100 Daniels Street - Second Reading (Motion to Adopt Bylaw Amendment 20-859 - Majority Roll Call Vote)

COVID-19 Update

To investigate charges of criminal misconduct or to consider the filing of criminal complaints.

Two-Thirds Vote: requires 6 votes
Majority Vote: requires majority of members present and voting
The full agenda can be found online
The PDF including materials released for this meeting
Franklin, MA: Town Council - Agenda - Oct 7, 2020
Franklin, MA: Town Council - Agenda - Oct 7, 2020


Sunday, September 6, 2020

Commonwealth Magazine: Ranked choice voting and the 4th District; rethinking high school in COVID

From CommonWealth Magazine we share two articles of interest for Franklin:  

"WHEN JESSE MERMELL gave her videotaped concession speech in the 4th Congressional District primary race on Friday, she did it in front of a sign that read “Jesse Mermell for RCV,” an acronym for ranked–choice voting. “If the ranked–choice voting campaign needs a new face, give me a call, guys,” Mermell said. “I’ve got some time on my hands.” 

Mermell, a progressive who worked for former Gov. Deval Patrick, lost the Democratic primary by just 2,000 votes, or 1.3 percent, to Newton City Councilor and US Marine Corps veteran Jake Auchincloss. That means primary voters in the liberal congressional district that repeatedly reelected Joe Kennedy, Barney Frank, and Robert Drinan over the past five decades have selected seemingly the most moderate of seven Democratic candidates vying to represent them in Congress.

Auchincloss, who worked for Republican Gov. Charlie Baker’s gubernatorial campaign in 2014, won in a seven-candidate field comprised mostly of liberals. Auchincloss rejects the “centrist” label and calls himself a “pragmatic progressive.”  But his close election reflects a campaign that performed strongly in much of the more moderate southern part of the 4th Congressional District, which extends from Brookline and Newton to Fall River, and featured a crowded field that likely led liberal voters to split their vote.  

The race is calling renewed attention to a November ballot question that would implement ranked–choice voting, which lets voters select candidates in order of preference and could mitigate the effects of vote-splitting."

"FOR 20 YEARS, I’ve taught in an adult ed program in Dorchester. Every year we tweak things, adjust the schedule, hire new faculty, tinker with syllabi. Change happens gradually.

This past spring, with the advent of COVID, we had to scramble. Many of our students do not have laptops or good internet service and our class sputtered out. Around the end of June, my fellow teachers and I thought about what we would do for this coming year. What we did is, we tore up our schedule, our comfortable ideas, our expectations, and started fresh. Change happened suddenly.

Which is why I wanted to write up some ideas for the coming school year, specifically for the suburban high school where my children are enrolled.

I, like every other parent I spoke to, and like the teachers and School Committee members who wrote and spoke publicly — like everyone in town — was disappointed with the agenda for this school year — remote learning. The truth is, it’s disappointing because it’s not like previous years, and it’s not close enough to previous years to placate us."
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Monday, August 10, 2020

FM #325 Superintendent Sara Ahern Reopening Update - 8/06/20 (audio)

FM #325 = This is the Franklin Matters radio show, number 325 in the series.

This session shares my conversation with Superintendent Sara Ahern regarding the school fall re-opening status. Our conversation was conducted via conference bridge to adhere to the ‘social distancing’ requirements of this pandemic period.

Sara and I picked up from where we left off last time, which was before the preliminary plan was submitted to DESE, to talk about the remote learning first plans.   A focus on the high needs learners would bring them into the school environment safely when the protocols are ready. One key difference from the remote learning done at the beginning of the pandemic, schools were closed then, schools will be open in September. Teachers will be expected to teach from school classrooms, however exceptions may be made if appropriate for remote teaching.

The show notes contain links to the Re-opening page, family webinar and presentation docs. The agenda for the School Committee meeting scheduled for Aug 11 will be shared as soon as it is available.

Our conversation runs about 19 minutes, so let’s listen to my conversation with Sara on the preliminary plan and process.

Audio file =


Reopening Presentation 

Reopening Comprehensive Plan 

Proposed Revised Calendar for 2020-2021 School Year 

Franklin Public Schools - Re-opening page

Re-opening Plan presentation doc

Re-opening Webinar for Families 

Webinar Presentation copy:


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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.

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FM #325 Superintendent Sara Ahern Reopening Update  - 8/06/20 (audio)
FM #325 Superintendent Sara Ahern Reopening Update  - 8/06/20 (audio)