Saturday, February 2, 2008

Franklin: I can use your help

Franklin: 2 bag recycle walk, originally uploaded by shersteve.

Yes, I can use your help. Franklin can use your help.

I came up with this brain storm of an idea a couple of weeks ago. When Dolores and I go walking now on the weekend, I carry a bag (or two) and pick up the recycling I find along the way.

All Franklin walkers could help in this effort. Take a bag with you. PIck up the recycling.

A little bit at a time, Franklin will be cleaner.

A little bit at a time, people will notice us picking up the recycling.

Maybe after they notice, they might stop and think about tossing their recycling out on our roads and sidewalks.

Our walk today generated two bags and I could have easily filled about a dozen more.

A little bit at a time.

Franklin matters. Please recycle!

About to go swimming

About to go swimming, originally uploaded by shersteve.

If it gets much warmer, or continues to stay warm for a few more days, these guys are about to go for a swim.

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Franklin MBTA Commuters

Real-time alerts ease sting for commuters facing delays

By John Dyer, Globe Correspondent

On weekday mornings, environmental lawyer Michael Ernst rides the commuter train from Westborough to South Station in Boston. The train, he said, is often late. But usually, one of his fellow stranded passengers will help him cope.


Yes, from the T itself... hard to believe but true, they do publish T-Alerts and they have been pretty accurate, much more so that the stupid message board.

You can sign up for T Alerts here.

Creative Commute is a new service just expanding into Boston having already been developed and serving the NY/NJ commuter in the post 911 days. I wrote about Clever Commute in December.

You can sign up for Clever Commute here.


There are two other blogs about commuting via the trains into Boston:

The Franklin Line

Charlie on the Commuter Rail

In the News - Dan Sullivan

Sharing his experiences ‘one day at a time’

By Heather McCarron/Staff writer

For many years, Dan Sullivan struggled with alcoholism that started with experimental drinking as a youth and escalated into more serious drinking as a young man.


Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Where in Franklin? Answer #28

Where in Franklin? Answer #28, originally uploaded by shersteve.

Look what I found, finally!

I knew I had a better photo of the Ginley Funeral Home but couldn't locate it at the time I was announcing the answer.

Better late than never!

Where in Franklin? #29

Where in Franklin? #29, originally uploaded by shersteve.

Where will you see this bell tower?

The guidelines for playing "Where in Franklin?" can be found here.

Have fun. Thanks for playing!

Where in Franklin? Answer #28

Where in Franklin? Answer #28, originally uploaded by shersteve.

The answer to picture 28 is the Ginley Funeral Home. Congratulations to Ken who again has named the location correctly.

Stay tuned for the next photo to play "Where in Franklin?"

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

In the news

Teen charged with videotaping girls without their knowledge

By Michelle Laczkoski/Daily News staff

MILFORD - A 17-year-old Franklin High School senior, who police say secretly videotaped two girls in his bedroom, is facing charges for the unlawful recordings.


Monday, January 28, 2008

Boston Globe gets to the brick report

One-room school gets thumbs-up

By Rachel Lebeaux, Globe Correspondent

Now that Franklin's Brick School Task Force has issued a contentious final report - with a divided opinion as to whether to keep the 175-year-old, one-room, brick schoolhouse open - a decision on its disposition rests with the School Committee.


Sunday, January 27, 2008

Where in Franklin? #28

Where in Franklin? #28, originally uploaded by shersteve.

Can you identify the location for this entrance that dates back to the 1890's?

The guidelines for playing "Where in Franklin?" can be found here.

Have fun!

Updated 1/29/08

Hint: while I don't have another photo clue, I can reveal that this is a corner building, downtown.

Tax increases hit homeowners hard

Franklin parent Donna Martel said it was a choice between higher property taxes or even higher fees for high school sports, school clubs and non-mandated busing.

"It was still going to be cheaper," she said of the override. "It worked out."


For senior citizen Marion Melo, that means she can no longer buy whatever groceries she wishes and must shop at Bellingham's cheaper Market Basket, rather than at Franklin's more expensive Stop & Shop or Shaw's.

"I'm making a list," she said. "I have to cut back."

Come from the article in today's Milford Daily News:

Tax increases hit homeowners hard

By By Michael Morton & John Hilliard, Daily News staff

When Mendon resident Russ Gregoire opened his third-quarter property tax bill earlier this month, he knew there would be a substantial increase from two overrides passed by town voters. Mendon grabbed the highest ranking in the Milford area thanks to two votes to go beyond the limits of Proposition 2-1/2. In Westborough, the average tax bill jumped nearly 8 percent this year - higher than many nearby MetroWest towns.


Saturday, January 26, 2008

Yes, Salem is close to Franklin

Salem delays layoffs to seek state aid

Salem is delaying the layoffs of about 60 school employees to seek emergency aid from the Legislature.


State bailout for Salem schools near

SALEM - Layoffs in this city's financially troubled public schools were postponed yesterday, hours before they were to go into effect, as state and local officials put the final touches on emergency legislation to allow Salem to borrow up to $1 million.


No, not geographically. The fiscal problem they are in the middle of as reported in the two Boston Globe articles (above), we were very close to.

City officials have publicly said that the shortfall was caused in part by a former school business manager who used money from this year's school budget to pay off old bills. This week, at the request of the School Committee, Salem police began investigating Bruce Guy, who is also a former city finance director, to examine whether municipal finance laws were broken. Guy has not responded to the Globe's repeated requests for an interview.
What happened there is what did occur here. One prime difference is in the amount of money. The total deficit (at a point in time) in Franklin was $1.5 million. The actual shortfall was $894,000 which was covered by our stabilization fund. Fortunately, that amount was available. Salem was looking for $4.7 million.

Just imagine what would happen to our schools if we were forced to make the cuts they were about to make.

Paying attention to the Franklin's school and town business is a serious matter! Stay informed!

Nutting quietly got new 3 year deal last year

Town Administrator Jeffrey Nutting confirmed this week that he has been working under a new, three-year contract.

The contract was negotiated with the council and signed shortly before the town's Nov. 6 election, Nutting said, with the terms retroactively taking effect a few months before in July.

Under Nutting's new deal, he gets a 2 1/2 percent raise this year, with subsequent raises up to the council as part of their annual review. Nutting received a $119,978 salary and a $5,983 car allowance in 2006, according to the town's most recent annual report.

Michael Morton reports the remainder of the details in his article in the Milford Daily News

Thursday, January 24, 2008

In the news - street play, teacher citizenship, betting on a budget

Game over for street play?

By Michael Morton/Daily News staff

FRANKLIN - Under a strict reading of a bylaw revision proposed at last night's council meeting, children playing baseball or having a snowball fight on town streets and sidewalks could get a disappointing message: game over.


Teacher feted for getting U.S. citizenship

By Michael Morton/Daily News staff

FRANKLIN - When French teacher Mireille Malouf walked into the auditorium at Benjamin Franklin Classical Charter Public School yesterday, she thought she had come for an assembly with a broad patriotic theme.


Local towns would get more state aid

By Matt Kakley/Daily News correspondent

The town of Milford would receive a 10 percent increase in local aid and Franklin would receive an additional 7 percent under Gov. Deval Patrick's budget proposal.


Patrick's budget plan would rely on casino revenue

By Lindsey Parietti/Daily News staff

BOSTON - Gov. Deval Patrick released a $28 billion budget proposal yesterday, banking on casino licensing fees to fund local aid and challenging his critics in the Legislature to come up with their own solutions to the state's fiscal challenges.


Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Dean College gets $1 Million

(CSRwire) FRANKLIN, MA – January 23, 2008 - Accenture Chairman & CEO William D. Green has donated a gift worth $1 million to Dean College, where he received an associates degree in 1974. The gift is the largest from a living donor in the college's history.

"When Bill Green and his family made the decision to give this inspiring gift to the college, they were making a bold statement about the value of a Dean education," said Dean President Paula M. Rooney. "Bill has always been an inspiration to our students, our staff, and quite clearly to the business world. He always seems to have Dean students on his mind and works diligently as a trustee and an alumnus to continue to make Dean a place where students succeed. He created such excitement and energy when he addressed our students in October - urging them to find their passion and confidence and telling them that they will go farther than they can imagine. This gift will help the College expand the mentoring and support that Bill calls the 'primary ingredient of Dean's special sauce.'"

Green, known as a leader who seeks to "educate, energize and inspire" the more than 175,000 Accenture professionals around the globe, has credited this ability and his success in large part to his start at Dean College.
Read the remainder of this good news for Dean College here

Visit the Dean College web site here.