Tuesday, December 10, 2013

A Christmas Carol, Times Two! - Thursday, Dec 12

"A Christmas Carol Times Two!", a dramatic reading performance of Charles Dickens "A Christmas Carol" combined with traditional 19th century English Christmas carols will happen on Thursday, Dec. 12 at 7PM at the Franklin United Methodist Church, 82 West Central Street in Franklin, Massachusetts.
Al LePage performs "A Christmas Carol"

"Englishman Thomas Hutchinson, Traveling Thespian" portrayed by actor Al LePage, complete with English accent and Victorian-era clothing, will give his dramatic reading performance based on Dickens' very own historic script as a one-man show using only his voice, facial expressions and gestures to create some 18 characters.

Organist and local minister Rev. Dr. Dianne Carpenter will weave organ music between various scenes to set the tone for what's to come and entertain. This is a special benefit performance hosted by the Franklin United Methodist Church with all proceeds to benefit the Franklin Food Pantry.

Admission is $10 per person and the performance is best appreciated by both adults and children 7 years of age and older. Tickets are on sale and can be purchased in advance through BrownPaperTickets.com/, either on-line or by calling their 24/7 toll-free number 1-800-838-3006, and if still available, at the door the day of event. Doors for the performance open at 6:30PM, the fun begins at 6:45PM, and seating is general admission.

Tickets are also available at the Franklin Food Pantry during open hours 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM Tues, Weds and Thursday.

"They have control over only so many dollars"

The Milford Daily News provides the story behind the MPO letter published to the Franklin website and shared here recently.

Town Administrator Jeffrey Nutting said Franklin has benefited from past TIP projects. But recently officials have not seen the same value in the program. 
The communities competing for the funds have to pay the engineering costs associated with the project, which can mean millions of dollars, typically with no guarantee that they will receive any money in the end. 
"The issue that we face now is there are so few dollars available in comparison to the need," Nutting said Friday. "It’s hard for the town to justify paying the engineering costs only to then wait 10 years or 15 years to never get that road approved for construction because of the competition."

Read more: http://www.milforddailynews.com/news/x915451163/Franklin-officials-State-transportation-funding-system-needs-to-be-changed#ixzz2n4FuXSRv

You can find the Metrolpolitan Planning Organization (MPO) letter here

Monday, December 9, 2013

Franklin, MA: Finance Committee - Agenda - Dec 10, 2013

The Finance Committee is scheduled to meet Tuesday evening, Dec 10, 2013 at 7:00 PM. The published agenda for this meeting is shown below:

Franklin, MA: Municipal Building
Franklin Municipal Building

You can also find this agenda on the Franklin webpage

Winter Weather Reminder for the Schools

Superintendent Maureen Sabolinski has updated the winter weather advisory process. This outlines how the decision is made, who is involved, what factors are considered, etc.

You can also find this on the Franklin Public Schools website here

DelCarte Playground - December update

A walk around the new playground being set up at DelCarte Open Space along Pleasant St here in Franklin, MA.

Photos from the prior visit (includes links to prior DelCarte posts as well)

In the News: solar farm, Santa Foundation

Abbey sisters, politicians celebrate solar farm

The sisters of Mount St. Mary’s Abbey hosted a public celebration and ribbon-cutting for their latest green energy effort – an 8.6-megawatt solar farm off Upper Union Street. The abbey already has a 130-foot-tall wind turbine and a geothermal system underneath its chapel. As a result of their efforts, the sisters were awarded the Energy Leadership Award by the Mass Energy Consumer Alliance in October.

Franklin non-profit Christmas gift provider in need of donations

For the 28th consecutive year, Franklin small businessman Bob Sullivan shut down his own business to open up a Santa’s workshop that plans to bring the joy of Christmas to about 800 local families in need.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

FRANKLIN PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICT: Update on Weather for Monday - Dec 9th

The first snow of the season has been predicted for late this evening into tomorrow. We anticipate school opening as scheduled. We have been in contact with DPW and they will be treating roads and parking lots when the precipitation begins.  
As this is the first snow please drive slowly and allow extra time to drop your child/ children off at school. HS age drivers often have less experience driving in these conditions so please consider driving them to school. If they must drive please encourage them to leave some extra time and to drive slower. 
If the weather report changes and we need to delay school we will send out a Connect Ed message. Additionally we will post any change in schedule on our web site and announce to the media outlets. 
Please be reminded that all parents/guardians may keep children at home if  you choose to. If you elect this option please call the school to let them know about your decision. 
Stay safe. 
Thank You,
Maureen Sabolinski

This e-mail has been sent to you by FRANKLIN PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICT. To maximize their communication with you, you may be receiving this e-mail in addition to a phone call with the same message. If you wish to discontinue this service, please inform FRANKLIN PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICT either IN PERSON, by US MAIL, or by TELEPHONE at 508-613-1777.

Franklin, MA: Town Council - Agenda - Dec 11, 2013


This meeting is being recorded by Franklin TV and shown on Comcast channel 11 and Verizon channel 29. This meeting may also be recorded by Franklin Matters.




Tax Classification Hearing – 7:10 PM

2014 Annual Alcoholic Beverages Licenses Renewals

Guidelines and Criteria for Penalizing Alcoholic Beverage License holder Violations


1. Resolution 13-85: Classification Tax Allocation – Residential Factor
2. Resolution 13-86: Classification Tax Allocation – Open Space Exemption
3. Resolution 13-87: Classification Tax Allocation – Small Business Exemption
4. Resolution 13-88: Classification Tax Allocation – Residential Property Exemption
5. Resolution 13-89: 2014 Schedule of Town Council Meetings
6. Resolution 13-90: Legal Notices
7. Zoning Bylaw Amendment 13-726: Amendment to Chapter 185, Attachment 9, Schedule of Lot, Area,
Frontage Yard and Height Requirements – Referral to Planning Board





Negotiations, Litigation, Real Property, as May Be Required


The full set of documents for the agenda as published can be found here

Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) Letter

This letter was posted to the "News" section of the Franklin home page. It is unsigned and lacking a description as to who or what group authored it.

MPO seems to be the acronym for Metropolitan Planing Organization. MassDOT has 13 MPOs to cover the state according to the map located here. It appears that Franklin is part of the Boston Region MPO which would explain why getting assistance and funding from the MPO is difficult.

A Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) is a transportation policy-making organization made up of representatives from local government and transportation authorities. Federal legislation passed in the early 1970s required the formation of an MPO for any urbanized area with a population greater than 50,000. MPOs were created to ensure that existing and future expenditures for transportation projects and programs were based on a continuing, cooperative and comprehensive (3-C) planning process. Federal funding for transportation project and programs are channeled through this process. 
As transportation policy-making entities, MPOs have five core functions. 
  1. Create a fair and impartial setting for effective regional decision making in the metropolitan area.
  2. Evaluate transportation alternatives and needs through appropriate studies and activities as detailed in the MPOs Unified Planning Work Program (UPWP)
  3. Maintain a Long-Range Transportation Plan (RTP). Develop a 20-year transportation planning document which identifies existing infrastructure conditions, projects future transportation needs and provides a plan or program to attain the stated goals and visions.
  4. Develop a Transportation Improvement Program (TIP). Develop a program based on the long range plan and designed to serve the MPO’s goals using spending, and other financial tools.
  5. Involve the public. Involve the general public and all significantly affected sub-groups in the four essential functions listed above.

More about the MPO and process can be found on this MassDOT page

ECDC Open House - Jan 13th

The F.X.O’Regan Early Childhood Development Center located at 224 Oak Street Franklin, Ma, will have an Open House on January 13th and January 21st from 3:30pm-4:30pm. This will be for new parents who are considering sending their child/children to the preschool in the fall of 2014. Please check our website (www.franklin.k12.ma.us) for more program information and if you have any questions, call 508-541-8166 ext. 2938

FX O'Regan Early Childhood Development Center

The application can be found here

"We had time to kill"

Milford Daily News reports on the blood drive at the Franklin Public Library on Saturday.
At the Franklin Public Library, Mike Green was also donating blood to the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in honor of his sister, Meredith, a 2008 graduate of Franklin High School who was diagnosed with cancer in January of 2012. 
With his sister in remission as of July of last year, Green said he hopes people realize the need to give blood, especially since his sister required transfusions when she was hospitalized. 
"It’s just a good thing to do," he said. "People don’t realize the need for blood."

Read more: http://www.milforddailynews.com/news/x915450921/Blood-drives-help-children-cancer-patients-in-Milford-Franklin#ixzz2mt0Cy9It

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Hockomock Area YMCA: Holiday Gift Drive

holiday gift drive
Attached is an invitation to participate in the YMCA's annual giving tree program.  Sharing gifts with families in need this holiday season exemplifies the caring of our community, our staff, and our YMCA members.  On Christmas morning last year, 705 gifts found their way to the homes of 118 Y families, for which we were truly thankful to all involved.  That meant together we brightened the lives of 357 children, women, and men in our community. 
Thank you in advance for your consideration in printing the attached release to help make the holidays much brighter for those families with tags remaining on our lobby trees. 

Scholarship Fund in memory of Colleen Ritzer

From the Essex County Community Foundation website:
To carry on the legacy of our beautiful daughter and sister Colleen and her passion for teaching, we have established the Colleen Ritzer Memorial Scholarship Fund. This scholarship will be awarded to students who are pursuing a degree in education so they can continue her legacy of making a difference in a student's life. 
Colleen Ritzer
The Colleen Ritzer Memorial Scholarship Fund is managed by Essex County Community Foundation. If you have any questions regarding your online donation, please contact Kathy (978) 777-8876 or k.moriconi@eccf.org. If you prefer to make a donation by mail you can make a check payable to: 
ECCF/Colleen Ritzer Fund and mail to: 
Essex County Community Foundation
175 Andover Street
Danvers, MA 01923

You can donate online via this link

Who was Colleen Ritzer? An Assumption College graduate and teacher at Danvers High School.

"the regulations tighten the town’s rules on smoking in public places"

The Milford Daily News reports on the public hearing being set up for Jan 7th to review proposed new tobacco regulations for Franklin.
The Board of Health will hold a public hearing next month on whether to pass comprehensive new tobacco regulations. 
The three-member board scheduled the hearing for its Jan. 7 meeting, set to begin at 10 a.m. at the Municipal Building, 355 East Central St. Health Director David McKearney wrote the proposed regulations. 
If passed, the controls would reshape how the town handles tobacco sales, raising the legal age to purchase tobacco products to 19 and establishing a tobacco and nicotine delivery products permit, administered by the board. Currently the town does not have a local tobacco permit for businesses, which still must acquire a license from the state Department of Revenue in order to sell cigarettes and other tobacco products.

Read more: http://www.milforddailynews.com/blog/healthconscious/x915450461/Franklin-Public-hearing-set-for-new-tobacco-regulations#ixzz2mnGuTbfg

Franklin Elks - BPOE 2136

The membership and association clubs such as the American Legion and Elks would also be included in the new regulations to ban smoking within their facilities.

I would hope that there would also be a hearing scheduled for some evening as any of the voters/residents who work during normal business hours are disenfranchised by this particular time of day for the 'public hearing.'

Friday, December 6, 2013

Weekend events in Franklin

  • The Annual Christmas Fair takes place at St John Episcopal Church on Saturday from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM

  • Bubbles and Bark, wine tasting and special hot dogs to raise money for the Forever Home Rescue New England at Pour Richard's on Saturday from 1:00 Pm to 4:00 PM

What is missing from this list? Is something else happening here in Franklin this weekend?
Please leave a comment to include that item.

Updated 12/6/13 6;00 PM

Saturday, December 7th from 8am-11am,

  • Cub Scout pack 126 will be holding its Annual All You Can Eat Pancake Breakfast with Santa. 

It is being held at The Elks Lodge, 1077 Pond Street , Franklin Ma.
The cost is $6 per person, with children under 3 and Pack 126 scouts in uniform free.
Breakfast includes pancakes, eggs, sausage, orange juice, coffee and tea.
Santa will be available for photos for a cost of $3.
There will be a raffle to win one of our gift baskets, with tickets on sale to benefit the scouts!
Scout popcorn and candy bars will be available for purchase.
Pack 126 will also be hosting a toy drive for local children in need. You may bring to the breakfast a new unwrapped toy if desired.

  • Craft fair open house at Akin Bak Farm from 9:00 - 6:00 PM! Also selling fresh trees and wreaths