Monday, September 12, 2016

Recap of Town Council meeting Sep 7, 2016

The Town Council meeting of Wednesday, Sep 7 is recapped as follows:

Single person appointments were made to the Conservation Commission and Citizens Advisory Committee

Liquor license suspensions to be served by Acapulco's and Joe's American Bar and Grill for one day each with two days held in abeyance for three years.


  • Acapulco's will not serve liquor on Wednesday, Sep 14.
  • Joe's will not serve on liquor Thursday, Sep 15
Joe's American Bar and Grill
Joe's American Bar and Grill

Liquor license transfers for Longhorn Steakhouse and 99 Restaurant were approved

School Dude which already is used by the Town for their facility work order system is also being piloted for their preventive maintenance planning tool. The application sounds really slick and easy to use. It does depend upon and inventory of the facility infrastructure (heater, lighting fixtures, etc.). There is likely to be a proposal to expand the pilot with a full rollout as part of the capital budget planning for FY 2018.

The prior Charter commission and committee reports were reviewed with leadership of the prior efforts present to answer questions. Bottom line: some of the Town Council are upset with the lack of say they have in the direct hiring process for certain personnel within the Town. This is a slippery slope. As a legislative body, they should only hire the Town Administrator and approve of the key departmental appointments (as they do today). To do otherwise, would change their role from the legislative body to one of being active in day-to-day operations and in so doing, create additional liabilities for the individual councilors. The easier solution since addressing this via the Charter is not really practical, would be to simply address the issue via better communications. Better communications is something the Council should do all around. They have occasionally made improvements but there is a whole lot of room to work with.

The Pine St legal claim was approved for settlement. A complicated issue whereby many years ago, a property was taken for tax tile by the Town which was eventually taken to court and by this agreement finally resolved.

Ribbon cutting of the new downtown improvements will open the Holiday Stroll, Thursday, October 6. 4:00 PM on the triangle. The rather large planters on the triangle (some have referred to as burial urns) will be swapped out with units that are shorter in height.

The Actions Taken document can be viewed here:

My notes from the meeting reported live on Wednesday evening can be found here by the section of the meeting they apply to:

The full agenda and associated documents (i.e. the Pine St legal issue, and the Charter commission report) can be found here

Update: Gala 2016 - LAUGH IN THE BOX

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FPAC Gala 2016 

LAUGH IN THE BOX A Comedy Tonight!

The Gala is two weeks away! Have you purchased your tickets yet?

We are excited to announce that Broadway guest artist Darlesia Cearcy will be headlining the Gala's special, one-night-only show! Darlesia just completed the Broadway run of Shuffle Along as understudy to Audra McDonald in the role of "Lottie Gee." She made her Broadway debut in The Goodbye Girl with Martin Short and Bernadette Peters. Additional Broadway credits include "Nettie" in The Color Purple and "Sarah" in Ragtime, for which she received a Helen Hayes Award nomination. 

Darlesia was part of the original Broadway production of The Book of Mormon, and you can catch her high notes on the original Broadway cast album. Recordings also feature Everlasting Pictures with B-Zet. 

Darlesia's television credits include Nurse Jackie, Law and Order SVU, Mercy Me, Rescue Me, and House of Cards (Season 5, Netflix). Films include The Challenger, Rush, and Frozen.
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Gala 2016 - LAUGH IN THE BOX
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Norfolk County Real Estate Bounces Back in August

Norfolk County Registry of Deeds

Norfolk County Real Estate Bounces Back in August
After a disappointing July, the Norfolk County real estate market roared back to life showing mostly solid gains for the month of August.

Register of Deeds William P. O'Donnell stated, "After a down July, it was nice to see the real estate market recover in August. Increases were seen in both home sales and lending. August was a month where all stakeholders benefited from the strong real estate market in Norfolk County."

"During the month of August," noted O'Donnell, "a total of 1,945 property transactions, both residential and commercial, were recorded in Norfolk County. This represented a 9% increase year over year. The average sales price for these properties was $874,726, a 47% increase from August 2015."

The Register also noted that the total volume of real estate sales, both residential and commercial, came in at $1.18 billion, a 60% increase from the same time period in 2015. It should be noted that these figures were enhanced by a $205 million dollar sale of Westwood Station that took place during the middle of August.

O'Donnell stated, "Lending activity also showed some impressive gains. For the month of August, a total of 3,511 mortgages were recorded, a 35% increase from the previous year. Furthermore, total mortgage financing came in at $1.7 billion, a 60% increase from the previous August. Clearly, the continuing low interest rates are spurring individuals and businesses to borrow money for home and capital improvements and education."

If there was one cloud in the silver lining concerning August's data, it was the increase in foreclosure activity experienced in Norfolk County. A total of 32 foreclosure deeds were filed compared to 19 filed in August 2015. Also, the number of Notice to Foreclose Mortgages recorded, the first step in the foreclosure process, was 96 compared to 31 recorded during the previous August.

O'Donnell noted, "The significant increases in foreclosure activity were discouraging, especially after we thought the market had turned the corner. There is no question that some of our neighbors continue to struggle.

"I want to again stress the Registry's continuing partnership with Quincy Community Action Programs at (617) 479-8181 x-376 and Neighbor Works Southern Mass at (508) 598-0950. These agencies are there to help anyone who has received a Notice to Foreclose Mortgage from a lender. Another option for homeowners is to call the Massachusetts Attorney General's HomeCorps program at (617) 573-5333. I cannot stress enough to call them promptly if you are struggling with paying your mortgage."

Homestead recordings showed a solid 11% increase in August compared to the same time period in 2015. O'Donnell noted, "A Homestead is an important consumer protection tool that I would encourage all homeowners to consider. A Homestead provides limited protection against the forced sale of your primary residence to satisfy unsecured debt up to $500,000."

In conclusion, Register O'Donnell stated, "After a less than robust July, it was great to see Norfolk County real estate activity rebound so strongly. It appears that a sizeable pool of buyers were aggressive in getting back into the market. Hopefully, the housing inventory level will not take a dip anytime soon. Another positive indicator is the continuing low interest rate which has been a key driver for real estate sales and lending."

To learn more about these and other Registry of Deeds events and initiatives, like us at or follow us on and/or

The Norfolk County Registry of Deeds, located at 649 High Street, Dedham, is the principal office for real property in Norfolk County. The Registry is a resource for homeowners, title examiners, mortgage lenders, municipalities and others with a need for secure, accurate, accessible land record information. Residents in need of assistance can contact the Registry of Deeds Customer Service Center at (781) 461-6101, or on the web at

Register William P. O'Donnell

Norfolk County Registry of Deeds

phone: 781-234-3336
Norfolk County Registry of Deeds, 649 High Street, Dedham,, MA 02026-1831

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"I've learned Horace Mann began his education using the books that Benjamin Franklin provided to the town library - it's astounding."

From the Milford Daily News, articles of interest for Franklin:
"The town will unveil a new statue of Horace Mann next spring. 
The statue of the town native known as the father of public education in America will be placed in a green space at 150 Emmons St. The town sold that land, once the site of a municipal building, to local developer Roger Calarese, but required an easement for a park honoring Mann. 
State Rep. Jeffrey Roy, D-Franklin, who has been active in supporting the effort, said the statue will be unveiled on May 7, 2017. 
"(The sculptor) could have it available in November or December, but the weather then is unpredictable," he said. "We also wanted to get it as close to Horace Mann's birthday (of May 4) as possible."

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

a recent view of the Horace Mann opens space from Emmons St
a recent view of the Horace Mann opens space from Emmons St

a recent view of the Horace Mann opens space from West Central St
a recent view of the Horace Mann opens space from West Central St

Horace Mann is buried in Providence, RI

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Franklin, MA: School Committee - Sep 13, 2016

Vision Statement
The Franklin Public Schools will foster within its students the knowledge and skills to find and achieve satisfaction in life as productive global citizens.

"The listing of matters are those reasonably anticipated by the Chair which
may be discussed at the meeting. Not all items listed may in fact be discussed
and other items not listed may also be brought up for discussion to the extent
permitted by law."
the key to learning
the key to learning

1. Routine Business

  • Citizen’s Comments
  • Review of Agenda
  • Budget to Actual
  • Minutes: I recommend approval of the minutes from the August 23, 2016 School Committee Meeting.
  • Payment of Bills Dr. O’Malley
  • Payroll Mrs. Douglas
  • FHS Student Representatives
  • Correspondence

2. Guests/Presentations
a. MASC Superintendent Search - Jim Hardy
b. Update DIP and Progress Monitoring 2nd doc
c. Middle School (SIP) School Improvement Plans
d. FHS School Improvement Plan

3. Discussion Only Items
Superintendent Search Discussion/Decision
Policy – Second Readings

  • DJE - Bidding Requirements
  • DKC - Expense Reimbursements
  • JJF - Student Activity Accounts
  • JJF-R - Student Activity Accounts
  • JJFG - Disposition of Student Activity Accounts

4. Action Items
a. I recommend approval of the following 2016-2017 School Improvement Plans:
1. Annie Sullivan MS
2. Horace Mann MS
3. Remington MS
4. FHS

b. I recommend adoption of School Committee Policies:
1. DJE - Bidding Requirements
2. DKC - Expense Reimbursements
3. JJF - Student Activity Accounts
4. JJF-R - Student Activity Accounts
5. JJFG - Disposition of Student Activity Accounts

c. I recommend acceptance of the check from the Franklin Music Boosters in the amount of $1600.00 for supplemental supplies for the Elementary Music Program.

5. Information Matters

  • Superintendent’s Report
  • School Committee Sub-Committee Reports Policy
  • School Committee Liaison Reports

6. New Business
To discuss future business that may be brought before the School Committee.

7. Motion to Adjourn 
– Dr. O’Malley

"a significant 'generational shift' over the past several years"

"In the 15 years since the 9/11 terror attacks, the United States has seen the rise of two ongoing wars, a massive government surveillance program and an increased awareness and fear of global terrorism. But for this year's first-time voters, this is the only world they've ever known.
Most freshmen entering high school this year were born after 9/11. Those 18-year-olds entering college will have little, if any, direct memories of the attacks on the World Trade Center towers in New York and the Pentagon. As they enter the polling booth for the first time in November, they will be challenged to vote for a president who can tackle growing issues, including the fight against ISIS, the need to deal with economic instability and internet security that have become increasingly intertwined over the past decade-and-a-half."

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

flags placed on the lawn at the Elks Lodge on Ponds St to remember 9/11 victims
flags placed on the lawn at the Elks Lodge on Ponds St to remember 9/11 victims

flags placed on the lawn at the Elks Lodge on Ponds St to remember 9/11 victims
flags placed on the lawn at the Elks Lodge on Ponds St to remember 9/11 victims

flags placed on the lawn at the Elks Lodge on Ponds St to remember 9/11 victims
flags placed on the lawn at the Elks Lodge on Ponds St to remember 9/11 victims

In the News: Cultural Council grant schedule, Russian Math School awards

From the Milford Daily News, articles of interest for Franklin:
"The Franklin Cultural Council has set an Oct. 17 deadline for organizations, schools and individuals to apply for grants that support cultural activities in the community. 
This funding encourages individuals, groups and not-for-profit organizations to bring to the community unique programming that centers around the arts, humanities, history or interpretive sciences for children, adults and intergenerational groups. 
This year, the Franklin Cultural Council will distribute about $11,000 in grants. Previously funded projects include programs/field trips for five of Franklin’s schools (public and charter), Franklin Downtown Partnership Strawberry Stroll, LiveArts, Franklin Performing Arts Company Whatever Theatre Festival, Southeastern MA Community Concert Band and the Franklin Art Association."

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

"The Russian School of Mathematics recently announced that 16 of its Franklin students posted notable scores on both national and international mathematics competitions. 
Nearly 100 students received an award on the AMC 8, 10 and 12, and approximately 87 percent of the Massachusetts Math Kangaroo winners were RSM students."

The following are Franklin award winners:

  • Shoyaib Shaik, grade eight
  • Aishwarya Prakki, grade five
  • YickRen Leong, grade five
  • Rutvik Parikh, grade six
  • Sameen Shaik, grade six
  • Izam Karukappadath, grade seven
  • Pratusha Nouduri, grade seven
  • Rohit Valiveti, grade seven
  • Vibha Kamath, grade seven
  • Arvind Sridhar, grade eight
  • Shoumik Sompally, grade six
  • Arya Bhat, grade four
  • Nikhil Sankaran, grade three
  • Justin Chen, grade four
  • Liana Warnakulasooriya, grade four
  • Alexandra Krylova, grade nine

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

Update on the BFCCPS expansion

Dear BFCCPS Community,

We wanted to provide an update to developments with the construction of our new school, this is the first step in our overall BFCCPS Expansion Process. It has been an exceptionally busy summer and we are pleased to announce that we made significant progress in the last eight weeks.

In July our project received clearance from the Franklin Conservation Committee followed by approval by the Franklin Planning Board. Based on that approval we were able to solicit bids for the Construction Manager for our new building. During the month of August the neighboring project which is involved in our land swap also received clearance from the Franklin Conservation Committee and the Franklin Planning Board.

Both projects are subject to a complete review by the Massachusetts EPA that has taken longer than we could possibly have anticipated.

At this time, we find ourself beyond the deadline where we would need to be in order to open for the 2017-2018 school year. We did consider a number of creative alternatives however in the end, they would have been significantly disruptive to our educational program. We will have a better idea of what our timeline will be once the MEPA review is completed . We remain incredibly pleased with the progress that has been made this summer, and we continue to be excited about continuing with this process and we hope that you are too.

If you have any questions about the project, please contact the Board of Trustees President, Mr. Jason Fine by email at


The BFCCPS Board of Trustees

 Benjamin Franklin Classical Charter Public School
Benjamin Franklin Classical Charter Public School

Shared from the BFCCPS webpage

Pipeline Talk in Millis - Sep 13

Tuesday September 13th  = 7:00 PM

961 Main St.
Millis, MA

Sponsored by Millis Public Forum

As part of its Access Northeast project, Spectra Energy is proposing to build a 30-inch high pressure gas pipeline that would be 21.2 miles through nine towns: Bellingham, Medway, Millis, Franklin, Norfolk, Walpole, Sharon, Canton and Stoughton. A presentation on the proposed pipeline, sponsored by the Millis Public Forum, will be held Tuesday, September 13, 2016, at 7:00 PM at the Millis Library and will offer information about what it is, how it would impact Millis and its residents, and what people can do about it. 
Interested residents and town officials are invited to attend to learn more. A question and answer period will follow. 
Presenters: Carolyn and Rand Barthel of 350 Massachusetts.

For more information, contact Carol Coakley at 508-376-8495.

lawn sign found on several Franklin homes
lawn sign found on several Franklin homes

For more information on the No Spectra effort, visit their webpage

L.E.A.P Self Defense Program for Women

A Personal Protection Program

Leadership, Empowerment, Awareness, Protection!
After a very successful event last month, here is the opportunity for women to advance their individual confidence and defense skills. The L.E.A.P. Program with Officer Michelle Palladini from the Norfolk Police Department, begins September 21st and runs for 6 weeks (on Wednesday nights) from 7-8 pm.

Please see flyer for details. Feel free to stop by the front desk to have questions answered and to sign up- or call: 508-541-8330.
Team Fitness Franklin, 100 Franklin Village Drive, Franklin, MA 02038

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Pennywise Sale - Sunday, Sep 11

Don't Miss the Pennywise Sale at Pour Richard's, our signature try-before-you-buy wine sale with dozens of wines priced 20%-70% off original retail!

Half-priced Bordeaux, 45% off Amarone, Mags of party-ready Chardonnay for $9 .... something for everyone.

1-4 PM Sunday, September 11 at 14 Grove Street in Franklin

Save your pennies, buy more wine
Save your pennies, buy more wine

For more about Pour Richard's check out their webpage

Fall Registration Open at Adult Ed

In This Issue

Wine School

Learn the art of traditional Italian winemaking - and bring home your own case of wine!    
The Center for Adult Education and Community Learning at Franklin, in conjunction with La Cantina Wine School, is pleased to offer its first series of Winemaking Partnership Seminars. This is a multi-week course designed to introduce you to the pleasures and satisfaction of winemaking.

For more information  

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News You Can Use

National Tour launches at Providence Performing Arts Center (PPAC)!

Lincoln Center Theater's critically acclaimed production of Rodgers & Hammerstein's THE KING AND I, directed by Tony Award® Winner Bartlett Sher, won four 2015 Tony Awards® including Best Revival of a Musical.

Working with Providence Performing Arts Center, we are able to offer you a group rate for a Friday evening performance of this classic, fabulous musical.

For more information    
         Click Here     
Dear Reader........... It's Fall...well.....ALMOST we wanted to let you know that registration is open. AND we have some new, fun offerings as well as returning programs and a whole lot more.............Happy reading!

                           Brenda Reed, Director
      Center for Adult Education and Community Learning

              Fall / Winter Brochure 

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Floral Design Seminars

Floral Design Partnership with Hillside Nurseries 

The Center for Adult Education and Community Learning at Franklin, in conjunction with Hillside Nurseries, is pleased to once again offer their Floral Design Partnership Seminars, a program developed to introduce you to the pleasures and satisfaction of the art of floral design. Whether you are interested in floral design for your own personal occasions or the various seasons of the year, this series will give you the opportunity to explore.
For more information............Click Here  

                                        * * * * * * * 

Kid's Corner 
Where fun and learning meet
Kids' Corner Franklin, a program of Franklin Public Schools Lifelong Learning Institute and The Center for Adult Education & Community Learning, is a unique collection of after school activities for children with the goal of making learning fun. Classes are small, relaxed and designed to encourage children's creativity......a place where fun and learning meet.

For more information.......Click Here     

Child Care Education
 and Parenting

Explore adolescent development and how this exciting, yet sometimes excruciating process, of growing up can impact family life. Explore why teens become allergic to their parents and how boys and girls journey through adolescence in similar and different ways.  
For more information.......Click Here

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Children communicate through their behavior. Behavioral problems may occur when we misunderstand what a child is trying to tell us. Parents may find themselves continuously addressing the same behaviors and wondering why their child keeps repeating these behaviors. This workshop will help parents get under the behavior and discover what it is a child is trying to tell you.
For more information........Click Here
Beginning Ceramics

This could be the perfect class for you! 

A perfect class for beginners! Make clay objects including bowls, mugs, plates, and tiles while learning a new technique each week.  Hand building, wheel throwing, glazing, and surface decoration will be explored during this fun and intensive class.  In the end, you will gain a better understanding and appreciation of the ceramic medium and you will have made several functional and decorative clay objects. 

For more information.......Click Here
  so much more

Watercolor, More Exercise and Sports than ever.....
Knitting,  Cooking, Digital Photography, Language,
Special Events.

There's so much planned for this Fall. Check us out online and take advantage of our fun, affordable classes.
click on Adult Education
Proud to be part of the Franklin Public Schools.

FPS- Lifelong Learning, 355 East Central Street, Franklin, MA 02038

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