Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Live Reporting: Town Council - Oct 5, 2016

Present: Pellegri, Padula, Mercer, Vallee, Kelly, Pfeffer, Dellorco, Bissanti, Jones
Absent: none

– September 21, 2016
motion to approve, seconded, passed 9-0

– 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 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.

Michael Swetz Jr, 3 Kara-Lyn Drive

  • questions on resident solar panels installations
  • a ground based 40 panel installation, on Prospect St
  • there are currently no screening requirements, no safety requirements
  • asking for considerations for solar panel limitations, screening setbacks, etc.

- Election workers
motion to approve, seconded, passed 9-0



"a great educational experience"

From the Milford Daily News, articles of interest for Franklin:
"John McCarthy said he always knew he wanted to get involved in government. When he turned 18 last month and saw an opportunity, he took it. 
“I jumped right on it,” said McCarthy, a senior at Hopedale Junior-Senior High School who is now the newest - and youngest - member of the town’s Finance Committee. “I’m excited to get involved.” 
The Board of Selectmen voted to appoint McCarthy to the committee at a meeting this week and the teenager was sworn in by the town clerk on Tuesday afternoon. 
McCarthy said in an interview that he had been looking for a town board or committee to serve on when he discovered that the Finance Committee had a vacancy."

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

the traditional tree and flag on the topping beam hoisted for the Library expansion on Oct 4. The Library expansion was first reviewed by the Finance Committee before being approved by the Town Council
the traditional tree and flag on the topping beam hoisted for the Library expansion on Oct 4. The Library expansion was first reviewed by the Finance Committee before being approved by the Town Council

If you do have interest in getting involved in Franklin, of all the places to start the Finance Committee would be a key one. In my years of observing the various committee and boards, I have learned the most from the Finance Committee meetings. "Follow the money" is not just a catch phrase from a movie. Money is actually how things are prioritized around town, it really does matter. Without funding, there can be desire and talk but it won't go anywhere without a dollar (from somewhere).

Coincidentally, the Finance Committee did have an opening in September. It may be that no one has stepped up yet to fulfill it. Maybe this is your chance!

In the News: National Grid gets rate increase

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

"The Department of Public Utilities has approved a rate increase that will add about 5 percent to residential electric bill in National Grid’s service territory. 
The average will increase from $139 to $146. 
The agency approved $101 million of the $132 million sought by the company in its first distribution rate increase since 2009. 
The money will help pay for improvements to its facilities and its response to storm-related power failures."
Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

cover page of presentation to Town Council on Aggregation Program
cover page of presentation to Town Council on Aggregation Program

If the pending aggregation plan for Franklin goes through, this won't be an issue. The cooperative buying power of aggregation should do better than the current rate National Grid was authorized for.

Updated: Per the Town Council meeting, Wednesday, Oct 5, the aggregation plan was approved. They'll go to bid in the next two weeks and should have a decision to proceed at this time or not. The key will be what the market will offer for rates and for what period. Assuming the market rates will be lower than what NationalGrid received, this will go forward and we'll all save some money.

In early August, it was reported the State was beginning to deliberate on the aggregation proposal

FHS golf tops Attleboro

From Hockomock Sports we share the golf results from Tuesday, Oct 4

*** Golf = Franklin, 164 @ Attleboro, 169 – Final

FHS Panthers
FHS Panthers
– Bryan Woelfel earned match medalist honors, shooting a low round of 37 to lead the Panthers. Matt D’ Errico and Matt Dao each shot 42 for Franklin while Ethan Johnson led Attleboro with a team-low round of 39.

For all the results around the Hockomock League on Tuesday

Tri-County students looking for internships in law enforcement, public safety, and/or legal services

Via Mrs Bastien:
"The students in the Legal and Protective Services program at Tri-County RVTHS are looking for part-time jobs and internships! 
 I'm one of the teachers of this new criminal justice program. Message me or comment below if you know of any law offices, public agencies, private agencies, or businesses that have anything to do with criminal justice and are located in the Franklin area that would accept high school students who want to work.  
My seniors have 8 different industry certifications and excellent academic credentials. Give local kids a chance!  
Feel free to share this post. Thanks everyone."

Legal and Protective Services
Legal and Protective Services

Future areas of employment include, but are not limited to:

• 911/Dispatch Operator
• Armed Services
• Border Patrol Agent
• Computer Security Specialist
• Court Officer/Bailiff
• Court Personnel
• EMT/Paramedic
• FBI Agent
• Firefighter
• First Responder
• Fish and Game Warden
• Forensic Technician
• Homeland Security Officer
• Immigration Officer
• Law Clerk
• Law Student
• Legal Services
• Loss Prevention Officer
• Paralegal
• Police Officer
• Private Investigator
• Probation Officer
• Secret Service
• Security Guard
• Sheriff
• Social Worker
• Transit and Railroad Officers
• Victim/Witness Advocate

Franklin's Planet Fitness - newly renovated

Planet Fitness, one of the largest and fastest-growing franchisors and operators of fitness centers in the U.S. and home of the Judgement Free Zone®, recently announced the completed renovation of its club in Franklin, Mass. The newly remodeled club is at 166 Grove St. Planet Fitness prides itself on providing a high-quality experience at an exceptional value and being home of the Judgement Free Zone®, where members experience a hassle-free, non-intimidating environment.

The newly renovated Planet Fitness exceeds 20,000 sq. feet and is essentially an entirely new gym. It offers all-new, state of the art cardio machines and strength equipment, including treadmills, ellipticals, stair climbers and stationary bikes. The brand new fully-equipped locker rooms feature day lockers, fully tiled private showers and granite counters. A new Black Card® Spa has been created featuring salon-grade tanning booths, state-of-the-art HydroMassage beds and massage chairs. The enhanced club also boasts a newly remodeled front desk and waiting area, new flooring, updated signage, other architectural improvements throughout, and an expanded parking lot. The club is open and staffed Monday through Thursday, 5 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Planet Fitness Franklin

This also marks a milestone for the Planet Fitness franchisee group which owns and operates the Franklin gym – its first location 15 years ago this month. Today the group owns and operates 10, soon to be 11, locations in the state making Core Management and Development the largest Planet Fitness franchisee in Massachusetts.

“We’re looking forward to offering both existing and new members in the Franklin community an amazing and upgraded facility that promotes fitness in an encouraging and hassle-free environment,” said Planet Fitness franchisee and Core Management and Development Chief Marketing Officer Jonathan Epstein. “This was the very first location for our franchise ownership group and we are so proud of this major renovation to bring the best gym to Franklin.”

Membership includes a variety of other benefits, including unlimited small group fitness instruction by a certified trainer through the pe @ pf ® program. In addition, as a member appreciation gesture, Planet Fitness provides free pizza on the first Monday of every month, and free bagels on the second Tuesday of every month while supplies last, as a reminder that it’s okay to treat yourself every once in a while.

The PF Black Card® membership, which is $19.99 a month, includes additional amenities such as the ability to bring a guest every day at no additional charge, access to all 1,200+ Planet Fitness locations, as well as access to the new Black Card® Spa.

Planet Fitness also provides members with an opportunity to connect and support each other with “Planet of Triumphs,” an online community that celebrates all accomplishments and inspirational stories of Planet Fitness members. 

For more information or to join online, please visit or follow us on Facebook ( and Twitter (

Free Flu Shot Clinic - Oct 20 at the Senior Center

For all Franklin residents, age 6 months or older

At the Franklin Senior Center from 1 - 3:00 PM on Thursday, Oct 20, 2016

This was shared from the official Town of Franklin page

Franklin Senior Center
Franklin Senior Center

In the News: Library topped off, opioid crisis starts with doctors

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

"Workers placed the final steel beam of the Franklin Public Library addition Tuesday morning, marking a milestone in the project. 
A small crowd gathered to watch as the beam - along with a traditional pine tree and American flag - were hoisted to the top of the structure in a "topping off" ceremony. 
Town Councilor Judith Pfeffer, chairwoman of the Library Building Committee, said she was pleased at the progress of the work. 
"I'm thrilled to death we've gotten this far," she said, likening the topping off celebration to those done at tall buildings in cities like Boston. "It's a sign things are moving forward."

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

the traditional tree and flag on the topping off beam
the traditional tree and flag on the topping off beam

"Public Health Commissioner Monica Bharel offered a sobering story at the first meeting of a special commission looking to reverse the state’s opioid crisis. 
Bharel, a doctor who studied drug-related deaths earlier in her career, told of a conversation she had with a mother whose teen child died from a prescription overdose. 
“I was really taken aback when she opened by saying ‘My son’s first drug dealer was his doctor,’” said Bharel. 
Bharel is a member of the 15-member Special Commission on Substance Misuse and Pain Treatment, which held its inaugural meeting on Tuesday to discuss safe and effective pain treatment methods for medical professionals who prescribe controlled substances such as opioids. The Legislature created the panel earlier this year.

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

The box, tagged in Armenian; "these are the things I've made"

A recap of Robert Megerdichian's talk at the Franklin Historical Museum on Sunday, October 2, 2016. He told of his father's art work, handcrafted miniatures made from scrap metal.

(be sure to scroll within the Storify widget to review all the entries)

on display at the Franklin Historical Museum

on display at the Franklin Historical Museum

The display will be shown during the open hours for all of October

What are the open hours?

  • Thursday, 4:00 PM to 7:00 PM
  • Saturday, 10:00 PM to 1:00 PM
  • Sunday, 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM

Hayride, Food and Music Highlight Franklin’s Harvest Stroll - October 6

It has been many decades since a hay wagon was regularly spotted on Main Street in downtown Franklin, but you’ll see that and other sure signs of autumn on Thursday, October 6, at the Franklin Downtown Partnership Harvest Stroll.

The Partnership has added several new attractions to the annual fall event, including the hayride, two children’s activities areas, more entertainers and delicious food options. The Stroll runs from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. rain or shine.

The Harvest Stroll also gives the Franklin community a chance to celebrate the completion of the Roadway and Streetscape Improvement project. Main Street will be closed to vehicle traffic for the Stroll, and the party will continue on West Central Street and part of East Central Street, too.
Downtown Franklin with Main St closed off for a Harvest Stroll
Downtown Franklin with Main St closed off for a Harvest Stroll

“With this street festival, we invite the community to celebrate the many positive advances in downtown Franklin. The Partnership is celebrating its 15-year anniversary, the downtown revitalization project is nearly complete, and Franklin is on the cusp of even more positive growth. It’s time for the community to experience the downtown’s growth first hand,” says Scott Martin, event co-chair.

The Stroll will begin with a ribbon cutting ceremony to officially mark the completion of the two-year construction project. Join town administrators, Franklin Downtown Partnership members and state officials at the top of Main Street to cheer the beginning of the next phase of revitalization.

From there, visitors can sample fall-themed foods, watch talented local entertainers, dance to tunes courtesy of Music Odyssey Productions, discover shopping specials and learn about helpful community resources at more than 50 vendor booths and store locations.

The hayride, sponsored by Hillside Nurseries, will operate near the Post Office on Main Street. The Hockomock Area YMCA’s Bernon Family Branch in Franklin will operate two children’s areas; one in the Century 21 parking lot on Main Street and the other in THE BLACK BOX parking lot on West Central Street. New activities that will get the kids moving include a bouncy house and an inflatable obstacle course.

At THE BLACK BOX, watch FPAC members perform selected numbers from their upcoming production of “Fiddler on the Roof.” Performances will be inside the theater at 4:30, 5:30 and 6:30 p.m. Additionally, visitors can enter to win two free tickets to a “Fiddler” performance of their choice.

Farther up West Central Street, the Fire Station will hold its popular “Touch-A-Truck” event. The Franklin Historical Museum will feature entertainment and a miniature metals exhibit.

Along with performances at THE BLACK BOX and the Museum, entertainers will also perform at Dean Bank and Rockland Trust. Jamie Barrett will sing and strum his guitar for the crowds at Jane’s Frames, and Stroll-favorite DJ Domenic Cotoia will entertain crowds in the Century 21 parking lot.

“This is the type of downtown block party we’ve been anticipating ever since the road construction project started. We’d like everyone to come see the improvements, enjoy the new amenities, and get to know new businesses,” says Lisa Piana, FDP Executive Director. “For 15 years FDP members have worked hard to bring more economic viability to downtown Franklin and we look forward to showing off the progress that’s been made so far.”

The 14th annual fall event is made possible by sponsorship of several local businesses.

Middlesex Savings Bank and Rockland Trust are Gold Sponsors.

Dean Bank, Franklin Ford and Keefe Insurance are Silver Sponsors.

Beaux Regards Photographic Art by Marjorie Sardella, Chestnut Dental, Digital Federal Credit Union, Michael Dunsky, Branch Manager Guaranteed Rate, Inc., and Hillside Nurseries are Bronze Sponsors.

D.G. Ranieri Real Estate, Franklin Health & Rehabilitation Center, Maven Hair Company, Rescom Exteriors, Simon’s Furniture, The Franklin Historical Museum and Tom Fricker Heating & A/C, Inc. are Friends Sponsors.

The Franklin Downtown Partnership is celebrating its 15th year as a non-profit, 501©3 organization made up of businesses, residents and community leaders working to revitalize downtown Franklin. The Partnership runs events such as the Strawberry Stroll, the Harvest Stroll and the Holiday Stroll, and is involved in streetscape and design efforts, greenspace and sculpture projects. New members are always welcome. Learn more at

  • This was shared from the Franklin Downtown Partnership page

Parmenter School has picture day scheduled for Wednesday, Oct 5

No school Monday, and then again next Monday (Oct 10) and Wednesday (Oct 12). The October calendar is a challenge with the religious holidays and Columbus Day combined.

Parmenter School has picture day scheduled for Wednesday, Oct 5

Parmenter School has picture day scheduled for Wednesday, Oct 5
Parmenter School has picture day scheduled for Wednesday, Oct 5

Senator Ross: September 2016 State House Update

Senator Richard J. Ross, State House Update, September 2016
View this email in your browser
State Senator Richard J. Ross (R-Wrentham) proudly serving the Norfolk, Bristol and Middlesex District.

State House
Room 419
Boston, MA 02133

Ph: 617-722-1555
Fax: 617-722-1054
Dear Friends,

I have made it a priority to meet and listen to residents of every town in our district. Hearing your comments and concerns is an important part of representing my constituents in Boston.

Please read/share my monthly newsletter for updates on what is happening in the district as well as important resources for both citizens and local farmers.

I am honored to serve you and look forward to the new legislative term. Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns.

Dear Constituent:

It has been a great honor to serve you in the Massachusetts State Senate for the past six years.

I work hard each and every day to make sure you have the most effective representation possible and that your voice is heard in all state matters.

We have addressed many challenges in our State, but we have so much more to do to ensure that we can reach our full potential and greatly improve the quality of life for all Massachusetts residents.

This is why I am asking for your help in identifying the issues most important to you, and where you want me to focus my efforts in the new session.

Please take a few minutes to complete this survey. To do so, click the "Give Feedback" button below.

Thank you.
Give Feedback

As the fall season approaches, it is important to remember that mosquitoes are still present. With recent cases of West Nile Virus found in Massachusetts, I urge my constituents to take precaution and be preventative against mosquito bites.
Prevent mosquitoes and mosquito bites by:
  • Applying insect repellent when outdoors: Be sure to use a repellent with an EPA-registered ingredient.
  • Be aware of peak mosquito hours: Dusk to dawn is the peak hours for mosquitoes, so try to avoid outdoor activities during this time.
  • Wear long-sleeves and other protective clothing to keep mosquitoes away from the skin
  • Drain standing water: Mosquitoes lay eggs in bodies of standing water. Be sure to drain rain gutters and change water in birdbaths often.


The newsletter was shortened for publication here. To view the full text, follow this link in your browser

Monday, October 3, 2016

FHS cross country results from Kelley Invitational

FHS cross country team on the bus
FHS cross country team on the bus

FHS girls varsity cross country results from Kelley Invitational
FHS girls varsity cross country results from Kelley Invitational

The full set of results for the Kelley Invitational

The girls junior varsity results

The girls freshman results

The boys varsity did not appear to run,
The freshman boys did post results

The boys junior varsity have results (preliminary - corrected ones expected)

  • For the Hockomock results for this meet

"It’s time for vocational schools to get some respect"

Vocational education is in the news with two articles coming across the radar on Sunday. First from the Magazine section of the Boston Sunday Globe. The second from the Milford Daily News (MDN).

The Globe article touts vocational education as something to be considered. The MDN article effectively provides a good example of why.

The links to both articles are shown below:
"On a Monday morning in late spring, city buses arrive like clockwork on Malcolm X Boulevard, disgorging students hunched over cellphones, earbud wires trailing down the fronts of hoodies. They file toward Madison Park Technical Vocational High School, where executive director Kevin McCaskill, in a suit and pin-striped shirt with matching pocket square, and two other administrators greet them as if part of a receiving line. “Good morning! Good morning! Good morning!” McCaskill booms at bleary-eyed kids moving as if they are battling a stiff wind. 
Among those passing through the metal doors is Reno Guerrero, who emigrated several years ago with his mother, older sister, and younger brother from the Dominican Republic to Dorchester. Guerrero, 19, wears a white T-shirt, jeans, and white socks with soccer sandals. His hair is close-cropped, and a shadow of a beard is shaved to precision points at his temples. Clear stone studs sparkle in each earlobe. He is feeling nervous about his senior presentation on engine repair, the culmination of three years of course work plus intensive training in automotive technology. But the nerves are tempered by excitement. He’s learned he’s been accepted to MassBay Community College, and he already has a job lined up for after graduation at a garage that services Boston’s city-owned vehicles. “Cars, for me, is everything right now,” he says. “It’s what I know how to do, and I’m going to do it for life.”

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

"Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School senior George Wood received the opportunity to tour Europe over the summer, thanks to his cooperative education employer. 
Wood, a computer information systems student from Medway, was hired by Hamilton Storage Technologies Inc. as part of the school’s Cooperative Education Program. Students who qualify for the program receive paid, full-time employment in their respective fields in place of the time they would spend in their career programs. 
After hiring Wood in the summer for the fall semester, Matthew Hamilton, president of the Franklin-based company, chose to send him to Switzerland to receive training from the information technology department."

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

Ballot Question 2: Teachers on opposite sides

In the Magazine section of the Boston Sunday Globe, Oct 2, there was an article with a question and answer for two teachers on opposite sides of the charter school ballot question.

"Question 2, the referendum on November’s Massachusetts state ballot proposing to let up to 12 more charter schools open or expand each year than current limits, is expected to draw a record-setting $30 million in TV advertising spending by backers and opponents by the time polls open. The dollars might seem out of whack, given that if Question 2 passes it would be more than a decade before even 10 percent of the state’s public schools were charters (today just 78 of our 1,854 K-12 public schools are). 
The proposal looks incremental, but, nationally, this ballot question is seen as a shootout at the OK Corral for charter schools, says Paul Reville, who was then governor Deval Patrick’s secretary of education and is now a professor at Harvard’s Graduate School of Education. He says Question 2 could eventually see hundreds of millions of dollars in state aid follow students to charter schools, threatening the status quo."

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

Voter Information mailer for Nov 8, 2016
Voter Information mailer for Nov 8, 2016

The MA.Gov summary of Question 2 can be found here