What do the votes, now that they have been tallied, tell us? I think:
It does not matter much to Franklin voters that some of their candidates (and now elected officials) are willing to violate the law that they created and should be obeying.
While the Franklin voters have been lapping at the trough of Commonwealth funds (50% of the town revenue comes from Chap 70 funding), they decided not to spend a little more to gain a little more and rejected the Community Preservation Act.
The Planning Board incumbents were given a message that a change in how Franklin conducts business with developers was needed.
The School Committee candidates ran without opposition. One new face took the top vote count however as M Kelly replaced MJ Schofield. Is this the same Kelly as associated with the Brick classroom? Let’s look to see what he can do for the whole district now!
The split tax rate proponents did not gain a seat running on their platform. Just as well, the split tax rate is not a solution for Franklin. Franklin needs to grow the pie not split it.
Two new voices and one returning voice join six incumbents on the Town Council. The problems remain today as they were yesterday: Leaking library requires repairs. High school needs renovation or replacement. The budget needs to provide appropriate support for all town services including education. Support that can help to maintain our selection as one of the Top 10 towns to raise a family and one of the Top 100 towns to retire in. The quality of life we have does not get cheaper.
The Ben Franklin seal in the Town Council chambers reads “Industry need not wish”. This translated to our modern interpretation means that the hard work that got Franklin to these top rankings is still required. If we continue to work hard, good things will happen.
Congratulations to all the newly elected folks! Your work is cut out for you.
Good luck to all those who gave it their best. Stay involved. A good discussion requires two sides for the conversation. The Franklin problem can not be solved by any one person or group, it will take coordination, cooperation, collaboration, and many conversations to keep Franklin a quality place to live.
My writing on the election can be found here.