Franklin mayor runs unopposed
Running unopposed for his second term, Franklin Mayor Bob Scott hopes to continue on his path toward a more open and accessible government while leading the town for the next two years.
During his last campaign, he promised change and progress for Franklin — something he thinks he’s been able to accomplish with the current board and the town staff.
“I feel like I have the community’s support because I said I’d change some things and I have,” he said. “It hasn’t been easy, but we’ve done it and I’m proud of the town — Franklin is definitely on the move.”
He hopes installing new sidewalks will improve the appearance of downtown and also increase safety. The problem with speeding on Main Street has been an issue Scott has been harping on for months because it causes a danger to pedestrians.
Scott also supported the Main Street Program becoming inactive and the town taking over organizing four of the street festivals. Many merchants weren’t happy with how the Main Street Program was operating and the board felt it was best to go to an inactive status to allow the program to regroup and recruit new volunteers.
Scott is glad to see new businesses opening downtown and wants to continue efforts to make Franklin more attractive to small business entrepreneurs since it is unlikely Franklin will see any large industries moving in any time soon. He said Lazy Hiker Brewing opening up in the old town hall building was a great addition to the town that is drawing a younger crowd.
Scott said he is thrilled to see so many residents stepping up to run for a seat on the town board. He welcomes the opportunity to serve with some of the younger candidates running for alderman because they are more representative of the changes occurring in Franklin.
“The (current) board has a sense of vision, but I’m not sure sometimes if our vision is going along with way we should be going because Franklin is undergoing a lot of changes. Our demographics are changing quickly,” he said.
One main goal he had during his last campaign was to hold monthly town hall forums to give residents, merchants and town leaders an opportunity to express their concerns, but once he was elected the idea was met with board skepticism. Depending on which three aldermen candidates get elected this year, the forums might have a second chance at getting off the ground.
“That got botched — there were people that didn’t want me to do it but my philosophy is we should be open. I still want to do that,” Scott said.
Moving into his next term, Scott reiterated the two things he doesn’t want to hear from the board or people in the community.
“I’ve said I don’t want to hear, ‘we’ve always done it that way’ or ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,’” he said.