NEW FRANKLIN Following action taken at the April 1 New Franklin Council meeting, first responders and city employees recently received gift cards to local restaurants.

The project, “Gratitude for Service Dining Program” was recommended by Mayor Paul Adamson. At the meeting, he said that it is a way to say thank you. The mayor said the program is to would boost morale and to help keep a local restaurant running.

The week of April 14, 68 full and part-time fire/paramedic, police, dispatch, and service department employees each received $35 in gift cards to the eight open restaurants in New Franklin serving carry out.

Adamson said city officials wanted to thank the men and women for putting their lives on the line to serve New Franklin. He said they are risking getting infected with COVID-19 each day and it poses a risk to their families as well.

Those receiving the gift cards were appreciative but suggested they could go to better use by giving them back to the community that has faithfully supported them. A suggestion was made that there were some in the community that had a bigger need for the cards such as those that were not working and not receiving an income.

Fire Chief Steve Leslie said the cards are a great morale booster and as nice as it would be to continue to provide the recipients with lunch or dinner each week, they know there are many people who are not going to work each day. So, those receiving the cards are passing them along to those in need. Leslie said that it is a way that they can thank the community for what they have done for the city workers.

Adamson said he knows that businesses are struggling, and he wants to do whatever they can to help, whether it is directing them to government assistance programs and available grants, or in practical ways, such as making purchases.

Adamson suggested that for anyone wanting to donate to the gift card program they can make an even a bigger impact to help more businesses and residents. Adamson said that anyone wanting to donate to the gift card program can do so by purchasing gift cards at New Franklin businesses and dropping them off at the Dispatch Office at City Hall. Some have already donated to the gift card fund. Cards will continue to be collected until further notice. City administration is finalizing plans as to how to distribute the gift cards to those in need. Details and instructions will be posted on the City of New Franklin Facebook page and