The following letter was written in response to a letter from former First Selectman Evonne Klein. It is reprinted here with the author’s permission.

To the Editor:

Thank you for your email regarding the Board of Selectmen’s unanimous decision to keep the Pear Tree Point building committee as originally structured and approved. By way of clarification, our ‘precedent’ concern was not in seating a neighbor on the committee, it was in creating an ex-officio position, outside the original charge, to do so when ample opportunity exists for their participation.

In spite of the fact that no proximate neighbors stepped forward to interview for the committee, we encourage them, and all interested citizens, to take part in the Pear Tree Point Building Committee process by attending building committee meetings; attending Park and Recreation Commission meetings; calling or sending emails to members of the building committee and or contacting me with ideas, comments or concerns. Neighbors have unique perspectives that are valuable to the planning and building process and will be carefully considered along with all input regarding improvements to public facilities.

My administration has made great strides in creating and maintaining open and transparent government processes which extends to the work of all capital building committees. On Nov. 28, the Pear Tree Point building committee and I held a meeting with neighbors to give them an opportunity to express their early thoughts, concerns and ideas. This productive and collegial meeting is available to view on demand on TV79.

Regarding the Ox Ridge Elementary School Building Committee — there are several members of the Ox Ridge Elementary School community and neighborhood who have volunteered to join the building committee. The Board of Selectmen is very encouraged by the number of volunteers with outstanding qualifications for this important task and look forward to announcing the committee in the near future.

Jayme Stevenson

First Selectman