Group Letter to First Selectman Camillo, BET, BOE: “We implore you to address OGS renovation with a greater urgency”

Dear First Selectmen, Members of the Board of Estimate and Taxation, and Members of the Board of Education,

The undersigned Representatives of District 6 encourage you to take on the acute needs of Old Greenwich School with further creativity, leadership, and executive action. We implore you to revisit the school renovation project and take steps to advance the project with a greater sense of urgency, commercial savvy, and confidence in the judgement and talents of the Old Greenwich School Building Committee. We acknowledge and thank the BOE for supporting and unanimously endorsing the Building Committee’s work and recommendations. The Board of Selectmen can act now by recommending OGS for a Municipal Improvement.

Delays in construction projects are costly. We have already seen the costs of so many projects, including Old Greenwich School, escalate, especially when there is no decisive, visionary action. As elected representatives of Old Greenwich, we were concerned to learn that the BET chose to add more costs to the project by deferring it.

The last-minute appropriations for an elevator and sewage abatement amount to inadequate stop-gap measures, more likely to interfere with rather than advance a well-planned, holistic plan and were not based on vetted professional assessments. 

We hope the BET will actively seek out and rely on the most updated and substantiated construction costs and collaborate actively with the OGS Building Committee during their deliberations. Finally, the rumors and calls by some to tear down OGS, a building that all agree is an iconic landmark in the Town and especially in Old Greenwich, should be openly addressed. Our constituents are clear that they want OGS fixed, not torn down.

Of course, there are also reputational costs to the Town and in the broader community if the pressing needs of OGS are not addressed. Lastly, and hopefully, they will not come to pass, there are real safety risks to Greenwich youth by delaying this project.

You have the opportunity to take a more proactive, dynamic course by tackling the Old Greenwich School project with a heightened sense of care, urgency, and respect for fellow residents, the leadership of Old Greenwich School, and the volunteer Building Committee.

Thank you for your service to the Town of Greenwich and your attention to our call for responsive, creative leadership in addressing the critical needs of our community.

Respectfully yours,

Seventeen District 6 RTM Representatives  

1.       Sally Bednar

2.       Tom Byrne

3.       Marilyn Cahn

4.       Robert Carter

5.       Matthew DesChamps

6.       Daniel Izzo

7.       Coline Jenkins

8.       Brian Maher

9.       Victoria Martin Young

10.   John Merrill

11.   Stephen Meskers

12.   Barbara O’Neil

13.   Tracy Parsons-Grossman

14.   Kathleen Smith

15.   David Snyder

16.   Mary Tobin

17.   Alexis Voulgaris