Greenwich Ethics Board OKs Camillo’s $10K Appointment to Engineering Company’s Advisory Board

A recent Board of Ethics decision to greenlight First Selectman Fred Camillo’s appointment to S.E. Minor & Company’s advisory board, a position that pays $10,000 annually, is meeting with mixed reviews.

S.E. Minor & Co does a lot of work with the Town of Greenwich. Their services include land surveying, planning and zoning services, civil engineering, and environmental science.

The Ethics Board noted the advisory board’s duties include attending monthly strategy meetings, acting as a resource for management and executives to develop and enhance market share, particularly including increasing the visibility of the company with other municipalities in Connecticut and New York, expansion of industry relationships and other related efforts expansion of industry relationships and other related efforts; providing third-party insights, perspectives and ideas; encouragement and support of the exploration of new business ideas; encouraging and supporting the exploration of new product and service areas and other business ideas; and any other responsibilities “that do not conflict with” the member’s role as a Selectman.

Camillo had received an offer letter from the firm and went to the Ethics board seeking an advisory opinion before accepting it.

In their  Feb 7, 2024  decision (starts on page 121) the board said they had never rendered a decision or provided and advisory opinion with respect to such an arrangement.

Services to the Town of Greenwich

While not referring to S.E. Minor & Co by name, the Ethics board noted, “The Company was founded in Greenwich in the 19th Century and has participated in the laying out of many of the Town’s subdivisions. It has had a leading role in handling wetlands applications and remains a prominent firm in the area. According to its website, the firm ‘works closely with the Town of Greenwich.’ But recently, it has been expanding operations, particularly in the Hartford area, and has established offices in Darien, Armonk and Florida.”

Also, “Their planning and zoning services include preparation and management of applications and notifications for permits and exceptions as well as overall project management. These would periodically involve appearances before the Town’s various land use agencies.”

Greenwich’s Human Resources policy manual notes, “Employment by the Town is the employee’s primary job and the employee cannot hold any additional jobs that interfere with the ability to perform their primary job or create a conflict of interest or perceived conflict of interest with their job or with Town policies and interests.”

The Ethics board noted that Section 217 of the Greenwich Code of Ordinances requires the Selectman to devote full time to the duties of his office.

The Ethics board also noted the Selectman’s duties do not include land use and included the town organizational chart.


While many departments report directly to the First Selectman, such as Parks & Recreation, DPW and both Police and Fire Departments, Planning & Zoning is different.

The town planner is a paid member of staff who reports to the chair of the P&Z Commission who is a volunteer.

Members of the P&Z commission are nominated by the Board of Selectmen and appointed by the RTM, as per the Town Charter.

The P&Z commission elects their own officers. Today the chair is Margarita Alban.

An alternate being considered to become a regular member of the commission goes through the same process.

Once in recent memory did the RTM flex their muscle when it came to the P&Z commission. In 2018 P&Z chair Richard Maitland, was ousted from the commission by the RTM after 18 years of service.

Both the First Selectman and the Commissioner of Public Works are ex officio members of the P&Z Commission.

Per the town code, “The ex officio members of the Commission shall have the same rights and duties as the appointed members, but shall not have the right to vote.”

The Ethics decision talks about recusal. The last sentence in the decision reads:

“By properly disclosing a financial interest in any Town transactions that the Company is involved with, as well as implementing the various measures suggested above, the Selectman can arrange for complete recusal from involvement with Town actions having a financial effect on the Company and may accept the Company’s offer to sit on its advisory board without automatically violating the Code of Ethics.”


RTC chair Beth MacGillivray commented on the appointment and Ethics opinon, saying, “Town officials should avoid consulting for private companies, as it risks being perceived as endorsements by the town and officials.”

“Our Town’s good name belongs to residents, and using it for private gain should be prohibited, even if allowed by the current code of ethics,” she added.

DTC chair Joe Angland asked, “Is he sure this is a good idea?”

“Given how much work this company does with the town, the path for the First Selectman to avoid a conflict of interest is exceedingly narrow,” Angland added. “Think of how often he may need to recuse himself from doing the business of Greenwich. Is that fair to the people who elected him?”

Former First Selectman Jim Lash also opined.

Mr. Lash said that he had a business career before he was elected First Selectmen. And while he stopped working full time for those businesses, they continued, and he had an economic interest in them.

“But while I was First Selectman, I wasn’t engaged in any business activity that was also doing business with the Town of Greenwich,” he said.

Former Greenwich First Selectman Peter Tesei reacted to the appointment by saying, “During my 12 year tenure as Greenwich First Selectman, the salary was my sole income and I did not serve on any for profit corporate boards.”

Recently, after his six terms as Greenwich First Selectman, Mr. Tesei did testify before the P&Z commission several times on behalf of a private developer seeking to build luxury housing for seniors at the end of Old Track Road.

At the time, he emphasized the Greenwich POCD objective about facilitating housing options that encourage seniors to stay in town and age in place.

One Democratic leader in Greenwich worried the Ethics decision would set a precedent, asking, “Where do they draw the line on the framework for town employees getting paid by third parties? Consulting is a nebulous term.”

Lastly the Democratic leader asked, “How do the other employees at town hall treat their boss when he’s in the employee of a firm with so much business with the town?”

Asked to comment on his arrangement with S.E. Minor & Co, Camillo said he approached the Ethics Board to make sure the advisory board position was vetted because, he said, in the past at least one First Selectman had served on boards without seeking an opinion from the Ethics Board, and doing so would, “show that the board is a valuable tool that everyone should avail themselves of so that any unforeseen circumstances are avoided.”

“I wanted to avoid that and any misinformation about this position. Basically, I would NOT be involved in any business they have with the town nor would lobby on their behalf. This is just to help them in a minor role with my thoughts on market expansion endeavors in other towns and states. Both the company and myself want to steer clear of any potential conflicts and appearances of conflicts.”

Camillo described his First Selectman job as 24/7, and said that as a result he could not dedicate more than one hour a month to the S.E. Minor & Co advisory board.  He explained his time is already limited since he volunteers for local organizations and individuals a lot more than an hour per month..

Asked about a rumor he had plans to move to Florida in future, he said, “Greenwich is my lifelong home and that is not changing, though I visit Florida as often as I can, and not always for rest as I have family there.”

Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of S.E. Minor & Co Gigi Ma confirmed that Camillo had joined her company’s advisory board.

“This board is a collective of community leaders, including historical leaders and contemporary thinkers alike,” she said. “It serves an important role in fostering deeper connections and engagement with our communities. The influence of these members extends beyond immediate impacts, contributing to broader perspectives and long-term strategic planning.”

Ms Ma said Mr. Camillo brought a keen interest in community matters to the table.

“His involvement ensures we remain in sync with the overarching goals of our community, expanding upon our day-to-day operational focus,” she continued, adding, “Mr. Camillo shall not engage in discussions with any officials, participate in committees, or influence decisions regarding S.E. Minor’s current projects and dealings within the Town. His contributions are focused exclusively on assessing and addressing long-term impacts and requirements, both in this community and in other geographies where we maintain active involvement.”