standing Stonington Town Hall

STONINGTON — With multiple changes ahead because of the middle school consolidation and other factors, the Board of Selectman finished naming the members of a committee Wednesday that will study the town’s public buildings.

The Permanent Committee to Study the Needs and Use of Town Public Buildings, a name that Selectman John Prue suggested be shortened to the Building and Facilities Committee, will have a threefold mission.

The primary mission will be to focus on the closing and disposition of West Broad Street School and the District Office, also known as the Old Mystic Elementary School, and to consider their retention by the town for another town-related use, lease to a third party or sale.

The secondary mission will be to examine the current state of the Human Services building to determine potential alterations to its heating and cooling systems, which do not function properly. Thirdly, the committee will consider renovations to Town Hall, additional spaces for Town Hall staff members, and a professional meeting room for  boards, commission and authorities.

 After interviewing multiple candidates for the committee over several weeks, the selectmen chose Alisa Morrison and Don Maranell for three-year terms, Chris Donahue and Sandy Grimes for two-year terms, and Paul Sartor for a one-year term. Jean Fiore and Bill King were chosen as alternates with two-year terms.

The committee will meet on a monthly basis and report to the Board of Selectmen orally or in writing on a quarterly basis.

First Selectman Rob Simmons said a previous committee did not meet on a regular basis , seldom achieved a quorum, and did not write an annual report.

“I think that with the urgency of what we’re looking at here, we need regular monthly meetings with designated tasks and verbal or written reports,” Simmons said.

Prue will serve as the Board of Selectmen’s ex officio member.

He said he had confidence in the committee members’ high level of experience and expertise as well as the structure of the mission statement.

“I think that the tasks assigned are weighted in the proper order,” he said. “I think fortunately we have seated people on the board who are able to produce a work product. They are able to meet goals and deadlines and produce something that’s of value.”

Simmons said the next task was to schedule to the committee’s first meeting, which will likely take place in the next few weeks.

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