Community advocates, some of whom serve on commissions that depend on the expertise in the planning office spoke at the meeting expressing general approval of the proposed organization of the planning department, while suggesting edits to the job description of City Planner.
UPSEU union president Geen Thazhampallath said that the job descriptions had his union's approval.
"We as a town, are in need of a planner," Thazhampallath said. "The decisions made here will have an impact on this town for thirty or forty years."
"I hope you 'll encourage all candidates to be vetted by planning and zoning professionals," Devoto said.
"This is an important time for Middletown," Alexander said. "The state needs us to excel. In Connecticut we are the best shot at being a second city where millenials decide to settle and work."
"I'd like to suggest that we need to find someone who doesn't just have basic experience," added Krishna Winston, who serves on the the Resource Recycling Committee.
"We have some big projects going on out there in town," according to Kate Miller who serves on the city's Conservation Commission. "I really want to be sure there's someone from the planning office out there. I'm concerned that right now we don't have eyes on the big projects."
Samolis indicated that it was important to consider all positions in the new organization as vital.
Committee members Mary Bartolotta, Gene Nocera, Gerry Daley and Deb Kleckowsky voted to approve the new positions, while Linda Salafia voted in opposition.