The June 29 editorial “No more dodging the public” highlights an important issue contributing to a decline of public trust in our elected officials. Elected officials are abusing their limited “executive session” privilege to hide important tax spending decisions from the taxpayer.

Here in Summerville, we have learned that our mayor and Town Council met numerous times over nine months in “executive session” to negotiate and approve a hotel/condo development in the heart of our Historic District, subsidized with $10 million in taxpayer money.

All we were told was that the sessions involved “an economic development program.” This outsized and unwelcome development will destroy five historic structures, dozens of mature trees as well as the oldest pine tree in a town that holds them sacred. Disenfranchised citizens were left with no alternative but to sue town officials to protect our small town charm.

We embrace your call for the state Supreme Court to clamp down on this abuse by clearly identifying and limiting the topic of discussions whenever the public is excluded.

Peter Gorman

East Historic District Civic Association Summerville

S. Magnolia Street

Summerville