As a lifelong Republican, it is a rare thing for me to consider asking my friends and neighbors to support a Democrat. However in Jim Kennelly's case, I'm glad to do so.

Jim is seeking re-election to the Fairfield Town Plan and Zoning Commission. And while he is a Democrat, he has worked across party lines on a host of issues with his fellow commissioners, like the new zoning regulations designed to discourage the kinds of ugly, jammed-in subdivisions that often ruin neighborhood character and drive up our school taxes.

Time and time again over his six years on the TPZ, he has stood up for our neighborhoods, opposing development that would have created traffic headaches and hurt property values. He lives by the motto, "strong neighborhoods equal strong property values" while serving on the TPZ -- and we are a stronger community for it.

Jim's also been an advocate for lively commercial streetscapes, supporting farmers markets and outdoor dining where appropriate. And he has championed a more open TPZ, leading to the commission getting a webpage that provides information about many applications and allows residents to email commissioners as a group during the public hearing process.

I hope my fellow Republicans in Fairfield will join me in supporting one person from the other party this Nov. 5. That person is Jim Kennelly for Town Plan and Zoning Commission.

Susan Civitano