Kim Kaiman, who in June resigned from her job as executive director of North Hempstead’s tourism agency, accrued pension credits she wasn’t entitled to while working for the town, the Nassau County Civil Service Commission ruled.

Kaiman, 47, the wife of former Town Supervisor Jon Kaiman, was hired by current Supervisor Judi Bosworth in January 2014 and given two titles: executive director of North Hempstead’s Business and Tourism Development Corp. and deputy finance commissioner. Her annual salary for 2017 was $81,344.

The deputy finance commissioner position is a civil service title. The tourism agency executive director is not. Civil service titles allow workers to accrue credit toward a retirement pension based on the length of work and the amount of pay.

The county civil service commission establishes civil service titles for public employees. Municipalities submit a prospective employee’s job functions and the commission determines the appropriate title. Some civil service positions require employees to take exams; others, such as Kaiman’s deputy finance commissioner title, do not.

While Kaiman had two titles, her job responsibilities in North Hempstead were solely in the tourism agency, town documents show. Those responsibilities — including working with small businesses and film companies — did not match the finance title description and duties town officials submitted to the commission for approval when Kaiman was hired, documents show.

Among Kaiman’s finance responsibilities the town gave to the civil service commission was assisting with preparing the department’s budget and acting on behalf of the finance commissioner to implement and enforce town laws pertaining to human resources. Town officials would not say whether Kaiman performed those finance duties. When describing Kaiman’s work to a Newsday reporter, town officials detailed only tourism-related responsibilities.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Bosworth, who was elected after Jon Kaiman left office in 2014, said she gave Kim Kaiman two titles to cover a new, broader set of responsibilities for the tourism executive director position, such as boosting film production in town. The town intended to increase the nonprofit agency’s role beyond that of previous years, Bosworth said.

She did not address whether Kaiman performed the deputy finance commissioner responsibilities listed for the commission other than to say the duties “coincide with planning, business and tourism.”

“It was a title we thought fit,” Bosworth said.

Because the town only gave the commission information on Kaiman’s finance title, the agency was unaware of the tourism duties, officials said. If the commission had known Kaiman’s job was solely to perform the tourism duties, it would not have approved her accruing pension credits under the finance title, commission executive director Karl Kampe said.

Kaiman was the first person in the town tourism job to be given an added civil service title to receive pension credits.

The county civil service commission started investigating Kaiman’s job responsibilities and pension accrual in May 2016 after receiving an anonymous letter, Kampe said. The letter asked whether Kaiman was being “shown favoritism because she is Jon Kaiman’s wife.”

In January, the commission wrote to town officials stating Kaiman’s work was “out of title,” meaning her responsibilities did not match the finance job description.

The letter instructed the town to fix the issue by taking away Kaiman’s civil service title, which would prevent her from continuing to collect pension credits.

The town took away Kaiman’s deputy finance commissioner title in February.

Kaiman stayed in the tourism job, without being able to accrue pension credits, until she resigned on June 21. She was given a payout of $4,431 for unused vacation and sick time, documents show.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Kaiman now works as a regional public affairs manager at PSEG Long Island. She could not be reached for comment.

According to state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli’s office, town officials “may make retroactive adjustments to salary and service to correct reporting errors,” which would revise Kaiman’s pension amount. Town spokeswoman Carole Trottere did not address specific questions about whether the town would change Kaiman’s salary or length of service, instead stating that Kaiman was “properly treated as a Town employee.”

Kaiman started working for the town as director of legislative affairs, a job with a civil service title, in 2000 — the year before her husband was elected supervisor — and left in 2003. She now has six years of service credit accrued through her town positions and a brief period at the Nassau County Industrial Development Agency. Kaiman became eligible to join the state retirement system last March after five years of public employment, according to DiNapoli’s office.

The county civil service commission considers misuse of titles to be “serious,” Kampe said.

“This is probably the most extreme — when somebody fills a position and basically is doing work totally different than what the position calls for,” Kampe said of Kaiman working as the tourism agency executive director while classified under the deputy finance director title.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Bosworth said town officials are working to align titles with the jobs town employees actually perform.

Kaiman also was the first tourism director to receive health insurance benefits as part of the job.

The tourism agency’s first director, Leslie Gross, said she “had begged for health insurance,” but the request was denied during Jon Kaiman’s administration. Louise Fishman, the succeeding executive director, said she also asked for benefits for “many years.” Ian Siegel, who was in the position from 2010 to 2011, said that he “understood at the time that it was never an option.”

Bosworth addressed the differences by saying the executive director position was “expanded tremendously” so that Kaiman’s job was “very different from the job that was done before.”

With Kaiman’s departure, tourism agency deputy director Roy Smitheimer will be taking on additional responsibilities. He has an additional civil service title of secretary to the commissioner of planning and development, with a salary of $69,143, and is eligible for health insurance and pension credits, Trottere said.

Bosworth said no decisions have been made about Kaiman’s replacement.