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County critic's kids worked for parks department

Nassau Legis. Dave Denenberg, announces his candidacy for

Nassau Legis. Dave Denenberg, announces his candidacy for the State Senate on March 6, 2014, at the American Legion Post in Seaford. (Credit: Newsday / Alejandra Villa)

Although Nassau Legis. David Denenberg complained that a Newsday review of Nassau's 2013 part-time and seasonal parks employees payroll showed “a political-insider feeding frenzy,” records show that the Merrick Democrat's own children have worked for the parks department in past years.

County comptroller records show that Amanda Denenberg worked as a seasonal parks worker in 2007 and again in 2011, making between $8.50 and $12.90 an hour, for a total of $4,350 in salary for the two summers. Danielle Denenberg worked as a seasonal parks worker in 2010 and 2011, at the same hourly rates, to earn a total $3,615 for the two summers. Aron Denenberg was a seasonal parks worker in 2011, paid $8.50 an hour, earning a total $1,950.

"Dave Denenberg is a hypocrite and by his own words he should be ousted as three of his children worked for the county at his personal request," said Brian Nevin, spokesman for County Executive Edward Mangano, a Republican.

Denenberg, who is running for a vacant State Senate seat, said his children were camp counselors at Wantagh Park for six weeks of each summer they worked, earning the minimum county wage. “They worked the quintessential part-time summer job,” he said. “Something you hire high-school or college kids for because it’s only over the summer.”

He questioned, “That’s an excuse for political insiders making $30, $40 and $50 an hour, earning $50,000 to $70,000 a year, more than a full-time job? That’s a misuse of funds for the politically connected.”

Nevin said, “He's a politician that personally requested the hiring of his three children. There's nothing more politically connected than that.”

Newsday reported Tuesday that some part-time and seasonal parks employees who have family, community or political ties made more than full-time workers in the same title. The three highest paid part-time parks workers were all ranked golf course attendant 1, and earned from $66,400 to nearly $80,000 last year — more than full-time workers in the same low-level title and more than three full-time golf course managers.

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