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Suffolk IDA hires Bellone pick as chief executive

Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone, above, backed Anthony

Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone, above, backed Anthony Manetta, a political strategist and fundraiser, for IDA chief executive. (Dec. 20, 2011) Credit: Howard Schnapp

Political strategist and fundraiser Anthony Manetta was hired Tuesday by the Suffolk County Industrial Development Agency to be its executive director and chief executive.

After a two-hour private meeting, the agency's board of directors announced Manetta's hiring with a salary of $134,500 a year.

From a field of seven candidates, Manetta was the only one interviewed. He was interviewed last month before a public call for applicants.

Manetta, a former vice chairman of the Suffolk County Independence Party, was backed by County Executive Steve Bellone. However, the agency is not controlled by Bellone.

The agency also gave a raise to deputy executive director Tony Catapano and ensured the outgoing executive director Bruce E. Ferguson would receive full salary and benefits through his last day, Aug. 31.

Manetta begins work Wednesday..

In selecting him, the agency board turned down several applicants with years of experience in economic development and finance.

Pictured: Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone

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