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Ex-Suffolk official says she was unaware of comp time practices

Suffolk’s former commissioner of economic development and planning said she was unaware of comp time practices that led to the two-week suspension of county planning director Sarah Lansdale last month

“I no idea,” said Joanne Minieri, who left her job last month but remains chair of the Suffolk Industrial Development Agency, and discovered the issue when she read about it in Newsday. Asked if she should known, Minieri said, “I don’t think so. Sarah was one of the leaders in the department who I relied on for her expertise.”

Lansdale’s suspension, which cost her more than $5,000 in lost wages, came shortly after Comptroller John Kennedy began an audit of the economic development and planning department last month shortly after Minieri left the agency. Kennedy said his audit was not prompted by Lansdale’s policies, but declined to comment on whether it had any connection to Minieri’s exit.

Minieri said she expects no issues to arise from Kennedy’s audit. “Our department is full of professionals with high integrity who understand the regulations. I’m very confident we’ll be fine . . . eveyrone works very hard.”

Minieri said she has not taken a new job yet, but “I’m back out there reconnecting with my network.” She said she has “a couple of balls in the air . . . It’s August.”

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