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Nassau GOP chair’s daughter takes part-time job in Hempstead

Nassau County Republican Chairman Joseph Mondello's daughter, Elizabeth,

Nassau County Republican Chairman Joseph Mondello's daughter, Elizabeth, is among several relatives on county payrolls. Credit: Danielle Finkelstein

Elizabeth Mondello, daughter of Nassau County GOP chairman Joseph Mondello, was on the payroll of two of the county’s three town governments this year, most recently being hired by Hempstead Town.

She was hired by the Town of Hempstead as a part-time clerical aide in July, about a month after she resigned from part-time employment in the Town of Oyster Bay. Hempstead Town spokesman Mike Deery said Tuesday that Mondello was hired on July 7 in the Department of Parks and Recreation. She is paid $25 an hour and works approximately 15 hours a week.

“I think the commissioner felt that her credentials and experience and background were very good and that she could perform the tasks that they were looking for,” Deery said.

Newsday reported in October that more than 100 current or former elected officials, high-level appointees and political club leaders of both parties have at least one family member who has worked in local government at some point since 2015.

“It’s hard to see this as anything other than political power being used to spend tax dollars on folks who are connected,” said Doug Kellogg, spokesman for Reclaim New York Initiative, the nonprofit lobbying arm of Reclaim New York, a fiscally conservative good-government group. “The rules don’t just stop because there’s a smaller amount of money.”

A spokesman for Joseph Mondello said the chairman was not available for comment.

A part-time clerical position entails “duties of limited difficulty,” according to a copy of the general job description Deery provided to Newsday, “such as sorting and filing records, collating, numbering and stapling printed forms” as well as “routine messenger duties.”

In June, Elizabeth Mondello, 43, of Oyster Bay, resigned from her job as a part-time recreation aide in the Town of Oyster Bay, where she was paid $10,000 in 2016 to inspect playground equipment, Newsday previously reported. She was hired in 2001 as a lifeguard and later became a recreation aide.

Her sister, Lisa Ostuni, is a former Oyster Bay employee and brother-in-law Christopher Ostuni is majority counsel for the Nassau County Legislature.

Mondello’s aunt — her father’s sister — Norma Ferretti, is a clerk for the county elections board, Newsday reported. Ferretti’s daughter-in-law, Doreen Ferretti, is an executive assistant to the Hempstead Town Board and her grandson, John Ferretti Jr., is a newly elected Nassau County legislator, as well as a member of the Hempstead Town Industrial Development Agency and the chief deputy Nassau County clerk.

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