Some residents in Floral Park aren’t happy with the village’s proposed 2017-18 budget because it includes a $55,000 raise for the police commissioner.
During a public review of the budget Wednesday night, one resident called the potential raise for Stephen McAllister “crazy.” But Mayor Dominick Longobardi and Village Administrator Gerry Bambrick defended McAllister, saying the commissioner has done a great job since being hired in 2010.
If approved, McAllister’s annual salary would grow from $190,000 to $245,000. When he was hired, McAllister was paid $170,000 a year.
“I would love a job where I got a 70 percent raise over a seven-year period,” resident Mike Kroeber, 53, told the village board Wednesday night. “I just think that’s ridiculous.”
The village does not contribute toward a pension for McAllister, 54. Bambrick said the raise factors in the lack of pension contributions. If the village had to contribute, it would ultimately equate to $245,000 anyway, Bambrick said.
“It’s the equivalent of hiring someone at $197,000 and paying a pension contribution on top of that,” he said.
McAllister, an NYPD retiree, oversees 35 officers in the village’s department. In comparison, Nassau County Police Commissioner Thomas Krumpter makes $237,265 a year and oversees 2,380 officers. New York Police Department Commissioner James O’Neill makes $219,773 a year and oversees a force of more than 36,000 officers.
Longobardi told Kroeber that, at one point, village officials researched the cost to hire a new commissioner. It was determined that the village would end up paying about the same amount if the board replaced McAllister, Longobardi said.
“Did you look at candidates? Did you ask for resumes? Did you hold interviews?” Kroeber said.
“We did not look at other candidates,” Longobardi said.
“So you don’t know that because you didn’t go out and look,” Kroeber responded.
The village board approved McAllister’s raise in February. Approving the budget would have made the raise official. However, the board decided to postpone approving the spending plan at Wednesday’s meeting. Longobardi said the board will likely vote on it on May 2.