Nassau County Executive-elect Laura Curran will not keep more than 60 percent of County Executive Edward Mangano’s political appointees, according to letters distributed to county employees Friday.
Termination letters were sent to roughly 160 nonunion appointees, including department heads, commissioners, assistant commissioners and deputy county attorneys, who can be hired or fired at will, according to Curran spokesman Philip Shulman.
Curran, a Democrat from Baldwin who takes office Jan. 1, will retain about 100 exempt county workers who applied for positions under the new administration, Shulman said.
“Today we asked the county to notify employees not covered by a labor agreement that their resignations were accepted; others that their services were no longer required and we asked a group to stay in their current jobs to ensure continuity of government services throughout the county,” said Helena Williams, who will serve as Curran’s chief deputy county executive. “Personnel decisions are difficult when a new administration takes office, and I thank the current administration for their assistance with employee notifications.”
The Curran transition team declined to provide Newsday with a list of individuals who were terminated or who will be retained.
But a county source familiar with the letters confirmed that Sheriff Michael Sposato, Information Technology Commissioner Ed Eisenstein and John Marks, executive director of the Traffic and Parking Violations Agency, will leave at year’s end.
“I am disappointed, but I respect Curran’s decision,” Sposato said. “I think I did a good job at the jail, especially managing the budget.”
Curran also will not keep any of Mangano’s top deputies, including Chief Deputy County Executive Rob Walker; Charles Ribando, deputy county executive for public safety; and Eric Naughton, deputy county executive for finance.
Acting Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder did not receive a letter, said Det. Lt. Richard LeBrun, a police spokesman.
Ryder is expected to be kept on, at least temporarily, but his long-term status remains a question mark, officials said.
Last month, Thomas Garry, chairman of Curran’s transition team, informed Mangano that his appointees would be asked to submit letters of resignation. Those who wanted to work for the new administration were asked to reapply through the transition team.
It is not clear, the source said, which appointees let go Friday had applied to work in the new administration and which ones had already planned to leave.
For example, County Attorney Carnell Foskey and Public Works Commissioner Shila Shah-Gavnoudias previously announced that they planned to leave their posts at year’s end.
Curran plans to keep at least three Mangano department heads — Veterans Service Agency Director Ralph Esposito, Human Resources Director Melissa Gallucci and Taxi & Limousine Commissioner Gregory May. Chief Deputy County Attorney Lisa LoCurto also will be kept on, the source said. Several deputy county attorneys, housing specialists and members of the Office of Management and Budget also retained their positions.
Social Services Commissioner John Imhof and Health Department Commissioner Lawrence Eisenstein have contracts and will not be immediately leaving their posts.
County spokesman Ed Ward declined to comment Friday.
In May, Mangano, a Bethpage Republican who did not seek a third term as he fights federal corruption charges, moved more than 40 politically appointed employees into competitive union positions to protect them from being terminated under a new administration.
The reclassified employees included 26 community service representatives, 12 deputy county attorneys who took assistant county attorney titles and a half dozen other exempt employees who took vacant civil service positions.