Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy is, after Newsday revealed his wife received work from businesses paid millions of dollars in county contract, now a true believer in strict ethical standards.
Today's evidence comes as spokesman Mark Smith tells us Levy will veto legislation passed last week that would allow Legis. Vivian Viloria-Fisher to hire her 21-year-old daughter Stephanie as her $45,000-a-year aide.
"It is simply bad public policy in this day and age of heightened disclosure for an elected official to hire a relative to be in that official’s office," Levy writes in the draft veto message passed along by spokesman Mark Smith. "As you are aware, Legislators are responsible for monitoring the hours worked and approved time off for all employees of their district offices. The question remains: can taxpayers feel assured that an independent and unbiased accounting of time and performance is occurring when one relative is signing off on the time sheets of another?"
Viloria-Fisher was unimpressed when we told her the news.
"I'm not surprised," she said. "It's typical of the county executive to act vindictively. It seems to me that I have done everything appropriately. Well just have to get the 12 votes to override it."
Viloria-Fisher's daughter would be the second relative to work as a legislative aide. Leslie Kennedy, wife of Legis. John M. Kennedy Jr. (R-Nesconset), has served as his aide since 2007. Levy pocket approved legislation to allow the Kennedy hire, declining to act upon it so it became law.
Smith also sends along draft legislation that would forbid elected officials from hiring relatives for whom they would serve as direct supervisor. We attached it below.