Republican Nassau County Comptroller George Maragos continues to stay mum on whether or not he has hired former Democratic District Attorney hopeful Michael Scotto as a deputy comptroller for $120,000 annually.
Five county sources say that Scotto, who ran an unsuccessful Democratic primary against District Attorney Madeline Singas last year, appears on the county payroll as a deputy comptroller and that his start date was this week.
After Maragos’ office declined to comment Tuesday, Newsday submitted a Freedom of Information request asking if Scotto had been hired by the comptroller, and, if so, when he started, his title and his salary.
According to the New York Freedom of Information law, every public agency must maintain “a record setting forth the name, public office address, title and salary of every officer or employee of the agency.”
Maragos’ office maintains the county payroll. In the past, Maragos’ office has been able to respond within minutes to questions about whether someone was an employee or not.
On Friday, Maragos’ counsel Sergio Blanco responded to Newsday’s FOI request. “Our Office is in the process of reviewing your request and will provide you with a response in approximately fourteen (14) days or less from the date of this acknowledgment,” he wrote. “At such time, we will release to you all information to which you are entitled under the FOIL. Please note that this correspondence does not make any representations or final determinations concerning any of the information you requested.”
Longtime Legis. Judy Jacobs (D-Woodbury), said, “This is a perfect example of a lack of transparency. If you hired the gentleman and he has the qualifications, be honest and speak up about it. Don’t make that a story in and of itself.”
Scotto, a former chief of the Manhattan district attorney’s Rackets Bureau, could not be reached for comment.