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Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone shuffles staff, appoints 11

Eric Naughton will be Suffolk County Executive Steve

Eric Naughton will be Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone's new budget director. Credit: Barry Sloan

Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone has shuffled his staff with 11 appointments, including hiring Eric Naughton as his $171,007-a-year budget director to replace retired Connie DeGiovine, who is returning to a $70,000 part-time job.

For Naughton, who had been former Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano’s top fiscal aide, it will be his second stint as Suffolk budget director. He also was deputy county executive for finance during the administration of Bellone’s predecessor, Steve Levy.

DeGiovine, who retired last fall at 55, stayed on as a county fiscal consultant but under state law is limited to earning $30,000 in state or local government pay while receiving a state pension until she reaches age 65.

Under the reorganization, DeGiovine, who was Connie Corso before she recently remarried, will hold the title of assistant deputy county executive for finance, allowing Bellone to apply for a waiver from state Civil Service officials so she can earn more.

Jason Elan, Bellone’s spokesman, said if approved, she will work 22.5 hours a week and her salary will be capped at $70,000.

Elan also said “none of these jobs are new but include positions that have been vacant for months” and are part of a “long-term reorganization strategy that will result in savings for taxpayers.” He estimated the switches would save $29,581 annually.

Legis. Tom Cilmi (R-Bay Shore), Republican caucus leader, said Bellone “is clearly living in a different world . . . from a majority of Suffolk residents . . . struggling to make ends meet.”

The county executive, Cilmi said, “continues to appoint deputies, assistant deputies . . . and unnecessary directors during the county’s historic fiscal crisis” while probation, corrections and 911 call centers are “woefully understaffed.”

Other high-level new hires include Eric Hofmeister as deputy public works commissioner paid $135,000 a year. He is currently state Sen. Tom Croci’s (R-Sayville) $106,417-a-year district director.

Steve Randazzo has started as a $106,384-a-year deputy director of performance management, and Don McKay, Huntington’s park director, has been hired as a $111,317-a-year deputy county parks commissioner. Felix Adeyeye, a former spokesman for the Brentwood School District, will be paid $86,214 a year as a government liaison.

Elan acknowledged that Hofmeister will earn $8,400 more than Tom Vaughan, who previously held the job and now shifts to become Bellone’s director of operations, earning the same $125,533.

However, Elan noted that Vaughn is filling a post previously vacated by Luis Montes, who made $144,594 a year. Adeyeye will make $13,421 more than the $72,793 made by Pamela Robinson, who had the same title in parks but left the job.

In other announced shifts, Ed Moltzen, now assistant to the Fire Rescue and Emergency Services commissioner, will become a $102,182-a-year director of shared services, a state initiative to press local governments to merge operations. Amy Keyes becomes a $106,044-a-year director of intergovernmental relations, replacing Katie Horst, who earned $111,317 before moving to the sheriff’s office.

Peter Guaraldi, becomes a $76,447-a-year director of community affairs, replacing Kerry Ann Soto, who made $72,219 on the county executive’s payroll while working in the police department. She now works for the district attorney.

Olga El Sehamy will become deputy Youth Bureau director making $32,419 a year working 16.5 hours a week.

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