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Amityville Village votes to replace fired clerk-treasurer

Amityville Village has hired a replacement for its clerk-treasurer after the previous person in that position was fired in a controversial move by the mayor earlier this month.

The village board voted 5-0 Monday night to approve the appointment of Catherine Claire Murdock. Her salary will be $36.06 per hour, about $11 less per hour than her predecessor, and she will start Thursday.

Murdock, 37, who has lived in the village for 31 years, most recently worked from 2012 to 2015 as a bid manager for The Haugland Group LLC, an infrastructure services holding company in Plainview. Before that she was a financial analyst from 2006 to 2008 for Fidelity Investments in Boston.

“To be given the opportunity to work here and use my business degree to help the village is a great career opportunity for me,” she said.

The village received 12 applications and conducted a couple of interviews, Mayor Dennis Siry said. An advertisement said applications would be accepted until April 28, but Siry said officials called off the search when they realized Murdock was a good fit.

“Her personality is good, she has excellent managerial skills, she’s very organized and aggressive to take the helm,” Siry said after the meeting. He said the hiring will provide the village a nearly $40,000 savings in salary and benefits.

The village has been paying former clerk-treasurer Dina Shingleton her $97,000-a-year salary since she was fired by Siry the day after he took office on April 3. Siry had told Shingleton he would keep her on after the March election, but said in the week after he won that he changed his mind.

Some in the village — including Siry’s mayoral opponent and village trustee Nick LaLota — questioned that move so close to the May 1 deadline to pass a budget.

“Having spent more than $8,000 of taxpayer money for a former employee to stay home for almost a month, I’m pleased the mayor finally filled the position of clerk-treasurer,” LaLota said.

A budget work session will be held Thursday at 8:15 a.m., and a budget public hearing on May 1 at 7:30 p.m., both at Village Hall.

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