Mayor: Village working to restructure utility plant management

JENNIFER GUSTAVSON FILE PHOTO | The Greenport Village sewage treatment plant.
JENNIFER GUSTAVSON FILE PHOTO | The Greenport Village sewage treatment plant.

About six weeks after former Greenport utilities director Jack Naylor left his post at the village, agreeing to terms with the village for an $80,000 payout that includes five months of salary and another 18 weeks leave time, Greenport Mayor David Nyce said this week that the village is working toward a plan to restructure management at the plant.

Without offering details about Mr. Naylor – per the terms of an agreement signed on Sept. 20, the village is not allowed to comment on his employment with the village – Mr. Nyce stated that he hopes to bring the plan to the public at an upcoming village board meeting.

Mr. Naylor remains on paid administrative leave through Feb. 28 – when the resignation officially takes effect. At his regular rate of $52 per hour, the deal adds up to roughly $82,000.

Until the end of February, Mr. Naylor is required to be available, upon reasonable notice expect in the case of an emergency, to perform work-related duties consistent will his job description, the agreement states. He would be paid for his hour-and-a-half commute to the village should his services be needed, according to the document.

In early October, the trustees voted unanimously to accept Mr. Naylor’s resignation.

Mr. Nyce declined to disclose details of how he would like to restructure the utilities plant, which oversees the village’s sewer, electric, and roads. He did state, however, that currently, all three of the respective department heads are reporting directly to him, Village Clark Sylvia Perillo, Village Administrator Dave Abatelli, and Village Treasurer Charlene Kagel.

“Those people and myself are covering any overages while I and the board move forward with how to restructure,” he said.

Deputy Mayor George Hubbard has stated in the past that the village may do away with the position completely.

Prior to Mr. Naylor’s appointment in late 2007, Mr. Nyce said, department heads at the plant reported more directly to him and village administrators. Richard Walkden, the plant director prior to Mr. Naylor, retired in the spring of 2006.

Mr. Naylor was brought in to help right the ship at the plant, which was “left with utilities that are falling apart” when Nyce took office, the mayor said in the spring of 2007. However over time, Mr. Naylor felt the wrath of village board members in public on several occasions, with elected officials noting publicly that he had missed deadlines to complete projects and work at the plant was not being done effectively.

“We wouldn’t want to have him coming into work,” Mr. Hubbard said recently. “Projects weren’t getting done. It just wasn’t working.”

Officials are planning on doing several upgrades to the plant; village board members approved a $1 million bond this past spring to complete the work.

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