With Natural Resources Director Larry Penny readying for retirement on March 31, the East Hampton Town Board already has someone in mind to fill his shoes.
Supervisor Bill Wilkinson said a person has been identified for the position, but not yet hired and their name has not yet been publicly disclosed.
There was some question as to if the board could move forward in compliance with Civil Service procedure.
Budget officer Len Bernard said Penny's title under civil service was director of environmental management. Currently, Suffolk County does not have a list for that position so the town cannot request a list to hire off of, Bernard said.
He told the board they could hire somebody provisionally who qualified to take the test for the position once it is available. If the person lives in the Town of East Hampton, they will have to test in the top three for that position and if they don't live in town, they will have test within the top three county wide.
Bernard said the board was in a similar position when Edna Steck retired as the head of the Human Services department and the board hired Diane Patrizio.
Penny, who makes about $95,000 per year, was suspended without pay in early December, reportedly having something to do with animal carcasses and violations of a permit to complete work at the Barbara Hale Preserve. The community rallied in support of him. A month later, the town agreed to drop the disciplinary charges in an undisclosed agreement and Penny announced he would be retiring after more than 25 years with the town.
In other two employee news, the board has hired part-time accountant Charlene Kagel as a chief auditor. Kagel has billed the town around $84,000 per year working part-time and will make $90,000 per year in her new position.
Bernard said her position had been budgeted for and that Kagel would not required health insurance benefits as she has them through her husband's job.
Having a chief auditor will save the town about $15,000 a year on an annual audit for the State Comptroller's office, Bernard said. She will also oversee the accounting department and handle what Bernard said is a long-list of departments requesting internal audits.
David (Buzzy) Browne has also officially been appointed chief fire marshal in the fire prevention office. He was promoted to the position on a provisional basis in Dec. 2010 until an exam was offered.