A union representing state Department of Environmental Conservation workers criticized Gov. David Paterson Monday for filling management positions at the DEC while eliminating rank-and-file jobs.
But DEC spokesman Yancey Roy told the Enterprise that the department hasn't added any workers, "no ifs, ands or buts.
"These people have not been added to the payroll," Roy wrote in an e-mail. "This list reflects people who were internally promoted."
The Civil Service Employees Association says documents it obtained using the Freedom of Information Law show that the DEC has filled 36 top-level management positions since July 1, despite the state hiring freeze and a continued push to lay off 900 workers statewide, including 134 from the DEC, before the end of the year. Eighteen of the DEC positions filled have a base salary in excess of $100,000 per year.
"It's a contradictory message," said CSEA spokesman Stephen Madarasz. "We wouldn't argue with the idea that probably a number of these positions might be substantive work that you need someone who is capable and qualified to be able to do it. But in the context of the governor saying we have to downsize, that he's filling so many high-level positions and high salaries while insisting that we have to proceed with layoffs for rank-and-file members, it's just outrageous."
State Division of Budget spokesman Erik Kriss said the positions filled were ones vacated by workers leaving through the early retirement incentive program. The DEC lost 260 workers this fall to early retirement.
"(CSEA is) wrong. DEC did not hire or add anybody," Kriss said. "All of these folks were promoted into positions that were vacated by people who took the early retirement incentive, and for every single one of those people that were promoted, their previous position or a previous position at the agency has been abolished. This whole matter that CSEA is describing to you is saving taxpayers money while at the same time ensuring that DEC has qualified, competent people in positions to manage and run the agency and make sure the programs and services that DEC's provides are delivered."
In response to the CSEA attack, the governor's office released a statement defending itself.
"CSEA leadership is once again trying to distract from the fact that they were unwilling to negotiate with this administration to achieve workforce savings required by this budget and avoid state worker layoffs," Paterson's spokeswoman Jessica Bassett said in a press release. "Governor Paterson proposed a number of methods for achieving workforce savings this year, and the unions rejected every single one of them while failing to provide realistic savings alternatives."
|High-level DEC positions filled since July 1:|
|Iwanowicz, Peter M.||Deputy Commr||$150,000|
|Nasca, Jack A.||Dir Env Permits||$120,135|
|Flint, Steven E.||Assnt Envirnl P Dir||$120,135|
|Schick, Robert||Assnt Envirnl P Dir||$120,135|
|Myers, Jeffrey||Envirnl Engineer 4||$114,961|
|Pettit, Peter||Envirnl Engineer 4||$106,903|
|Cozzy, Robert J.||Envirnl Engineer 4||$106,903|
|Phaneuf, Robert J.||Envirnl Engineer 4||$106,903|
|Eaton, Angus K.||Envirnl Engineer 4||$106,903|
|Ferguson, John||Envirnl Analyst 4||$106,903|
|Menrath, Scott||Envirnl Engineer 4||$105,559|
|Sitzman, Larry||Envirnl Engineer 4||$105,559|
|Tang, Koon||Envirnl Engineer 4||$104,215|
|Brezner, Kenneth B.||Envirnl Engineer 4||$104,215|
|Ryan, Michael J.||Envirnl Engineer 4||$104,215|
|Vitale, David||Envirnl Engineer 4||$104,215|
|Rudolph, Thomas||Envirnl Engineer 4||$104,215|
|Cruden, Michael J.||Envirnl Engineer 4||$104,215|
|Hulbert, Philip J.||Biologist 4 Aquatic||$98,791|
|Briggs, Peter S.||Mineral Resrcs Spc 5||$97,909|
|Batcheller, Gordon R.||Biologist 4 Wildlife||$97,447|
|Dowd, Christina T.||Biologist 4 Ecology||$97,447|
|Messenger, Robert||Forester 4||$96,103|
|Cadrette, Mark W.||Agency Labr Rel Rep 4||$93,837|
|Perkins, Matthew A.||Assnt Dir Div Opers||$93,463|
|Matteson, Benjamin K.||Real Estate Offr 2||$92,565|
|Zeglen, Joseph J.||Dir Forest Rngr Svs||$91,096|
|Hurst, Stephen S.||Biologist 4 Aquatic||$84,318|
|Evans, Harold||Assnt Dir Comctn & Ed||$82,363|
|Mcenaney, James T. Jr.||Consrvn Opers Supvr 4||$79,759|
|Sproul, Peter M.||Consrvn Opers Supvr 4||$78,415|
|Lyng, Patrick N.||Consrvn Opers Supvr 4||$66,914|
|Montross, Sherri M.||Assoc Persnl Admr||$61,993|
|Burrows, John M.||Assoc Persnl Admr||$61,993|
|Rowinski, Andrew D.||Assoc Budgetg Anlst||$61,993|
|Schweitzer, Shaymus R.||Assoc Budgetg Anlst||$61,993|
Contact Mike Lynch at 518-891-2600 ext. 28 or firstname.lastname@example.org.