Mayor Must Pay Back Misappropriation of $180,000 Undeserved Longevity

By John Puopolo

After several months, the city council finally reduced the mayor’s bonus from $40,000 a year to $1,700 where it belongs.

The mayor continued to push for $2,500 until the very end Monday night. difference.

One would think that the ongoing negative publicity, on top of the misappropriation for $180,000, that the mayor would opt for a more humble and reasonable resolution.

Instead he pressed forward prolonging the division he created for the extra $800, and keeping the misappropriated $180,000. The negative publicity this has brought on the mayor, the city and city council is of no concern to him. At this point it came down to $800. Embarrassing!

The mayor never responded to the city council’s request to explain how the longevity went from the agreed to $2,500 annually to $40,000 in violation of the documented longevity plan. Who decided this? Who initiated the $40,000 payment and why? Why wasn’t City Council informed of the inflated amounts? How can you take action addressing those responsible with no answers from the Mayor for how & why this took place?

Clearly the Mayor and CFO jointly agreed privately to the $40,000 per year. They also maintained secrecy for the payments. They hid $180,000 from City Council, the budget and tax payers. When this became public the Mayor backed off collecting the $40,000 – what does that tell you? He knows it was wrong! All those involved know it was wrong, yet there is no accountability for the $180,000 and its return to the tax- payers. The taxpayers have been defrauded by this administration.

The Mayor must be called out to explain how the $40,000 came to be. He has remained silent on this matter, which raises more questions about the misuse of taxpayer money. The Mayor should not receive any longevity. He already took $180,000 over what he was entitled to and that $180,000 must be returned to the taxpayers.

No longevity should be considered by City Council, it should be zero until the Mayor pays back the $180,000.

John Puopolo is an Everett resident and a businessman with a great deal of experience in corporate policy.

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