Paterson council confirms six of Sayegh’s department heads | Paterson Times

Paterson council confirms six of Sayegh’s department heads


The City Council confirmed six of mayor Andre Sayegh’s department heads on Tuesday night.

Council members confirmed:

  • Business administrator Vaughn McKoy
  • Law director Khalifah Shabazz-Charles
  • Economic development director Michael Powell
  • Public works director William “Billy” Rodriguez
  • Public safety director Jerry Speziale
  • And finance director Marge Cherone.

Sayegh described his nominees collectively as an “all-star” team when he submitted the names and resumes to the council last week. He has yet to nominate a permanent health director and community development director.

The council confirmed all six nominees in a single vote without opposition.

All six were approved in an 8-0 vote. Al Abdelaziz, Ruby Cotton, Michael Jackson, Shahin Khalique, William McKoy, Lilisa Mimms, Flavio Rivera, and Maritza Davila voted in favor. Luis Velez was absent.

Jackson raised a question about the appointing resolutions not containing the salaries of each of the appointees.

“Salaries are set by the salary ordinance previously passed,” answered Shabazz-Charles. A 2015 ordinance sets the salaries for the mayor and department directors.

The council four years ago included salaries in appointing resolutions.

Mimms wanted the administration to email salaries to the nine council members. McKoy’s salary is $110,000; Shabazz-Charles, $122,000; Powell, $107,000; Rodriguez, $105,000; Speziale, $92,000; Cherone, $145,000, according to payroll records.

“The public holds us accountable and we have to hold you accountable. I just want to remind you we’re holding you to a high standard,” said Rivera.

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Correction: A previous version of this report erroneously made mention of a 2004 salary ordinance. There’s a 2015 ordinance that sets the salaries for high ranking officials.

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