Home Wanted

Smithtown Animal Shelter

The Smithtown Animal Shelter has many kittens for adoption, the little ones are handled and socialized by our volunteer staff they are friendly have their initial shots and de-worming.


 

____________________________________________________________________________________


 

 

 

 


 



 

 

 - Click for Restaurant Directory_____

Find us wherever you are!
Subscribe To Smithtown Matters
Email Newsletter icon, E-mail Newsletter icon, Email List icon, E-mail List icon Sign up for our Email Newsletter
_________________________________________________________________________________________

CLICK ON PHOTOS TO ENLARGE



_______________________________________________________

 

*******************************************************************

Thursday
Dec182014

Superintendent Of Highway Glenn Jorgensen Accused Of Harassment

Aimee-Lynn Smith, 26, is a former employee of the Smithtown Highway Department.  She began working for the town on November 25, 2013. Her tenure as a Smithtown employee ended when she was fired by Superintendent of Highway Glenn Jorgensen, 63, on October 17, 2014. On December 9, 2014 the Town Clerk’s office received a Notice of Claim from Ms. Smith alleging that Glenn Jorgensen sexually harassed her during her tenure at the Highway Department. 

NYS law requires a person to file a Notice of Claim prior to suing New York State, local government or a government agency for money damages. According to the Notice of Claim received in the Town Clerk’s office on December 9th, Ms. Smith is seeking damages of $200,000, compensation for losses and benefits “and to be reimbursed for any therapy to which I need due to the ongoing and pervasive sexual harassment and hostile work environment.”

Ms. Smith’s Notice of Claim is a 16-page document (Smithtown Matters obtained a copy of the Notice of Claim) in which Ms. Smith declares that she has been “systematically subjected to an ongoing pattern and practice of: discrimination based on gender, and subjected to a hostile work environment, sexual harassment, and an unlawful termination.” The document goes into great detail about her experience in the highway department from the time she was hired as a secretary in the department until she was fired. 

As an example of the harassment Smith describes a Dec. 2013 conversation, “Mr. Jorgensen commented that the man (a man she had been dating) opened the car door for me to get in, which made me uncomfortable because I felt like Mr. Jorgensen was spying on me.” She also describes  numerous questions Jorgensen asked about her personal life including questions about dating and who watched her children (Ms. Smith has two children) for the evening. “If I did, the following day I would be peppered with questions about the date: Where did we go to eat, who drove, did he pay and what time did I get home from the date.”  states Smith

The document mentions one event in the spring of 2014 which involved physical contact. In the spring of 2014 which took place at the Highway Department yard on Smithtown Bypass  ”…Mr. Jorgensen unclasped his hands from behind his back to lift them up and point at something with the tower, hitting my rear. Mr. Jorgensen immediately apologized and claimed he didn’t mean to touch me. However, based on subsequent events and his relative proximity to me, I do not believe it was an accident.”

Time after time Ms. Smith indicates that she was treated differently from other office employees by Jorgensen. She was given business cards and was directed to order a  jacket and have it labeled as his secretary, despite the fact that no other office worker had a jacket or business cards. Smith delineates meetings and unnecessary drives she was required to take with Jorgensen including a trip to the Kings Park Psychiatric Center to look at a building, drives past his house, Suffolk County Highway Superintendents Association (SCHSA) where she was being shown off “as many of the men made comments and remarks to Mr. Jorgensen about how “lucky” he was to have me as his personal secretary.”

The 16-page document is filled with examples of how Ms. Smith feels she was put on display, embarrassed and made to feel uncomfortable by Jorgensen. On October 10th, Smith identified a Highway Department employee as a man she was dating.  The work relationship with Mr. Jorgensen deteriorated and Ms. Smith was terminated on Oct. 17. 

A day after being terminated Smith went to the Department of Public Safety and filed a complaint.

There is little that the Town can do at this point other than wait for the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) to investigate and issue a report. Neither Glenn Jorgensen nor Aimee-Lynn Smith are union members so the CSEA will not be involved. The Town Board has no authority over the Superintendent of Highway. At some point the complaint may become an issue for Smithtown’s Board of Ethics.

Superintendent of Highway Glenn Jorgensen was first elected in 2009 and was re-elected in 2013. A call to Mr. Jorgensen’s office was not returned. Supervisor Vecchio, Councilman Creighton, Town Attorney Matthew Jakubowski declined to comment. 

 

 

Sunday
Dec072014

Jan. 1, 2015 Smithtown's New Recycling Program Begins See What Will And Will Not Be Accepted

January 1, 2015 Smithtown residents will be changing to a single-stream recycling program. Residents will continue to place their recycle bin by the curb once a week. The new program eliminates the need to separate paper from glass. Recyclables can be combined in the same container.  More materials will be collected. The following letter identifies what can be recycled and what will not be collected. Click here for Town Message

 

Thursday
Dec042014

Woman Drives Her Ford Into Kings Park Post Office Building

The Kings Park Post office is open for business.   On Thursday, December 4th, around 10 am, a 58-year-old woman drove her vehicle, a 2011 Ford, through the wall of the Post Office building.  The Kings Park Post Office, located at 125 East Main Street, continued operations throughout the day.

The woman, whose name has not been released, suffered minor injuries and was taken to St. Catherine’s Hospital. No one in the building was injured. According to responders the women accidentally stepped on the accelerator causing the crash.

The vehicle did not go completely into the building but it did leave a hole in the lobby wall.  A town building inspector responded to the scene  and deemed the damage minor. A section of the lobby was taped off and the Post Office remained open.  No citations were issued.

Monday
Dec012014

Thanksgiving Day Fire At San Remo Deli In Kings Park

photo courtesy of S.Trehy

Everyday is an appropriate day to give thanks to volunteer firefighters. Thanksgiving Day is no exception. While most people were enjoying Thanksgiving Day dinner and family gatherings, firefighters from the Kings Park FD and several other local fire departments were responding to a fire at the San Remo Deli in Kings Park.

(The information about this fire comes from Jeff DiLavore FD Rant News click here for article)

The Kings Park FD received a call around 6pm reporting a fire at the small strip shopping center on the corner of 25A and Ivy Road in Kings Park. The shopping center houses a pizza shop, cleaners, deli and a vacant store.  The fire was brought under control approximately two hours later. Two firefighters from Kings Park were treated for minor injuries.

The cause of the fire is being investigated by the Smithtown Fire Marshal, Suffolk County Fire Marshal and the Suffolk County Police Arson Squad.

Sunday
Nov232014

Smithtown's 2015 Town Budget NOT Approved By Town Board

by p.biancaniello

Smithtown Town BoardSmithtown’s 2015 Town Budget did not pass.  The budget failed to receive the necessary three votes to become the official 2015 Town Budget.  Supervisor Vecchio and Councilwoman Nowick voted in support of the budget, Councilman/Deputy Supervisor McCarthy abstained (a $30,000 increase in the Deputy Supervisor’s stipend, the position McCarthy holds, was included in the budget)  Councilmen Wehrheim and Creighton voted NO.  Prior to voting on the 2015 budget, there was a vote on a resolution amending the proposed budget which passed in a three - two decision with Vecchio, McCarthy, Nowick voting YES and Wehrheim and Creighton voting NO. 

According to Supervisor Vecchio the budget amendment became necessary due to the fact that the proposed transfer of Highway Department employees would not occur on January 1 as initially budgeted. Instead the transfers will take place in July of 2015. Therefore predicted savings in the highway budget would not happen. The amendment provides funding for the highway department with current personel staffing. Also included in the amendment were salary increases for certain town employees.

To understand what happens in 2015 you need to understand the budget process. 

The function of preparing the town’s budget rests with a town’s Supervisor.  After creating a budget the Supervisor  presents it to Town Council members and the public. Council members, after examining the budget, may offer amendments/changes to the budget and the changes may or may not be incorporated in to the budget.  Town Board members then vote to schedule a public hearing on what is now called the Tentative Budget. The public is invited to comment on the budget. At this point changes may be made to the budget but generally are not significant changes. A resolution for the town board to accept the budget is placed on the Town Board agenda to be voted on. The vote is largely symbolic since NYS Law mandates that the Town has a budget. Failure to approve the budget means that it becomes the budget without the support of the Town Board.  

L-R Councilmen Creighton and WehrheimSo how did it happen that this all Republican Board did not support the Supervisor’s Budget? It pretty much boils down to communication or a lack of it. Since the campaign of 2013 there has been very little communication between the Supervisor and Coucilmen Creighton and Wehrheim.  It was a messy election followed by Oathgate, followed by the $30,000  increase in the Deputy Supervisor’s stipend for 2014, and now a budget that according to Councilman Wehrheim “is more than a budget, it is the restructuring of Town departments and the way services are provided to the residents of Smithtown without any discussion or input from Council members.”

Wehrheim has concerns about the Supervisor’s plan to transfer Highway Department employees from their department to the Municipal Services Facility (MSF). “I am concerned about snow removal and the impact the proposed changes in leaf and brush pick-ups are going to have on the residents. I asked Superintendent of Highways Glenn Jorgensen if he had concerns about the proposal and he indicated that yes he did.” Councilman Wehrheim provided a copy of a memo  on which all members of the Town Council signed their names seeking written assurances from  Director of Environment and Waterways Russ Barnett, Supervisor of Municipal Services Facility Matthew Gorecki and Superintendent of Highways Glenn Jorgensen that they would work together for a smooth transition. According to Councilman Wehrheim not one of the named department heads has responded.

In addition to the structural changes, Wehrheim is not happy with the unannounced salary increases given to select employees which were part of the adopted amendments to the Proposed Budget Thursday evening. “I am not making a judgement call on whether or not they are warranted. I do believe they should have been part of the original budget and there should have been a discussion about it. Why give salary increases to people when they will be receiving two scheduled increases in January and July of next year?” Wehrheim supplied a copy of notification about the amendments received from Town Comptroller Louis Necroto. “This is the only notification, no discussion, no other information was provided.”

So how much how much have the salaries been increased and what was the justification for the increase? Councilman Wehrheim didn’t know. Presumably Councilwoman Nowick and Councilman Mc Carthy know as they both supported the budget amendment.

Without support from the Town Council Smithtown has a 2015 Budget. 

*Town Comptroller Louis Necroto was not available at the time this article was written.