Former Mangano political appointees receive $2.5 million in payouts

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MINEOLA -

Dozens of political appointees in Nassau County are receiving millions of dollars in payouts.

Many residents are frustrated as the county government is already deeply in debt, but 76 departing employees received $2.5 million in payouts when former County Executive Ed Mangano left office.

The money comes from a county law that allows former members of the Mangano administration to collect unused sick and vacation time once a new county executive takes over.

Former Deputy County Executive Ed Ward received the biggest payout with nearly $200,000, according to data obtained by a Newsday Freedom of Information request.

Former Sheriff Michael Sposato took home $181,000 and his wife, former Deputy County Attorney Elizabeth Loconsolo received $155,000.

These payouts are happening even as the county ended the 2017 year with a $122 million deficit.

News 12 Long Island spoke with a resident from West Hempstead who says he's disappointed, but not surprised, to hear about the hefty payouts.

“They've got to stop paying exorbitant salaries to their civil servants and they have to run a tighter ship,” says Robert Dougherty. “It's a joke.”

News 12 reached out to current County Executive Laura Curran's office and the County Comptroller's office for comment, who responded in a letter that reads:

"Severance pay is very common both in the public and private sectors. The extra cost is currently more challenging, given the difficult financial position of Nassau County. While people regularly leave government and receive severance pay, it is generally more pronounced during the turnover over of an administration."

The staggering numbers have prompted Rep. Kevan Abrahams to call for an investigation by the county comptroller.

The comptroller's office says it audits expenses for legality, regularity and correctness and is open to requests from the legislature for items that require further review.

News 12 has reached out to several of the largest payout recipients for comment but has not yet received a response.

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