Youngstown OKs severance pay for fired prosecutors

By David Skolnick


The city’s board of control agreed to give $28,171.39 in total severance payments to the former city prosecutor and assistant prosecutor, fired after an investigation into a controversial text message.

The board agreed Thursday to pay $15,350.19 to former Prosecutor Jay Macejko, fired April 5, and $12,821.20 to Bret Hartup, fired a day later as an assistant prosecutor.

Macejko received $12,248.99 for 35 percent of the 1,064 unused sick hours he accumulated during more than six years as prosecutor and $3,101.20 for 94.34 hours of unused vacation time.

Macejko made $32.87 an hour as prosecutor.

The board also voted to give $12,821.20 to Hartup for 35 percent of his 909.83 hours in unused sick time and $9,433.85 for 114.34 hours of unused vacation time.

Hartup, who worked for the city for about six years, made $29.62 per hour.

Macejko and Hartup were fired by Mayor Charles Sammarone, chairman of the city’s board of control, after an investigation into a controversial text message about President Barack Obama to Hartup that appeared to show it came from the former prosecutor.

Macejko has denied sending or receiving the text.

Attorneys who work for the city are at-will employees who can be fired by the mayor at any time.

The mayor also fired John Marsh as an assistant prosecutor April 13. His severance package should be in front of the board of control shortly, said Law Director Anthony Farris, a board member.

Also Thursday, the board agreed to a $369,234.63 increase for a railroad relocation project needed as part of V&M Star’s $650 million expansion.

The addition primarily was to purchase more dirt needed for the project, said Charles Shasho, deputy director of the city’s public-works department.

Also, there is a $142,700 reduction because some steel-pipe casings in the original proposal no longer are needed, Shasho said.

The city is spending $14,075,796 from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, also known as the federal stimulus fund, for the rail work.

The project has had cost overruns with the cost of the work increasing to $14,610,204.

V&M is paying the city for the additional expenses, Shasho said.

The rail work should be done in July, he said.

The board also agreed to pay $150,000 to the PFM Group to conduct a study that will evaluate and improve city government operations.

In addition to the $150,000 from the city, PFM is also receiving $50,000 each from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Raymond John Wean Foundation.

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