Youngstown Prosecutor Ally quits, gets $12,907
By David Skolnick
Bassil Ally, who’s religious- and ethnic-discrimination lawsuit against Youngs-town eventually led to the firing of the city prosecutor, has resigned to take a job in Texas.
The board of control voted Thursday to pay a $12,907 severance package to Ally, who started working for the city Sept. 9, 2002, as an assistant law director and has been senior prosecutor since settling the lawsuit in October 2011.
Ally took an unpaid leave of absence in June for a family medical issue and decided to take a prosecutor’s job in Texas a month later, said city Law Director Anthony Farris.
The severance payment was $5,315.25 for unused sick time and $7,592.16 for unused vacation time.
The city hasn’t hired anyone to replace Ally with its prosecutor and two assistant prosecutors handling the caseload in municipal court, Farris said.
Any additional hires would be the decision of Charles Sammarone, whose term as mayor expires at the end of the year. All attorneys hired by the city work at the discretion of the mayor.
Sammarone didn’t sound too keen on hiring additional lawyers for the city.
“I’d be looking for a job too because there’s no guarantee [the next mayor] will keep them,” Sammarone said.
Ally, a Muslim, filed a civil lawsuit in May 2009 against the city contending he was harassed by co-workers because of his faith and Middle Eastern descent.
A settlement, reached in October 2011, increased Ally’s base pay by $4,000 annually to $65,200, and gave him a $110,000 lump-sum payment, and a promotion from assistant prosecutor to senior prosecutor.
The fallout from that settlement and a subsequent in-house investigation led Sammarone to fire then-Prosecutor Jay Macejko and Bret Hartup, an assistant city prosecutor, in April 2012.
Among the evidence in the investigation was an April 2009 text message on Hartup’s cellphone supposedly sent by Macejko that made derogatory references to President Barack Obama. Macejko insisted he never sent the text.
Also Thursday, the board awarded an $805,568.95 contract to Marucci & Gaffney Excavating of Youngstown to renovate a 93,000-square-foot manufacturing facility on Salt Springs Road for Vallourec Star.
The work includes site clearance and improvement, and storm sewer lines with $500,000 of the cost coming from a state grant. The city is paying the rest of the cost.
The former RAS Manufacturing building, is to be used by Vallourec as a roll shop for its $1.1 billion expansion plant off of U.S. Route 422.