THIS STORY HAS BEEN FORMATTED FOR EASY PRINTING
< Back to front page Text size +

Newton's mayor-elect ousts nine top city officials

Posted by Your Town  December 11, 2009 03:07 PM

E-mail this article

Invalid E-mail address
Invalid E-mail address

Sending your article


Newton mayor-elect Setti Warren today fired the entire staff of the city’s executive office, along with four other city officials.

Warren’s transition office said he called the employees today and told them their last day of work would be December 31. Warren will be inaugurated on New Year’s Day.

Warren wouldn’t go into specifics about why he won’t retain the workers, saying only that the city needs a “new direction.”

“I very much appreciate the service they’ve given to the city as public servants,” Warren said. “But I believe that Newton needs to head in a new direction, and this is the beginning of that process.”

In addition to the mayor’s office staff, Warren dismissed city solicitor Dan Funk, Parks and Recreation commissioner Fran Towle, director of Planning and Development Michael Kruse, and building commissioner Nick Parnell.

“I went through an extensive interview process with each department head and member of the executive staff,'' Warren said in an interview today. "I spent a lot of time with them one-on-one and then thinking what my decision would mean to the community.”

Deborah Shah, a senior adviser on Warren’s transition team, said Warren will likely announce a new executive team next Friday and that the other roles will be filled with interim appointees.

Warren cleaned house in the mayor’s office, firing Chief Administration Officer Sanford Pooler, Chief Budget Officer Susan Burstein, Director of Policy and Communication Jeremy Solomon, Citizen Assistance Officer Maureen Grimaldi, and executive assistant Mary Morgan.

Warren had promised during the campaign to eliminate Solomon’s role. See the salaries for Newton city employees here and the pensions for current retirees here.

The workers will lose their jobs less than a week after Christmas Day, but Shah said the timing was unavoidable.

“These are difficult decisions for any person in a leadership position,” Warren said. “They’re always difficult decisions when you have to make a change in leadership. But I am very appreciative of their contributions, as well.”

Warren said he is keeping the rest of the city’s department heads and won’t be announcing additional firings. “I’ve made all the calls at once,” Warren said.

Email Globe correspondent Calvin Hennick at calvinhennick@yahoo.com

E-mail this article

Invalid E-mail address
Invalid E-mail address

Sending your article