At the February 1 Woodbury Town Board meeting, the town board unanimously voted to approve Local Law 1 of 2024. This law would raise the pay of Supervisor Kathryn Luciani from $35,000 to $61,434, an increase of $26,434. Although asked by the public at the meeting, members of the town board did not explain where this additional $26,434 would come from. The 2023 budget was already passed with a pay rate of $35,000 for the town supervisor. However, in 2022 the salary was a littler over $57,000.
The board members suggested that the previous supervisor may have changed the salary possibly due to conflicts with his pension.
One person who spoke before the board said he did not want to see services cut or taxes increased to justify the supervisor’s pay increase. Most comments from the public were addressed by the town attorney and not the town board. When the town board did speak, they took pains to explain that the additional $26,434 was an “adjustment” and “not a raise.” The town board stated that the new salary of $61,434 is less than what some other town supervisors make in the area.
Councilwoman Sandra Capriglione stated that Supervisor Luciani had no transition period and no time to get ready to take over as supervisor in an attempt to justify the increase in Luciani’s pay. However, Luciani was a board member in 2023, along with councilmembers Brandon Calore and Timothy Finnegan. When the returning councilmembers were asked why they did not vote to increase the supervisor’s salary during the 2023 budgeting process, Councilman Finnegan stated that he did push for the pay increase during budget workshops.
During the budgeting process for 2024, then-Councilwoman Luciani was competing with former Supervisor Thomas J. Burke for the role of supervisor.
Capriglione noted that she previously opposed a pay increase for former Woodbury Town Supervisor Frank Palermo. According to the minutes from the February 1, 2018, town board meeting, Capriglione stated she felt “the [town supervisor’s] salary of $33,000 is exactly where it should be.” Capriglioni stated that, at the time in 2018, she did feel the town supervisor role was a part-time position. Since then, she believes Supervisor Luciani to be hardworking and dedicated, thus deserving of a full-time salary.