Top 20 salaries for city, education employees in 2016-17
Editor's Note: The following article is based on the salaries paid to all city employees in fiscal year 2016-17 as provided by Shelton’s finance director and Board of Education finance director.
The highest paid city employee in Shelton for fiscal year 2016-17 was the superintendent of schools, Dr. Chris Clouet.
Clouet was paid $188,135 in his first year as superintendent, 2016.
In the Board of Education’s annual review of the superintendent, a consensus was reached that the city was pleased with the direction in which he has taken the city’s education and the board looks forward to his continuing the progress he’s made during his time in the position.
Since becoming a part of the Shelton school system in January 2016, Clouet has visited schools to build relationships with their individual staffs, assembled a team to address the opioid crisis that continues to plague the entire country, and has helped strengthen the relationship/communication between the Board of Education and the Board of Aldermen through consistent meetings with the mayor.
Education salaries based on reported income
The salaries listed are based on income as reported to the state government, according to information provided to The Shelton Herald by the city’s finance director, Paul Hiller, and the Board of Education’s finance director, Dominic Barone.
In some cases, people’s salaries may be higher, but some of that income is not considered taxable for various reasons.
The second highest paid city employee in education for Shelton in 2016 was Assistant Superintendent Lorraine Rossner. In 2016, Rossner earned $156,669.
Outside income for police officers
The second and third highest paid employees in the city for 2016 are members of the Shelton Police Department, Lt. George Rodrigues and Officer John Napoleone.
Police department members can earn extra income through private duty work for utility, construction and special event projects. The city is reimbursed by outside companies for the private duty, and also makes money through a slight surcharge for such work.
According to interim police Chief Shawn Sequeira, the increase in development within the city has opened up more situations where officers are required for traffic duty.
In 2016 Rodrigues earned $171,691 and Napoleone earned $163,922. According to Sequeira, $21,071 of Rodrigues’s pay was earned through a combination of serving road duty for many of the city’s developments, his work in the department’s accreditation team, and his work in internal affairs.
Sequeira said Napoleone had a similar case where more than $40,000 of his pay was earned through his work as the union president, working as many road jobs as he could and picking up overtime when possible or covering for officers when they were out sick.
Other officers, such as the fifth highest paid city employee, not counting those who work in education, Kevin Ahern have are eligible for additional pay when they retire. According to Sequeira, nearly $18,000 of the $139,199 Ahern earned in 2016 came from “cashing out” on his retirement.
In 2016, 19 out of 20 of the highest paid city employees, not counting those who work in education, were a part of the Shelton Police Department.
The only city employee who made the list of the top 20 salaries and wasn’t part of the police department was Mayor Mark Lauretti. In 2016 Lauretti earned $131,714.
Lauretti said he recalls when he was making nowhere near what he is today, but said working in the community was never about the money for him.
“I just thought I could make a difference,” said Lauretti.
The mayor received a nearly $25,000 raise in 2015.