Claiming that the Plattekill Town Board didn’t adequately support her and that she was pushed out, assistant recreation director/summer camp director Kim Way resigned on June 15.
Supervisor Jennifer Salemo accepted Way’s resignation letter at the Town Board’s June 21 meeting without identifying her by name. Teresa Robertson, who is an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), was appointed as Way’s replacement.
“My team and I, along with the help of residents, made phone calls to get the right people in place so that we can continue summer camp this year,” Salemo said after the board voted 5-0 to accept Way’s resignation.
Summer camp is being held from June 26 through July 28 at Thomas Felten Park.
Way, who worked for the town for two years, blasted the board in a statement during the meeting’s public comment period. One of her complaints was that she didn’t receive any backing from the board when she requested assistance in finding an EMT for the summer camp.
“Yes, I resigned basically feeling that I was pushed out,” Way said. “Where was the guidance and help from all of you when I was looking for an EMT? All of a sudden (after her resignation) you can find an EMT and you can run the camp and that’s great. The kids deserve to have a camp that opens. But it’s funny how I step out and all of a sudden the EMT is found. Interestingly, it’s an election year, but we’ll put that aside.”
Salemo responded that it was Way’s responsibility to find an EMT and she felt the former town employee “didn’t exhaust all avenues” to find one.
Councilman Wilfrido Castillo Jr. said when he talked to Way he knew she was upset and urged her not to do anything for a day or two.
“You mentioned about quitting and I said why don’t you hold off for 24 to 48 hours to see if this gets resolved,” Castillo said. “When you quit, we had to keep on going and move forward.”
“I tried to help,” Salemo said. “You spoke to me. You spoke to my secretary. You spoke to Willy. Everyone got the same feeling that you didn’t want to move forward with the camp. You were ready to quit.”
Councilman Dean DePew Sr. said he was surprised Way resigned after he had a phone conversation with her prior to her quitting.
“I did not know you had any intentions of resigning,” DePew said. “I’m very sorry to see that you resigned. I thought you were doing a great job and I thought that the board did work well with you. There’s always issues. They were all small ones. I thought we worked through those the last two years. It sounds like you don’t feel the same way. But regardless before I hung up, I said, ‘Kim the camp’s going to work. It’s going to happen.”’
In other news, former town detective Oscar Lopez was sworn in to replace former Police Chief Joseph Ryan, who resigned on May 17 following 16 years as head of the town’s part-time police force. Prior to resigning, Ryan was suspended without pay for one month due to an accident he had with his police vehicle while on personal business in New Jersey.
After being sworn in by Town Clerk Donna Hedrick, Lopez made a few brief remarks.
“I think the public is going to see a very professional police force from here on out,” said Lopez, who had been a detective for the town since 2014 and has over 40 years of experience in law enforcement. “We’re here to serve you.”
The board also approved the hiring of two new part-time police officers – Jason Tolentino and Steven Scarselli.