Schnirman responds; returns overpayments

Nassau County Comptroller Jack Schnirman (Photo courtesy of the Nassau County Comptroller's Office)

Nassau County Comptroller Jack Schnirman said he has returned the full $52,780 in overpayments he received after resigning as city manager of Long Beach.

Schnirman said in a statement that he is “aware of the recommendations in the State Comptroller’s draft audit and, in short, I agree.”

Before being elected comptroller in 2017, Schnirman served as the Long Beach city manager for six years beginning in 2011.  A draft audit conducted by state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli showed he was one of 10 former and current employees who received a total of more than $500,000 in excessive separation payments. 

“Thanks to the work of the State Comptroller’s Office, Long Beach now has the opportunity to implement even more reform,” Schnirman said, “and the right thing here is to do my part first.”

Schnirman’s overpayments were a combination of accrued sick and vacation days that exceeded the amount allowed under city codes, resulting in his getting total payments of $108,000.

“I now understand that the methods Long Beach has been using to calculate payout amounts for at least the last 25 years are different than the stricter formula originally set out in the City Code,” Schnirman said.

“I have always said that I didn’t want any money that I shouldn’t have received, and would return any overage,” he said. “And that’s exactly what I’m doing.”

Long Beach City Council President Anissa Moore said that necessary steps would be taken to make sure that everything would be in compliance with city codes as soon as possible.

“We will get to the bottom of this,” Moore said at an Aug. 20 City Council meeting, “and we intend to seek restitution for all that’s owed to the city.”

Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas is investigating the matter.

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Robert Pelaez

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