Former Netcong employee settles age d...

Former Netcong employee settles age discrimination suit for $50,000

There are 18 comments on the Daily Record story from Sep 11, 2012, titled Former Netcong employee settles age discrimination suit for $50,000. In it, Daily Record reports that:

A former administrative assistant for Netcong Borough who sued for alleged age discrimination when she was laid off in 2010 has settled her lawsuit claims for $50,000. The settlement between Dolores Colabella, now 74, and the borough was reached in August, according to court records.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Daily Record.

Good Old Netcong

Bayville, NY

#1 Sep 12, 2012
After reading the Daily record article about Netcong settling a lawsuit involving age descrimination, I was left wondering about a few things.
One, what was the administration thinking when they tried to fill a $165,500 budget gap by laying off a 70yr old woman making a whopping $37,900 a year? Isn't there an overpaid town administrator making over $150,000 a year with his benefit package and perks (like a free car and gas). Seems like a perfect person to lay off.
Two, how much did they have to pay the "special council" that had to be hired to defend this lawsuit? I'm sure it is at least double the $50,000 settlement.
Three, what does Mr. Buocco consider a "low sum" of money? I'm sure a 74 yr old widow who was layed off without cause has a very different definition.
Four, How much did the town have to pay Mr. Bell to defend Mrs. Collabella? Again I'm sure much more than the "low sum" of $50,000.
And finally five, how many "temp" workers did the town hire and fire to find one that did the work of Mrs. Collabella?(Remember according to Mr. Blaksley she was layed off because her position was not necessary anymore). I personally have seen at least 3 different "temps".
Is it any wonder why the last election was marked by a mad rush to find a write-in candidate for Mayor?
Knucky Thompson

Landing, NJ

#2 Sep 12, 2012
Good Old Netcong wrote:
After reading the Daily record article about Netcong settling a lawsuit involving age descrimination, I was left wondering about a few things.
One, what was the administration thinking when they tried to fill a $165,500 budget gap by laying off a 70yr old woman making a whopping $37,900 a year? Isn't there an overpaid town administrator making over $150,000 a year with his benefit package and perks (like a free car and gas). Seems like a perfect person to lay off.
Two, how much did they have to pay the "special council" that had to be hired to defend this lawsuit? I'm sure it is at least double the $50,000 settlement.
Three, what does Mr. Buocco consider a "low sum" of money? I'm sure a 74 yr old widow who was layed off without cause has a very different definition.
Four, How much did the town have to pay Mr. Bell to defend Mrs. Collabella? Again I'm sure much more than the "low sum" of $50,000.
And finally five, how many "temp" workers did the town hire and fire to find one that did the work of Mrs. Collabella?(Remember according to Mr. Blaksley she was layed off because her position was not necessary anymore). I personally have seen at least 3 different "temps".
Is it any wonder why the last election was marked by a mad rush to find a write-in candidate for Mayor?
You, my friend, are my new hero. It's about time someone got it right around here!
netcong resident

Flagtown, NJ

#3 Sep 12, 2012
yes but the water bills are not sent out two days before due anymore and are on time now
Surprised

Cedar Knolls, NJ

#4 Sep 12, 2012
netcong resident wrote:
yes but the water bills are not sent out two days before due anymore and are on time now
you have no idea what you are talking about. Furthermore please dont tell me the residents of Netcong are paying for the administrators gas.
Know It All

Sparta, NJ

#5 Sep 12, 2012
Not being familiar with case, but having an understanding of local government, here is what I suspect -

The lay off was part of a larger effort to control costs, not the single element. There have been significant cuts in state funding to local government over the past few years. What other changes in government operations took place? Shared service agreements?

There was likely no "special council" hired by the town, but one assigned by its insurance carrier. These types of law suits are very common and towns have special insurance to cover their actions. They will have to pay some form of deductible and probably a portion of the defense legal fees, but the bulk of the cost will come from the insurance carrier. BTW you used the wrong form of "council". What you meant to use is "counsel".

Since it is a settled agreement, the town will not have to pay for the litigant's defense attorney.

I can not speak to the temporary workers being hired and fired. However I can tell you that the trend in both the private and public sector is to replace workers who have left employment with either temps or part time employees. The primary reason for this is the escalated cost of pension and health benefits.

Local governments through out the state and the nation are laying off workers, primarily for economic reasons. It is a trend that will continue. Form the article it sounds like the administration tried pick from several employees and came to the conclusion that the subject employee would cause the less disruption. That being said, have you notice any diminished capacity or services from the town hall? If not, I suspect that they were able to realign the office in such a way as to continue the same work output. That would lead me to believe me that they were overstaffed to begin with.
Surprised

Cedar Knolls, NJ

#6 Sep 12, 2012
Know It All wrote:
Not being familiar with case, but having an understanding of local government, here is what I suspect -
The lay off was part of a larger effort to control costs, not the single element. There have been significant cuts in state funding to local government over the past few years. What other changes in government operations took place? Shared service agreements?
There was likely no "special council" hired by the town, but one assigned by its insurance carrier. These types of law suits are very common and towns have special insurance to cover their actions. They will have to pay some form of deductible and probably a portion of the defense legal fees, but the bulk of the cost will come from the insurance carrier. BTW you used the wrong form of "council". What you meant to use is "counsel".
Since it is a settled agreement, the town will not have to pay for the litigant's defense attorney.
I can not speak to the temporary workers being hired and fired. However I can tell you that the trend in both the private and public sector is to replace workers who have left employment with either temps or part time employees. The primary reason for this is the escalated cost of pension and health benefits.
Local governments through out the state and the nation are laying off workers, primarily for economic reasons. It is a trend that will continue. Form the article it sounds like the administration tried pick from several employees and came to the conclusion that the subject employee would cause the less disruption. That being said, have you notice any diminished capacity or services from the town hall? If not, I suspect that they were able to realign the office in such a way as to continue the same work output. That would lead me to believe me that they 99164overstaffed to begin with.
. Who is paying for the attorney bills is yet to be seen. Yes you do sound like a know it all. Disagree with you. I also want to add again that i hope we are not paying for the administrators gas. We cant even afford to pay for our own these days. What does this man do that makes him so valuable? He makes enough money to buy his own gas like the rest of us do. Please mayor and council stop this nonsense.None of the other employees get this treatment.
Good Old Netcong

Bayville, NY

#7 Sep 13, 2012
Hey "Know It All", you used the wrong form of "notice", I think you meant "noticed". Must have slipped your know it all mind.

I can go down and dispute every one of your so called points but you are so very unimformed it would ba a waist of time.

However, there were no other lay offs. It was clearly a stupid move on the Mr. Blaksley's part.

We, the taxpayers, paid for the attorney (councel)not the joint insurance fund. But, even if the fund did pay for the lawyer,(which in this case it did not) who do you think pays for the insurance? Oh yea, the taxpayer. The premiums continue to go up, especially when there are claims to settle.

By the way, "Surprised" you pay for his gas.
Know It All

Sparta, NJ

#8 Sep 13, 2012
Thank you for picking up my grammatical error. Clearly you pay attention to detail, or perhaps not. You continually spell the man's name wrong. In the article the Administrator's name is spelled "Blakeslee" not "Blakesley".

As far as disputing the points I made, please go a head. You seem to have enough time on your hands and anger in your soul to point out the flaws in my statement. But here is a better suggestion - why don't you become active in this town? I sure there are plenty of volunteer opportunities - boards, committees, commissions - heck you might even what help up the DPW and do a little litter patrol. But I bet you won't. You seem to be the type of person who will through wild claims around with out an proof.

Oh, and regarding the gas issue, it is a legitimate beef. Many towns are restricting use of municipal vehicles. So here my suggestion - find out when the governing body meets, and during time for public comment - every meeting must have one in accordance with state law - ask the gas question. My guess is that you won't. You just lurk in the weeds of the internet and whine.

BTW - the attorney's bills will be a matter of public record, once the case is settled officially. So down to town hall and request them. I bet you will not do that either.....
Netcong Resident

Cedar Knolls, NJ

#9 Sep 13, 2012
The whole layoff issue was a complete waste of taxpayers money. I totally agree with with "Good Old Netcong". He/She made all good points. You can say what you want but I'm sure it cost the town plenty of money. It will come out sooner or later.
Bull s

Bayville, NY

#10 Sep 13, 2012
Know It All wrote:
Thank you for picking up my grammatical error. Clearly you pay attention to detail, or perhaps not. You continually spell the man's name wrong. In the article the Administrator's name is spelled "Blakeslee" not "Blakesley".
As far as disputing the points I made, please go a head. You seem to have enough time on your hands and anger in your soul to point out the flaws in my statement. But here is a better suggestion - why don't you become active in this town? I sure there are plenty of volunteer opportunities - boards, committees, commissions - heck you might even what help up the DPW and do a little litter patrol. But I bet you won't. You seem to be the type of person who will through wild claims around with out an proof.
Oh, and regarding the gas issue, it is a legitimate beef. Many towns are restricting use of municipal vehicles. So here my suggestion - find out when the governing body meets, and during time for public comment - every meeting must have one in accordance with state law - ask the gas question. My guess is that you won't. You just lurk in the weeds of the internet and whine.
BTW - the attorney's bills will be a matter of public record, once the case is settled officially. So down to town hall and request them. I bet you will not do that either.....
Seems like good old netcong was just stating an opinion, you however seem to be the one filled with venom. Name calling and attacks are the only way to defend this huge waiste of tax money. I guess you had to try. Who cares how ralph spells his name? Exept maybe ralph. go back to work ralph oh I mean know it all.
stupid ass

Bayville, NY

#11 Sep 13, 2012
know it all needs to get a life
Poor Richard

Livingston, NJ

#12 Sep 13, 2012
Know It All wrote:
Thank you for picking up my grammatical error. Clearly you pay attention to detail, or perhaps not. You continually spell the man's name wrong. In the article the Administrator's name is spelled "Blakeslee" not "Blakesley".
As far as disputing the points I made, please go a head. You seem to have enough time on your hands and anger in your soul to point out the flaws in my statement. But here is a better suggestion - why don't you become active in this town? I sure there are plenty of volunteer opportunities - boards, committees, commissions - heck you might even what help up the DPW and do a little litter patrol. But I bet you won't. You seem to be the type of person who will through wild claims around with out an proof.
Oh, and regarding the gas issue, it is a legitimate beef. Many towns are restricting use of municipal vehicles. So here my suggestion - find out when the governing body meets, and during time for public comment - every meeting must have one in accordance with state law - ask the gas question. My guess is that you won't. You just lurk in the weeds of the internet and whine.
BTW - the attorney's bills will be a matter of public record, once the case is settled officially. So down to town hall and request them. I bet you will not do that either.....
I don't doubt everything you write is true. It is a great small town, but trust me when I say, Netcong is ah... a rather unique place you can't really appreciate unless you live here. Some people say the town is run by cronyism, and that is probably true.

This was not managed well by the town at all. Like always the attorneys win and the taxpayers lose. I think this town really misses our old mayor. Our current Mayor is in over his head Nick would have never let these things happen.
Fed Up

Madison, NJ

#13 Sep 13, 2012
Poor Richard wrote:
<quoted text>
I don't doubt everything you write is true. It is a great small town, but trust me when I say, Netcong is ah... a rather unique place you can't really appreciate unless you live here. Some people say the town is run by cronyism, and that is probably true.
This was not managed well by the town at all. Like always the attorneys win and the taxpayers lose. I think this town really misses our old mayor. Our current Mayor is in over his head Nick would have never let these things happen.
Thank you Jimo, don't you have things to keep you busy???????

Since: Apr 10

Location hidden

#14 Sep 13, 2012
What a surprise that the taxpayers of Netcong once again have to flip the bill for a terrible decision made by the Mayor and Council. I would also like to point out what fantastic advice they were given by our wonderful administrator and town attorney. Kudos to you all.

Maybe we should really look at some cost saving measures....How about consolidating our two fire departments into one? How about taking away Fat Ralph's free car? How about not having any more concerts in Direnzo park? By the way, I am sure we are paying for the administrator's gas, but that sure is better than paying for his groceries.

As I have said many times, this is what happens when you have a Mayor and Council made up of idiots and alcoholics.

Since: Jul 12

Location hidden

#15 Sep 13, 2012
one day Mrs. C will find out who really threw her under the bus, eh Pepperoni? I knew you would be back with your words of wisdom. But the joke is on you this time. Ha, Ha, Ha. Why not have a drink or two or how about some cake?
what

Conshohocken, PA

#16 Sep 13, 2012
Kylos Creed wrote:
one day Mrs. C will find out who really threw her under the bus, eh Pepperoni? I knew you would be back with your words of wisdom. But the joke is on you this time. Ha, Ha, Ha. Why not have a drink or two or how about some cake?
what are you talking about? What joke is on who? Your post makes no sense. Dont know who you are but maybe you should have LESS alcohol and LESS cake. Might be a happier person.
I_hate_fat_ralph

Bronx, NY

#17 Sep 14, 2012
Fat Ralph needs to be fired this fat fu@$ needs to go.

Since: Sep 12

Location hidden

#20 Sep 21, 2012
I went to high school with Mrs. C's kids. She is a doll.

She should have settled for much more.

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