The city plans to eliminate the part-time local emergency planning coordinator position it created 15 years ago.
Its functions will be shifted to the Capitol Region Emergency Planning Committee beginning in January.
The former chairman of the city’s Salary Committee, Frank Nicastro, said the move is part of the ongoing effort by the city to look at the regionalization of services.
“We’re transitioning this position to the state,” Nicastro said, adding that nobody was doing it in order to dump Ed Luczkow from the job at City Hall.
The two part-time city workers who handle emergency planning -- Emergency Management Director Richard Ladisky and Luczkow – together earn a bit more than $20,000 annually.
The emergency management post held by Ladisky won’t be touched.
City councilors unanimously approved the change last month – after debating what to do for at least seven years -- and established the switchover will take place January 1.
Mayor Art Ward said it makes sense “to utilize the services of the state” where possible and putting the LEPC function in the hands of the regional planning committee makes sense.
He said that the regional committee can take “a coordinated effort” to take care of issues raised.
At least 28 municipalities in the Hartford area have signed on with regional planning committee since its inception a decade ago.
The city’s fire department is already heavily involved in emergency planning with the regional committee.
The city created the part-time planning coordinator position in the first months of Nicastro’s term as mayor, with the primary responsibility of organizing and making useful the federally-mandated chemical disclosure forms filed by city businesses and other entities.
The forms disclose which companies are using potentially toxic chemicals and provide a sense of the scale of the use as well.
Only two people have held the job – Robley Newton, whom Nicastro said did “a fantastic job,” and Luczkow. Nicastro said Luczkow did “an outstanding job.”
Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.
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