“The Board of Trustees has again refused to amend convicted felon Anthony Mallia’s contract after he reached the $75,000 pay threshold to work for Mayor Alan Simon, essentially removing Mallia from his paid top aide position.
Simon failed to garner the three board votes needed to amend Mallia’s contract during Tuesday’s board meeting in Village Hall.
Simon and Deputy Mayor Zack Clerina supported Mallia, while Trustees Sherry McGill and Eudson Francois rejected amending Mallia’s contract. Trustee Asher Grossman, seen as the deciding vote, again abstained.
When Francois asked why Simon persisted after two previous rejections, the mayor said, “We strongly need the services of this gentleman,” without providing specifics, and there’s a vote because “I make the agenda.”
Hiring a felon
Simon originally hired Mallia in January 2018 on the heels of Mallia’s 2017 guilty plea as Ramapo building inspector to charges that involved undercharging contractors for permits and shortchanging taxpayers by $150,000 from January 2015 to February 2016. He overcharged the Hillcrest Fire Department by $75,000 for a building permit.
Mallia joined Spring Valley in January 2018 as a Simon appointee at a salary of $125,000. He had resigned his Ramapo job as part of the plea agreement.
The village had paid Mallia as Simon’s confidential aide during 2018 before the Rockland Personnel Department learned in December that Mallia had been on the village payroll in violation of civil service law with an unapproved job application. His wife, Randi, got paid $75,000 to work for Simon.
After the Rockland Personnel Department then denied him the position in March, Simon responded by convincing the Board of Trustees to sign a contract paying Mallia $75 an hour, capped at $75,000 annually.
Simon, Clerina and Grossman voted for the deal, while McGill and Francois opposed, arguing the board never got the opportunity to vote on hiring Mallia the first time and to consider his credentials and history.
Hiring Mallia as a consultant would be legal and not in defiance of the personnel ruling, the then-Village Attorney Amy Mele said. Rockland personnel officials agreed.
“As a consultant, he’d still be getting paid — and that’s taxpayers’ funds,” McGill said in March. “He was not authorized (previously) by the board. It’s not appropriate. I am not going to prison for anyone.”
Guilty plea, but no prison
Mallia had pleaded guilty first-degree tampering with public records and official misconduct.
Mallia received no prison time and remains on five years probation on the two charges. A grand jury originally charged Mallia with 188 counts, including dozens of felony counts of falsifying and tampering with business records.
The Simon administration, including Village Clerk Diana Montgomery, has not provided a copy of Mallia’s contract or other documents requested by The Journal News/lohud under the state Freedom of Information Law.
Simon, the mayor since December 2017 who had gotten removed as a judge for inappropriate behavior and later disbarred by the state courts, has a long history with Mallia.
Mallia worked as a Ramapo building inspector when Simon was the building and zoning administrator from 2008 to 2011. Mallia succeeded Simon, who had worked years as Ramapo’s town attorney for Supervisors Herbert Reisman and Christopher St. Lawrence.”
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