Ex-fire chiefs’s pension worth $70K

NAUGATUCK — Former Fire Chief Charles Doback Jr. will receive an annual pension of $70,700.

The Board of Mayor and Burgesses voted 8-0 to accept his proposal at a special meeting held Tuesday night at Town Hall.

Doback, a 49-year-old Naugatuck native who was hired as a firefighter to serve the Naugatuck Fire Department on Sept. 9, 1984, worked his way up the ranks to become chief, a position he has held for five years. Doback, who also served as the borough’s fire marshal, retired as fire chief at the beginning of the month.

The Board of Fire Commissioners tried to negotiate a contract with Doback that would keep him on as fire marshal on an interim basis until the end of the year. Some members of the fire commission wanted to pay Doback substantially more than the $5,000 annual stipend he received as marshal.

A proposal was brought before the Board of Mayor and Burgesses by Mayor Robert A. Mezzo this month, but the board took no action. The fire commission was originally willing to continue negotiating with Doback, but he decided to resign as fire marshal, too, a position he legally held per state statute unless he was removed for cause, which he was not.

When contacted at his home late Tuesday, Doback said he had no comment.

Doback is a vested employee under Firefighters Pension Plan C, which entitles him to a pension equal to 75 percent of the average salary for his last three years. In those last three years as fire chief, Doback earned $79,251, $81,451, and $82,352.

Also calculated into the way his pension is figured is his unused sick day payout, which was $28,616. And he accumulated $11,128 in unused vacation days, which also is factored in. The three years salary, plus unused sick time and vacation equals $282,800. That number is divided by three and equals $94,266; 75 percent of that is $70,700.

Doback accumulated 90 unused sick days and was one of few employees left within the fire department who can do so. The Naugatuck Fire Fighters Union, Local 1219, negotiated that away about 15 years ago and now they can only accumulate 30 unused sick days.

Ken Hanks, the deputy chief under Doback, is currently the interim fire chief and Bob Weaver, former deputy fire marshal, is serving as interim fire marshal.