NEDC board OKs raises

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NAUGATUCK — The Naugatuck Economic Development Corporation Board of Directors approved raises for its two employees last week.

The board gave NEDC CEO and President Ron Pugliese a $4,000, or 5.6 percent, raise to bring his salary to $75,000. Administrative assistant Lori Bourassa received an $800 increase, or 4.2 percent, to bring her salary to $20,000.

The NEDC is a quasi-public organization that receives private funding and a yearly stipend from the borough. The borough is giving the NEDC $94,050 this fiscal year.

Board members Ed Fennell and state Rep. Rosa Rebimbas (R-70) voted against the raises, saying the increase was too much at once.

“I do believe that Ron and Lori do go above and beyond what is required and asked of them. I’ve seen it personally,” Rebimbas said. “I do believe we’ve failed to do the appropriate increases in the past. And it’s not whether or not they deserve the increases. I think that we all agree in that regard. … I can’t support that at this time. I wish it was spread out.”

Fennell echoed Rebimbas’ comments.

“I would have liked to seen two separate motions and I’d like to see the raise spread out a little further,” Fennell said.

The consensus among other board members was that it hasn’t given out raises recently and might not give another in the near future.

“There haven’t been any raises within the organization for a number of years and there is no guarantee that there are going to be any raises next year. With the amount that has been accomplished over the last two years with no increases, especially with Ron specifically, it’s warranted,” said Jay Carlson, chairman of the board.