This story has been updated with a statement by City Manager Charles Strome.
The City of New Rochelle today fired Deputy DPW Deputy Commissioner - Operations Joseph Cotroneo.
Cotroneo is the second top DPW official this past year to resign or be fired since the Westchester County District Attorney's office began an investigation into an alleged kickback scheme to defraud the City of New Rochelle by submitting phony invoices. Former DPW Commissioner Jeffrey Coleman resigned unexpectedly last July, just days after investigators from the DA's office visited the New Rochelle DPW City Yard at 224 East Main Street.
DPW Fleet Manager Richard Fevang, under investigation by the District Attorney for 8 of the last 11 years, is widely expected to be indicated as soon as next week.
Reached by telephone, Cotroneo hung up on a reporter seeking comment. City spokesperson and City Manager Chuck Strome did not respond to phone calls seeking comment made to their City Hall offices before 5 p.m.
Last December Joseph Cotroneo was caught by a City official using City resources to remove snow from a private commercial parking lot in the West End of New Rochelle. The parking lot is owned by Robert Lopez, a former City Council member and current Democratic City Council candidate. Also involved was Joseph Quatrochi, Working Supervisor for Streets & Highways.
Days prior to the Lopez Snow Removal incident, Cotroneo stood guard at the DPW maintenance shed as investigators from the DA's office executed a search warrant in the ongoing criminal investigation of the New Rochelle DPW.
Cotroneo was previously employed in Harrison, NY.
UPDATE: City Manager Chuck Strome emails "The decision was made by the Commissioner and is unrelated to the district attorney investigation. It was performance related."
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