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UPDATE: Parsippany Gets New Captain; Councilmen Cry Foul

Mayor blasts councilmen for getting in the way of his efforts to 'run the town.'

Amidst a storm of controversy,  Lt. Jeffrey Storms was sworn in as the township's fourth captain. The promotion ceremony took place at Town Hall Tuesday night.

Mayor James Barberio praised Storms' efforts during the crisis of Hurricane Irene last summer, and said it was necessary for public safety and preparedness to have senior-level police management to oversee the town's Office of Emergency Management.

"As the mayor, my priority is public safety," he explained.

Council members Michael dePierro, Paul Carifi Jr. and James Vigilante have criticized the mayor's move, saying there is a greater need for more patrol officers than for additional higher-ranking officers.

DePierro told Patch during a recess that despite the swearing-in he would go ahead and introduce .

The councilman made the proposal at the July 10 council meeting. He agreed to table his motion and to meet again with the mayor and DeZenzo to discuss the matter.

Mayor Barberio said a meeting did take place Monday between himself, DeZenzo and Councilmen dePierro and Vincent Ferrara.

"We agreed to go ahead with the promotion and eliminate a lieutenant" from the PPD table of organization, he said. "Two hours later, Councilman dePierro reneged on the decision."

Barberio said he decided then to move ahead with his plan to make Storms a captain.

DePierro confirmed the mayor's recounting of what transpired.

"We met, and when I got home, I just wasn't comfortable with adding another captain," he said. "So I called the mayor and told him, and then called the chief as a courtesy, given that they took the time to meet with me."

The mayor went ahead because, he said, "I did what was best for the community."

Prior to the swearing-in, two council members, Paul Carifi Jr. and James Vigilante, accused the mayor of breaking his word by going ahead with the promotion.

"It goes to show again the mayor's total disregard for the best interest of the taxpayers of Parsippany," said Councilman Paul Carifi Jr. "At last week's meeting the mayor stated that he would not make any promotions until the council as a whole could discuss it at this week's meeting.  

"I would have to say he lied to us."

Councilman Vigilante said he also is not pleased with the decision.

"I am shocked," he told Patch before the promotion ceremony. "There seems to be a pattern of disbelief and deception from the administration. Hopefully on behalf of the taxpayers, the legislative body can change that behavior and restore faith and integrity in the eyes of the taxpayer."

Earlier this year, the state Civil Service Commission refused to allow Storms' promotion to go through because his eligibility had expired. The mayor appealed the matter behind the scenes and last week told Patch that Storms' eligibility was reinstated.

The mayor insisted Jeffrey Storms is the man for the job and had the skills needed to manage OEM. 

The new captain said he wasn't interested in the controversy.

"I am grateful for the opportunity to serve the department and the community," Storms said.

dallas July 17, 2012 at 10:28 PM
Nothing new isn't that what ever mayor does looks out for his friends first than the taxpayers so I guess we didn't have to worry if the chief was going to get more money to do the job they should have left it the way it was because the old oem corr was making much less what they r going to pay storms what a waste of taxpayers money next ull have the police taking over the fire depts
Mrs. K July 17, 2012 at 10:45 PM
Congratulations Lt. Storms! Well deserved and long overdue!!!
john p maguire July 17, 2012 at 10:47 PM
Mayor Barberio Has To Go, Why Do We NEED Four (4) Captains, A Chief And A Deputy Chief For A Department That Currently Has Less Than 100 Officers. Between The Top Brass Salaries And The Sick Time Payouts To Retiring Officers You Are Bankrupting The Town And Disregarding The Advice And Criticism Of The Citizens And Taxpayers !!!!!!!!!!!! This Is A Disgrace Mayor Barberio !!!!!!!!!!!! And By The Way That $40,000. Increase To The Police Chief Was Astronomical In That It Was A 25% Increase In Salary !!!!!!!!!!!! Is Barberio Getting Kickbacks From These Career Employees ????????????
William Paavola July 17, 2012 at 11:27 PM
I have to say all facets of the town governance are disfunctional. It is like amateur hour. From the school district to the town govenment have a gross disregard for the people they are supposed to represent. I do not wish to belittle the hard working people. But the promotion was back doored and deceptive. We should be working agressively to control the costs now and for the future. The retirement plans and payouts are egregious when you compare it to the everyday working stiff. I know everytime we see Parsippany mentioned it is likely not to be in a favorable light. Other towns must be shaking their heads at us in wonder.
Disgraced July 18, 2012 at 12:29 AM
I was a supporter of the mayor but he has turned into a cancer for the town. He has, is , and will continue to disappoint until he is not re-elected. I hope he sees that. The mayor I believe is catering to those he feels will help him get re - elected. I guess he did not learn from his fall out with the Carifi's, who if you do not know is in a full out press to have him not re-elected . By his actions ( mayor ) he is either blind or just does not care. Either way the mayor needs to GO!!!!
parhome July 18, 2012 at 01:31 AM
Parsippany is a real embarrassment to its citizens. It just gets worse every week.
VietNam Vet July 18, 2012 at 04:14 AM
Here we go again another friend of the mayor being promoted.
patchitup1 July 18, 2012 at 05:48 AM
Wow sure wish they had the patch when Luther & Mimi ran the town! I see the same people who slam the field if Dreams slam the Mayor here day in and day out? I like to say people in glass houses shouldn't throw bricks! Congrat to Mr. Storms and the other officers who got awards.
patchitup1 July 18, 2012 at 06:05 AM
I shocked to hear that Mr. Carifi is out to under mine the Mayor? Who would think that the same Guy who helped try to take out his boss in the last election would turn on his old pal the mayor?
Selene July 18, 2012 at 06:19 AM
Love the controvery,as it should be.......
B. Granger July 19, 2012 at 12:13 AM
congrats to capt storm.... now alll you have to do is start making campaign contributions to mr de pierro; then youre assured to keep your promotion. apparently he helps those who help him; check out the campaign contribution shoprite made prior to getting their liquor license approved.....as to mr carifi, he only has issues when his brother is involved regarding police promotions....he knows very well that if there are 4 cpts, there are tests to get promoted but not if there are only 3....

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