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Second Report: Ethington Had 'No Competence' in Health Dept, Fired Employee that Questioned Role

Written By Editor on 11/1/13 | 11/1/13

Cassandra Ethington's tenure as head of the County Health Department caused many problems, including those that were included in the first part of the Fitzmaurice Report. However, upon further inspection the situation was even worse than originally believed.

Ethington was advised by both a member of the Board of Supervisors and the County Board's attorney to not pursue the Health Department opening but did so anyway. She wrote the letter that appointed herself to the position herself.

An employee in the Department, Kim Euler questioned whether or not the appointment was legal. Ms. Euler was previously described in work reports as "Extremely effective" but Mrs. Ethington was irritated to the inquiries-- including Ms. Euler forwarding the list of concerns of the NYS Health Department. Ms. Euler was assigned additional work outside of her field. This violated Civil Service law 61(2).

Ms. Euler could not file a grievance because Mrs. Ethington was one of the people meant to send the complaint to as Personnel Director.

When Ms. Euler fell behind on the additional duties, Mrs. Ethington placed her on reduced workload. The Report then states that Mrs. Ethington lied about making the change to a dual-role.

Ethington approached [redacted] and Treasurer Bill Cherry stating that she was going to fire Ms. Euler "whether or not" she caught up with her work.

Ms. Euler was fired on August 22, 2011 even though her job was still funded until the end of the year in the budget. Ethington claimed that the firing was in part due to a "Lack of Work or Funds." Telling other personnel about the decision separate from a Board decision is a violation of NYS General Municipal Law 805-a.

The problems in the Health Department caused by Ethington continue "to this day."
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