Executive director, aide resign from Cambridge Redevelopment Authority; independent counsel on the way
Under new scrutiny since the proposal of a project for developer Boston Properties in February and the appointment of new board members, Cambridge Redevelopment Authority executive director Joseph Tulimieri resigned Thursday, The Cambridge Chronicle reported Friday.
“The authority has become concerned that salary increases and benefit enhancements received by its executive director were not properly authorized,” Kathy Born said in a press release sent to the Chronicle. “The authority is beginning the process of hiring independent counsel and a forensic audit firm to examine these concerns. The authority is committed to determining the full extent of these matters in a transparent fashion.”
The authority had until recently been without a board for two years and eight months, with legal counsel for the new board recently looking into a “quiet period” running from Sept. 17, 2009, to May 21, 2012, the first meeting for five newly active members.
Tulimieri had been at the authority for more than three decades, but actually retired Dec. 31, 2010, when by his own account he was earning an annual salary of $220,480. His retirement benefits were $144,280.56 annually as he went on working part time, up to 960 hours a year, for the authority. A recent spreadsheet showed him making $78,617 in wages at $113 per hour.
It begged the question: When Tulimieri retired during the “quiet period,” how was compensation decided without a board?
The hiring of independent counsel, although so far for limited purposes, is significant; the use of Foley Hoag, who worked with Tulimieri during those nearly three years, was repeatedly called a conflict of interest by residents speaking during the Sept. 19 authority meeting.
An administrative assistant for the authority also resigned this week.
The Chronicle has a full report here.