Two of the Princeton deputy administrator’s daughters work for the new consolidated Princeton and a third worked for the municipality over the holidays, a situation that has angered some municipal employees.
Kathy Monzo, who served as acting administrator for Princeton Township most of last year and appears to be being groomed to become administrator when Bob Bruschi retires, now holds three positions in the consolidated Princeton — deputy administrator, director of finance and director of health and social services. She confirmed to Planet Princeton that one daughter worked for the public works department over the holiday break stuffing envelopes, preparing mailings and answering phones and that two other daughters work in the building and construction office.
Daughter Jacqui Shaddow is a full-time, permanent secretary in the building department, Monzo said. She started working in the department in the summer as a temporary employee and was the only person to apply for the permanent position, Monzo said. A second daughter, Meg Shaddow, started working for the department last month, doing filing several hours a week. The position is temporary and the daughter is getting all the building and construction documents in order post-consolidation, Monzo said.
The employees who believe the hirings are unfair say the municipality needs to have a hiring policy that bans nepotism. The few employees willing to speak with Planet Princeton on the matter said the hirings are particularly upsetting, and are a blow to employee morale given that several municipal employees lost their jobs as a result of consolidation.
But Monzo defended the hirings, saying her daughters were independently hired and she did not participate in the process. She also said some of her daughters have worked for the municipality in the past on a temporary basis in the past, before she became acting administrator.
“We have always had a practice in the Township — and I’m sure it is the same in the Borough — that family members could work for the municipality,” Monzo said. “They just can’t be directly supervised by their family members. A number of people’s family members have worked for the municipality.”
Monzo also said there was only a hiring freeze early on in the year last year as the effects of consolidation were being assessed.
“There were several areas that needed additional help, and we hired temporary or seasonal (help) to cover it, and construction was one of those areas,” Monzo said.
The employees who spoke to Planet Princeton said the fact that Monzo is not supervising her daughters and allegedly did not have any say in their hirings does not make the situation better, because she was the acting administrator, not just another employee or department head. “Even if she is not directly supervising them, she was the acting administrator of the Township,” said one employee who did not want his/her name revealed. “She was the big boss. It’s not better, it’s even worse to put someone in the position of having to supervise someone whose relative they ultimately report to.”