De Blasio says Emergency Management head will keep job — until successor is found

Mayor de Blasio said in a statement on Monday night that Office of Emergency Management head Joseph Esposito will be leaving his post after a transition period — ending a day of confusion about whether he had been fired and who is leading the agency.

“We have started the process of leadership change at New York City Emergency Management. Commissioner Joe Esposito will continue to lead OEM as we conduct a national search for his successor,” the mayor said in the statement.

The announcement comes after Esposito was ostensibly fired on Friday by deputy mayor Laura Anglin after the two got into a heated exchange during a meeting about the city’s response to a paralyzing snow storm last month.

Mayor de Blasio was out of town at the time, and Esposito responded to Anglin by saying only the mayor could demand his resignation.

Without word from de Blasio, Esposito showed up to work on Monday, and the Office of Emergency Management said in a statement that he was still leading the agency.

Esposito and de Blasio met later Monday at Gracie Mansion, but no announcement about his job was made by either the mayor or by him following the meeting.

As the chaos developed on Monday, several members of the city council came to Esposito’s defense.

Upon hearing of the mayor’s statement that Esposito will ultimately step down, Council Speaker Corey Johnson told The Post: “I’m bewildered and confused. Joe deserved better than this.”

Councilman Joe Borelli, of Staten Island, added: “It’s disappointing. It will be difficult to find someone matching Esposito’s credentials no matter how wide of a net the administration casts.”

The mayor’s statement about Esposito’s departure said that City Hall looks “forward to exploring additional opportunities for Commissioner Esposito to remain in the administration.”

Source: Read Full Article