West New York promotes Baez to BA, Castaneda to serve as special projects manager

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The Town of West New York promoted Luis Baez, the assistant business administrator, to business administrator, while his predecessor, Jonathan Castaneda, is now poised to serve as special project manager.

New West New York Special Projects Manager Jonathan Castaneda and new Business Administrator Luis Baez.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

Their board of commissioners voted unanimously (5-0) to make Baez the BA for one year, from today through October 6th, 2022, at an annual salary of $125,000 a year, according to a copy of the resolution.

While there was no measure naming Castaneda as the special projects manager, Mayor Gabriel Rodriguez said that would be his new role.

“This is a change that we’re doing to move the administration forward. We’re restructuring our roles. Jonathan will now exclusively be in special projects, which is something that he is very good at … I think that this should be an absolute step in the right direction,” he told HCV.

“He is a driving force in our special projects. Luis is just as important, which is why we’ve assigned him as our BA dealing with all personnel duties. It’s a separation of duties.”

When they were hired in 2019, two of the first major hires of the Rodriguez administration, Baez earned about $90,000 and Castaneda made around $120,000 annually.

According to public records, their salaries were $94,375 and $125,000 last year, respectively. In their form of government, commissioners are able to make new hires for their departments as long as they can verify their compensation is within the budget.

Rodriguez added that he had no plans to hire a new assistant business administrator at this time.

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