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News10NBC investigates complaints into Perinton town supervisor

November 02, 2018 08:30 PM

News10NBC is investigating complaints about the supervisor of one of the biggest towns in Monroe County. 

The people who contacted us are concerned the supervisor isn't doing the job he was elected to do because of the side job he's working.

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The person in question is Mike Barker, the town supervisor in Perinton. 

Barker got elected for his third term last year, and it's a full-time job. But he's also a teacher at Bishop Kearney.

News10NBC Chief Investigative Reporter Berkeley Brean: "At least two people have contacted me concerned about this part-time job." 

Mike Barker, Perinton town supervisor: "Right, and their concerns are?"

Brean: "Their concern is that you're not here. So what do you say to that?"

Barker: "Their concerns are... first of all they haven't been here, otherwise they would know that I have been here."

Mike Barker says he started teaching at Bishop Kearney -- his alma mater - in September. 

He says he teaches two mornings a week from 8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.  

He says, on those days, he stays late at the town hall and he works on the weekend. 

Barker: "There's no punching of a clock, in or out, and I put my schedule against anybody."

Brean: "Your website says that the position of supervisor is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the town."

Barker: "And I'm responsible for the day-to-day operations."

Brean: "But how can you do that if you're not here on a particular morning twice a week?"

Barker: "Those mornings I don't schedule meetings. I do have a cell phone. Bishop Kearney knows that my priority is here."

News10NBC checked with almost every supervisor within the larger towns of Monroe County. The supervisors in Chili, Gates, Brighton, Irondequoit and Penfield do not have second jobs.

However, the supervisor in Greece, Bill Reilich, sits as the chairman of the Republican Party in Monroe County. And the Henrietta supervisor, Steve Schultz, says he does a couple hours a month consulting for start-up businesses. 

The minutes in Perinton show Barker has not missed a town board meeting since he started teaching. He showed News10NBC his November calendar which is marked with town-related meetings.

Before he was supervisor, Barker was a teacher in Fairport for 26 years.

Brean: "Do you like the job?"

Mike Barker: "Being town supervisor?"

Brean: "Yeah."

Barker: "It's a very good job. I like teaching better."

Barker: "I'm as happy as I've been in five years."

News10NBC found out that Baker makes $112,000 as supervisor. That's one of the highest paid, and it is just slightly less than the county executive. 

There is no law that prevents a town supervisor from having a side job.

Barker told News10NBC he is not running for re-election. So next year will be his last in that office. 

Credits

Berkeley Brean

Copyright 2018 - WHEC-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

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