HAVERHILL — Police Chief Alan DeNaro has filed for disability retirement, according to city retirement board officials. His last day would be June 30.
The city has not released information about the nature of the disability. DeNaro wasn’t immediately available for comment.
DeNaro turns 65 this month, according to city officials, and is required by state law to retire at this age. He is expected to receive his first “superannuation” retirement payment one month after his retirement date, officials said.
According to the city’s human resources department, DeNaro began his job with the city on Oct. 28, 2002, and that his contract expires this Oct. 28.
According to his contract, his salary is $198,185 for 2018; $210,235 for 2019 and $223,017 for 2020, not including $8,000 per year for also serving as the city’s Emergency Management Director.
However, DeNaro’s contractual salary amounts differ from what he was actually paid.
So far this year, he has been paid $213,168, which includes $38,012 in vacation buy-back, $51,606 in sick pay buy-back, $9,503 in overtime and $11,403 in other payments, according to the Human Resources Department.
DeNaro received gross pay of $361,621 in 2020; $289,935 in 2019 and $289,935 in 2018, all of which included other accrued benefits, according to the Human Resources Department.
Based on his almost 18 years as chief, DeNaro stands to receive 45-50% of his salary based on the average of his highest three years of pay, retirement officials said.
Based on the average of his last three years of contractual pay, DeNaro could receive approximately $98,000 to $109,000 in annual retirement pay.
Any employee approved for an accidental disability, however, is entitled to 72% of their highest salary, retirement officials said.
The higher rate could boost his annual payments to roughly $157,000 per year.
When asked to comment on DeNaro’s application for retirement, Mayor James Fiorentini said he was advised by the city solicitor not to comment as it is a personnel matter and commenting could leave the city open to liability.
David Van Dam, the city’s retirement board administrator, said that in cases where a city employee files for disability retirement, that application would first go before the board, which would gather medical records and schedule an executive session with the board’s attorney as well as the employee and their attorney.
He said the entire process can take, on average, up to 12 months, depending on the backlog of disability retirement filings.
“The board would then make a decision if it should go before a PERAC (Public Employee Retirement Administration Commission) medical panel of three doctors, who would conduct a physical exam,” Van Dam said. “Those doctors would send their assessment to the board, which would meet again in executive session to discuss the details with the board’s attorney, and they would meet again in executive session with the employee and their attorney to determine if more information is needed or if the disability is approved or denied.”
If approved, the applicant would begin receiving disability payments. If denied, the applicant has the right to appeal the decision to the Contributory Retirement Appeal Board (CRAB).
Van Dam said that while that process is taking place, the employee could immediately begin receiving their retirement benefits.
Retirement benefits are free of state tax, regardless of the type of retirement, but are federally taxable, Van Dam said.