Joe Alosso retires as Oak Bluffs wastewater plant manager

Joe Alosso, at a February meeting of the Oak Bluffs Wastewater Commission. — File photo by Steve Myrick

Oak Bluffs wastewater plant manager Joe Alosso informed town officials this week that he intends to retire from his position on May 18.

The decision follows a stormy spring for Mr. Alosso, including a decision by a sharply divided Oak Bluffs wastewater commission to eliminate the plant manager’s position.

Based on an opinion from their attorney, selectmen advised the wastewater commission that it did not have the authority to take that action. Selectmen asked the commissioners to present their case for reorganization, but they have yet to do that.

Mr. Alosso said the dissension was not the only reason for his retirement, but it was a factor.

“It’s interesting when you work for elected boards,” Mr. Alosso said. “I try to focus on what my job is and not so much on the politics. It’s really too bad that politics gets involved with higher profile public employee jobs, but I guess that goes with the job. There wasn’t the most stable situation.”

Until February, Mr. Alosso was also the plant manager for Edgartown’s wastewater system, splitting time between the two towns. He resigned from that position in an agreement negotiated with the town.

A special counsel appointed by selectmen recommended that Edgartown fire Mr. Alosso, following an investigation of billing irregularities, management lapses, and violations of public records laws at the wastewater department. His resignation from the Edgartown job is effective May 16.

Mr. Alosso was philosophical about the end of his 25-year career in Oak Bluffs.

“I just figured it’s time to see what else is going on in the world,” Mr. Alosso said. “The first time I came to the Vineyard was for a job interview, the second time was with everything I owned in the back of my truck.”