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Pete Cammarano

Cammarano: I didn’t hire Alvarez

Unclear who gave job to former Schools Development Authority chief of staff

By Nikita Biryukov, January 10 2019 1:03 pm

Gov. Phil Murphy’s chief of staff Pete Cammarano said he did not hire former Schools Development Authority chief of staff Al Alvarez and did not know who did, though he acknowledged that Alvarez could have been a political hire.

In testimony delivered earlier this week Jose Lozano, who led Murphy’s transition team, said he was unsure who made the decision to hire Alvarez for the SDA job.

Since then, it’s been unclear who cleared the hire of the staffer who has since been accused of sexual assault by state Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency chief of staff Katie Brennan.

Former SDA chief Charles McKenna said he was asked to meet with Alvarez, his future chief of staff, by Lozano. Lozano testified on Tuesday that Alvarez told him he would be chief of staff at the authority and asked him to set up a meeting with McKenna, who would be his boss.

Thursday marked Cammarano’s second appearance before the Special Committee on Oversight. He first testified before the panel in December, but his testimony was cut short after the panel reached it’s closing time for the day.

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