Republican gubernatorial candidate Jack Ciattarelli is using a State Commission of Investigation report that said Gov. Phil Murphy’s administration was kept in the loop on patronage hires at the Schools Development Authority to raise funds.
“[Lizette] Delgado-Polanco fired dozens of longtime SDA employees — 14 in a single day — and then turned the Authority into a political patronage pit, hiring unqualified family and friends at huge salaries. Fired employees sued the state, resulting in settlements paid for by taxpayers,” Ciattarelli said in an email to supporters before following with a fundraising pitch.
As SDA CEO, Delgado Polanco culled dozens of longtime authority staffers and replaced them with friends and family members who frequently lacked qualifications for their new positions.
The SCI report said Murphy’s staff was kept informed about the hiring spree, though it did not suggest the governor’s office signed off on individual personnel move.
Murphy repeatedly declined to comment on the report in the days after it was released last week. On Monday, he said did not agree with all of its conclusions, though he did not name any specific conclusions.