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One of Gov. Phil Murphy’s top aides will soon leave his post to lead an organization with significant authority over the state’s pensions.
Gregory Petzold, Murphy’s deputy chief of staff of intergovernmental affairs, told the governor Today that he will resign soon accept a position as executive director of the Police and Firemen’s Retirement System (PFRS), the New Jersey Globe has learned.
The job is contingent upon board approval at their meeting on Monday.
It is not unusual for senior members of the front office staff to depart around the midpoint of a governor’s term.
In previous administrations, high-level staffers were often told to leave around the midterms or stay on board through the next election.
Last year, Murphy signed a bill reorganizing the PFRS.
Under the new structure, the executive director will manage the pension system’s day-to-day operations and report to the PFRS board.
Petzold, respected by multiple factions of the New Jersey Democratic Party, has worked for Murphy for several years, including on the governor’s 2017 campaign.
He rose to his current post after Adam Alonso left the administration to advise Murphy on political matters from outside state government.
There’s no word yet on who will replace Petzold, whose position involves handling external politics for the governor, including coordinating with party leaders and local elected officials.
Any announcement on Petzold’s replacement is unlikely to come before Murphy returns from a family trip to Germany on Sunday.