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Munoz: I think Alvarez hired himself

By Nikita Biryukov, January 22 2019 1:36 pm

Assemblywoman Nancy Munoz (R-Summit) said she thinks former Schools Development chief of staff Al Alvarez gave himself that role in the Murphy administration.

“I think Al Alvarez hired Al Alvarez. That’s why we need to find out — some of the documents are like, ‘he was greenlighted,’ but who they came from is redacted,” Munoz told the New Jersey Globe. “I don’t know. We all agree we would like that kind job if we just have to walk in and say ‘I’m your new chief of staff.’”

It’s not clear what documents Munoz is referring to. The committee has yet to release any documents gathered in the course of its investigation to the public.

The identity of the person that hired Alvarez has become a prime focus of the Select Committee on Oversight investigating Alvarez’s hiring.

So far, several high-level individuals involved with Gov. Phil Murphy’s transition — including former Murphy chief of staff Pete Cammarano, chief counsel Matt Platkin and transition executive director Jose Lozano — have denied hiring Alvarez.

“Nobody actually claims to have hired him, so who hired him?” Munoz said.

Transition counsel Raj Parikh will appear before the committee Friday, and Cammarano has been asked to make a third appearance before the panel on the same day.

“He’s supposed to come back, and that’s what my understanding is. We asked him to come back,” Munoz said. “Chris Porrino said he would only come back to hear from the two attorneys. I think we set the agenda, hopefully, so I do expect him.”

Porrino, a former New Jersey Attorney General, has been tapped to serve as the Murphy administration’s attorney for matters concerning Alvarez.

Katie Brennan, chief of staff at the State Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency, has accused Alvarez of sexually assaulting her in April, 2017, when they were both involved in Murphy’s gubernatorial campaign.

At the time, Brennan was a volunteer for the campaign. Alvarez then handled outreach to Muslim and Latino outreach for the same.

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