Democrat Jaclyn Veasy began her second term as Evesham mayor last night with diminished power after a face-off between two influential South Jersey law firms didn’t go her way.
The all-Democratic council voted to toss their township solicitor, Robert Wright, Jr. of Malamut & Associates, and replaced him with Christopher Orlando of Parker McCay.
Three councilmembers – Eddie Freeman III, Patricia Hansen and Ginamarie Espinoza – vote for Parker McCay, the firm run by Phil Norcross, the brother of powerful political powerbroker George Norcross. Veasy and Heather Cooper voted to keep Malamut, a firm run by Adam Malamut, an ally of Veasey and State Sen. Troy Singleton (D-Delran). Orlando is a key insider in his own right.
The move follows an earlier vote this week in Lumberton, where Parker McCay also ousted Malamut for the townships’ legal work.
Cooper, the Burlington County Democratic vice chair who was re-elected in November on a slate with Veasy and Hanse, was unable to get the votes for another term as deputy mayor. She nominated Espinosa, an aide to Rep.-elect Donald Norcross (D-Camden), but Freeman won the post with the backing of Hansen and Espinosa.