Boss Perrucci

It’s tough to tell a Democrat from a Republican in Warren County these days, but it’s clear that former Warren County Democratic Chairman (and Bob Torricelli campaign treasurer) Michael Perrucci is emerging as a significant power in solidly-Republican Warren County. A fledgling law firm, Florio Perrucci Steinhardt & Fader, includes: former Democratic Governor Jim Florio; current Warren County Republican Chairman (and Lopatcong Mayor) Douglas Steinhardt; Paul Fader, the ex-Mayor of Englewood who served as Chief Counsel to Governors James E. McGreevey and Richard Codey; and Bloomsbury Mayor Mark Peck, a former aide to Assemblyman Michael Patrick Carroll who ran for the GOP Assembly nomination in the 23rd district last year. In a fortunate coincidence, Fader’s new legal work reportedly includes a contact with the South Jersey Transportation Authority, which was approved by the Governor’s office prior to Fader signing up with the firm. The Governor’s office also signed off on the appointment of James Stettner as Chief of Security of the Delaware River Joint Toll Commission; Stettner is a Phillipsburg Councilman and was Council President when Perucci was named redeveloper for several parts of the town, including a brownfield site that had been set aside for the New Jersey Transportation Museum. The site was to be purchased with a combination of county funds and an $800,000 state Economic Development Fund grant approved a few years ago. The state has since backed off its funding commitment and Perucci is interested in developing riverfront condominiums instead. Fader has developed a certain affinity for Warren County over the last few years. He helped push through legislation that assured Warren would get two of the five Commissioner slots on the DRJTC. The commission recently purged some Republican appointees, including the wife of former Mercer County Executive Robert Prunetti. This has enhanced Perrucci’s ability to deliver some jobs at the DRJTC. Steinhardt’s father, Hackettstown (and Pohatcong) Municipal Court Judge Joseph Steinhardt, is reportedly Perrucci’s choice to replace Robert Ellwood as the Phillipsburg Municipal Court Judge.

Boss Perrucci