Bayonne Mayor Davis has a pick for 2015 LD 31 race, will announce by end of month

BAYONNE - Bayonne Mayor Jimmy Davis got right to the point when asked Monday if he has a preferred candidate for the 31st Legislative District state Assembly seat in 2015.

JimmyDavisNov.17,2014

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BAYONNE – Bayonne Mayor Jimmy Davis got right to the point when asked Monday if he has a preferred candidate for the 31st Legislative District state Assembly seat in 2015.

“Yes, I do. I’m going to keep that [to myself] for another week or so,”: Davis told PolitickerNJ on Monday following the dedication of the Hudson County city’s first new firehouse in decades. “I’ll leave it up to him. We’ve already had a conversation. He knows who it is. Before the end of the month, I will announce who it is. I just don’t want to overstep him. He should be the one standing next to me when I make the announcement.”

The mayor of Bayonne traditionally plays the lead role in selecting one of the Assembly members from the 31st LD, which includes all of Bayonne and parts of Jersey City. During the 2014 Bayonne mayoral race, the two incumbent assemblymen, Democrats Charles Mainor and Jason O’Donnell, both backed then-incumbent Mayor Mark Smith, who was defeated by Davis in a June runoff. O’Donnell also served as campaign manager for Smith.

Among the names floated as a potential challenger to O’Donnell in a potential 2015 primary fight is Nicholas Chiaravalloti, an attorney from Bayonne who served as state director for U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) before resigning in 2007 to focus on an unsuccessful bid for the 31st LD Assembly seat. Chiaravalloti is the executive director of the Guarini Institute for Government and Leadership at Saint Peter’s University.

Chiaravalloti was present along with Davis at Monday’s fire house opening. O’Donnell, an Assemblyman since 2010 and Bayonne firefighter who served as Bayonne’ public safety director in the Smith administration, was not present. Mainor was also not present at the ceremony.

Davis said that when he made his soon-to-be-announced selection, he had one main priority.

“I want someone who will go down to Trenton and fight for the city of Bayonne,” Davis said. “For the last couple of years, our school district has been the most underfunded school district in the state of New Jersey. We need someone who will help us get funding.”

Bayonne Mayor Davis has a pick for 2015 LD 31 race, will announce by end of month