Pintor Marin Criticizes Verniero Report

After the release of an initial report from the special legislative committee that has been investigating the School Development Authority's hiring of Al Alvarez, who has been accused of sexual assault by Kate Brennan, it's clear that Gov. Phil Murphy's messed up.

Assemblywoman Eliana Pintor Marin (D-29), the co-chair of the New Jersey Legislative Select Oversight Commitee, issued the following statement today in response to the Verniero Report:

“Although the Verniero report is an attempt to analyze the issues and find answers, the lengthy and time-consuming report fails to answer the hard questions or assign blame.

“It boggles the mind that after months of interviews and investigation, Mr. Verniero and his team cannot identify the person who hired Al Alvarez to be the Chief of Staff at the Schools Development Authority. It is unacceptable and wholly inappropriate that such a fundamental question cannot be answered. This should not be an unsolvable mystery.

“The report also makes clear the governor could have been told about the allegation because the claim could have been discussed with persons ‘who have a legitimate need to know about the matter.’ It is safe to say the governor had a legitimate need to know that a person accused of rape was hired to a senior position in the Administration.

“Finally, Mr. Verniero’s report does concede mistakes were made in the hiring and retention of Mr. Alvarez which only serves to highlight the importance of the ongoing work of the Select Committee on Oversight. The findings make it abundantly evident that we must provide substantive policy recommendations regarding vetting and hiring practices of any future Governor-elect’s transition office. We intend to do just that.”

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