Tuesday, November 21, 2017

City Council Candidate John Allen Named Chief of Staff by Mayor Zimmer and Mayor Elect Bhalla

Mayor Zimmer and Mayor-Elect Bhalla Announce New Chief of Staff:

Mayor Dawn Zimmer announced today that she will appoint John Allen to serve as Chief of Staff effective December 4, 2017.

“In consultation with Mayor-Elect Bhalla, I am appointing John Allen as Chief of Staff,” said Mayor Dawn Zimmer.
John Allen New Chief of Staff for Mayor Zimmer and
Mayor Elect Ravi Bhalla - photo via Facebook
“John will help ensure that there is a smooth transition between administrations and will be a tremendous asset to Mayor Bhalla and the City of Hoboken.” "John has all the right qualities and experience to take on this important role in City Hall,” said Mayor-Elect Ravinder S. Bhalla. 

“I look forward to working with John as my Chief of Staff in 2018.” Mr. Allen is an attorney who specializes in the representation of governmental bodies, including boards of education and municipalities. He serves on the Board of Directors of Easterseals New Jersey, one of the state’s oldest and largest charitable organizations dedicated to empowering individuals with disabilities. He is a graduate of Rutgers University and earned his law degree at Rutgers School of Law. 

Editor's Note: 

There had been some speculation that perhaps former Zimmer Chief of Staff Vijay Chaudhuri would be appointed to be Ravi Bhalla's Chief of Staff but it looks like he is forging ahead with other opportunities. Vijay had previously resigned mid-week to join the Bhalla campaign as manager in late August.

As for John Allen, this is an interesting move for a full time lawyer in an established firm that actually brought in more in government contracts in the prior year than Ravi Bhalla's law firm according to the Michael Defusco campaign. Michael's prior assertions are referenced here with the following link:

In Hoboken DeFusco goes after Bhalla for adding political establishment attorney

We will have to see how this plays out but these appointments usually go to someone more junior and more familiar with the local political landscape then John has exhibited to date at least publicly.

Additional comments from Michael Defusco appear on Hudson County View's latest piece on the hire: