Morris County Administrator John Bonnani notified former Prosecutor Robert Bianchi this week he no longer will receive a county paycheck, according to the Daily Record.
Bonnani told the newspaper the Attorney General's office advised in an email on Friday that Bianchi, a resident of Morris Plains, was not necessarily entitled to pay even though his successor has not yet been approved by the New Jersey Senate, contrary to the county's initial interpretation of the law. Bianchi was earning around $3,100 a week, the newspaper reported.
Bianchi was on the payroll for about a month after the Attorney General's office took over the Morris County Prosecutor's Office on Dec. 14 at Gov. Chris Christie's request.
The "supersession" effectively ousted Bianchi, a Democratic appointee whose five-year term was up in June, and installed attorney Fredric Knapp, a Republican, as acting prosecutor after the Democratic-controlled Senate Judiciary Committee never considered Christie's nomination of Knapp. Democrats have said the takeover was shocking, and Bianchi has filed a lawsuit challenging the state's actions.
Knapp, a Randolph resident and founding partner of the law firm Knapp, Trimboli & Prusinowski in Florham Park, is Christie's pick to be the next county prosecutor. The New Jersey Senate voted down the nomination in December to make a statement, but the governor's office said the vote was "partisan theater" and Knapp would be renominated in the new year.
A post on the law firm's website dated Monday says it has dropped Knapp's name from the firm's name because of his new role:
On December 14, Fred Knapp, was sworn in as a Deputy Attorney General and placed in charge of the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office. Fred’s nomination to become the Morris County Prosecutor was submitted to the New Jersey State Senate for a vote in June 2012; however, a vote was not taken at that time. In December, the Governor’s Office superseded the holdover Prosecutor and placed Fred Knapp in charge of the office.
We are happy to see Fred succeed in obtaining this position and we wish him the best of luck in fulfilling the position’s duties.
As a result of Fred taking on this new position, the firm will now be known as Trimboli & Prusinowski, LLC.