Hoboken Mayor-elect Ravi Bhalla will be departing high-powered law firm Florio Perucci Steinhardt and Fader tomorrow, three days prior to being sworn in.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
“Leaving the firm is bittersweet as I will truly miss the partners, associates, staff members and clients who I have worked so closely with at Florio Perrucci Steinhardt & Fader over the past four years. I am so grateful to have been part of such a remarkable team,” Bhalla, a firm partner, said in a mass email sent out by FPSF.
“The entire firm is proud of Ravi and all of his accomplishments as an exceptional attorney and as a public servant. We will greatly miss him and we know the City of Hoboken will benefit greatly from his leadership,” said ex-Gov. James Florio, a co-founder and partner at the firm.
Last month, Bhalla won a hotly contested mayoral race against five other opponents, including three other elected officials.
The victory, historic since he will be the first Sikh mayor in New Jersey, didn’t come cheap: Hudson County View exclusively reported that it took over half a million dollars to propel Bhalla into the winner’s circle.
The Rochelle Park-based law firm gave the councilman-at-large some headaches during the election cycle, as chief rival Mike DeFusco, Hoboken’s 1st Ward councilman, alleged Bhalla had a conflict of interest on the Suez contract since the agency was a client of FPSF.
Bhalla ended up abstaining on the matter, but DeFusco later filed an ethics complaint against him for voting on the Hoboken Yard property in 2014, since the property is owned by NJ Transit – another FPSF client.
The Bhalla camp wrote off the complaint as a “desperate political stunt.”
The law firm formally changed their name at the end of last month, with Camden County Freeholder Director Lou Cappelli, Jr. taking the reigns from Paul Fader.
Fader, a former Englewood mayor, passed away less than two weeks later (h/t The Record).