TOMS RIVER, NJ – Toms River Councilman Josh Kopp, who approved an ordinance to hire patronage and pay-to-play lawyer, New Jersey Assemblyman Gregory McGuckin is now asking Councilman Daniel Rodrick to pay the bill for challenging McGuckin’s appointment.
McGuckin not only holds over twenty public legal appointments, earning his firm an estimated $3,000,000 in 2020, he also donated thousands of dollars to Kopp’s political campaign. Now, after awarding McGuckin a job worth an estimated $300,00 to $500,000 annually, Kopp insists Rodrick pays.
Rodrick challenged Kopp’s hire of McGuckin, who since being hired this spring has not attended a single township council meeting, despite serving now as the head of the township’s in-house legal department. McGuckin hired his partner Jerry Dasti to defend a lawsuit in court filed by Rodrick. Now, for a few hours worth of legal work and a couple of short hearings, McGuckin’s firm wants over $6,000. Kopp wants that $6,000 to be paid to McGuckin’s firm.
Kopp said he now wants Rodrick to pay his political campaign donor’s firm $6,000 but said the township should start adding interest on the payment to McGuckin. He called for the bill to be tabled to the next meeting as Rodrick was not present.
It wasn’t the only bill Kopp didn’t want to vote on. Kopp had to abstain on bills by the township paid to Berkeley Township and Borough of South Toms River due to personal conflicts.
Councilman Matt Lotano could not vote on bills paid to Preferred Behavioral Health because of a personal conflict.
Councilman Terrance Turnbach abstained from bills paid to Toms River Magistrate because of a conflict.
Councilwoman Maria Maruca abstained on a bill to the NJ Motor Vehicle Commission where she holds a politically appointed patronage job. Maruca was one of few MVC appointees who survived the Republican purge of Governor Phil Murphy in 2018.