After giving him the boot as borough attorney in April, Matawan Democrats are now explaining their action by claiming that Pasquale Menna charged too much and gave the borough a “lack of adequate representation,” according to a report in this week’s Bayshore Courier.


Menna, of course, is also the Mayor of Red Bank and a Democrat.

Citing a press release issued June 5 by the Democratic majority on the Matawan council as its source, the Courier reports that the group argued Menna that charged the town $35 an hour more than his replacement, James Aaron of the Ocean Township firm of Ansell, Zaro, Grimm & Aaron.

They also cited “Aaron’s 39 years of legal experience, which included municipal work, as well as his firm’s reputation,” the Courier says.

But the newspaper also has this eye-opener:

The release outlined concerns about a “lack of adequate representation” received by the former borough attorney. The group also questioned the timely and proper nature of his work.

Finally, the group questioned Menna’s ability to drop his rates in March. The Democrats said that he had been overcharging them before if Menna could have done the work for that amount the entire time.

“Overcharging?” “Lack of adequate representation?” Anybody know a good libel lawyer?

If nothing else, it’s a fairly public flogging.

Menna, you may recall, was backed by the new mayor, Republican Paul Buccellato, and the sole Republican councilmember, Linda Clifton. All the Dems went against his re-appointment in April, and none bothered to tell him not to show up at the next meeting, on May 6, Menna was quoted as saying at the time.

Now, though, he’s shrugging it all off.

“Old news,” he says. “Politics 101.”

“The reason [for his being shown the door] is the Republican mayor is doing a good job and I won’t play politics” by claiming otherwise, Menna says. So Monmouth County Dems chairman Vic Scudiery of Matawan is getting back at him, he says.

“He who pays the bills calls the tune,” Menna says.

But what’s with the late-hit press release, coming two months after his removal?

“They issued a bogus statement and they knew I couldn’t respond because of attorney-client privilege,” Menna says.

“Look, they have every right to change lawyers, and people expect that,” he says. But it’s “all politically motivated.”

Email this story