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Atlantic City's $400-an-hour overseer wants state to hire him a $120K deputy

The state's $400-an-hour overseer of Atlantic City wants a six-figure assistant.

Apparently, a $400-an-hour designee to oversee the state's Atlantic City takeover isn't enough to do the job.

Even a powerful Gov. Christie insider like Jeffrey S. Chiesa, who also has the right to have his law partners, associates and paralegals bill the state for their Atlantic City work, according to the retention agreement finally released this week.

Chiesa apparently needs to hire a full time assistant - at a cost of $120,000 to $140,000 a year. Qualifications: At least one year as a "Municipal Attorney of a large urban area," and a driver's license.

The N.J. Department of Community Services is now advertising a full-time job for another lawyer to help with the nitty-gritty of taking over the financially strapped municipality, including budgeting and capital plans.

This lawyer to be named later will have the mission of making recommendations for "appointments and removal of relevant positions and membership on committees."

The job posting also says the person will "provide oversight of personnel functions, collective bargaining, classification and compensation plans and benefits."

The takeover legislation, which kicked in last month, gives Chiesa the unilateral power to hire and fire; eliminate departments, authorities, and boards; rip up union contracts; and sell off assets.

Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian, who fought against the takeover and whose government paid consultants $225,000 to prepare a detailed recovery plan that was rejected by the state, earns $103,000.

Previously, Ernst & Young billed the state $2.6 million for work analyzing city finances.