Officials in Glen Ridge have been mum about the apparent suspension of Robert O’Connor, the borough’s construction official, two weeks ago — refusing to talk about what they call a personnel matter. But whatever’s going on, the matter also affects contractors in Montclair, because Montclair pays Glen Ridge $75,000 a year to have O’Connor oversee Montclair’s construction office — an arrangement made in the wake of Montclair’s decision last spring not to renew the contract of longtime construction official Robert McLoughlin.
Montclair’s Planning Director Janice Talley was in Glen Ridge Borough hall this morning, where she was asked to answer some questions in a hearing on the personnel matter. No explanation or hint of the reason for O’Connor’s suspension has been shared.
Talley told us by phone today that Montclair has appointed its own construction official to temporarily oversee the office. “That’s our short-term solution,” she says. But she’s going back to Glen Ridge tomorrow to discuss the long-term implications with Glen Ridge administrator Michael Rohal. She describes Friday’s powwow as a “practical meeting about how to handle our needs and their needs.”