Westfield Newsroom

Lack of quorum again delays DPW hiring

Westfield Personnel Director Robert Bishop. (THE WESTFIELD NEWS FILE PHOTO)

WESTFIELD — The remote joint meeting of the Water and Public Works Commissions to deliberate on hiring a new DPW director was again cancelled due to a lack of quorum Aug. 12. 

Personnel Director Robert Bishop waited more than 10 minutes past the meeting’s scheduled start time before deciding for the fifth time to cancel, it when not enough commissioners connected to the Zoom call to form a quorum. 

At the time, severe thunderstorms were rolling through the area and many Westfield residents were reported to have lost power as a result. Bishop did not respond to a request for comment by press time.

Three candidates for the public works director’s position were interviewed June 14 by the joint commission. The candidates were Jon Hume, Robert Tober, and Kelvin Ridgley. Hume is the assistant DPW director in Saugus, Mass. Tober is the DPW director in Adams, Mass. Ridgley is the former DPW director in Baker, La., and currently works with All South Consulting Engineers. 

Bishop said ahead of Thursday’s scheduled meeting that he was confident that they would be able to reach a quorum to begin the discussion of choosing a new DPW director. Former Assistant DPW Director Francis Cain has been serving as interim director since Oct. 30, 2020, when former director David Billips retired.

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