Cranford reorganization meeting brings changes

CRANFORD, NJ — On Tuesday, January 3, Cranford held its reorganization meeting. Tom Hannen was sworn in as the town’s new mayor, Patrick Giblin as deputy mayor, and commissioners are Andis Kalnins, Mary O’Connor and the newly elected Ann Dooley. Ryan Cooper was sworn in as the town’s new attorney. Hannen was also nominated and elected as chairman of the Township Committee, and Giblin was nominated and elected as Vice Chairman of the Township Committee.

When it came to replacing the township attorney, Cooper was elected for a one-year term as the township attorney. Kalnins was the only one that voted against this decision.

“I believe we are in complicated legal times and should be bringing in someone with significant knowledge of municipal law and that has contacts in that area too,” Kalnins said during the reorganization meeting.

Cooper expressed his commitment to serve Cranford and bring his expertise to the town.

“I’m very honored and excited to bring my professional skills to the community,” Cooper told LocalSource over the phone. “I’ve been committed to this town for a long time.”

Township Clerk Tara Rowley was honored for her 10 years of work as she congratulated the new officials elected to their positions. There was an empty seat at the meeting that belonged to Township Administrator Terence Wall. Wall was absent due to the death of his nephew.

“I’d like to thank Jon Bramnick for swearing me in tonight,” Commissioner Mary O’Connor said. “I would also like to thank the residents for putting their faith in me.

Next to raising my daughter, serving the town of Cranford has been the most rewarding job I’ve ever done. The flooding and repairing programs have been a success. The most important contribution I made was funding the Cranford Community Connection. As Commissioner of Public Safety, I will continue to work with the police and fire departments to promote pedestrian safety and awareness.”

Dooley spoke more about the new township attorney and expressed her confidence in him.

“I will be an official member of the planning board,” Dooley said. “As the commissioner, I’m looking forward to all my appointments and assignments. I look forward to working with Ryan Cooper. I practiced law for 25 years. Ryan surprised me; he knocked my socks off. He has expertise in areas we desperately need. It’s a huge advantage to us. I cannot tell you how impressed I am with his education in municipal law. Fifty-four percent of my taxes go to the Board of Education, and he’s a member of the Board of Education. I’m very excited he will be our township engineer.”

When attempts were made by LocalSource to directly contact Mayor Hannen, Deputy Mayor Giblin, Commissioners O’Connor and Kalnins for comment, none of them responded prior to press time.

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