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A picture is indeed worth a thousand words, and this one of NJEA Vice President/Montclair Mayor Sean Spiller and Montclair Education Association (MEA) President Petal Robertson says it all. A concerned Montclair citizen sent Sunlight this picture of Spiller having a discussion with Robertson and Brendan Gill, Essex County commissioner and manager of Phil Murphy’s 2017 gubernatorial campaign.
Sunlight observes that:
- MEA President Roberston apparently has her NJEA Vice President Spiller’s ear. As a Superior Court judge noted, Spiller has a fiduciary duty to Robertson and other NJEA members, so Robertson’s direct access to Spiller reveals the unusual bonds between Montclair’s mayor and the president of the Montclair teachers’ union.
- But what about the 64% of Montclair parents who want their children in school? Why don’t they have their mayor’s ear? What about the parents who held a rally in Rand Park on Sunday? Why isn’t their mayor speaking to them? The MEA apparently has all the access it wants. Montclair parents, not so much.
- Of course, the substance Spiller’s and Robertson’s discussion can never be learned. There will be no offical record of what was said and no ability for citizens of Montclair to monitor these activities of their mayor via open records laws. Their mayor has cagily avoided any disclosure and ensured his discussions with Robertson will remain private – except for Murphy’s pal Gill. Why the secrecy, Mayor Spiller?
Here is NJEA VP/Montclair Mayor Spiller’s conflict of interest captured for all to see: Roberston has a seat at the table; Montclair parents do not.