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Ocean County College Seeks Apology For Statements made By Faculty Association Reps

Ocean County College
Photo courtesy Ocean County College Facebook Page

Ocean County College says allegation launched against them by a former faculty member and the NJEA are false and they are prepared to fight them with legal action if need be.

Dr. Jon Larson
Ocean County College President Dr. Jon Larson (OCC)

At a meeting held by Ocean County College Board of Trustee’s on Monday, litigation committee chairperson Stephen Leone read a resolution formally responding to allegations of impropriety in the college’s purchasing department, calling them “hearsay allegations contained in a lawsuit filed by a disgruntled former employee”. Leone stated that the allegations are “are totally unacceptable and irresponsible.”

Chris Berzinsky and Kathy Tietge, from the state’s teacher’s Union and the OCC Faculty Association, have called for college President Dr. Jon Larson, along with the entire purchasing department to step down. Berzinsky claims that a former employee of the purchasing department has stepped up as a whistleblower with proof of the impropriety and they have evidence to support their accusations.

The College Board of Trustee’s however says the allegations by Berzinski and Tietge are completely unfounded, and stem from contract negotiations between the union and college. Board of Trustee member Jerry Dasti mentioned that in the past allegations have been launched against the college by union members who were not happy with contract talks.

“I won’t sit here and be told I am unethical because someone in the union is unhappy with the results from a talks of contract negotiations.” Says Dasti

Board member Harvey York noted the issue has nothing to do with politics, identifying himself as a “liberal” and “pro union”, however the claims by the Berzinsky go into the realm of personal attacks.

“What I don’t understand how society is allowed to change the discourse where instead of attacking the people instead of the issues.” Adding “This isn’t a union issue; this is a failure of civility.”

Leone has demanded an immediate retraction of Birzinsky’s and Tietge’s claims as well as issue an apology to the board as well as the students and faculty.

Adding that legal council will analyze the claims moving forward, saying “if they want to fight. We’re prepared to fight”


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