Leave a comment

Detroit — Bill Nojay lives in upstate New York, where he’s a conservative radio talk show host five days a week and is campaigning for a seat in the state assembly.

And for the last seven months, he’s been running the Detroit Department of Transportation as its chief operating officer.

That is until Tuesday, when The Detroit News called Mayor Dave Bing’s office to ask about Nojay’s side jobs. Two hours after the inquiry, Bing’s staff issued a statement saying Nojay was no longer working for the department.

City officials said the company Nojay works for, TransPro, made the decision to “reassign” Nojay and gave no explanation for the move. Ron Freeland, DDOT’s chief executive and a TransPro employee, referred comment to the city Wednesday.

Nojay’s vocal politics has caused tension as well. He routinely rails against welfare and big government on his show — carried on 10 stations in upstate New York — and even gave the keynote address at a 2009 local tea party rally.

Nojay, who lives in Pittsford, N.Y., is an attorney and was a member of the Rochester-Genesee Regional Transportation Authority in New York for eight years. He wouldn’t return calls for comment Wednesday.

A Bing aide said the mayor wasn’t concerned with Nojay’s politics and that he “maintained a full work schedule in Detroit during his tenure.”

Nojay’s radio show introduction includes slams against “big unions, the education lobby and enviro wack jobs,” saying they helped drive residents out of New York State leaving a

“crumbling socialist New Age penal colony disproportionately populated by malingerers, criminals and self-serving grievance groups perennially attached to the teat of a bloated and indifferent government.”

City officials argue TransPro, a management consultant company whose owner lives in Florida, has improved Detroit’s bus service.

Spokespersons for TransPro and Parsons Brinckerhoff didn’t return calls from The News for comment.

It’s not clear what Nojay’s salary was as chief operating officer.

In Nojay’s resume, he said as COO he was “responsible for financial performance, budget development, human resources/labor relations, operations, maintenance and other department-wide operations.”

Read more of this fascinating story in The Detroit News

Also On WCHB-AM: NewsTalk 1200:
comments – Add Yours