LEWISTON — Jon Connor, a former state representative and military veteran, has been named director of planning and code enforcement.

Jon Connor, a Lewiston native, has been named the new director of Planning and Code Enforcement in Lewiston. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal file

The hire comes during a period of turmoil in the department, which has seen several of its staff leave following the city’s decision to terminate the contract of longtime Director David Hediger.

Connor, a Lewiston native and mayoral candidate this past fall, has owned and operated AVB Logistics, which according to a city news release, has given Connor expertise in strategic planning, program management, operational direction, financial analysis, human resources and more.

City administration said Connor’s experience in coordinating complex operations and managing budgets of roughly $12 million, “aligns seamlessly with the responsibilities of the position.”

“Jon Connor’s extensive experience and unwavering commitment to service make him ideal to lead our Planning and Code Enforcement Department,” Brian O’Malley, acting city administrator, said. “I have full confidence that Jon’s leadership will be instrumental in driving forward Lewiston’s development initiatives while upholding the integrity of our codes and regulations, all while paving the way for a prosperous future for our community.”

The city advertised the job on various job websites and municipal employment boards. Afterward, a committee consisting of departmental staff chose Connor, who will begin working this week.


“As a veteran and business owner, I understand the value of adaptability and sound decision-making,” Connor said. “I bring a unique set of skills and experiences that will translate seamlessly to the department, which requires effective coordination, abundant communication and leadership.”

Mayor Carl Sheline, who beat Connor in a close mayoral runoff election in December, said he respects Connor and is excited that he has taken the role.

“Jon Connor comes with a breadth of professional background that will be invaluable to the city,” he said.

The position oversees a department responsible for managing planning, permitting, and code enforcement functions for the city, which includes development review, zoning and land use, building and sanitation inspections, and more.

“The team is comprised of administrative staff who serve as the initial and pivotal point of contact with the public,” the release states.

Early this year, city leaders decided not to renew Hediger’s contract and proposed cutting the city sanitation officer position in the wake of a temporary closure of the popular restaurant DaVinci’s Eatery due to an ongoing roach issue.

The decision was met with considerable criticism from code enforcement staff and the public, and highlighted a debate over the role of code enforcement and its impact on economic development.

This week, Code Enforcement Officer Adam Jones announced he is leaving Lewiston to take a director position in another municipality. Jones’ announcement comes following the departure of several other staff, including code officer Nick Richard.

Connor is listed as a candidate in the Republican primary for Maine State Senate District 21 on June 11, but when asked Thursday, Connor said he is no longer running.

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