Yes there is! Have a look at the scene_operation_tk-maya.py hook (tk-multi-workfiles2).
elif operation == “open” :
cmds.file(file_path, open=True, force=True)
You could customize this hook and add the additional “loadNoReferences = True” flag to the file command to change the behaviour when opening the scene.
To let your users choose wheather to load references or not you could add an additional checkbox into the gui that controls the flag. Or you could just make two different versions of the app and create two SG-menu options like “File open with ref” and “File open without ref”.
I hope that gives you a start.