County news # 2Stan Klotz, President of the Marshall County Plan Commission was before the County Council “again” to discuss and seek approval of a new part-time Code Enforcement Officer.  While his request has been on the table for several months, the Council voted 2-4-1 to approve the position and salary.

Klotz told County Council members there was a slight change in the proposal.  Initially the plan was to implement a special fee if the county had to take someone to court.  Klotz said the county attorney, Jim Clevenger told him, “it’s a good idea but in theory it doesn’t work that well,” referring to being able to collect the additional fee.  Members of the Plan Commission asked to remove the special court fee and Klotz said, “With the increase in fees, we will more than cover that cost.”

The recommendation was to hire a part-time position, 15 hours a week at a pay scale of $17.40 to $20.05.

When asked by County Council President Judy Stone if Plan Director Ralph Booker had given formal notice of his retirement, Klotz said nothing has been received leaving them in “limbo.”

County Commissioner and Plan Commission member Mike Delp suggested waiting to move forward with the part-time position until a new Plan Director is in place.  He said he had heard that Booker was leaving the end of June.  While Delp said, “My gut feeling is we do need somebody part-time, why go ahead at this point with the eminent retirement of Ralph Booker.”  He did say he didn’t see how a Plan Director could cover code enforcement and planning too.

Stan Klotz said “I think we are in this mess because we’ve been lax on code enforcement in the past and we’ve let it get out of hand and people have basically been taking advantage of us. Part of this is self inflicted.”

While Bill Githens and Heath Thornton felt moving forward was better than waiting a couple more months.

The vote was 2 in favor (Githens & Thornton) 4 against (Judy Stone, Jim Masterson, Don Morrison and Jon Van Vactor) and Penny Lukenbill abstained from voting.