City settles on seeking part time code officer

Friday, January 10, 2020

The Alta City Council began the process of filling it vacant city code officer position this week, after the previous employee was fired under the previous mayor’s watch in late 2019.

“We have kind of a big void right now,” Mayor Kevin Walsh said, hoping the position can be filled by spring. The pervious code officer had also been assigned to maintain the community building, which in retrospect was “not the best decision,” he said.

The council discussed whether the position should be full or part time, with Walsh favoring part time, feeling the previous employee had struggled to fill his hours at time.

Council member Pam Henderson said the former employee was let go for not completing all the tasks the city wanted, which implies that there was not enough time to do it all - and if that were not true, he should not have been fired, she said, advocating for a full-time position separated out from the community building responsibilities. Walsh questioned whether the city can afford that. Henderson noted, and the others agreed, that Alta has many more rental units that need to be inspected than other communities its size.

Others felt that by hiring a part-time code officer and a part-time community building manager separately, and avoiding the expenses of benefits such as insurance, the city could come out ahead compared to one full-time salary. Benefits for a full-time employee cost the city about $13,500 per year.

“There is only so much money in the budget… taxes cover that position,” City Clerk Megan Pederson said. Alta is ahead of many communities its size, which are just looking to create a code officer position for the first time. “It’s fair to say Alta has a few more challenges,” Mayor Walsh added.

The council decided to advertise the position at 25 hours per week. Expecting that $15-17 an hour is no longer adequate to attract applicants, it expects to pay slightly more, depending in part on experience.

A cleaning service has been temporarily taking care of the community center, with interest in continuing and possibly taking on the management role.