Share This Page

Penn Hills residents request hiring of fire marshal/code inspector position

| Wednesday, May 14, 2014, 9:01 p.m.

After creating a new position in the municipality's embattled code enforcement department, Penn Hills officials have yet to hire someone to fill it.

Two residents addressed council at its May 5 meeting to question why the newly created “fire marshal/chief code inspector” position had not been filled.

“What's the holdup?” Donald Sanker said. “You know and I know that once the summer months are here, code enforcement is going to be extremely busy with complaints.”

Municipal Manager Moe Rayan said the delay in hiring was due in part to pending litigation by two code enforcement employees who were fired in 2012. Rayan said he plans to advertise for the position by this week, and will look to start the hiring process.

McLaughlin, who has met and spoken with Rayan multiple times about the position, said “this is the first time, tonight, that I've heard you say the position wasn't being filled because of litigation.”

Rayan also said that new hires are not generally made until mid-year.

“We wait for revenues to come in and things like that,” Rayan said.

The municipality's most recent new hire was a group of police officers in September 2013.

Resident Mickey O'Connor, a fixture at council meetings, said he sees the lack of proper code enforcement when he drives around town.

“This department is not out writing tickets to properties,” O'Connor said.

“Wilkins, Verona, they don't have this problem. They write tickets constantly. Our people should be out there, citing properties.

“Don't send them a letter; send them a ticket,” he said.

McLaughlin agreed.

“We are in dire need of more support for our code enforcement department,” she said.

McLaughlin asked that council consider including a provision in the advertisement requiring proficiency with both the code-enforcement software, used to catalog citizen complaints, and the type of data-based technology that can aid the department in tracking violations and trends.

Patrick Varine is an editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7845 or pvarine@tribweb.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.