County adds new full-time building inspector |

County adds new full-time building inspector

— With building activity expected to be on the rise this year, Routt County commissioners agreed Tuesday to upgrade seasonal building inspector Keith Villa to full-time status.

The move comes in time for Villa, who worked for the Routt County Regional Building Department for part of last year, to enroll in a certification program on March 1.

Taking Villa on full time, “has been necessitated by the increasing numbers of inspection requests and the expectation of property owners and contractors for timely inspections,” Chief Building Department Official Ben Grush told the county commissioners in a memo.

He reported that the number of inspection requests has increased annually since 2011 when the total was 3,875, to 4,996 in 2014.

He said the goal of his department is to carry out all inspection requests received by midnight of the previous day.

The alternative to not granting full-time status for Villa, Grush said, “is to continue with a seasonal inspector that is at a high risk of leaving at the height of the building season when you need them most.”

There are currently two multi-family residential buildings under construction in Steamboat Springs near the base of Steamboat Ski Area, and several single-family homes were under construction throughout the winter in the Barn Village and Graystone on the Green subdivisions.

Since the first of the year, permits for single-family homes with permit values of $2.5 million, $645,000 and $797,000 have been issued. Permits for alterations with values of $750,000 and $600,000 were issued in December 2014.

County Manager Tom Sullivan said Tuesday that Villa’s salary will be $39,655 with the county’s benefit package raising the full cost of his employment to $55,785.

Summer 2015 will mark the first full construction season in Routt County for Grush, who was hired in September 2014. He relocated to Colorado from Pennsylvania where he was the chief inspector with the Cambria County Building Code Enforcement Agency.

To reach Tom Ross, call 970-871-4205, email or follow him on Twitter @ThomasSRoss1

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