A proposed new maintenance code - one that will enable Philippi's code enforcement officer to enforce some of the same items included in its existing building inspection codes - appeared for its first reading at Tuesday's Philippi City Council meeting.
The need for the ordinance stems from the fact that the city of Philippi's code enforcement officer, Bill Annon, did not pass a recent building inspector's recertification test that would enable him to continue to enforce existing building codes as state law would require, Philippi Mayor Jerry Mouser said Wednesday.
Mouser said the maintenance code certification would be simpler to obtain, although Annon would still have to pass a certification test to be permitted to enforce the proposed maintenance code if it passes on a second and final reading.
The maintenance code differs from the existing building code because it will not require Annon to perform building inspections.
"We (the city) don't really do building inspections, we never have," Mouser said. "In order for him to be certified to be a building inspector it involves a lot of time. (The maintenance code) still allows us what we need in order to enforce our ordinances. It's easier to get certified."
Mouser said the city needs "someone to deal with our derelict houses, weed ordinances and junk vehicles."
"We don't go in these homes and give home inspections. A lot of small cities don't have building inspectors. For a person that is certified, usually in the building codes, you're talking about paying a lot more for that
The code will not go into effect until 30 days after it passes its second reading at a Philippi City Council meeting. The next regularly scheduled meeting is planned for 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 29 at Philippi City Hall.