Tuesday, June 27, 2017
[Shasta County] City officials respond to report on code enforcement
Both Redding City Manager Barry Tippin and Mayor Brent Weaver are open to discussing consolidating city code enforcement under the Police Department.
But they emphasized that any change would not occur overnight. Much needs to be talked about before moving forward, and the city will do that over the next several months.
“I will be cautious to say it definitely should stay within the Building Department or go to the Police Department,” Weaver said. “I am confident that we are going to come forward with what is right for us right now.”
Tippin and Weaver were responding to a Shasta County grand jury report that was critical of city code enforcement and recommended placing its employees under the purview of the Redding Police Department.
The 10-page report, released Tuesday, also gave the city deadlines to shape up its code enforcement efforts.
Currently, the code enforcement division falls under the Development Services Department, which also oversees planning and building.
Much of the cleanup and nuisance abatement code enforcement officers do affects public safety, which is why the grand jury recommended they work under police jurisdiction.
"City of Redding code enforcement funds, supervision, staff, and responsibilities are spread among three departments, resulting in a lack of comprehensive planning, supervision, evaluation, communication, and follow-up," the jury wrote in its findings.
It’s true the lion’s share of code enforcement work is related to public safety, but Tippin said hopefully that will not always be the case.
So talking about putting code enforcement under police is worthwhile “but it may or may not” be something that’s beneficial on a long-term basis, Tippin said.
Both Tippin and Weaver appreciated the grand jury’s work and believe the report will be useful.
“I am open to any ideas that would enhance our ability to do what we do,” Tippin said.
Weaver said the report had some good ideas.
They plan to talk more about the report with Development Services Director Larry Vaupel and Peter Hansen, the former Redding police chief who’s been tabbed to lead the department until a replacement for his ousted successor, Robert Paoletti, is found.
Weaver said he doesn’t want to get too focused on the deadlines the grand jury set.
“What I say is most important is getting right,” Weaver said.
June 23, 2017
Redding Record Searchlight
By David Benda