City combats code enforcement issues

Published 8:18pm Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The Selma City Council approved the allocation of funding to allow retired Selma Police Department officers to come back on staff for a mere 20 hours a week.

The measure unanimously approved Tuesday will be in effort to target and crack down on code enforcement violations that are rampant throughout the city. These retired officers will specifically combat the code enforcement issues.

“We will hire one officer in particular and he was very excited about the idea of coming back on board to help us do this,” Selma Mayor Evans said.

During Tuesday’s meeting Evans asked the council to approve the reallocation of $5,000 for the officer’s salary to strictly focus on code enforcement — something the city officials say they get the most calls and complaints about.

From cars parked on street curbs and in grass to abandoned homes, city council members say they get multiple calls a week from constituents who are reporting code enforcement violations in their neighborhoods. Officers from the police department are charged with writing code enforcement citations, but because of their other duties with crime and watching neighborhoods, Evans said he wanted to bring back retired police officers to focus on code enforcement.

“That initial $5,000 will go towards the officer’s salary. He will work about 20 hours a week and make $15 an hour to do this,” Evans said. “His schedule will be flexible because he wont be working the same time everyday.”

Ward 7 Council woman Bennie Ruth Crenshaw asked the mayor for an official job description of the officer, “So if we look at the situation and have issues, then we can know what he is supposed to do,” Crenshaw asked.

The officer will be expected to write citations but also to report what areas he has gone to, how many citations he has written and detail the results of those citations, according to Evans.

As for when the officer would start, Evans said he would start immediately.

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