Vince Rocco, McPherson’s current code enforcement officer, will be retiring by the end of the summer.

Vince Rocco, McPherson’s current code enforcement officer, will be retiring by the end of the summer.

His replacement, Edythe Leslie, was approved for hire by commissioners during a city commission meeting on Monday morning.

Tom Stinemetze, zoning administrator, presented the request for her hire. He described her qualifications before commissioners prior to her approval for hire.

Leslie began her work in code enforcement as a code enforcement officer for Newton in 1991. She also served as interim housing officer. Her minimum housing inspector certification, Stinemetze said, comes from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

She also served as city inspector for Abilene before leaving that position in September 1996. During that time, she fulfilled all building and code enforcement duties, including licensing and contracting.
Stinemetze said Leslie’s prior experience in building inspection was a great factor in considering her hire.

“One of the duties we’d like to have our new code enforcement officer do is back up Bret,” Stinemetze said.

Bret Reynolds is the building inspector for McPherson.

Leslie also worked for Wichita Housing and Community Services, doing a number state and federal funding projects, which focused primarily on low-income housing rehabilitation.

She started her own inspections consulting business in January 2008, where she helped several municipalities with building codes and lead-based paint code violations. She also served on the Southwest Kansas Regional Planning Commission as an inspector, where she was certified as a lead-based paint risk assessor.

Stinemetze said she also served on the Kansas Disaster Assessment Team in 2008, where she helped to assess structural damage after tornados came through Manhattan and Chapman.

Pending background checks and drug tests, Leslie will start as McPherson’s new code enforcement officer on Monday. She will work alongside Rocco until his retirement from the position on Aug. 1.

Stinemetze said the city was fortunate to have Leslie take the position.

“She’s an extremely well-qualified individual,” he said.

In other business:

- Bret Reynolds, building inspector, delivered his monthly report. He reported a continued rise of permits issued, with 73 issued during the month of May. Twenty were issued in May 2012. To date, a total of 146 permits have been issued for 2013, compared to 40 by this same time in 2012.

- Commissioners signed a request by Darren Fraizer, director of McPherson County Dispatch, for a 911 state grant application. The funds from the grant would go toward next-generation 911 hardware and software.

- Commissioners signed a resolution to levy assessments on improvements to The Veranda and the Barnstormers West Field Addition. The levy of assessments goes toward paying the costs of those improvements.