SMITHFIELD – In 2001, the Johnston County Inspections Department had 18 inspectors out of a full-time staff of 21. The department completed 49,673 inspections that year. Fast forward 20 years to 2021. The department has a staff of 24 and 19 of those are inspectors. So far this year, 97,822 properties have been inspected.
The workload has more than doubled but the number of needed inspectors hasn’t kept up. Inspections Department Director Shane Hudson and Johnston County Manager Rick Hester asked County Commissioners for approval to hire two new building inspectors and convert one administrative position from temporary to full-time
Mr. Hudson told The Johnston County Report a jump in residential and commercial growth including larger projects like Amazon, the Johnston County Detention Center, JCC Engineering Building, and multiple apartment complexes are increasing the workload for inspectors.
“Commercial projects take up much more time to inspect due to complexity and sizes of those projects. They also require a higher level of certification in order to perform those inspections which is why additional staff were needed,” Hudson said.
Commissioners unanimously approved the request.
“The numbers support the need for more help with building inspections. We appreciate the Board’s support,” Mr. Hester said. The positions will be filled as soon as possible.
The salary for the two new inspectors will vary depending on the level and number of certifications they hold.