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Town may hire code enforcement officer

<p>Horace Langford Jr. / Pahrump Valley Times - McMurry fire </p>

Horace Langford Jr. / Pahrump Valley Times - McMurry fire

Pahrump Town Board members considered the merits of hiring a code enforcement officer during last night’s regular board meeting.

The idea was initially proposed late last year when Chairman Harley Kulkin authored an agenda item asking the board to approve hiring an individual to maintain decorum at town board meetings.

This week Town Manager Susan Holecheck said the scope of the position has changed slightly where the officer will be assigned to duties outside of town board meetings.

“We are finding that on Friday, Saturdays and Sundays particularly, we are seeing more and more street vendors. We would like to be able to hire an individual who is strong and gentle enough to go out and inquire if the vendors have a current town business license. If not, he or she can encourage them to get a license because overall it helps the town with revenues,” she said.

The Town of Pahrump defines a business as any commercial enterprise, trade, or occupation with the objective of livelihood and or profit through repetitive means.

Pahrump Town Ordinance 35 requires that anyone obtain a license when conducting any business activity within the town.

The business license certificate only shows that an individual has met the Town of Pahrump requirements and that the license fee has been paid.

Other permits may also be required to operate a business in town.

The town manager said one of her main concerns is the street vendors who sell food around the community.

Those who are selling or preparing food will also need to apply for a health permit from the Bureau of Health Protection Services in order to receive a business license from the town.

“I laud them for their entrepreneurial spirit, but at the same time I don’t know how it was grown or where it was grown. I don’t know what type of fertilizer is being used. I would be a little concerned about certain health issues for the residents of the town. If somebody were to get sick I suppose possibly that it could be a liability issue and that scares me,” she said.

Holecheck also noted that if the board approves hiring a code enforcement officer, the individual should possess skills that would exude professionalism in a non-threatening manner.

“Hopefully the person is tactful and polite enough to tell someone that they will grant a business license for the weekend but also encourage them to visit the office during the week to get licensed,” she said.

Kulkin, meanwhile, said the cost of funding the position would not hit the town hard.

“It’s not much of a salary and it would just be a part-time job, but i really think it is needed,” he said.

Upon approval by the board, Holecheck said the search for a qualified candidate would begin within a few days.