The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

Local News

May 24, 2013

Offices move to Voorhees facility

Departments found at Public Works

DANVILLE — With the start of the city’s new fiscal year this month, Mayor Scott Eisenhauer’s reorganization of city departments also has taken effect.

This means some city hall employees have moved to the Public Works facility, 1155 E. Voorhees St.

Those who have moved, with new, earlier office hours of 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. starting on Tuesday are: the zoning department, environmental and construction/building inspectors and rental registration/complaints.

The city no longer has a Public Development Department.

Eisenhauer’s reorganization for city departments included city engineer David Schnelle being named urban services director. Schnelle now oversees zoning and other divisions, including the Danville Area Transportation Study.

Solid waste workers also will serve as environmental inspectors to help address tall grass, trash issues, broken windows, falling down porches, etc.

Urban services manager Chris Milliken is now a direct supervisor with the planning and zoning areas.

In addition to Milliken moving to the city’s Voorhees Street facility, secretary Connie Osgood also has moved out of city hall.

Inspectors who have moved include Inspection and Code Enforcement Manager Jim Meharry, inspector Rick Brown, plumbing inspector Dave Collins and the part-time electrical inspector.

The city is now hiring for two other code enforcement inspectors due to long-time city employees Jim Pope and Robert Boards retiring. Nancy Larson, neighborhood services secretary, also has taken advantage of the city’s early retirement program.

The city also is hiring, due to retirements, for the city clerk position, a criminal investigations secretary, police records clerk, DATS planner, city engineer and code enforcement secretary.

Twenty-two year public works laborer Tony Monson also is retiring next month.

“It will save us money,” Eisenhauer said of all the retirements. But it’s hard to lose all those years of knowledge and experience, he added.

“There’s an amazing number of years of experience there,” Eisenhauer said of the dedicated service.

Eisenhauer said he’s received more phone calls from city employees, more than the 12 who initially expressed interest, about the city’s early retirement program.

Eisenhauer said he has ideas he still is exploring about what to do with the extra office space now at city hall.

There was open office space and some break rooms and other areas converted into office space at the Public Works facility for the new offices. The cost was minimal, with the work being done in house for the office conversions, he said.

“It really is trying to centralize like resources in two departments into one building,” Eisenhauer said.

He said the public will be able to go to one building, instead of city hall and the public works facility, for building permits, site plans and other construction resources.

“It was a slower process,” Eisenhauer said about having engineers, zoning officials and building inspectors in two separate locations. “(This will be) greater productivity working under the same roof. It’s far more conducive in working with the customer.”

All construction questions should be able to be answered in one place now, Eisenhauer said. Phone numbers are expected to be the same.

The earlier office hours for the zoning officials, inspectors and others was done at the request of contractors, Eisenhauer said.

“They want to get out and get working as early as possible,” he said.

The newly moved offices also will be open during the lunch hour for building permits, code enforcement issues, etc.

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