Stiffer home inspections coming soon

(Filed June 4, 2014)

A more expansive home inspection will soon become a reality for Marshall County home owners. New Kentucky law requires more extensive inspections for remodeling older homes and new home construction. Marshall County Fiscal Court has been given little options for implementation of the new inspection requirements that will hold home owners and contractors to newer stiffer construction standards.

During Tuesday’s meeting of the court Judge Mike Miller and the Commissioners went into a closed session to meet with Wendy Baxter and an applicant for the county’s building inspector position. Larry “Cat” Spears has been inspecting buildings for Marshall County for decades but has informed the court that he no longer wants to continue in that role. Spears has agreed to train an applicant for the position.

Counties and cities in Kentucky were given the option of implementing their own program for inspection of home and commercial structures or defer to inspection by the state. Marshall County had the option of letting the state take over inspection of the homes but the court feared longer waits for inspections which would drive up the cost of building new homes or making additions to existing homes.

Over the past few months the fiscal court has agreed to provide the county’s inspector for work in both Benton and Hardin. They approved an inter-local agreement with Hardin Tuesday that allows the county to keep all the fees charged for servicing Hardin’s inspection needs and to convert to an 80 percent/20 percent sharing of the fees if Hardin should begin doing some of the processes involved in the inspection in the future. The court reached a similar agreement with Benton last month for inspecting homes in that city.

Baxter told the court before the meeting that the state’s attorney had contact her last Friday to check the county’s progress on the new inspection requirements.

Soon Marshall County employees will have the opportunity to have a subscription for an air ambulance service deducted from their pay checks. Mark Harrison and Rick Perry with Air Evac met with the court Tuesday and presented information about the service and explained how being a subscriber to the service could save employees a substantial amount of money.

Hospitalization insurance generally does not pay the full amount for air evacuation and policy holders can be left with thousands of dollars in fees for air transport. However, Air Evac along with other air ambulance services offer an annual subscription fees that covers whatever amount that insurance does not cover. That annual subscription fee is reduced when it is payroll deducted.

Marshall County has a policy in effect that allows payroll deduction programs provided that a minimum of 30 employees sign-up for the service. Expectations are that number of employees will enroll in the program. The annual membership fee is normally $65 but that amount is reduced to $55 for payroll deduction plans because of the reduced amount of handling.

Air Evac has more than 200 aircraft nationally and they have 12 bases in Kentucky and will soon have a new Kentucky base in operation in Marion, Kentucky.

Marshall County Jailer Roger Ford addressed the court in a response to an inspection report that noted two deficiencies at the jail. Ford said both of the issues had been addressed. He said the Training and Transport Procedure mentioned in the report was a matter of adding an explanation in the manual that said they followed the training procedures. He pointed out that he never sent out a “rookie” to transport prisoners and that the JOC actually does the training for the county jail’s officers.


The other deficiency mention in the report was non-compliance in the table and bench area of the women’s area of the jail. He explained they had already modified a new table in that area to allow access for fire escape.