County to hire zoning administrator

YORK – York County is seeking a zoning administrator with the hopes of hiring someone very soon.

The York County Commissioners developed a job description and started advertising for the position earlier this month.

For the past several years, the job has been handled by the York County Attorney’s office, typically falling on the deputy county attorney. But due to workload issues and increasing demands on the role due to several pressing zoning issues, the county has decided to hire a separate person for the job.

Currently, zoning issues pertaining to solar and carbon pipeline projects are before the planning commission – which has bumped up the urgency for someone to be hired.

York County Commissioner Chairman Randy Obermier said he and Commissioner Daniel Grotz looked over the zoning administrator job descriptions from other counties and formulated one that would fit York County’s needs.

While the commissioners say they would prefer applicants to have prior experience and training in this particular field, it’s not a deal breaker if someone comes in without those attributes. However, the person will be tasked with working through the current zoning issues as they work through the planning commission with eventual arrival at the commissioners’ desk.

The zoning administrator will also be paramount in the updating of the county’s comprehensive plan, which will happen in the next year or so. The comprehensive plan is updated every 10 years and the update will be needed in the near future.

The zoning administration is a board supervised position which enforces the county’s zoning ordinances and regulations, reviews permits, assigns 911 addresses, coordinates floodplain development permits and inspects properties. Job requirements include knowledge of Nebraska’s state statutes regarding land use, environmental issues, solid waste, wetlands and floodplains.

The position is part-time and currently pays $20,000 a year. It was noted by the commissioners that in many counties, “this position also wears other hats which would likely be the same here,” Obermier said during a recent meeting of the county board. “The zoning board recently met and the lock is ticking as they would like to see some regulations for them to consider.”

The position is currently being advertised with hopes that a number of candidates will step forward.

“Let’s see what kind of interest we get,” said Commissioner Grotz during an earlier meeting of the county board, “and go from there. Hopefully, we can start moving forward very soon.”

This week, Obermier reported that the county has received two applications so far. He and Grotz will review those applications this week and report back at the next meeting of the commissioners.

Meanwhile, Grotz said the application period is still wide open and they are hoping to see more people come forward. “We haven’t closed the application window yet, so we are still accepting those from interested persons.”

 

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