DC Residents Are Now Conducting Building Inspections

  • November 25th 2019

by Nena Perry-Brown

This spring, DCRA Director Ernest Chrappah disclosed plans for an initiative that would train DC residents to do on-demand building inspections. That program is now in full swing.

Since the resident inspector pilot program was announced, more than 600 residents have registered for training. Presently, there are 31 participants working to inspect either vacant residential buildings or code violations in occupied apartment buildings, and 30 people are certified to inspect illegal construction, issuing stop work orders when needed.

There may be overlap between the two groups, because although each type of inspection requires a different training, one is not limited to only one class of inspections. Another 12 residents are currently in the pipeline awaiting field training.

Resident inspectors can log into a database and search for and accept inspection assignments based on when they are available. A DCRA representative shared with UrbanTurf that there are not specific numbers on how many resident inspections have been completed, but that these have helped the agency address a backlog of requests.

"One of the key advantages of this model is that it allows us to scale the number of inspections the agency is able to provide in direct proportion with the District’s growing population," Director Chrappah told UrbanTurf. "The program is also a talent pipeline for our permanent inspector positions, allowing us to see potential full-time employees perform in the field. Given the success we’ve seen so far, we expect the program to continue to grow and be a model for other cities nationwide."

DCRA is expected to continue the pilot program in some form through the end of 2020.

Note: The numbers of inspectors currently working and awaiting field training are valid as of two weeks ago.

This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/dozens-of-on-demand-resident-inspectors-deployed-for-dcra/16184.

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