Licenses & Inspections chief says department is working to improve

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Philadelphia Licenses and Inspections Commissioner David Perri testifies Tuesday before City Council. (Tom MacDonald/WHYY)

Philadelphia Licenses and Inspections Commissioner David Perri testifies Tuesday before City Council. (Tom MacDonald/WHYY)

Philadelphia’s Department of Licenses & Inspections chief appeared Tuesday before City Council as part of its ongoing budget hearings.

Commissioner David Perri said one of his department’s major problems is customer service, adding that upgrading to a new computer system should help with that.

“In terms of customer service, I understand we need to do a better job, we need to put more folks on line to be able to take more questions over the phone and move the lines,” he said.

However, it’s tough to find qualified people to do the jobs in his agency that require specialized training, he said.

“Many of the technical positions, the salary levels aren’t high enough,” Perri said. “We go and recruit … we just don’t get an applicant pool that are willing to take the jobs at the salaries that are offered.”

The department is working on an initiative to be notified by community members who notice buildings that may be in danger of collapse.

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