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The Haines City Police Department’s Code Compliance Unit is in elite company.
Earlier this year, the unit became just the third in the state of Florida to become nationally accredited through the American Association of Code Enforcement (AACE). Founded in 1988, AACE is a nonprofit that represents the code enforcement profession.
The process took about three months before the unit was officially accredited on Jan. 25, 2021. The accreditation will last for three years. The unit, however, will continue to seek accreditation for the foreseeable future.
“We will continue to hold ourselves to the highest standard in everything that we do,” Police Chief Jim Elensky said. “This accreditation represents our commitment to providing an exemplary level of service and meeting every national benchmark.”
Accreditors from AACE thoroughly reviewed 50 standards to ensure that the unit was providing the highest level of service. AACE also examined the work plan and output by the unit’s Code Compliance officers. The Code Compliance Unit has been a part of the Haines City Police Department since 2014.
The Code Compliance Unit serves many purposes, including preserving property values and promoting the community’s health, safety and wellbeing. Haines City’s Code Compliance officers serve more than 27,000 residents and cover more than 15,000 acres or nearly 24 square miles.
“As our city continues to grow at a significant rate, it is one of our most important missions as a staff to promote a high quality of life for our residents,” City Manager Deric Feacher said. “Code Compliance plays a vital role in that mission and this is a testament to their dedication in moving Haines City forward as a great community to live, work and play.”
Supervisor Steve Shifley, who has 32 years experience in code enforcement and more than 13 in Haines City, was instrumental in seeing the accreditation process through to fruition. Shifley oversees the unit, which includes three Code Compliance officers and a Code Compliance specialist who handles clerical duties.
“They’re hard workers who have a positive attitude, care about this community and live up to the highest of ethical standards,” Shifley said of his team. “As a unit, we’re always striving to be the best. It’s encouraging to have an administration, staff, and community who share that vision.”