There has still been no decision by the Franklin County Commission to hire another full-time food inspector after a lack of inspections that occurred in 2011 and 2012.

County Health Department Director Angie Hittson has said that she would like to hire another full-time food inspector to assist the one full-time and one-part time inspector currently on staff.

With the current number of food establishments in the county and the potential for growth, the county would definitely benefit from having an additional inspector on staff, First District County Commissioner Tim Brinker said Thursday.

There are currently about 487 food establishments in the county.

Brinker said the intention is to hire another full-time inspector if funding can be located.

He said the commission and Hittson will probably know in 30 days whether another inspector will be hired.

However, funding could be a problem because the county has not even been able to afford raises for its current employees, which means there could be scarce resources available to bring on a new employee.

County commissioners say sales tax revenue remains flat.

Brinker noted that Hittson and the county commissioners must see if there are subsidies available that could help the health department fund a new inspector.

The lack of food establishment inspections conducted by the Franklin County Health Department came to light last month.

The Missourian reported that there were between 460 to 500 food establishments in Franklin County during those years. But there were only 186 inspections in 2011 and 368 in 2012, according to health department records.

However, county officials have promised that all food establishments will be inspected this year.