West Tisbury is seeing a sharp increase in requests for building inspections, town inspector Joe Tierney told the select board Wednesday.

“When we did our budget last year, we were still in the midst of Covid,” said Mr. Tierney, who requested permission to seek an approximately $12,000 reserve fund transfer for the unanticipated surge in demand.

“We basically came out of Covid with lightning speed, and we’re just getting more inspection requests than we had planned,” he said.

“We planned on 780 inspections and . . . we’re going to be closer to 960 inspections.”

The reserve fund fund transfer is needed to make up the shortfall in building inspectors’ pay, Mr. Tierney said.

While his department pays the inspectors, the fees from applicants — which more than equal the building inspectors’ pay — funnel back to the town’s general fund, he said.

“It’s not like we’re losing money, but we need Peter to pay Paul,” Mr. Tierney said.

“So Peter is the finance committee’s reserve fund, and Paul is your budget?” asked board member Cynthia Mitchell.

“Correct,” Mr. Tierney said.

The board unanimously approved the request to tap the finance committee for the shortfall funding.

Board chairman Skipper Manter welcomed third board member Jessica Miller, who was elected April 14 to serve the remaining year of the late Kent Healy’s term.

“We’ve had some challenges over the last few months with Mr. Healy’s passing. But we’re here, and we appreciate your being here,” Mr. Manter told Ms. Miller.

— Louisa Hufstader