The Davison County welfare office was on the move earlier this month, sliding its services to the Davison County Fairgrounds.
July 8 was the first day that the county’s welfare office was located at 3200 W. Havens Ave., moving from the county’s North Office Building at 1420 N. Main St.
Davison County Commission Chairwoman Brenda Bode said the move was necessary from a staffing perspective to continue having an employee who can work full-time, but do welfare duties on a part-time basis. The office assists with the applications for poor relief and economic, financial and funeral assistance.
Bode said the move was used as a chance to combine the welfare administrative assistant and fairgrounds coordinator position into one full-time job. She said, otherwise, it would be hard to guarantee full-time hours in either position on its own.
“I was looking at the history of how many people came (to the office), and how many were on the phone. It was almost none that come to the office,” she said. “Location really didn’t come into play as much as I thought it did. I think the move from before came from a space standpoint, simply because we had a lot of room at the North Office Building.”
The welfare office and its positions have been in flux for the last year. In September 2018, former Welfare Director Dawn Grissom changed jobs within the county, moving to the sheriff’s office to work as a civil deputy. A month later, the commission formally eliminated the full-time director position, and determined staffing would be part-time only. Since then, Auditor Susan Kiepke has overseen the welfare department.
In October 2018, the new position — Welfare Intake Administrative Assistant — was created. It is held by Debbie Emme, who will now be stationed at the fairgrounds. It marks the third location for the office since 2014, when the county moved a few of its offices to the North Office Building from the Davison County Courthouse.
“It started at the courthouse, it moved to (the North building). It has walked,” Bode joked.
The North Office Building remains the site of the Community Health Nurse, the Veterans Service Office and the county commission chambers.