By Steve White, Grand Island Bureau Chief - bio | email
Like pawns on a chess board, that's how the head of Hall County describes their current situation as they shuffle offices. That includes Probation, where staff members have run out of room.
Twenty-two staff members are squeezed into tight space at the District Probation Office in Grand Island.
While it's a state program, it's the county's responsibility to provide space.
And as Chief Probation Officer Clay Schutz recently told the Hall County Board, they've run out of room.
He told the board, "I have one officer sitting at a table outside a secretary's cubicle, trying to conduct business. I have two officers who will be out of training in a couple weeks; I have no place to put them. I don't even have a hallway to set a table up they can work at."
They've found a temporary home for at least some staff, but they only have $14,000 to use. Some of that'll go toward dividers.
Schutz said, "We have privacy, confidentiality concerns, office space, and I have to advocate for my staff."
County Board Chairman Bob McFarland said this is just a short term fix.
A lot of what they do hinges on getting an addition built to the courthouse, but that's still in the early stages.
The board will talk about financing options for the courthouse Tuesday, and officially move forward with the plan for the Probation office.