The Ottumwa Courier

February 13, 2013

Board OKs applying for anti-violence acts

CINDY TOOPES
Courier Staff Writer

OTTUMWA — Women in Wapello County can be relieved the board of supervisors has again approved two programs in the county attorney’s office.

The supervisors again approved doing grant applications for VAWA/VOCA certified assurances.

VAWA stands for Violence Against Women Act and VOCA is Victims of Crime Act. Both Gary Oldenburger and Charlotte Kovacs are assistants in the Wapello County Attorney’s office, and they work with the VAWA/VOCA programs.

The supervisors have applied for the federal funds to cover the salaries of Oldenburger and Kovacs.

Supervisor Jerry Parker said the county attorney has had the program for several years. The program was started by Victoria Siegel, who was county attorney at the time.

“Without the funding, we’d have two less people to work on violence against women,” Parker said. “We need some kind of funding to make up for a tragedy, and we wouldn’t have it without the grant.”

Supervisor Steve Siegel said the compensation wasn’t much and the local court doesn’t allocate funding for it.

“The court doesn’t pay attention. It’s the staff person who hears the concerns of the client,” Siegel said. “Without that guidance they’d get lost in the system.”

Although Parker didn’t like the idea of losing Oldenburger and Kovacs, he said the county will have two less employees if the grant isn’t approved.