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No Discussion On Replacing Senior Center Director




Fulton County commissioners have not made a decision on what to do to replace Sandy Griggs, who retired as the director of the Fulton County Senior Center.

When asked via email if Griggs will be replaced, Bill Rufenacht, a commissioner, said, “The subject has not been discussed at this time.”

Sheri Rychener, who was hired in February as Griggs’ assistant, is currently handling the day-to-day operation of the center.

Vond Hall, Fulton County administrator, said the commissioners accepted Griggs’ resignation for retirement purposes Thursday, May 16.

Her effective retirement date is June 30.

Griggs retired under the Early Retirement Incentive Program (ERIP).

If an employee voluntarily elects to participate in ERIP, the commissioners will buy one year of additional service credit on the retiree’s behalf.

The move can increase a person’s retirement benefit.

Griggs has more than 25 years of service with the county and was eligible for ERIP, Hall said.

Not Determined

Rufenacht said the commissioners have several options to hire a replacement for Griggs, “but no direction has been determined.”

No timeline for replacing Griggs has been decided “because as of now, we haven’t discussed a process.”

When asked if the county Senior Center Advisory Board would have a role in the hiring process, Rufenacht said, “We have not discussed this option.”

Strained

At times over the last few months, relations between the senior center and commissioners have been strained.

One dustup between the two sides came to light in November 2012, when the commissioners grilled Griggs about a decision to take county-funded home-delivered meals to residents of the Fairlawn Apartments.

At the time, Jim Wyse, Archbold mayor and advisory board chair, said he met with Steve Ringenberg, chief executive officer of Fairlawn, who agreed the senior center could deliver meals to the apartments.

Prior to that, Wyse said there was a gentleman’s agreement in place which said the senior center would not deliver meals to nursing homes.

However, the apartments are not part of the Fairlawn Haven nursing home.

Food service is only available to apartment residents from Fairlawn at an extra charge.

Wyse said the advisory board decided to okay deliveries to the Fairlawn Apartments, not wanting to bother the commissioners with a minor issue.

But in minutes from the Nov. 26, 2012 commissioners meeting, Dean Genter, then a commissioner, said the board is only supposed to advise the commissioners. It is the commissioners who make decisions concerning the senior center.

Disbanded

In December, the commissioners disbanded the Senior Center Advisory Board, but did not inform the board members of their decision.

It was only later that the commissioners re-constituted the board, after it was discovered an advisory board needed to be in place to receive some funding.

Representatives of both sides of the issue have said they are working to develop a better working relationship between the two groups.



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