Fillmore County creates its own community corrections

Fillmore County creates its own community corrections.
Published: Jan. 12, 2023 at 5:40 PM CST
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PRESTON, Minn. (KTTC) – Big changes are coming to some regional community correction agencies. The organization previously known as Dodge-Fillmore-Olmsted, or DFO, community corrections is now D&O after Fillmore County withdrew from the joint power’s agreement.

As of the beginning of the year, Fillmore County has its own community corrections.

In May of last year, the Fillmore County Board unanimously approved a plan to withdraw from the agreement. The change has been discussed for a number of years.

In 2016, Minnesota state statute was changed to allow counties with a population fewer than 30,000 to implement their own community corrections, if it has participated with a joint board for at least five years.

Around 21,000 people currently live in Fillmore County. Fillmore County had been with DFO since 1974.

Olmsted County had six DFO Community Corrections employees staffed in Fillmore County.

Those employees will maintain employment with Olmsted County and work in Rochester.

“It’s really about having services that then meet the needs of the clients that we serve, but the work is still the same. In 2021, we served approximately 5,300 clients on supervisor and/or victim services,” D&O community correction director Nikki Niles said.

Fillmore County’s new Community Corrections Director Tom Jenson says the transition has gone smoothly. After months of paperwork and hiring, the new probation department is up and running. There are four people who work in the Fillmore office in Preston.