Assistant Veterans Service Officer

Wright County Buffalo, MN
Primary Objective & Scope of Responsibility Benefits Supplemental Questions

This is a newly budgeted position available for hire after July 1, 2018.

The Assistant Veterans Service Officer assists the Veterans Services Officer with providing general administration of services to veterans. This position is responsible for supplying direct assistance to veterans and their dependents, through advocating with respect to available benefits, and advocates for eligible parties to receive benefits to which they are entitled on the County, State and Federal level. In the absence of the Veterans Service Officer, provides the administration, planning, coordination and management of the overall operations, programs, activities and services to veterans.

The duties and responsibilities of this job are carried out under the supervision of the Veterans Services Officer, with independence, in accordance with professional practices and governing laws that are established through the strategic direction set forth by the County Board.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:1 Provides direct assistance to veterans and their dependents, by providing counseling with respect to available benefits, and ensures eligible parties receive their requested entitled benefits.

1.1 Performs intake and conducts interviews of veterans, widows, dependents, beneficiaries and families by phone and in person to determine and assess their needs;

1.2 Responsible for selecting the appropriate course of action to assist the veteran and/or family; provides information on all applicable benefits available through the Veterans Administration Office, including, but not limited to, compensation, pension, health care, burial allowance, vocational rehabilitation, insurance, employment, education, shelters, and other benefits offered by other agencies as appropriate;

1.3 Assists applicants in filing for benefits in an accurate and timely manner;

1.4 Provides assistance to veterans relating to help with chemical dependency, mental health, PTSD, and other issues;

1.5 Advocates for veterans in all matters related to available benefits, services and programs and makes referrals; arranges for transportation, medical benefits, etc.;

1.6 Advocates for and assists veterans and dependents in filing claims and appeals by interviewing clients, processing paperwork, compiling evidence in support of claims and presenting to the Veterans Administration Office and assisting the client to present at proceedings;

1.7 Develops methods of outreach for the Veterans Service Office including home, hospital and nursing home visits; provides services at regional sites as needed;

1.8 Prepares veterans case records, social histories and documentation.

2 Assists the Veterans Service Officer in the operations of the Veterans' Services Office. Recommends and implements office procedures and policies.

2.1 When required by the Veterans Service Officer, meets with the County Board to communicate information on the office's activities;

2.2 Assists in the preparation and submittal of reports as required and requested to the County Board, local, state, and federal agencies, on the county veterans population and the activities of the Veterans Service Office, and to maintain eligibility for funding;

2.3 Inputs and updates veterans' information and records into electronic databases;

2.4 Updates and maintains information and reference materials for departmental use;

2.5 Adheres to policy related to the development and maintenance of a records management system in accordance with county policy and federal and state requirements;

2.6 Ensures compliance with Data Practices Act and HIPAA, and other applicable requirements;

2.7 When requested by the Veterans Service Officer, represents the county before community and county veterans' organizations;

2.8 With the approval of the Veterans Service Officer provides information to local organizations regarding programs of services offered to veterans.

3 Assists the Veterans Service Officer in managing the department budgets and general operations.

3.1 Prepares requests for annual funding and presents requests to the Veterans Service Officer for approval;

3.2 Assists in drafting and preparing applications for periodic grants through various County, State and Federal programs for special projects or equipment.

4 Maintains current knowledge of County, State, and Federal statutes, as well as rules, regulations, and policies regarding veterans' programs, and interprets and applies these to the office's operations.

4.1 Attends appropriate meetings, training sessions, seminars and conferences;

4.2 Acts as a representative for veterans in meetings and seminars with the Federal and State Veterans agencies;

4.3 Monitors current legislative and legal actions related to federal and state veterans' benefits.

5 Performs all job duties in compliance with safety guidelines and with an ongoing awareness of safety practices.

5.1 Knows and follows department and county rules as well as sound work and safety practices in order to accomplish the job objectives and avoid injury or loss;

5.2 Wears proper protective equipment when policy requires, or conditions indicate, a need exists and utilizes proper body mechanics and ergonomics while performing work;

5.3 When potentially unsafe conditions are observed makes efforts to avoid or correct them if they are controllable and draws them to the attention of the responsible supervisor or safety representative in a timely manner.

6 Communicates courteously and professionally and maintains working relationships with others in carrying out job functions. Communications include responsibility for maintaining relationships that are key to the office's functions.

6.1 Communicates frequently with county employees, county management staff and the public in complying with communication related policies and program operations;

6.2 Communications include responsibility for maintaining relationships that are key to the function or the county;

6.3 Plans and carries our communications at a level that can impact the morale and performance of a major work unit.

7 Performs other duties and activities as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications:The job requires a high school degree and two years of work experience requiring public contact or military leadership experience or an equivalent combination of training and work-related experience. The Assistant Veterans Service Officer must meet the qualifications set forth in MN Statue 197.601 which includes: 1). Must be a resident of the State of Minnesota; 2). U.S. Citizenship, 3). Veteran status as defined in Minnesota Statute 197.447, and 4). Related training and education for the duties of this position. A valid driver's license or evidence of equivalent mobility is also required.

Knowledge, skills and abilities required include:

* Knowledge of the Federal and State laws, regulations and rulings pertaining to Veterans services;

* Knowledge of administrative practices including budgeting, purchasing and policy formulation;

* Ability to understand, interpret, and apply moderately complex laws, rules, and regulations that are subject to frequent change;

* Intermediate level skills in Microsoft Office software and ability to learn county and other systems and software;

* Ability to train personnel and to perform their duties in an effective and efficient manner;

* Ability to defuse escalated situations and confrontations;

* Verbal and written communication skills sufficient to effectively present information and respond to questions from a wide variety of audiences;

* Reading comprehension skills sufficient to read, understand and interpret legal and technical documents, statutes and regulations;

* Leadership and interpersonal skills sufficient to exchange information, persuade others, resolve conflicts, give and receive work direction, and maintain effective working relationships.

Physical Demands & Working Conditions:Most work is performed in a normal office environment. Daily work involves moving between buildings and rooms. Occasional local travel is required to attend meetings. Intermittent overnight travel is required. Work requires regular computer and phone use and regular attention to detail and deadlines. The job involves regular public contact and may involve dealing with and calming individuals who are emotionally charged over an issue and may be volatile and/or potentially violent.

Some requirements in this job description may exclude individuals who pose a direct threat or significant risk to the health and safety of themselves or other employees. All requirements are subject to modification to reasonably accommodate individuals with disabilities.

Requirements are representative of minimum levels of knowledge, skills, and experience required. To perform this job successfully, the worker must possess the abilities and aptitudes to perform each duty proficiently.

The Employer retains the discretion to add duties or change the duties of this position at any time.