September 24, 2019

District attorney gets larger office Ellsworth staff moves to new building

ELLSWORTH – It’s been a moving week for Hancock County District Attorney Michael Povich and his staff.

Since Thursday, they’ve been busy relocating their office from the Hancock County Courthouse to the former home of WDEA-WMMJ radio, also known as the Cumulus Building, next door on State Street.

The Hancock County commissioners authorized the purchase of the building earlier this year in an effort to ease crowding in the courthouse.

The move was still in progress Tuesday, with phones and computers still functioning in the old offices as well as in the new. Povich said the move will be good for the staff.

“Finally, we’ll have working space for each person,” he said Tuesday. “The professional staff has been working in one room. For the past few months they’ve had one desk and one computer between them. They’ve been playing musical chairs.”

The offices for Povich and his staff, which includes assistant district attorneys, victim-witness advocates and support staff, will be in the main portion of the building. In addition to the office space for the 11-person staff, the new space will provide enough space for a conference room and for much-needed storage, Povich said.

Initially, the commissioners had considered leasing space in the ell of the building to the state for probation and parole officials. It does not appear that will happen now. Povich said the commissioners have considered that space as a possible site for a regional communications center.

The move is going well, Povich said, thanks to the loan of a truck from Cubby Brown at Brown’s Appliances. Povich expects to be settled by the end of this week.

“Settled means being able to work out of this office,” he said. “We’ve got a [Superior] Court session starting next week.”

Although the new offices are removed from the courtroom, he does not anticipate it will cause a problem. Povich, who also serves as district attorney for Washington County, said his offices in Machias have been “off campus” for 10 years or longer. Those offices also are located in a former radio station.

“You just get used to it,” he said. “It’s not that long a walk.”

He said he expected to reserve some space in the courthouse building and work from there when court is in session.

Hancock County Superior Court is expected to move into the vacated office space on the second floor of the courthouse.

The county likely will take over the vacated court space on the building’s main floor.

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