Thursday, September 15, 2011

SpokAnimal won't bite on the new SCRAPS facility

Posted By on Thu, Sep 15, 2011 at 2:29 PM

The city of Spokane has promised that if voters pass a bond to construct a new shelter for SCRAPS at Broadway and Havana, they’ll use SCRAPS for animal control. All strays in the county will be sent to the new building. But what happens to the other two animal shelters — those run by the Humane Society and SpokAnimal?

The Humane Society has already signed on to partner with SCRAPS, County Commissioner Todd Mielke announced at a press conference this morning. It will remain its own entity, with its own shelter, but will likely have a presence — such as offering animals for adoption — at the new SCRAPS building.

The county was talking with SpokAnimal, asking them if they’d be willing to consider a similar partnership, Mielke said. The answer was no.

“They have made that offer,” says SpokAnimal Director Gail Mackie. “It doesn’t work for us. We told them that at the offset.”

SpokAnimal has a state-of-the-art veterinary clinic, Mackie says.  Transporting animals across town from the SCRAPS facility would just put added strain on them.

In fact, Mackie says SpokAnimal will officially offer a 10-year contract to the city of Spokane tomorrow to continue animal control services. No need to raise taxes to build a new facility. This is despite the City Council’s official commitment to pursue a partnership with SCRAPS.

“SpokAnimal is interested in continuing animal control to the city of Spokane,”  Mackie says. “We’ve made that quite clear to staff members meeting after meeting. We are ready today, to continue our contract with the city.”

After all, if the city of Spokane starts using SCRAPS for animal control, SpokAnimal is left funded only through donations and adoption fees. That said, SpokAnimal isn’t officially opposing the bond.

“I think we’re just going to present ourselves as a different option, without the tax increases,” Mackie says. “People have to decide for themselves.”

If the bond doesn’t pass, the rest of the county will be stuck with the current aging SCRAPS building increasingly insufficient for the county’s needs.

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