Archive for September, 2011|Monthly archive page

IACC Budget Cut Attention

Wednesday, September 14th, 2011

The proposed budget cut for IACC by the public safety committee has drawn a great deal of attention from the animal welfare community.
The response is hard to ignore. Consider:

1. Monica North, who pens for the Examiner, “The animals of Indianapolis need you to be their voice” is the first journalist to get this right:

“If animals are deemed not adoptable for any reason (including a minor illness) or if space is needed for incoming animals, then they kill animals to make space.”

http://www.examiner.com/pet-rescue-in-indianapolis/the-animals-of-indianapolis-need-you-to-be-their-voice?CID=examiner_alerts_article

Ms North is very clear about this. They do not “put down.” They do not “euthanize.” They do not “put to sleep.” They (the city – with your tax dollar) kill animals for space.

The Humane Society of Indianapolis and the administration at IACC need to get this right: ADOPTABLE ANIMALS ARE KILLED FOR SPACE.

Why, at the 11th hour of a budget cut, is attention about what goes on (or not) at IACC just now coming to the attention of the public and the councillors? Maybe it’s because the self-delusion has coddled all with the “gently put to sleep” lullabye that is perpetuated by these agencies’ rhetoric. Get rid of these euphemisms. It’s time for adult conversation.

2. Congratulations to the animal welfare community (that generally remains self-restrained) for coming forward to address face-to-face the public safety committee tonight (09/14/11) about the embarrassing deficiency of the proposed IACC budget, those who proposed it and completely eliminated from the equation the IACC administrator.

Do the people responsible for this budget proposal need to be retired to the private sector?

Addendum 09/15/11

Animal Lovers Fight Indy Budget Cuts

Reporter Kara Kenney and anchor Todd Conner dismiss the euphemism “euthanize” and use accurate vocabulary in reporting the deaths of adoptable animals at Indianapolis Animal Care and Control.

http://www.theindychannel.com/news/29188753/detail.html

“Thumbs up” to North, Kenney and Conner

Indianapolis Animal Care and Control and Tax Dollars

Thursday, September 1st, 2011

August 31, 2011

Dear Mayor Ballard, Safety Director Straub and Councillors,

Like all taxpayers, I appreciate a responsible public servant. Mayor Ballard, responsible use of tax dollars was a key part of your campaign. I know, because I worked for your campaign. During that time, I shared with you a proactive spay/neuter plan that could improve effective use of tax dollars at Indianapolis Animal Care & Control. You told me “If I become mayor, I’ll look into that.” “WHEN you become mayor,” I replied.

But almost four years later, nothing has changed for IACC. Many of us taxpayers are disappointed to see that mortar and brick and no-bid city contracts seem to have become the order of the day — again. We are saddened to see that public money can be found for a North/South (City Way) project ($98M), $33,5M for professional basketball, $12M for renovation of Georgia Street in anticipation of the Super Bowl, and a major renovation of a public safety director’s office, complete with an elite personal security force — yet IACC continues to lack the funds to even maintain adequate sanitation. And earlier this year, it was discovered that $54K of donations made by private citizens to aid desperately underfunded IACC somehow disappeared into the general fund. To date I have not heard that this badly needed money has been delivered to the division to which donors specifically designated it.

I realize that professional sports and street improvements bring money into our city. But surely, if funds can be found for heated sidewalks to enhance the comfort of Super Bowl visitors, a much smaller amount of money could be found to bring the ventilation system at IACC up to code and provide a tolerable environment for homeless animals and the dedicated, hardworking people who labor every day in deplorable, depressing conditions to help them?

As conditions at IACC deteriorate, the more it is costing taxpayers to solve the problem.

At present:
• IACC’s building at 2600 South Harding Street has an antiquated HVAC system that is very effective at transmitting airborne disease.
• It has no structural isolation areas to separate incoming animals from those who are ill.
• Many of the private not-for-profit “Rescue Partners” (http://www.indy.gov/eGov/City/DPS/ACCD/Community/Pages/RescuePartners.aspx)
that pull animals from IACC to reduce the ever-growing death toll are offering their help to other city animal shelters instead, because the cost to treat these diseases has become prohibitive for their limited treasuries. Hundreds of thousands of private dollars are spent by these organizations treating the animals. Private citizens attempting to do good by adopting from IACC are also burdened with these veterinary expenses.
• Local veterinarians are expressing reluctance to accept animals from IACC because of these resistant, infectious diseases the animals bring to their practices.
• Wonderful, dedicated personnel who were once enthusiastic are now frustrated, depressed and demoralized.

The public does not want its tax dollars used recklessly, nor does it want them used to kill healthy, adoptable dogs and cats. Mr. Mayor, Safety Director Straub, and members of the City-County Council, you can change this situation. To do so would win the respect of a group of voters who are, at present, very disillusioned.

There are many ways in which tax dollars are spent to improve the quality of life in our community. To provide an acceptable, safe and clean facility where homeless companion animals can be cared for and adopted would cost a mere fraction of the amount spent on major downtown renovation, bike lanes and other improvements, but it would show that Indianapolis regards all living things worthy of decent and humane treatment. And it would be a solid investment in another part of the city’s infrastructure.

A world class city is more than sidewalks and sports stadiums. It also demands that all city services be efficiently and effectively maintained.

Respectfully,

Warren Patitz