With the split vote approval of the Greenbrier Humane Society’s contract for fiscal year 2018-2019 at the May 10, 2018 meeting, the county commission, once again, reflected on the volume of stray animals housed at the animal shelter and the costs to the county paid to the Humane Society.
While it is evident the Humane Society is “doing a great job,” the state code requires the county to only account for the dogs brought in by the animal control officer.
Before the vote, Commissioner Mike McClung offered a review of the history of the commission’s former commitments to many nonprofit service organizations, which used to receive support through the coal severance monies. Those funds no longer are available, he said, and those organizations no longer receive support from the county.
“Last year 167 dogs were brought in by the animal control officer and were put up by the animal shelter at a cost of $200,000,’’ said Commissioner Mike McClung. “They could be put up at The Greenbrier for less, or at the regional jail for that matter. My only gripe is we stop [helping dogs] and instead help organizations that help people. That’s always been my only complaint.”
Commissioner Woody Hanna recalled his former stint as commissioner when there was no animal shelter run by the county, and was instead handled by a local veterinarian. “It was a mess,” Hanna declared. It was during that time that land for the construction of a shelter was donated to the county, and the Humane Society took up the management for the shelter. “Their adopt/spay/neuter program is great,” which, he said, “is a service the citizens expect of the commission.’’
Commissioner Lowell Rose proposed striking references to stray cats in the contract, which the county is not legally responsible to catch. The vote on the amended motion to approve the Humane Society’s contract was 2-1, with McClung opposing.
In other business:
- The commission approved a $45,000 Small Cities Block Grant draw request for the PSD#2 Sam Black water line extension, presented by Leslie Taylor.
- Melissa Scott was approved as a program assistant new hire for the 4-H extension office.
- The delinquent Real Estate Tax List was approved for publication.
- The security contract renewal for the courthouse with Mason & Barry was also approved.
Commission President Hanna congratulated Tammy Shifflett Tincher on her successful bid for county commissioner. He said he will aid in her transition as soon as possible with the transferal of files from his computer to make her aware of what’s going on.
“It’s been an honor and a pleasure to serve on the county commission,’’ he said. “I want to thank the citizens of Greenbrier County and I am humbled to occupy a seat on the commission.” Hanna will continue to serve as president of the commission until the end of the year.