Thursday, July 14, 2011

Civera & the SPCA

If you missed last night’s “Live From the Newsroom” with County Councilman Mario Civera, you missed a couple of important updates concering the county’s new deal with the SPCA to continue animal control services for another six months.

You can watch the replay here.

First things first. Civera deserves credit for getting this extension deal done. Responsibility for animal control is the province of the state and municipality, so the county is not even on the hook for what most admitted was a disaster in the making on July 1.

But he was smart enough to see a big problem and went about working on a solution.

Getting there wasn’t easy, but he was able to pull it off at the last second.

It’s not cheap, either. Civera admits he now has a better feel for what the SPCA was doing for so many years, basically underwriting the municipalities when it comes to animal control. Under the new extension, the county will chip in $125 for every stray, and the municipalities will be on the hook for another $116. That’s $241 bucks per animal.

Expensive? Not when compared to the prices that private industry are paying.

Civera also wants to make it clear that while the county is taking the lead in getting a new shelter up and running on a tract owned by the Darby Creek Joint Authority next to the county Emergency Services Training Center off Hook Road, it has no intention of taking over animal control in the county. What they want to do is get a shelter up and running, set up a non-profit to oversee the operation and bring in another non-profit to run it. Civera says the county has had some interest from outside groups, even after seeing the first group to come forward back away.

Finally, Civera wants everyone to understand that this is a one-time deal. He stressed that the SPCA made it very clear that they will not extend this deal again. The county needs to get that shelter up and running.

Should the holidays roll around and the shelter not be ready to roll, Civera does not think the SPCA will be in the mood to talk about another extension.

The clock is ticking.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

why would they give another extension. i feel the spca has gone above and beyond helping the county..

July 14, 2011 at 8:06 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I do not understand how Mr. Civera intends to have a new non-profit operate the County's built shelter at a cost less than the SPCA incurred and still operate. If the SPCA could not make it financially feasible, how can we expect that a newly formed non-profit structure can do so? While I applaud his efforts in getting the extension of time for the County shelter up and operating later this year, the real question is what is the short-, mid-, and long-term plan? A new building at a new location will be hard pressed to reduce costs. The only difference which is evident thus far is that the SPCA will now be a No-Kill shelter whereas there is no such statement regarding the new facility in Folcroft.

July 17, 2011 at 8:45 PM 

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