The Bradley County Animal Control Committee, which met Tuesday, will be asking for letters of intent from potential partners to reinforce comments made both by Ark of Cleveland and the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Bradley County that they would partner with other community organizations to keep costs low.
Whichever group is chosen will be operating as a 501(c)(3) and not as a government department.
Committee member Bill Winters said he worried that if additional grants did not come through, the nonprofit shelter would not be sustainable. Committee chair Charlotte Peak-Jones said the Commission would not be obligated to provide further funding if additional grants do not come through.
The committee also wanted to know how the groups determined the number they were asking for as the county’s donation. The Ark of Cleveland asked $240,000 in its proposal.
“My concern with that number is it wasn’t internally developed. It wasn’t them taking their operations and their people and predicting out through a pro forma (budget) what it would be to actually deliver that service. It was externally kind of developed, which tells me there was not a whole lot of internal thought on how that was going to shake out,” said 4th District Commissioner J. Adam Lowe.
Lowe said he felt the SPCA had given more thought to its number. Yet, he felt the organization might be putting too much faith in their ability to run on bare essentials for awhile.
He wants a list of costs for the first year used to develop the amount of money being requested. Winters also wanted to ask the organizations if donation requests were negotiable.
Speculation was voiced in whether the city of Cleveland would want to partner for the nonprofit. Lowe said this was not within “the scope of the committee.” Committee member Mark Hall said he hopes the nonprofit shelter will be so successful the city will want to be a part.
Winters said he had talked to the local veterinarians’ association and would like a list of veterinarians who could provide spay and neuter services to be provided at the shelter. The association also wanted the committee to ask for the organization’s definition of being a no-kill shelter. Lowe sad this was a matter of policy and would not be up to the Commission to decide.
Peak-Jones said the SPCA plan does do this.