Showing posts with label Outrageous. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Outrageous. Show all posts

Monday, January 27, 2014

Gloucester, VA Animal Control Costs Still At About $600.00 Per Incarcerated Doggie

On January 6th, 2014 we did a  story on the outrageous costs we are paying here in the county for Animal Control and how it is costing us about $600.00 per doggie or kitty caught, which takes about two days per animal, and compared that to how one can call an ambulance to save a life at an average cost of about $400.00.

The above is an internal link to that story here on this site.

Here are the latest figures from the county as reported in the Gloucester Mathews Gazette Journal.  We have to get the information from them because the Animal Control department seems incapable of keeping it's own figures up to date on their web page.  The last entry they have is from 2011.

  The month of December, 2013, calls were down from last year, 237 for 2013 compared to 300 the year before.  43 lost dogs were reported, 41 general inquiries, 37 residents responding to correspondence, 35 stray dogs 13 cruelty cases, (May have been filed against one owner of anywhere from 1 to 6 animals), and 11 cat cases.  What these numbers say?  Nothing other than the secretary answered some phone calls and letters in between filing...... her nails.  It says nothing about how many calls Animal Control officers responded to.  Gee, was this by design?

  The only definitive information that was in the story was that Animal Control officers racked up a hefty 67.5 hours of overtime for the month by going out after hours during the week and calls on the weekend.  This we can only imagine that a good bit of it is above their monthly budgeted payroll plan.  We have to assume that there is some money held in the budget for OT for nights and weekend calls.

  This department is already obviously heavily bloated with way too much personnel that has shown over and over again to not even be capable of following it's own ordinances they are supposed to enforce.  The latest is Animal Control Officer Jeff Stihlman driving down Main Street while playing with his cell phone.  Was he texting?  This was early this morning, January 27th, 2014.  If the county is not looking to cut this department substantially, then we have a serious suggestion for at least ensuring that there will by no further OT expenses.

  There are 3 full time Animal Control officers and one part time Animal Control officer along with one full time secretary.  Why are these people all working a first shift, Monday through Friday if there are calls being answered during the weekday evenings and also on weekends?  Why not run multiple shifts and also incorporate a weekend shift?  This gets rid of the potential for the ridiculous overtime these folks like to rack up.  Put the keystone cops, err.....Animal Control officers to work in a much improved working environment for serving the county if we are going to keep this bloated expense to the taxpayers.  $600.00 per doggie caught and incarcerated?  Really?  The county can't do better than that?

  $400.00 to save a life but $600.00 to put a doggie in doggie jail and it takes two days per doggie?    $600.00 per animal handled for November, 2013 and about the same for December, 2013.  $600.00.  Can anyone think of anything better to do with $600.00?  How much food would that put on your table?  How much gas would that buy?  For some, $600.00 pays their mortgage.  $600.00 would pay a good amount of bills that keep piling up.  How much dog food would $600.00 buy?  How much cat food would $600.00 buy?  Come on folks, these people are costing us all a small fortune and for what?  We do not need these bloated costs and no human lives are being saved?
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Monday, January 6, 2014

Gloucester, VA County Services Outrageous Costs, $600 Per Cat and Dog In November

Exposing Some of The Outrageous Costs of Gloucester County, Virginia's Government Services:  $600.00 Per Dog and Cat Picked Up In November, 2013. 

According to the figures reported in the Gloucester Mathews Gazette Journal newspaper this past week, Gloucester's Animal Control picked up 41 stray dogs and 6 stray cats during the month of November, 2013.  The latest figures just released to the paper from county officials.  So we decided to see what that translates to as far as the cost per animal incarcerated by these over glorified doggie catchers.  What we came up with was a staggering figure of nearly $600.00 per cat and dog handled by Animal Control for the month of November.

$600.00 Per Cat And Dog To Be Incarcerated As Opposed To $400.00 To Save A Human Life In Gloucester County, Virginia: 

To qualify the above figures, what we did is look at the yearly budget for Animal Control.  We then broke that down by 12 months to come up with a figure of $28,021.00 for one month and then divided that by the number of animals caught and incarcerated.  41 stray dogs and 6 cats.  The final number there came to a staggering $596.20 per animal.  We compared that to what it costs to save a human life by calling an ambulance.  

  Coming up with a figure for an ambulance was a bit tougher and required more work.  In Gloucester, the ambulance ride is supposed to be free as it is county funded through tax dollars and there are no figures to break that down.  So we went through various counties and cities within Hampton Roads and the Middle Peninsula to come up with an upper end figure of about $400.00.  

  Maybe Gloucester County officials should start looking at our emergency response for clues on how to better budget the over glorified doggie catchers.  If they use ambulances, then at least they could transport the animals in accordance with county ordinances.  (You can not transport an animal in a vehicle when the temperature is 80 degrees or above without air conditioning.  An ordinance that is in violation with state codes from what we have reviewed, but the county refuses to follow their own ordinances when transporting animals.  Yet you can leave Grandma in a car when the temperature is 110 degrees without air conditioning and that is just fine.  Just call an ambulance when she passes out.)

(Air Gap Between Truck Front and Truck Bed of Animal Control Vehicles in Gloucester County.  No Air Conditioning Provided for Animals in transport).

  Also, we calculated the time it took to incarcerate an animal.  It was about 16 hours per animal based on the number of animals handled and man hours on the payroll of Animal Control.  It looks like we need a much better plan.  

  Maybe the county should look at a bounty payment plan instead.  Bring in a stray for a bounty of $200.00 would be much cheaper.   Either way, why does it cost more to incarcerate an animal than to save a human life?

 Next time you see a stray dog or cat remember that if you call to have the animal picked up, it's at a cost of about $600.00 to the taxpayers of the county.  But you can save a human life for two thirds that cost.  Does anyone find that outrageous?
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