Friday, March 23, 2012

Cats, Cops, & The Bomb Squad

Most people know that I harp on the financial drain that the no-kill movement and laws like CAPA have placed on all shelters, including even their own no-kill shelters. In a recent news story on the front page of the Delaware State News, the costs of CAPA were also discussed. The story discusses the bleak financial picture CAPA has created for the Kent County SPCA, and their struggle to live in a post CAPA world. Yes there was a $450,000 deficit for this shelter in the first year according to the article, but I want to instead focus on yet another ridiculous side effect of this law today. The following quote is from that story:
"The shelter is also concerned with cat control. As it currently stands the SPCA is not responsible for cats, but they’re a huge problem.

Mr. Usilton cited a recent case in New Castle County, where a crate of cats was dropped off outside a Mc­Donald’s, but nobody would come and pick them up. After repeated phone calls to animal control au­thorities and being denied, someone called in a suspicious package threat — bringing out multiple police units and the bomb squad."
This is what things have come to in Delaware as a result of CAPA.  No one will take in cats because the shelters are full, so now we are wasting taxpayer dollars to call out police units and the bomb quad for one crate of cats. What a ridiculous waste of taxpayer funds, and who knows what kind of collateral damage may have occurred if a crime was taking place elsewhere that these officers could have been responding to.  I'm surprised that our state hasn't earned a starring role on Anderson Cooper's Ridiculist for this one.

Since we no longer have an open access shelter for cats since Kent County SPCA was bullied out of staying open access to them, and because of the financial burden that this new law placed on them.  There is nobody that will accept cats other than being placed on a waiting list.  That means this year alone there will be at least an additional 5-6000 cats and their resulting offspring roaming the streets and neighborhoods in Delaware.  I assume the cats in the story above were not harmed or blown up by the bomb squad since it only made the news as a side note, but I shudder to think of what might be happening to other cats dropped off in locations where there might not be anyone to rescue them, or even worse. 

But I do want to review the list of players to show the taxpayer costs that won't be seen in the shelter financials.  There's been the various agencies asked to investigate alleged CAPA violations  - Dept. of Agriculture, the Governor's office, various legislators, county officials, the State Attorney General office, and that was just for one dog.  Now we have multiple police units and the bomb squad for a crate of cats.  I can't imagine what's next for us.  Well, at least there's consolation in the fact that other states like New York and Florida get a realistic look before they consider leaping into CAPA, or it's derivatives like CAARA and FARA. So much for for sweeping and progressive

Next time maybe the press should get a group picture of the bomb squad, police and the cats to commemorate the spending of thousands of dollars of taxpayer's money. I'm sure the movement that brought us CAPA would post the pic with a story about how it cost taxpayers less money for the bomb squad than for an animal control officer, and the kicker is his followers would buy it. 

2 comments:

  1. This story is an example of what happens when resources exceed income... This rescue meant well but due to circumstances that they could not correct or comply with, they have to shut down.... One group in DE that has not even opened yet is over their head already.... Interestingly enough, they have the financial resources but NO CLUE on animal care management... Getting the popcorn ready for the next 'show'.....

    http://spartaindependent.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20120327/NEWS01/120329968/0/FRONTPAGE/Rescue-cats-in-need-of-rescue

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  2. Ally, you have that right. They try to claim it's just about getting more volunteers and doing the work, but it takes food, veterinary care, medications, all of which require money. Like you said, it takes resources.

    I know what you mean about the next "show". You should take a look at the resources in that case. They posted their 2011 financials on their site, and if you take out the bequest, which most financial people would consider a one time item which is earmarked for specific use, then there was only a little over $200,000 in donations and event income to operate with. That is basically enough to pay for the loan payments on the bldg and the director salary. It will be curious to see how they pay the new employees. I certainly hope that none of those people left decent jobs.

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