Animal control vote set tonight
by JOYANNA LOVE Banner Staff Writer
Sep 10, 2013 | 899 views | 0 0 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Bradley County Commission will vote on the recommendation of the animal control ad hoc committee this evening.

Commissioners will meet for a special voting session to consider approving a $75,000 three-month contract or a $120,000 six-month contract with the city for animal control. Each option includes pickup of county animals.

These options come to the Bradley County Commission and the Cleveland City Council as a recommendation from the joint animal control ad hoc committee.

The short-term contract is meant to provide an immediate solution while the Commission decides what it wants to do.

How approving funding for a short-term solution would affect funding for long-term resolution of the issue was discussed during a work session Monday.

“If we do the six-month option, is that going to affect the funds we have available further along in the process?” asked 2nd District Commissioner Connie Wilson.

The current Bradley County budget allocates $180,000 to rabies/animal control.

“If we go with one option, we have more money left. If we go with the other option, we would still have $60,000 left,” Elkins said.

Bradley County Mayor D. Gary Davis said the county has made a request for proposals from nonprofits wanting to provide animal services for county animals.

Davis said he knew of at least two groups that want to present long-term solutions to the Commission.

“These organizations are truly caring organizations on this subject, and they want to provide this,” Davis said. “That way the people who are truly the ones concerned about it are the ones taking care of it all.”

The mayor chose to put out a request for official proposals in case there are others who would like to present. The proposals are due Thursday.

Fourth District Commissioner J. Adam Lowe suggested the Commission consider offering “a challenge grant” to help such a facility get started.

In the past, Lowe had said he was in favor of letting those in nonprofits passionate about animals fill the need for a shelter open to animals from outside the city limits.

While nothing official has been said by the Commission, 5th District Commissioner Jeff Yarber asked if the community corrections building was being considered.

Davis said some of the groups had discussed using the building.

Yarber questioned what would happen to community corrections if the building was used for a nonprofit animal shelter to serve animals outside the city limits.

Davis said he would be able to find another place for the department.

He said the building is more of a garage, and is used to store lawn mowers.

If a nonprofit route is taken, the Commission would most likely make an annual donation to the organization. Several county nonprofits receive donations from the county on an annual basis.

Also, during the meeting Monday, Yarber placed a rezoning request for property near Durkee Road be rezoned Commercial on the agenda for its next voting session. The rezoning was denied by the planning commission.