County needs to pay its share of animal costs

Published 7:07 pm Friday, October 14, 2011

The Decatur County Commission neglected its duty to serve the people of the county, when it failed to approve additional funding for the Bainbridge-Decatur County Humane Society to maintain and operate the animal shelter Tuesday.

The population of the county is approximately 28,000, and approximately 12,000 of those citizens live within the Bainbridge city limits. That leaves another 16,000 living outside the city jurisdiction, and whose animals would be picked up by the Decatur County animal control officers.

Simply looking at raw numbers, the City of Bainbridge pays $80,000 a year while Decatur County has only allocated $40,000 a year. While it is fair to say that the city probably has a higher number of stray animals due to its densely-populated area, it’s not likely that number is twice as high.

Email newsletter signup

The $50,000 a year compromise offer was more than fair, and Decatur County’s commissioners should have been able to agree to it. It’s simply not right that the Humane Society has to use much of its fundraising money to subsidize the county’s animal control, a service that should be paid for with taxpayer dollars.

If Decatur County is going to keep an animal control ordinance on the books, then it needs to be willing to help pay for that ordinance’s enforcement.